ISS To Evolve Into International Space Port - Official

Feb 02, 2006
ISS Progress 20 docks with the International Space Station. Credit: NASA TV
Image: ISS Progress 20 docks with the International Space Station. Credit: NASA TV

The number of pressurized modules on the International Space Station will be doubled to 12 in 2010, the head of Russia's leading space corporation said Wednesday, reports RIA Novosti.

Nikolai Sevastyanov, the head and chief designer of Energia, said ISS crews would be doubled to six members in 2007, and four Soyuz spacecraft and two Progress cargo ships would be launched to the station in the same year.

Sevastyanov also highlighted moves to ensure that the international community played a greater role in servicing and using the station.

"The launch of Europe's ATV [Automated Transfer Vehicle] has been scheduled for late 2007," he said, adding that Russia had been involved in the project.

The ATV is designed partially as a replacement for Russia's Progress spacecraft, although at nine metric tons it will have three times its capacity. Like the Progress it will deliver liquids and relatively fragile cargoes. Likewise, the ATV will also serve as a container for the station's waste.

The spaceship will also be used to correct the orbital station's trajectory if needed.

In addition, Japan, which has been participating in the ISS program since its early stage, intends to launch the H-II Transfer Vehicle (HTV) in 2009. The spaceship will deliver pressurized cargo to the station. The vehicle will not dock with the ISS, but will be handled by a robotic arm.

According to RIA Novosti, Sevastyanov said that all these efforts meant that the ISS was "evolving in an international space port."

Among other projects to be implemented on the ISS, Sevastyanov mentioned biological, biotechnological, medical and other research efforts, long-term manned missions, and assembling vehicles for the exploration of the Moon.

"Future flights to the Moon are one of the most ambitious projects. Its aim is to start the production of helium on the Moon," Sevastyanov said, adding that there were plans to establish a manned base on the Moon by 2020.

RIA Novosti reported that Russia also plans to start launching new Clipper space shuttles to the ISS from 2015, according to Sevastyanov. The Clipper will gradually replace the veteran Soyuz fleet. The Clipper is capable of taking six, instead of three, crew to the international station and 12 metric tons of cargoes, rather than two tons delivered today.

A future manned mission to Mars is also prominent on the international space agenda.

"A separate interplanetary mission segment and a special module to land on Mars will be created," he said.

Copyright 2006 by Space Daily, Distributed United Press International

Explore further: Grad student's aTmCam offers cosmic insight for dark energy survey

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Orbital cargo ship readies for Monday launch

Oct 26, 2014

Orbital Sciences Corporation's unmanned Cygnus cargo ship is preparing to launch to the International Space Station Monday, aiming to carry some 1,500 pounds (680 kilograms) of materials for space experiments.

SpaceX returns to Earth loaded with lab results

Oct 26, 2014

SpaceX's unmanned Dragon spacecraft splashed down in the Pacific Ocean on Saturday carrying a heavy load of NASA cargo and scientific samples from the International Space Station that experts hope could ...

Recommended for you

Possible bright supernova lights up spiral galaxy M61

2 hours ago

I sat straight up in my seat when I learned of the discovery of a possible new supernova in the bright Virgo galaxy M61. Since bright usually means close, this newly exploding star may soon become visible ...

Fifteen years of NASA's Chandra X-ray observatory

2 hours ago

This Chandra X-ray Observatory image of the Hydra A galaxy cluster was taken on Oct. 30, 1999, with the Advanced CCD Imaging Spectrometer (ACIS) in an observation that lasted about six hours.

Confirming a 3-D structural view of a quasar outflow

3 hours ago

A team of astronomers have observed a distant gravitationally-lensed quasar (i.e., an active galactic nucleus) with the Subaru Telescope and concluded that the data indeed present a 3-D view of the structure ...

Hubble sees 'ghost light' from dead galaxies

18 hours ago

(Phys.org) —NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has picked up the faint, ghostly glow of stars ejected from ancient galaxies that were gravitationally ripped apart several billion years ago. The mayhem happened ...

Cassini sees sunny seas on Titan

18 hours ago

(Phys.org) —As it soared past Saturn's large moon Titan recently, NASA's Cassini spacecraft caught a glimpse of bright sunlight reflecting off hydrocarbon seas.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.