A new view from inside the International Space Station captures a dizzying number of experiments underway in orbit.
European Space Agency (ESA) project astronaut Marcus Wandt recently shared a photo he took while floating in the microgravity environment of the orbiting lab’s Destiny module. Destiny is the International Space Station‘s primary research laboratory and is therefore home to a wide range of experiments and studies.
In the photo, which Wandt shared on X (formerly Twitter) on Jan. 25, the walls of the Destiny module are lined with various pieces of equipment and cords strung about to keep all of the tools tethered. Wandt’s legs and feet can also be seen floating in the foreground of the photo due to the weightlessness astronauts experience inside the spacecraft.
The Destiny module has 24 equipment racks, which support various studies related to health, safety and humans’ quality of life. The space station offers researchers a unique opportunity to conduct experiments in the absence of gravity, thus allowing them to better understand humans and the world in which we live.
“An astronaut’s perspective,” Wandt wrote in the X post. “How does this photo make you feel: relaxed, stressed, giddy or wanting to rearrange everything?”
An astronaut’s perspective.How does this photo make you feel: relaxed, stressed, giddy or wanting to rearrange everything? 📸: @esa’s Columbus lab on the International @Space_Station. pic.twitter.com/1IjfOmYdclJanuary 25, 2024
Wandt launched to the space station on Jan. 18 as part of Axiom Space’s Mission 3 (Ax-3). Joined by mission specialist Alper Gezeravcı of Turkey, commander and former NASA astronaut Michael López-Alegría (who has dual U.S. and Spanish citizenship), and mission pilot and Italian Air Force Col. Walter Villadei, Ax-3 carries Axiom’s first all-European crew.
The four Ax-3 astronauts are living and working in orbit for up to two weeks. They are tasked with over 30 experiments spanning various fields in science and technology aimed at propelling advancements in human spaceflight and contributing to enhancing life on Earth.
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While some may see Wandt’s photo and think the inside of the module appears a bit cluttered without the force of gravity to hold all of the equipment neatly in place, others may feel relaxed by the idea of floating weightless through space. However, despite the apparent disorganization, astronauts are trained to maintain a high standard of cleanliness, to ensure the safety and functionality of the space station.
So, the question remains: How does this photo make you feel?