International Space Station, Russia, Space

International Space Station, Russia

Russia rocket mishap briefly nudges International Space Station out of position

Russia rocket mishap briefly nudges International Space Station out of position

7/30/2021 7:26:00 AM

Russia rocket mishap briefly nudges International Space Station out of position

After several ‘hiccups’ on the journey to the ISS, the Nauka lab module accidentally fired its rockets after docking

The launch was closely watched by the European Space Agency because the module was travelling with the European Robotic Arm, the first robot arm that will be able to work on Russia’s ISS segment.Nauka – which means “science” in Russian – will be primarily used for research and storing laboratory equipment. It will also provide more storage space, new water and oxygen regeneration systems and improved living conditions for cosmonauts of the Russian ISS sector.

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The Nauka multipurpose laboratory module was conceived as early as the mid-1990s when it was intended as a back-up for the Russian control module Zarya.It was later repurposed as a science module but joined a lineup of stagnating Russian space projects that have fallen victim to funding problems or bureaucratic procedures.

The launch of the 20-tonne Nauka – one of the largest modules on the ISS – was initially scheduled for 2007 but has been repeatedly delayed over various issues.While last week’s launch was successful, Nauka experienced several “hiccups in orbit” during its eight-day journey to the ISS, the European headtopics.com

SpaceAgency said.“We won’t lie … We had to worry for the first three days,” Rogozin told journalists after Nauka had docked, according to the RIA Novosti news agency.Nauka replaces the long-serving Pirs docking module, which joined the ISS in 2001 as a temporary addition but ended up staying in service for two decades.

Making room for Nauka, Pirs detached from the ISS earlier this week, its burnt-up remains falling into the Pacific Ocean.Launched in 1998 and involving Russia, the United States, Canada, Japan, and the European Space Agency, the ISS is one of Russia’s few remaining collaborations with the west.

In April, Russia said it was considering withdrawing from the ISS programme citing ageing infrastructure, and is planning to launch the first core module of a new orbital station in 2025.Russia has announced a series of projects in recent years, including a mission to Venus and a station on the moon, but as the Kremlin diverts funding to military ventures, analysts question the feasibility of these ambitions.

With Agence France-Presse and Reuters Read more: The Guardian »

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