NASA published an image straight from the International Space Station (ISS) on Sunday (25) showing what a meal is like in space. Currently, the station is home to 11 astronauts from different countries, who also appeared in the photo.
Until this Saturday, the day before the photo, the ISS had only seven members. However, the number got a notable addition with the arrival of astronauts Shane Kimbrough, Megan McArthur (of JAXA, Japan’s space exploration agency); Akihiko Hoshide (from ESA, European Space Agency); and Thomas Pesquet, who is part of the SpaceX Crew-2 mission.
- The overcrowded ISS does not have enough beds for all astronauts
This group of experts joined the astronauts already installed Mark Vande Hei, Michael Hopkins, Victor Glover and Shannon Walker (from NASA); Russian cosmonauts Oleg Novitskiy and Pyotr Dubrov, who arrived at the ISS in early April; and Soichi Noguchi (JAXA), which has been part of the station since November 2020 and will return to Earth this week.
As seen in the image above, the dining area is a bit small for the 11 astronauts, who positioned themselves next to each other and bypassed the central table, where numerous vacuum-packed foods, sauces, and other items are arranged.
Despite this somewhat “stifling” impression, it is worth noting that the International Space Station has numerous other sections devoted to work, rest, and even the entertainment of astronauts. According to NASAs own description, the ISS is larger than a house with six bedrooms, two bathrooms, a gym and a 360º window.
In fact, it is not common for so many people to be on the ISS at the same time. The last time the station had a large number of astronauts was in 2009, when 13 members were taken into space.