ISS Research Projects

Image (Credit): International Space Station. (NASA)

Have you ever wondered about all of the scientific projects, past and present, on the International Space Station (ISS)? Quite a bit has happened onboard the station since it was first occupied back in November 2000.

Fortunately, NASA maintains an inventory of all of these projects. The Space Station Research Explorer provides information on all of the experiments, separated into six categories:

  • Biology and Biotechnology;
  • Earth and Space Science;
  • Educational Activities;
  • Human Research;
  • Physical science; and
  • Technology.

For instance, back in 2017 the station supported an experiment under “Earth and Space Science” titled ASTERIA:

The Arcsecond Space Telescope Enabling Research in Astrophysics (ASTERIA) is a six-unit (6U) CubeSat deployed from the International Space Station (ISS) that tests new technologies for astronomical observation, such as the detection of planets outside our solar system (a.k.a., exoplanets). Observing exoplanets requires repeated observation of stars over a long period of time from a dark environment, so that the small shadow of an orbiting planet can be detected passing through the star’s light. ASTERIA uses advanced pointing control technology, new thermal stabilization features, and the scalable CubeSat-platform to perform these complex measurements.

Some projects still lack information. These incomplete projects tend to be sponsored by ROSCOSMOS, though the Russian space agency has plenty of complete projects as well.

Poke around and see what you can find.