Russia Avoids Space Station Closure for Time Being

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by medea, Apr 3, 2003.

  1. medea macrumors 68030

    medea

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2002
    Location:
    Madison, Wi
    #1
    Russia's space chief said on Thursday he had secured government funds to avoid mothballing the $95 billion International Space Station this year, but said the outpost's long-term future was still uncertain.
    Russian Soyuz and Progress craft have become the only means of sending up cosmonauts and servicing the orbiting station since the U.S. space shuttle Colombia disintegrated in February, causing the U.S. shuttle fleet to be grounded indefinitely.
    Russia, hard-pressed for funds, has been lobbying Washington to fork out more cash to help keep manned flights running.
    But Washington has balked at the request for foreign policy reasons and niggles over whether Moscow had carried out its launch obligations under the program.
    "We have got 1.2 billion roubles ($38.36 million), moved from the third quarter of this year to the second quarter," Yuri Koptev, head of Russia's Rosaviakosmos space agency, was quoted by Russian agencies as saying after a government meeting.
    Koptev said the government's agreement to dispense money ahead of schedule had doubled the agency's funds for the second quarter and would allow it to carry out all the launches planned for 2003 as well as start building spacecraft for the next year.
    But additional funding would be needed in the future to keep the station permanently manned, he said.
    "In August-September we will need to return to the issue of additional financing," Itar-Tass news agency quoted him as saying. Rosaviakosmos needs an extra injection of 2.8 billion roubles to keep the ISS running, he said.
    On top of that, Russia needs $250 million to develop its part of the ISS station over the next three years.
    Since it was first manned in 2000, the station has been managed by permanent crews of Russians and Americans. Currently, the ISS is operated by two U.S. astronauts and a Russian cosmonaut, in orbit since November.

    NEW SOYUZ LAUNCH
    The three-man crew was due to return to Earth in March aboard the Atlantis shuttle. But their return now depends on a Russian mission due to blast off on April 26, which Koptev has said may be postponed until May.
    Russia asked Washington for $100 million to send Soyuz manned craft and Progress cargoes to the ISS. But Washington has said Moscow's arms deals with Tehran made money transfers between the two countries legally impossible.
    NASA also insists that last year Russia did not carry out all the launches it signed up to make and should now simply make up the shortfall.
    The indefinite grounding of the U.S. shuttle fleet -- until the cause of Columbia crash is established -- has halted the expansion of the ISS. A pause in Russian launches would mean a suspension of permanent human presence in space.
    Koptev said mothballing the station would damage the craft and endanger the future of the 16-nation project. He mentioned some recurring problems with the station's onboard computer among mishaps that could not be rectified from earth.
    Koptev also called on the Russian government to fund development of its segment of the station and carry out research instead of allowing its space program to narrow to simple ferrying of cosmonauts.

    http://www.reuters.com/newsArticle.jhtml?type=scienceNews&storyID=2502640
     
  2. Mr. Anderson Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2001
    Location:
    VA
    #2
    Russia asked Washington for $100 million to send Soyuz manned craft and Progress cargoes to the ISS. But Washington has said Moscow's arms deals with Tehran made money transfers between the two countries legally impossible.

    NASA also insists that last year Russia did not carry out all the launches it signed up to make and should now simply make up the shortfall.


    crap, politics are going to scuttle the thing....:(

    what its going to come down to is who really wants to have the ISS and who's going to be willing to fund it. Russia isn't pulling its weight and trying to stiff us - 100 million for resupply! Although, it doesn't say how many launches that counts for. But if its like the 20 million per launch that they're charging for tourists, that's 5 - I find it hard to believe that they'd be scheduled to do that many....

    D
     
  3. alex_ant macrumors 68020

    alex_ant

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2002
    Location:
    All up in your bidness
    #3
    Re: Russia Avoids Space Station Closure for Time Being

    Following in the footsteps of that guy who stirred up a ****storm with relatively dumb blacks and liberals over the word "niggardly," $10 says this guy gets fired tomorrow.
     
  4. NavyIntel007 macrumors 65816

    NavyIntel007

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2002
    Location:
    Tampa, FL
  5. Mr. Anderson Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2001
    Location:
    VA
    #5
    although its a little more straight foreward than I would put it, its approximately what I'm thinking should be done. At least mothball it till such a time as we can actually get to space without having to spend 10s of millions of dollars per trip.

    The shuttle fleet is aging, we need a new, single stage to orbit vehicle. They should be spending the money on that before they do the space station. Having space plane would make things so much easier.

    Oh well. Hopefully it won't go the way of MIR....

    D
     
  6. elfin buddy macrumors 6502a

    elfin buddy

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2001
    Location:
    Tuttlingen, Germany
    #6
    Correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't Bush recently ask congress for $75 billion for this war in Iraq? If you ask me, $75 billion is a sh*t load of money!

    Would it be possible for NASA to buy the Soyez design plans/instructions from the Russians? That way at least, they wouldn't have to rely on them to have punctual launches. ;)

    While I would love to see the ISS complete and fully-functional on schedule, I know that isn't going to happen. I just hope that the project isn't completely scrapped, even if it is shelved for a few years...
     
  7. alex_ant macrumors 68020

    alex_ant

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2002
    Location:
    All up in your bidness
    #7
    Just for laughs... I think we should de-orbit the ISS and make it fall on Baghdad. Wouldn't that be awesome? Of all the best ways to kill Saddam, I would have to put "getting hit by supersonic ISS" at about #1.
     
  8. wms121 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2003
    #8
    long term we still need it..but...

    this administration "knows too much about black programs".

    They can't keep the lid on forever. See all the recent poop on Richard Hoagland's web page on the history of NASA and military space..then go read Colonel Philip Corso's book "The Day After Roswell"..and then you can consider yourself a fully debriefed American Citizen.

    Or Planetary Citizen.

    Hey W..let's go invade Mars next...and get rid of them smelly Zeta Reticulans messing up those nice Aryan clone factories.

    Wake me when WWVII is over.
     
  9. elfin buddy macrumors 6502a

    elfin buddy

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2001
    Location:
    Tuttlingen, Germany
    #9
    wms121....

    Uhhhh...I have no idea what you are trying to say. sorry for being a dolt, but I'm not really up to par with the US's "black programs". In fact, this is the first I've heard of them (though I am assuming you are making reference to secret military research programs).

    Anyone wanna clarify? Please? :confused:
     

Share This Page