Browse Publications Technical Papers 2001-01-2142

Space Laboratories 2001-01-2142

This paper presents a review of the development and evolution of space laboratories. Laboratories in space constitute the unique and necessary working environment in which researchers conduct scientific experiments, engineering tests, and technology development missions. The United States (US) and (former) Soviet Union pioneered space laboratories with the Skylab and Salyut series stations. In the Space Shuttle era, the European Space Agency’s (ESA) SpaceLab, the commercial SpaceHab, and shuttle middeck lockers provided experiment accommodations for a broad range of disciplines. The MIR station provided a suite of laboratories and other facilities. The Space Station Alpha (SSA) will soon provide a multiplicity of laboratories, including the US Lab, the ESA Columbus Module, the “Kibo” Japan Experiment Module, and other facilities. Beyond the SSA, planetary exploration missions to the Moon and Mars will include Space Laboratories. The design of these laboratories is a critical ingredient of success for science. This paper generates units of analysis for evaluating the design of space laboratories.


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