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Russian space agency outlines goal for ISS

Roscosmos says it is keen on continuing to partake in the international project in the coming years

Russia’s Roscosmos is interested in staying in the International Space Station (ISS) project after 2024, a top official has said. The agency is now working to get approval from the government.

The International Space Station was launched in 1998, with plans of it remaining in orbit until 2024. NASA has previously announced that it intended to prolong the run of the aging station until 2030. But the new head of Roscosmos, Yury Borisov, previously said that Russia could consider withdrawing from the project after its initial expiration date in 2024 and begin putting together its own national space station. The Russian space agency later clarified that it wasn’t going to make any “abrupt” moves, thoroughly considering the decision on a possible pullout. 

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Sergey Krikalev, the head of the agency’s human spaceflight programs, said on Tuesday that Roscosmos had been eyeing to prolong its participation in the ISS project for at least another four years.

“For such decision to be made [by Russia], we’ve sent the relevant papers to the government, offering to continue the mission of the station,” he pointed out. 

The authorities in Moscow have now asked the agency to provide additional materials proving the technical possibility of prolonging the ISS project and agree the move with other involved ministries, the head of the human spaceflight programs added. 

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FILE PHOTO: In this image provided by NASA, the International Space Station is seen from the Space Shuttle Endeavour on May 29, 2011.
Moscow names trigger for ISS withdrawal

Roscosmos is intending to fulfill those requests by the government “right after the [New Year] holidays,” Krikalev said.

The issue of keeping the ISS in orbit has also been discussed with foreign participants of the project, which – besides the US – include Japan, Canada and several European nations, and most of them have confirmed their interest in it, he stressed.

In a later interview, Krikalev clarified that Russia currently considers staying at the ISS until 2028, with any further decisions to be made based on the condition of the station after that period.

In October, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Denis Manturov suggested that “it is possible to extend the ISS operations, while the Russian orbital station is being deployed in the minimal configuration,” also mentioning 2028 as the new deadline.

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December 27, 2022 at 09:01PM
RT

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