Russia unveils mock-up of its future space station
Russia’s space agency Roscosmos has presented the full mock-up of its planned space station.
Russian companies Energia Rocket and Space Corporation are currently developing a draft design of the Russian Orbital Station (ROSS) which is expected to be launched in two stages, the country’s space agency said without giving exact dates.
The first stage would see a four-module space station start operating in the low earth's orbit. That would later be followed by two additional modules and a service platform.
After the invasion of Ukraine, the new head of Russia's space agency reiterated that the country will end cooperation on the ISS after 2024 and build its own space station due to sanctions imposed by the West. However, NASA, which is keen to keep the ISS operating through to 2030, said it has not yet received official confirmation of Russia's planned withdrawal.
It is worth noting that Russia has long been planning to build its own space station and divest from the ISS after 2024.
Russia would start building its own space station by the time of quitting the ISS project, according to Russian news agency Tass.
Currently, Russia still owns around a quarter of the ISS, known as the Russian segment. It is responsible for navigation and control of the entire spacecraft, and, without it, the station would not be able to function, unless other companies like SpaceX took over.
The ISS is a multinational science laboratory in space that has been orbiting since 1988 and has been funded to operate until 2024. Russia started its participation in 2000.
China, which was denied access to the ISS program, is currently building its own space station called Tiangong. It is expected that the China Space Station will be fully operational by the end of 2022.
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