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Last Updated: Thursday April 14 2011 13:05 GMT

SPACE: Life on board the International Space Station!

International Space Station

Ever wondered what it's like aboard the International Space Station? Are the astronauts' rooms tidier than yours? Take a look at our guide to find out...


The space station is made up of lots of different bits which can be added or taken away. The top part is called Progress and is where all the fuel and food is kept.


The cylinder in the bottom right is Kibo and the astronauts use it as their porch to carry out outside experiments. Kibo is from Japan and is the biggest module on the station.

Robotic arm

When carrying out experiments astronauts also use robotic arms, like this one. They're really important in helping the station work and moving different bits of it around.

Astronaut in Columbus

The areas of the station are donated by different countries. The Columbus lab was given by the European Space Agency and is directly linked to a lab in Germany!

Astronaut in Destiny

Destiny is an American space lab. It is one of the few parts of the station with a window so that the crew can take awesome pictures of the view!


Soyuz is a Russian space capsule. There's always one docked at the station as it's the astronauts' emergency escape unit. It takes about three and a half hours to get back to Earth.

Solar panels

The space station runs on solar power. It has four big sets of solar panels. The eight solar arrays make 84 kilowatts - the crews laptops use between 15 and 45 watts.

Crew living quarters

Astronauts stay in the Zvezda module. It's pretty cosy and has a mini kitchen, bathroom and even an exercise bike!

Astronaut in an airlock

Before the crew can go out on spacewalks they have to enter an airlock to make sure that no air gets let out of the station.