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Explore the ISS


Look into the sky at dawn or dusk. You might see the International Space Station (ISS). It is 250 miles above you. But you can see its solar panels catch the sunlight.

The ISS is a space laboratory. It orbits the Earth at high speed. In 24 hours, it goes around the planet 16 times.

In the past 20 years, about 240 astronauts have traveled to the space station. They’re from 19 countries. Six astronauts are on board at a time. They do science experiments that can’t be done on Earth.

The living and working area is about the size of a six-bedroom house. The space station itself is as long as a football field. The diagram below tells you about some of its key parts.