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Manual Launched As Space Agencies Consider More Missions

International Space Station Manual
02 October 2012
David Baker
Out Now

Haynes is also releasing a Lunar Rover Manual which will be released this November and is available upon request.

A fascinating insight into the International Space Station (ISS) will be published just as American and Russian space agencies consider re-launching private space missions.

The International Space Station Manual, from Haynes, will include previously unpublished NASA images from inside the biggest orbiting platform ever built for human habitation.

Dr David Baker, who wrote the Manual, worked with NASA on the Gemini, Apollo and Shuttle programmes between 1965 and 1990, and said: “Space tourists have paid up to £25 million each for the opportunity to go to the station, so it’s not something most of us can do. But I hope that this International Space Station Manual will give a real idea of life on board and what it is like to be there.”

The station is the size of a football pitch and can be seen with the naked eye from Earth, which it permanently orbits. Although the station has been continuously occupied since 2001, astronaut crews have normally spent no more than six months at a time on board.

However, NASA is now considering a year-long tour of duty for astronauts on the space station, beginning in 2015. If NASA increases its astronauts’ time on the station, this could create more opportunities for privately funded individuals to get a seat on the Russian Soyuz craft, which is currently the only way to travel to the station.

Dr Baker said: “What fascinates me most about the station is how work up there has directly benefited us here on Earth.”

For example, extensive research has been carried out into new materials and pharmaceutical products produced in the microgravity environment aboard the station, and much has been learned about the behaviour of materials in a near-weightless conditions.

Dr Baker said: “Lessons learned on the ISS will carry humans forward to the exploration of the Asteroids and Mars as well as establishing a permanent science base on the Moon. NASA is already developing the rockets and the spacecraft to make those journeys.”

The construction and operation of the station is followed chronologically through an account of every mission, from the first NASA missions to the ISS’s predecessor – the Russian space station Mir – in 1994, to the historic final Shuttle mission to the ISS in July 2011, and beyond.

The Author

Dr David Baker worked with NASA on the Gemini, Apollo and Shuttle programmes between 1965 and 1990. He has written more than 80 books on spaceflight technology and is also the author of the Haynes NASA Space Shuttle Manual. He lives in Sussex. International Space Station Manual

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