As it passed Earth's equator at 06:10 UTC on May 16, 2016, the International Space Station (ISS) started its 100 000th orbit around Earth. It took 17 years for ISS to reach this important milestone.
During the 100 000 orbits since the first component of the station was launched on November 20, 1998, the station traveled around 4 254 046 973 km (2 643 342 240 miles), or roughly the distance between Earth and Neptune. This is also roughly equivalent of about 10 round trips between Earth and Mars at the average distance between the two planets.
The station travels at 28 160 km/h (17 500 mph), orbiting Earth every 90 minutes and traveling through 16 sunrises and sunsets per day.
A few hours after the station reached this orbital benchmark, a several types of Cubesats were deployed from the Kibo lab module’s airlock.
More Cubesats are being deployed through Wednesday, May 17, contributing to a wide variety of research designed by students and scientists.
Featured image credit: NASA/ISS