Take a Virtual Tour Inside the International Space Station

Before concluding her time in space, Italian astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti took pictures of the floating laboratory, giving us a rare glimpse inside.

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View of International Space Station over Gulf of Mexico. June 15, 2015. Credit: Reuters

A minute before Italian astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti ended her mission in the International Space Station, she documented the satellite from the inside.

Cristoforetti took 15 pictures of every part of the station and put them together to form a virtual panoramic tour of the rarely seen inside of the station.

The International Space Station is a satellite that circles the earth in low orbit and serves as a research laboratory operated by a number of international space crews.

The station is at an average height of 400 kilometers and funded by five participating space agencies – NASA, Roscosmos, JAXA CSA and ESA (the United States, Russia, Japan, Canada and the European space agency).

The ISS is a joint project of 15 states, supervised by the United States and Russia and is seen as a symbol of international cooperation in the post-Cold War world. However, as relations between Russia and the United States grew tense following the Ukraine crisis, Russia said it would deny the U.S. request to extend the space station’s use beyond 2020.

International Space Station astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti ends 199-day mission in space. June 11, 2015.Credit: Reuters

The station can be seen with the naked eye from earth as a spot of light moving in the sky.