International Space Station marks 15 years inhabited by astronauts

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Monday 2 November marked 15 years since astronauts began living on board the International Space Station.

The International Space Station (ISS) was launched back in 1998, but it was another two years before astronauts went to live there.

Since then, there has always been someone staying at the station up in space.

The ISS has become an important place to carry out tests and research that will help future space missions to places like the Moon and Mars.

Here is some facts about ISS:

  • It is about 115 metres long, that is just a bit bigger than a rugby field.
  • It travels at about 29,000km/hr!!! So it orbits the earth every 90 minutes.
  • 220 people from 17 different countries have visited the ISS since it launched.
  • It has 2 bathrooms on board! There’s also a gym!
  • 52 computers control all the systems on the station.
  • The space station weighs about 420,000kg – that’s about the same as 320 cars.
  • ISS is about 400km from Earth.
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