ISS composition

The International Space Station (ISS) - the manned space station, used as a multipurpose space research facility. ISS - a joint international project, involving sixteen countries: Belgium, Brazil, Britain, Germany, Denmark, Spain, Italy, Canada, Netherlands, Norway, Russia, USA, France, Switzerland, Sweden, Japan.

The construction of the ISS began on 20 November, 1998 with the launch of the Functional Cargo Block Zarya. Now, the station consists of the following units:

ELC - an ExPRESS logistics carrier is an unpressurized attached payload platform for the ISS. It comprises four unpressurized platforms fixed at trusses 3 and 4. An ELC provides scientists with a platform and infrastructure for implementation of scientific experiments in vacuum. The platforms provide data processing and transmission of the results of experiments on high-speed channels towards the station.


The first long-term expedition to the ISS began on 31 October, 2000. The crew comprised William Shepherd, Yuri Gidzenko and Sergey Krikalev. During the 142 days space flight Expedition 1 crew performed wide scope of operations on activation and equipping of the ISS systems, service maintenance operations, and deployment of primary and auxiliary equipment. Service operations for two Progress cargo transfer vehicle were performed. Joint operation program with three visiting crews onboard space shuttle was performed. As a result, station was equipped with P6 truss, Destiny module, more than twenty tons of cargo and equipment were delivered onboard the station for crew life support and further station development. Wide scientific research and experiment program was successfully performed.

International nature of the ISS project promotes collaborative scientific experiments.