Google Street View has been expanded to let armchair explorers visit the International Space Station high above in Earth’s orbit.
The first destination most of us view in Google Street View is the outside of our abode, but perhaps now future generation will look to the stars as their first port of call, as Google has now added a tour of the International Space Station to its mapping service.
As of today, Google Street View accommodates a ‘floating’ tour through the International Space Station, wherein visitors can inspect the modules that comprise the station while seeing a detailed description of what they’re looking at. Read: SpaceX reveals its plans to launch a private mission to the moon
Street View inside the station leverages a full 360-degree view, where users can tap on three dots at given points to see what information is available.
Google has revealed that the tour of the International Space Station was created by astronauts during a payload delivery from one of SpaceX’s Red Dragon vehicles – giving voyeurs the ability to see just how cargo from Earth reaches the station.
Such views might become more common in the years to come, as NASA has revealed its plans to sell the station to a private firm in the future as the equipment and modules that comprise it begin to date.
The trip to space is one of the major new advents Street View has benefitted from in recent years, and comprises yet another update to Google’s Maps service. If anything, the addition of the tour will help those of us with astral ambitious (and very earth-bound wallets) to explore a small part of the final frontier. Read: NASA’s Double Asteroid Redirection Test aims to prevent ‘Armageddon’
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Follow Bryan Smith on Twitter: @bryansmithSA