What language do they speak in the ISS?

By definition —or maybe better said, by requirement— the language of the International Space Station (ISS) is English.This means every astronaut or cosmonaut must be able to converse and read —technically and socially— in that language.

In practice however, astronauts (no matter what country they hail from) must also be quite capable with the Russian language. This is because of the current situation regarding launch and landing. The ONLY way to get into outer space and arrive at the space station is by flying the Russian Soyuz rocket/spaceship… at least until this week’s Soyuz abort disaster. We are now at a loss to get there at all.

With your only transportation option being a Russian vehicle, the Russian Space Agency is in a position of power. Unlike “daily living” on the ISS, where procedures are written (facing pages) in English and Russian, everything inside the Soyuz capsule is in Russian only (labels, procedures, etc.). This dictates that astronauts from the US, Canada, Japan, and the European Space Agency must be able to read, speak, and understand the cyrillic-based language of our slavic partners.

Back when I was an active flier (2007–2010), we were required to reach a level 3 —on a scale of 1 to 5— with our speaking and comprehension, in order to be considered eligible for flight assignment. Obviously, progressing to a higher level is quite desirable. In practice, my crewmates and I (Fyodor Yurchikin and Oleg Kotov) used a combination of both languages; affectionately known as “Runglish!” Fortunately for me, they were both very capable English speakers. In the event of a true emergency, I prayed that my language skills —something most of us take for granted— were “… just good enough to survive.”

Keep lookin’ up! (Продолжайте искать)

This information was taken from Quora. Click here to view the original post.

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What are your thoughts on this subject?
John Glenn
The intl air traffic language is English. I knew that but after leaving Tucson all on radio i heard was espanol. We had to land at Hermosillo to clear customs. As we neared there I asked permission to land . The ans came in crisp englis i was calmed. I try to learn espanol but have great difficulty.
Jul 21, 2019 5:03PM
Isabel Laing
I learnt some thing today. I know English is the world language but didn't know about the requirement for speaking Russian. It makes sense though when you read the explanation.
Jun 2, 2019 6:10PM
Rower Paang
Omg I loved that. Thank you!!! благодарю вас!
Apr 9, 2019 5:42PM
Marian Spitzig
Very interesting.
Mar 18, 2019 9:30PM
Keith Scholl
Интересно! Я не знал этого.
Feb 27, 2019 5:50PM
George N. Martin
Very interesting.
Nov 13, 2018 4:44PM
Humberto Carrasco
Nov 12, 2018 7:48PM

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