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International Space Station
What's Outer Space like?
Life in Space
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What's Outer Space like?

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Weightlessness Vacuum Vision Thermal Environment Radiation
  01 The ever-flying ball
02 Two forces affecting the ISS
03 The reason why the inside of the ISS is weightless

02 Two forces affecting the ISS

The International Space Station (ISS) continues to orbit the earth at a fantastic speed, just like that ball we just saw,

As the ISS is pulled by the earth's gravity and while flying ahead at just the right speed, the ISS can continue to smoothly orbit the earth.

Let's take a closer look at what。s happening.

ISS's orbit
ISS's orbit A-B

The ISS flies around the Earth at about 8 km per second.

Without the pull of the Earth's gravity, the ISS at Point A should travel to Point B'.

But at the same time, the Earth's gravity is pulling the ISS towards the center of the Earth. In fact, these two forces work together to move the ISS to Point B, along Earth's lower orbit.

ISS's orbit C-D

So then, the ISS will move to Point C instead of Point C', to Point D instead of Point D', and so on. The ISS continues to fly in Earth's lower orbit.

   
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