The International Space Station Is 15 Years Old, Still Going

I sometimes forget that we have had a real, live, working space station in Earth orbit for 15 years now. For a concept that was purely an imaginative fiction for many years (albeit convincingly portrayed in the 1968 movie "2001: A Space Odyssey"), the impressive NASA collaboration is now treated in a blasé manner. Such is the march of technology; we will likely realize in a few years that we have quietly inserted humanoid robots among us to help us with various mundane or perilous tasks...
The ISS is the only lab we have for carrying out sustained scientific research in zero-gravity conditions, and there are now five dedicated modules of the station that are purely for research. So far at least 1,500 scientific studies have been carried out in space, and the results are being used back here on Earth by the 69 countries that have taken part.

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