Space station observatory gazes at Earth

Space station observatory gazes at Earth

Summary: The six windows of the International Space Station's cupola observation deck provide stunning panoramic views of Earth

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TOPICS: After Hours
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  • Cupola image

    The International Space Station (ISS) opened its cupola observation deck in February, providing breathtaking views of the Earth.

    The six windows of the cupola are fitted with shields to protect them from space debris. The observation deck provides 360° views of the station, enabling the crew to direct operations outside the space station.

    Astronauts removed insulating blankets on the cupola from the space shuttle Endeavour on 17 February.

    Photo credit: Nasa

  • Europe at night image

    In November, the ISS celebrated 10 years in service. It has been continuously inhabited by humans since November 2000. More than 200 orbiting explorers have visited the space complex, 15 nations have contributed to the missions, and more than 600 experiments have been carried out on board.

    The view above, taken on 28 October, shows Italy and the Mediterranean Sea at night. Parts of a docked Russian spacecraft are visible in the foreground.

    Photo credit: Nasa

Topic: After Hours

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