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# Connecting in space

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• 1. Educational Product National Aeronautics and Space Administration Educators Grades 5&#x2013;12 Educational Brief Connecting in Space: Docking With the International Space StationObjectivesStudents will demonstrate and identify procedures, selecting the best method to complete the docking activity.Students will identify Newton&#x2019;s Laws of Motion.Science Standards Materials (for each group of two)Science as Inquiry String, 4.6 metersPhysical Science Pencil, sharpened Motions and forces Tape Position and motion of objects Space Shuttle template Stand-off cross and docking ring templateMath Standards 2 small plastic cupsProblem Solving StrawCommunication ClayBackground Information wise axis of the vehicle. The yaw is the angular rotation movementThe International Space Station will provide a long-term orbital labo- about the heightwise axis of the vehicle. The Reaction Controlratory in which research in biology, chemistry, physics, and other sci- Systems are located in the nose and tail sections of the Spaceences will be conducted. With an approximate mass of 456,620 Shuttle. When the systems are activated, they are fired in a directionkilograms when it is complete, the International Space Station will be opposite to that which the Commander wishes to move. If thethe largest object humans have built in orbit. Forty-five space flights Commander wants to move to the left, he or she fires the Reactionare required to assemble this orbiting laboratory. These flights will Control System on the right, and if the desired movement is to theoccur over a 5-year period. right, the system is fired on the left. The Space Shuttle travels toward Mir with a force that is equal and opposite to the Reaction ControlThere are three phases to the development of the International Space System firings (Newton&#x2019;s Third Law).Station. Phase One encompasses U.S. participation in the RussianMir space station project. Having astronauts live aboard Mir with the YawRussian cosmonauts enables the United States to study the long-term effects of space on the human body and to practice procedures &#x2013; +that will be used on the International Space Station. Phase Two ofproduction for the International Space Station consists of the first +portion of assembly, while Phase Three is the second portion ofassembly. Pitch + Roll &#x2013; &#x2013;In order for the components, crews, and supplies to be delivered tothe International Space Station, a system needs to be in place that The Space Shuttle stops within 50 meters of Mir, which is approxi-allows the Space Shuttle to dock, or attach, to the structure. One mately one-half the length of a football field. From that position theprocedure practiced on Mir includes the docking techniques. After Space Shuttle waits for clearance from Mission Control to continue.the Space Shuttle is launched and once inserted into an initial orbit, When the command is given to continue, the Reaction Controlthe Commander uses the Orbital Maneuvering System to thrust the System is activated again and the Space Shuttle closes in on Mir at aSpace Shuttle from one orbit to another. Using the Orbital speed of about 0.05 meters per second until it reaches a distance ofManeuvering System and Reaction Control System, the Space about 9 meters. There, the Space Shuttle stops again and waits forShuttle is positioned approximately 110 meters below Mir. The approximately 5 minutes. The Commander and Pilot make sure theyReaction Control System is used to complete the approach of the can see the docking target clearly and fine-tune the alignment of theSpace Shuttle toward Mir. The Reaction Control System is used to Space Shuttle with the docking target. A large black cross called thechange speed, orbit, and attitude (pitch, roll, and yaw.) The pitch is Stand-off-Cross is mounted 30 centimeters (cm) above the backan angular rotation about an axis parallel to the widthwise axis of a plate in the center of the target. When the Commander has thevehicle. The roll is the angular rotation movement about the length- Stand-off Cross squarely in line with the docking target, he or sheEB-1998-07-126-HQEB-1998-27-126-HQ 1 Connecting in Space