Visiting Vehicles

Endeavour docked in 2011. Credit: NASA
The International Space Station is serviced by a fleet of vehicles known as visiting vehicles. These vehicles deliver cargo and crew every few months. 

By the beginning of 2015, 78 different human spacecraft and 79 different unmanned spacecraft have docked or berthed with the ISS. Of the seven types that have launched, only three were designed to return safely to earth, while the other four burn up in the atmosphere with unneeded trash and equipment.

The Dragon and Cygnus were the first privately run cargo ships to be sent to the ISS while the other five were developed and run by the governments of the United States, Europe, Russia and Japan.

Two vehicles, the space shuttle and Automated Transfer Vehicle, have been retired. Two more vehicles are in development, and are expected to come into service in 2017.

Click on the links below to learn more about each spacecraft.

Active Vehicles
HTV
Cygnus

Vehicles in Development
Dragon V2
CST-100

Retired Vehicles
Shuttle