Russia to Jointly Use ISS and New National Orbital Outpost for Several Years

Russia will simultaneously use the International Space Station (ISS) and its new orbital outpost for several years, Roscosmos Executive Director for Long-Term Programs and Science Alexander Bloshenko told reporters at the Energia Space Rocket Corporation on Friday, Tass informed.

“The joint period will last several years. This depends on a specific technical project,” the Roscosmos official said.

Roscosmos Head Dmitry Rogozin said on April 20 that Russia’s Energia Space Rocket Corporation had been assigned the task of making the first basic module for a new Russian orbital station ready in 2025. Work on it is already underway, he said. Rogozin also posted a video of the first module under construction: this will be a research and power unit that was previously intended for its launch to the International Space Station in 2024.

The research and power module will be outfitted with life support systems, the Roscosmos executive director said on Friday.

“The first stage [of deploying the new orbital station]: the beginning of works from 2025-2026,” Bloshenko said.

As the Roscosmos official said, the module will be equipped “with control and life support systems, with all that is necessary to make it ready and become the basic module.” Several modules will be launched during the first stage. The second stage will begin from 2030-2035,” he specified.

The research and power module will be launched to Russia’s future orbital output atop an Angara carrier rocket, First Deputy Chief Designer of the Energia Space Rocket Corporation for Flight Operation and Space Rocket System Tests, ISS Russian Segment Flight Director Vladimir Solovyov told reporters on Friday.

“It will travel atop an Angara, not a Proton carrier,” he said, adding that the launch would be carried out from the Vostochny Cosmodrome in the Russian Far East.

It will take about a year and a half or two years to rework the research and power module for Russia’s new orbital outpost, he said.

Russian Deputy Prime Minister Yuri Borisov’s office announced on April 18 that the condition of the International Space Station left much to be desired. In order to avoid any risks in case of accidents, it was necessary to carry out a technical inspection of the station. After this, a decision should be made on the orbital outpost’s further operation. Also, Borisov said in an interview with the ‘Moscow. Kremlin. Putin’ program on the Rossiya-1 TV channel that Russia might quit the ISS project in 2025.