Hard Sci-Fi: Living on Orbit
Hi guys,

This  weekend update will take you aboard the International Space Station  nowadays. The station, as well as its design, space engineering  technologies, the knowledge we (I imply, humanity) have collected from  our studies aboard – all that is intended to provide a robust scientific  basement to the Daedalus, it’s storytelling, environment and  atmosphere. 

There will be a decent amount of links on thrilling  and learning videos in this modest update. Albeit, I am sure, you’ll get  closer to the reality of space/stars/planets after watching them :)

ISS TOUR

Ever wanted to utilize ISS’ cameras live and meditate on Earth view from space?

Not a problem. 

After 2014 you don’t even need to work in Mission Control Center to get the access.  Just use the High Definition Earth-Viewing System  (HDEV) from you PC/MAC/pad. The High Definition Earth Viewing (HDEV)  experiment aboard the ISS was activated April 30, 2014. It is mounted on  the External Payload Facility of the European Space Agency’s Columbus  module. This experiment includes several commercial HD video cameras  aimed at the Earth which are enclosed in a pressurized and temperature  controlled housing. While the experiment is operational, views will  typically sequence through the different cameras. Between camera  switches, a gray and then black color slate will briefly appear. 

Sometimes I look back to Jules Verne’s "Around the Moon"  I read in childhood, and get amazed by that now we just can to feed a  pet, slack in armchair and observe our planet from space in a couple  clicks, or to browse fresh photos from Mars. Nowadays it’s even sounds  like something from Instagram, like “my breakfast; my dog; oh, it’s me  in Walmart; it’s me in Walmart on Mars...” 

The future is here.

Want to turn you own PC/MAC into Space Center Houston?

Not a problem. 

See the same the astronauts aboard the ISS see right now: LINK

Keep the ground track of the ISS´s orbit: LINK

Connect even more live streams form the ISS: LINK.

Want to browse inside the ISS and check its every corner yourself?

Not a problem.

I  personally regard all space agencies in the world like one of the best  representation of the humanity’s light side. The collaboration between  people working there erases all international borders invented by  politics; the bravery of the geeks on the frontier between common and  future is their watch (heh, “Space Watch” ?) moves us toward the stars  we came from. 

One of such cool projects of transparency and  collaboration is the interactive ISS Virtual Tour that allows you to  explore the ISS yourself: LINK.

For even more tours aboard the ISS, I’d recommend you to check that concise NASA’s page: LINK.

I  bet, now you can see even better how hard sci-fi view/approach on  spaceship design and interior design is different from popular sci-fi  and cosmic opera genre. 

LIVING ON ORBIT

As you might know astronauts Scott Kelly (NASA) and Mikhail Kornienko (Roscosmos) returned this year (March 2) to Earth after a historic 340-day mission aboard the International Space Station

During  the whole mission they recorded various videos from the beginning of  preparations, through the like on orbit, up to landing back to Earth.  Their videos influenced the concept of the Daedalus a lot, as  well as they expanded my mind, erudition and purview. Beyond that, they  are really cool and thrilling if you dig sci-fi space stuff. 

There  are two main channels of records, two point of views, that was made by  Scott and Mikhail. In this update I feel like to share links on  Mikhail’s video records (with subtitles) because... well, I personally,  found their more intimate and informal. Based on my own experience in  Mission Control Center, I can assume, those record by Mikhail were made  not for Times or PR but just like “Hey, Mikhail, here. Take that cam.  We need to record a video for our YouTube channel... I dunno why.  *shrug* Now everyone keep YouTube channels.  *shrug* Just about anything  you feel like to. I’ll google about curious scoops and drop them  through Skype when you’re aboard the station. *shrug* Just, take the  cam, Mikhail” :)

A Year in Space:

Let's Go!
Our Common Home.
Out of This World Delivery.
Space Food.
Man overboard.
Special Edition. Outer Space.
Road to the Moon.
Happy New Year From Space.
Workout In Space.
View From Space Station.
The Earth Is Calling.
For The Sake Of Science.
Space Station Utilities.
Returning to Earth.
Next Stop: Mars.
Landing.
Aftermath.

And btw, about the subtitles and Russian language in spase...

Do foreign astronauts have to be able to speak Russian?

That might sound crazy for people outside the industry but Yes.

You might think, why teach Russian to astronauts, if everybody speaks English anyway? 

The fact is the working language at the ISS  is English, indeed, but all the crews are now delivered to the station  by a Russian ships (since the end of the Space Shuttle program, Soyuz is  the only spacecraft used to carry astronauts to orbit). 

Nowadays  each crew has three people - one Russian, one American (who sits in the  left seat of Soyuz during ascent into orbit) and another crew member,  for instance a space tourist (who sits in the right seat) or a payload  specialist like Lia Medvedeva. The commander of Soyuz is always Russian,  while the foreign astronaut becomes the commander of the ISS.

The  astronaut who is in the left seat is the right hand of the commander  and duplicates all the commander’s operations during the ascent, from  lift-off until docking with the ISS. The astronaut in the left  seat should communicate in Russian for the entire six hours, since the  Mission Control Center gives commands in Russian, and an interpreter  simply would not have time to translate it all.

Usually, American  astronauts come to Star City (the place for spec preparations) after  being assigned to a crew and after passing an ACTFL  test, the American system according to which the astronaut in the left  seat should speak the Russian language at a level no lower than  Intermediate High.

On arrival at Star City, astronauts learn not just the Russian language, but the specialty language - the "language of the astronaut."  For the astronaut in the left seat (the flight engineer) it is four  hours a week. For an astronaut in the right seat it is two hours per  week.

The language level requirements for space tourists and  payload specialist are lighter. This is social sphere, specifically a  basic level of knowledge of the Russian language and the ability to meet  the minimum needs of communication. They train for only six months and  get only about 250 hours of the Russian language. As for special terms,  we first introduce simple words – "on-off," "press." Word combinations –  "check the leakage," "equalize the pressure," "hold the handle" – are  introduced in the last two months of training.

* * *

Though, while I toiled on the space industry forecasting for the After Reset universe, I came to decision that by the time of the DSS  construction all of the modules and subsystems on the station (despite  the origin of its USPN’s parts) must have English markings as the basis,  though they might have spare markings in language of origin. Especially  those early Nodes from times of the first staged of construction in  2089. 

Well, I bet, that decent update will take time to study and  enjoy. Feel free to comment in case. Have a good family weekend and see  you next week with some other tasty content.

Thanks for backing/rooting/liking/sharing!

Sincerely,
Richard.