Google Maps has become a daily part of our life. It helps us by informing latest traffic conditions (recent update), 360-degree views of streets (Street View), and provides route planning for a car or public transportation. But, now it has decided to take its services a bit further. In a post published on July 20, Google announced that now international space station (ISS) can be explored using Google's Street View.

Stratosphere view

According to Google, it will now enable its Google Maps users to enjoy the stunning beauty of stratosphere. For that purpose, it will make use of services provided by European Space Agency (ESA) Astronaut named Thomas Pesquet.

Thomas photographed the Space Station during his six-month space mission. This cleared the misconception that Google itself has sent some 360-camera cars in space to capture the shots.

Details about the project

As the tech giant explained, Google Maps Street View team collaborated with NASA and Marshall Space Flight Center to produce a method for taking images using DSLR camera and other equipment present on International Space Station, in zero-gravity. Thomas then beamed these images down to Earth, so Google could make the 360-degree panoramic view by stitching these stills together. This panoramic view can be seen now in Google Maps Street View.

This newly made Street View will offer users a closer look at the 15 connected modules on which Space Station consists and will enable them to explore this place with leisure.

Google Maps will also provide clickable nodes throughout the images so that users can acquire more information about what they are looking at. For instance, further information can be accessed about COLBERT, BEAM, the Bigelow Expandable Aerospace module and the combined operational load- bearing external resistance treadmill on which Astronauts are required to work out for two hours daily.

Discuss this news on Eunomia

These exercises include weight bearing exercises along with some specific aerobics to maintain their fitness in the absence of gravity.

Since this post got published, numerous comments have been given by users about the project. Some are encouraging the effort, others criticizing it by saying it's a useless project and Google should focus its attention somewhere else. Nonetheless, it's a innovation that will help people to understand the space better and should be enjoyed by many.