Second Life International Space Station:

Living and Working in Orbit Over a Virtual World

International Space Station in Second Life
A detailed simulation of the International Space Station built by a teen orbits above the NASA spaceport in the virtual world Second Life
A detailed simulation of the International Space Station is in orbit above the NASA spaceport in the virtual world Second Life.

The Second Life grid simulation is a virtual world entirely built and owned by its residents.

The 3D virtual-reality service is provided on the Internet by Linden Lab of San Francisco.

The TSL ISS replica was located at the Eye4You Alliance Island sim. On the ground beneath were simulations of various NASA rockets and space shuttles built by teens who were interested in space science and astronomy. Other versions of teen-built space stations flew in formation near the ISS.

The real world ISS orbits Earth at an altitude of around 250 miles. These simulations ranged from 100-600 meters above the virtual surface.

What is a virtual world?
Wikipedia: virtual world »

A virtual world is a computer-simulated environment inhabited by users who interact through their on-screen avatars.

Social life in the virtual world is depicted by multiple users appearing together in three-dimensional graphical scenes.

The world being simulated has real-world physical characteristics such as gravity, topography, locomotion, real-time actions, and communication.

SL ISS 512X384 SL ISS 512X384
SL ISS 512X384 SL ISS 512X384
Click to enlarge a view of the International Space Station in orbit above the NASA spaceport on the Eye4You Alliance Island in the virtual world Second Life.
What is Second Life?
Wikipedia: Second Life »
Wikipedia: Teen Second Life »

Second Life is the best known virtual-reality world today with some 12 million residents.

SL was developed by Linden Research Inc. (a.k.a. Linden Lab) and came to life on the Internet in 2003. Basic membership is free although there is an advanced level called premium.

A downloadable Second Life viewer (browser) enables residents to interact with each other through their on-screen representatives, the avatars, providing an extraordinarily advanced level of social networking combined with general aspects of a metaverse.

A metaverse is an immersive 3D virtual space – a cyberspace environment where humans interact socially and economically with each other's avatars.
Wikipedia: metaverse »

Second Life is not a game. It doesn't have points, scores, winners, losers, levels, an end-strategy, or most of the other characteristics of games. Instead, it is a semi-structured virtual environment where characters undertake social, cultural, political and economic activities for personal enjoyment, fulfillment or financial gain. Some visit Second Life to escape from RL – their real world – and have fun exploring and social internetworking, while others view Second Life as useful for education and for-profit businesses.

SciLands blog »

On the adult main grid, a sim known as International Spaceflight Museum displays many rockets at Spaceport Alpha and Spaceport Beta, which connect to an archipelago of islands known as SciLands – a specialised region of Second Life owned and built by science and technology organizations that share resources and infrastructure. The islands bear names such as Exploratorium, Genome, and Nanotechnology. NASA has facilities there, too.

s Learn more about space and astronomy in Second Life:

The Virtual World
Second Life Spaceports Alpha and Bravo Second Life International Space Station The International Spaceflight Museum