ISS to be deorbited in 2020


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The head of the Russian space agency said today that ISS will be deorbited in 2020, as agreed to by the governments running it.

Wanna bet? They are only now starting to do the research the station is best designed for, and learning how to live in space for years is going to take years. Come 2020, that work will hardly be done. Moreover, the impossibility of replacing ISS without a shuttle to haul up large modules and trusses will make very appealing the idea of keeping the present station in operation.

Then again, everything I just wrote is simple common sense, and who ever expected common sense from these governments?

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4 comments

  • Joe2

    Since as things are going now, in 2020 we will have no human space flight capability; the Russians will have a say in what happens to the ISS and we will not. I am not saying this is a good thing, only a true thing.

  • The Russians have already said if we throw away our $100 billion investment and future, they will detach their modules and put them together as their own station. They, like China are in space to stay.

  • Joe2

    Art Harman says:
    Posted July 27, 2011 at 1:27 PM
    “The Russians have already said if we throw away our $100 billion investment and future, they will detach their modules and put them together as their own station. They, like China are in space to stay.”

    And sadly, it appears, we are not.

  • Kelly Starks

    > … impossibility of replacing ISS without a shuttle to haul up large modules and trusses..

    You’re overlooking the impossibility of MAINTAINING ISS without a shuttle to haul up large modules and trusses, as well as install and do big refit/construction without a shuttle. Theres some serious concern over our ability to even keep it going until 2020.

    Since at the moment the US seems unlikely to have any usable maned launch capacity by 2020 – were in no possition to decide.

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