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Madison Metropolitan School District

Living and Working in Space

Living and Working in Space
Astronaut Bruce McCandless II

Astronaut Bruce McCandless II conducts an untethered extra-vehicular activity (EVA) using the manned maneuvering unit (MMU).

What is it like to live and work in space? Why do the astronauts float? How realistic are block-buster movies like “Gravity”? How do astronauts get to the International Space Station? Our public planetarium shows on February 19, 2014, explore these questions. But there's so much more to explore on this topic than we can fit into a one hour program. Explore the links below to learn more about this exciting topic.

Tour the International Space Station with Sunita Williams

[VIDEO LINK] In this 30 minute video, the Commander of Expedition 33, Sunita (Suni) Williams provides a fun, fairly complete tour of the space station. It includes a great view of the exterior of the station and the Earth looking out of the Cupola. She also provides a straightforward explanation of how the toilet works. (2012)

Tour the International Space Station with André Kuipers

[VIDEO LINK] This 55 minute video tour of the space station is led by European Space Agency's (ESA) astronaut André Kuipers. This is the most complete tour of the station that I've seen. It includes excellent emergency and safety information, and is the only tour I've seen that includes the ATV (Automated Transfer Vehicle). This tour also includes an exterior view of the space station when he moves into a new module.

Eating on the Space Station

[VIDEO LINK] In this video (8:25 min.), astronauts Bob Thirsk and Frank De Winne talk about food and eating on the space station. (2013)

A Day in the Life Aboard the International Space Station

[LINK TO ARTICLE AND VIDEOS] This short article serves as an introduction to a video series which includes:  Morning Routine in Space; Exercising in Space; Eating in Space; Working in Space; Free Time in Space; and Sleeping in Space. Each topic includes a paragraph or two and a link to a short video in which the astronauts are teaching about that subject.

Challenges of Spacewalking

[VIDEO SERIES LINK] This is a series of videos in which astronauts describe the experience, some of the problems they've encountered, and how they eventually solved those problems.

Extended Trailer for the Movie "Gravity"

[VIDEO LINK] (Parental Discretion Advised: movie and trailer are intense) (5 minutes) This is a longer version of the movie trailer for the science-fiction thriller and space drama film that hit the theaters in 2013.

Poking Holes in the Movie Gravity

[ARTICLE LINK] (Parental Discretion Advised: movie and trailer are intense; the trailer is embedded in this article) In this article, the author interviews a NASA astronaut trainer. They are exploring some of the parts of the movie that aren't very realistic. The article was written before the movie came out, so it's based on the trailer, but the information applies very nicely to the full movie as well.

Eclipse Glasses for Sale!

Image shows a Sun shape made with eclipse glasses

Be safe, order a pair for everyone in the family!


Be prepared to look at the October 14, 2023 and the April 8, 2024 Solar eclipses!

Did you know the sun is a great object to look at any day... sometimes its sunspots are so large that you can see them with just your eyes (protected with these amazing eclipse glasses, of course) from our spaceship Earth at more than 93,000,000 miles away.

Glasses purchased must be picked up at the planetarium by appointment or at any of our public events.   Cost is $5 per pair with all proceeds directly benefiting the planetarium.  Send an email to the planetarium to arrange for a pickup time.

Cash or check is our preferred method of payment but payment through our online store is possible, if you have to use a credit card.

Buy a pair for yourself, every family member, as a gift, or simply donate the purchase so that we can provide safe eclipse glasses to others in our community.

Additional donations welcomed!!