NASA reportedly made a contingency plan for Russia to exit the ISS last year

The newly appointed head of the Russian Federal Space Agency, Yuri Borisov, recently announced that Russia pull out The International Space Station after 2024. NASA and Roscosmos are working together to keep the space station running, and the latter’s withdrawal will dramatically change the operation of the International Space Station.according to ReutersStill, before Borisov’s announcement — even before the invasion of Ukraine began — NASA was actually preparing for the possibility, given the growing tensions between Russia and the U.S.

Reuters‘ NASA and the White House developed contingency plans for the International Space Station late last year, the sources said. The plans include ways to evacuate astronauts from the space station if Russia suddenly leaves, and ways to keep the ISS running without Russian hardware. While the U.S. module keeps the space station balanced and uses its solar array to provide the power needed to operate, the Roscosmos module has the thrusters needed to keep the flying lab in orbit. That’s why NASA’s contingency plans also reportedly include research into ways to dispose of the space station years ahead of schedule.

Apparently, over the past few weeks, NASA has been working to make a formal request to contractors to figure out a way to deorbit the space station. That said, the agency has included private spaceflight companies in its contingency plans, hoping to keep the ISS in orbit even without Russia. Boeing has assembled a team of engineers to figure out how to control the International Space Station without Russian thrusters, the sources said. SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has previously express interest in helping Current Roscosmos Director Dmitry Rogozin lash out The West imposed sanctions on his country, asking who would “save the International Space Station from getting out of control” if the West blocked cooperation with Russia.

Back in June, Northrop Grumman made it able to adjust Provide orbit for future operations of the space station using the Cygnus capsule, which then docks with the International Space Station. Reuters‘ SpaceX is also looking into the possibility of using its spacecraft to elevate the orbit of the space station, the source said.

Borisov said Russia has not yet set a date for its withdrawal, but it will honour its obligations and will notify partners a year before it withdraws. Roscosmos and NASA will likely continue to work closely together until Russia withdraws from the program – they even recently agree to swap seats On a Crew Dragon and Soyuz flight to the International Space Station.

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