STS-120: Departure  

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Uploaded: 11/06/07 7:58 PM GMT
STS-120: Departure
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The newly expanded ISS backdropped by a blue and white Earth, seen from the Space Shuttle Discovery as the two spacecraft begin their relative separation. Earlier the STS-120 and Expedition 16 crews concluded 11 days of cooperative work onboard the shuttle and station.

Credit: NASA/JPL.


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11/06/07 8:01 PM GMT
This is definitely the best shot of it I have seen. Do you know the dimensions of it Phil?
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11/06/07 8:17 PM GMT
It certainly is a striking shot; itís hard to imagine that it is hurtling around the planet at almost 20,000 miles per hour, performing a full circumnavigation in 90 minutes or less. There was another shot in the media archives taken a few minutes later but that was backdropped by a lot of mountainous terrain and the shape of the station was less distinct so I figured this was the better of the two.

Its current stats are a weight of about half a million pounds, internal pressurised space of roughly 14,000 cubic feet an array Ďwingí span of over 250 feet and the combined modules measuring 170 foot by 150 foot.

Considering that there have been many extended periods of inactivity building the station during the periods of the shuttle fleet being grounded, much has been achieved in a few short years....
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A smart bomb is only as clever as the idiot that tells it what to do
11/09/07 4:17 PM GMT
Wow its awesome.
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11/12/07 2:37 PM GMT
Really an impressive photo of an impressive international project, and I am grateful that you continue to post such images. Thanks!
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11/17/07 4:26 AM GMT
Is picture taken after the new solar panels were put up?
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I used to be an idealist, but I got mugged by reality.
04/09/08 8:34 PM GMT
With all those solar panels, they should have plenty of power. I still want someone to truthfully justify the ISS.
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04/10/08 11:06 AM GMT
Truthfully, there isnít much justification for it anymore other than itís nearly complete so it would be pointless not to complete it. In its original form then yes, it was a viable resource but with so many budgetary cuts Ė much of the really useful stuff and laboratory modules have been axed. Whilst construction is speeding up, itís still way behind schedule because of the various accidents and delays with the shuttle program. By the time it is complete it will only see around 5 years service under its current projected schedule. Doubtless that will be extended as it is planned to be a staging post for the future moon/mars missions but that will also rely on continuing support from ESA and their ATV supply solutions.
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A smart bomb is only as clever as the idiot that tells it what to do
08/06/08 7:08 PM GMT
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01/14/09 3:44 PM GMT
I not only appreciate the picture, but the information that continues with it. Great post.
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