Monday, May 17, 2010

NASA, Collier Trophy, and the International Space Station

"NASA's International Space Station Program Wins Collier Trophy"
International Space Station, NASA (May 13, 2010)

Before someone has a stroke, the International Space Station is just that: international, involving five space agencies and 15 countries. That link is to a page on the NASA website, about the ISS.

(from NASA, used w/o permission)
"...The International Space Station is featured in this image photographed by an STS-131 crew member on space shuttle Discovery after the station and shuttle began their post-undocking relative separation. Credit: NASA"

"The International Space Station Program received the 2009 Robert J. Collier Trophy 'for the design, development and assembly of the of the world’s largest spacecraft, an orbiting laboratory that promises new discoveries for mankind and sets new standards for international cooperation in space.' The National Aeronautic Association (NAA) bestows the award annually to recognize the greatest achievement in aeronautics or astronautics in America. The Collier Trophy was formally presented at the Annual Collier Dinner on Thursday, May 13, in Arlington, Va...."

I think the ISS is a pretty big deal. The space agencies involved are:
  • Canadian Space Agency
  • European Space Agency
  • Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency
  • NASA
  • Russian Federal Space Agency
The ISS has been up for almost 10 years, has almost 150 experiments in progress and has had over 400.

The folks who run this program have kept the station working and occupied since it first opened - so every day sets a new record for longest continuously-occupied habitat in space.

For now, anyway. We're on the edge of serious commercial and industrial development in space - but that's another topic.


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