Astronomy Picture of the Day

Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.

February 23, 1999
See Explanation.  Clicking on the picture will download 
 the highest resolution version available.

Construction of International Space Station Begins
Credit: STS-88 Shuttle Crew, NASA

Explanation: Move over Mir, here comes the International Space Station. In December 1998, the crew of Space Shuttle Endeavour started construction by joining the U.S.-built Unity node with the Russian-built Zarya module. A close look at the above IMAX(r) photograph will reveal two astronauts working on Unity. Below on Earth, the terminator between night and day is visible. The International Space Station's low 250-mile Earth orbit causes it to experience one complete day/night cycle in about 90 minutes.

Tomorrow's picture: A Milky-Way Band

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Authors & editors: Robert Nemiroff (MTU) & Jerry Bonnell (USRA)
NASA Technical Rep.: Jay Norris. Specific rights apply.
A service of: LHEA at NASA/ GSFC
& Michigan Tech. U.