Will we one day in the future say, “That’s no moon. That’s a space station.”
Russia’s federal space agency Roscosmos announced the country wants to abandon the International Space Station (ISS) after 2024 and build its own space station:
Roscosmos leadership has been threatening to pull out of the International Space Station for months, stating that Western sanctions will “destroy” Russian cooperation aboard the orbital lab. While those threats have been numerous and inflammatory, they have yet to sound as definitive as the latest proclamation made by the new Roscosmos chief. “The decision to leave the station after 2024 has been made,” the current head of Roscosmos, Yuri Borisov, said(opens in new tab), according to the Associated Press.
“That is very recent news, and so we haven’t heard anything officially,” said Kjell Lindgren, a NASA astronaut currently aboard the ISS while speaking at the 11th annual International Space Station Research and Development Conference (ISSRDC(opens in new tab)) on Tuesday (July 26). Lindgren currently serves as commander of the NASA SpaceX Crew-4 mission. “Of course, you know, we were trained to do a mission up here and that mission is one that requires the whole crew and so we continue to work every day to conduct the science and research that we’ve been trained to conduct,” he continued. “As a crew we continue to work towards success and that is everybody working together to make sure we’re accomplishing the science and keeping the crew and the vehicle safe.”
NASA, Roscosmos, the European Space Agency (ESA), and other space agencies run ISS together.
So Russia wants its own space station. Strong Star Wars vibe, you guys.
Americans are not surprised but glad Russia will give them time to adjust schedules:
In an emailed statement, Scott Pace, who served as deputy assistant to the President and Executive Secretary of the National Space Council from 2017-2020, wrote that Russia’s announcement is “not a surprise” and that “reiterating their current commitment through 2024 is helpful for planning.”
Pace added that “what comes after 2024 is still very unknown, however, and the real question is when do in-depth technical discussions begin for *how* the transition will be managed (rather then whether there will be a transition). Among the considerations will be maintaining the Station’s altitude in the future, replacing ground communications support from Moscow, and disposition of Russian assets currently attached to the Station. Beyond the Station, it remains to be seen whether the Russians will be able to launch and maintain their own, smaller, station.”
The escalation of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has strained relations, even regarding space. The tensions disrupted “several missions” between Russia and the West.DONATE
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