Technology and Innovation
- Water purification systems tested on the ISS have been employed in areas around the world where people lack access to clean drinking water.
- All the watches and clocks on earth can be synchronized in the future by receiving signals transmitted by an antenna on the ISS
- The knowledge obtained through the observation of flame behavior during combustion on the ISS can lead to advances and improvements in car engine designs that reduces pollution and increases range.
- From 2000 to 2012 , 42 million students along with 2.8 million teachers were involved in educational activities about the space station, they were from 25000 schools in 44 countries.
- Thousands of students from all over the world have been inspired to come up with micro-gravity research ideas, a number of these ideas have actually been flown to the ISS to be conducted.
- The ISS has inspired future scientists and engineers from around the world. This helps to engage students in their learning and pave ways for their future career.
Earth Observation and Disaster Reponse
- The ISS monitors the earth in various lighting conditions and observes for changes on the ground such as a volcanic eruption or a wild fire. Crew members aboard the station can react to these changes in real time.
- The ISS monitors coastal zones around the world as they are important for economic development which a lot of cities are dependent on. Shorelines need to be protected to sustain the aquatic ecosystem which continues the fishery industry. Lakes are also monitored as they are the main, and sometimes the only, source of water for millions of people. Sophisticated cameras on the ISS are able to provide information about water depth and water clarity to agencies in different regions responsible for water protection.
- Images taken by the ISS of places where disasters have occurred are used by local governments to assess damages and are used for evacuation planning and disaster relief efforts.
- The robotic arms on the ISS, the Canadarm, Canadarm2 as well as Dextre have helped develop a robot that successfully removed a brain tumor from a patient. This is the first ever brain surgery performed by a robot.
- Crew members on the ISS have studied the changes that occur to the immune system while in space, this can help develop medicines that suppress the immune system for patients who undergo organ transplants.
- A device originally developed for monitoring astronauts' sleep in space has been used on earth, it can be placed under the pillow to record signals which are later analyzed to determine the quality of a person's sleep. Data collected by the device can help people realize and become aware of the need to improve their sleep.