The International Space Station Program has received the 2010 Aviation Week Space Laureate Award. This year’s winners were recognized for extraordinary accomplishments in the aerospace and defense industries.
In announcing the Space Laureate award, Aviation Week noted that the space station, currently orbiting 220 miles above the Earth with a multicultural crew of three on board, is “essentially complete after 25 years of political upheavals, redesigns, technical problems and the loss of the space shuttle Columbia.
“In 2009, the final major pressurized modules were attached to the orbiting laboratory, and its life support and other systems upgraded to support a full-time crew as large as six,” the announcement continued. “The five partner agencies are working to win funding to operate the station until 2020, and engineers already are recertifying its structure until 2028. It has become the model for international cooperation on future human exploration deeper into the Solar System.”