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Great things are not done by impulse,
but by a series of small things brought together.

- Vincent Van Gogh -

Module By Module

In 1986, the first module of the Mir space station was launched into orbit by RSC Energia. Over the following ten years, five additional modules were joined with the original core module. Each module serves as a place for scientific experimentation in different areas of study. The following photo gallery documents each of Mir's six modules.

Click on images for larger version.

Core Module - Launched 20 February 1986
Core Module  

The Core Module provides the basis for all living and research on-board Mir. The 20.4-ton Core module acts as an axle to connect the other modules and transports. It has four radial berthing ports for additional modules and two axial docking ports for manned Soyuz-TM transports and unmanned Progress-M supply ships. The Core module serves the basic needs of the crew, providing living quarters, life support, power, galley area, restroom facilities and scientific research capabilities.


Kvant Module - Docked 12 March 1987
Kvant Module with Core  

The 11-ton Kvant Astrophysics Module's purpose is to observe active galaxies, quasars and neutron stars, as well as to perform biotechnology experiments. This module provides data to scientists using instruments that measure electromagnetic spectra and x-ray emissions. Located on the aft port of the Core module, Kvant-1 also contains life support and attitude control equipment.


Kvant-2 Module -Docked 6 December 1989
Kvant-2 Module  

Kvant-2, weighing 19.6-tons, contains an EVA airlock, solar arrays, and life support equipment, such as motion control systems, power distribution, and restroom facilities. The Kvant-2 module's purpose is to provide biological research data, Earth observation data and EVA capability. EVA capability allows cosmonauts to place materials outside of the space station to study the how they are effected by space environment exposure.


Kristall Module - Docked 10 June 1990
Kristal Module  

Kristall is the technology module used to develop biological and materials production technologies in the space environment, such as semiconductors and other materials that benefit from low gravity. It carries scientific equipment, retractable solar arrays, a greenhouse and a docking mechanism. This radial docking port is designed to join with spacecraft weighing up to 100 tons.


Spectr Module - Docked 1 June 1995
Spectr Module  

The Spectr module is used for scientific study, specifically for observations of the Earth's natural resources and atmosphere. The Spectr module carries four solar arrays and scientific equipment. The module was linked into place after the Kristall module was moved, which displays the changeability and mobility of the Mir station modules.


Priroda Module - Docked 27 April 1996
Priroda Module  

The last module to be added to Mir, Priroda's primary purpose is to supplement Mir's remote sensing capabilities of the Earth. The instruments include active, passive, and infra-red radiometers, a synthetic aperture radar, and several types of spectrometers used for measuring ozone and aerosol concentration in the atmosphere. This module assists scientists in preserving the Earth from space.


Docking Module
Docking Module  

The Docking module, built by RSC Energia, was used to dock the space shuttle with Mir. It was delivered and installed by STS-74. The docking module is attached to the end of the Kristall module to provide enough docking clearance for the space shuttle to dock with the Mir without moving the Kristall module. View the Priroda module image for an in-space view of the docking module.


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