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Thread: Post-International Space Station?

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    Post-International Space Station?

    What are the plans after 2024 when the ISS might be abandon? As of this moment none according to this report other then it might be run by commercial companies.

    http://spacenews.com/nasa-urged-to-d...tion-strategy/

    Even if the other partners agree to continue ISS operations to 2024 or later, some say now is the time to develop a strategy for transitioning from the ISS to another facility to avoid any gaps in low Earth orbit operations.

    “In aerospace terms, [2024] is right around the corner,” Scott Pace, director of George Washington University’s Space Policy Institute here, said at a Senate hearing on human spaceflight Feb. 24. “We need to have very thoughtful discussions and decisions very soon about not just ISS extension but, post-ISS, what that looks like.”

    NASA officials acknowledge that now is the time to think about its post-ISS strategy, but say a successor to the ISS is unlikely to be a station built and operated by the space agency.

    “At some point this space station will wear out and there needs to be a follow-on space station,” said William Gerstenmaier, NASA associate administrator for human exploration and operations, in a speech at the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Commercial Space Transportation Conference Feb. 4. “What we’re hoping for is that the private sector picks that up.”

    “We, the government, want another viable space station before this one ends,” Sam Scimemi, ISS director at NASA Headquarters, said during a Feb. 17 workshop on ISS utilization here. That would prevent a gap in low Earth orbit activities that could be detrimental to current ISS suppliers and users. “If the space station ends in the 2020s and there’s nothing to follow it, we will have lost all of this effort in research and benefits to humanity,” he said.

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    Now this is a surprising turn of events. The new space station to replace the ISS might be jointly built by the US and Russia. Other countries are welcome to join in.

    http://sputniknews.com/science/20150328/1020127456.html


    BAIKONUR (Sputnik) — Russia and the United States plan to jointly establish a new space station after 2024 with participation of partner countries, Russian space agency Roscosmos head Igor Komarov said Saturday.

    "Roscosmos and NASA will fulfil the program of building a future orbital station. We will elaborate the details. It is going to be an open project, not restricted only to current participants, but open for other countries willing to join it," Komarov said.
    Last edited by selvaarchi; 2015-Mar-29 at 04:59 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    Now this is a surprising turn of events. The new space station to replace the ISS might be jointly built by the US and Russia. Other countries are welcome to join in.
    That's the Russian side of the story.
    The US side isn't as optimistic. They are only "expressing interest", and Bolden is saying that a Mars mission cooperation is more likely.

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    “We, the government, want another viable space station before this one ends,” Sam Scimemi, ISS director at NASA Headquarters, said during a Feb. 17 workshop on ISS utilization here."
    I think the key word here is “viable”. I believe a space station in Earth orbit should provide several things minimum. There should be sections with 1G gravity, .38G gravity, .16G gravity, micro gravity, and zero gravity. It should include areas and facilities for being at least partially self sustaining. It should provide internal dry docks for maintaining and repairing spacecraft. That is what I would call viable.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MentalAvenger View Post
    “We, the government, want another viable space station before this one ends,” Sam Scimemi, ISS director at NASA Headquarters, said during a Feb. 17 workshop on ISS utilization here."
    I think the key word here is “viable”. I believe a space station in Earth orbit should provide several things minimum. There should be sections with 1G gravity, .38G gravity, .16G gravity, micro gravity, and zero gravity. It should include areas and facilities for being at least partially self sustaining. It should provide internal dry docks for maintaining and repairing spacecraft. That is what I would call viable.
    And it would only be a couple of orders of magnitude the size and cost of the ISS to be able to do all that, real easy to get.

    What we are likely to actually get is something that is more like the ISS 2.0, larger and better but not to the sort of extent that you are proposing.

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    As long as we continue to make baby steps, we will remain babies.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MentalAvenger View Post
    “We, the government, want another viable space station before this one ends,” Sam Scimemi, ISS director at NASA Headquarters, said during a Feb. 17 workshop on ISS utilization here."
    I think the key word here is “viable”. I believe a space station in Earth orbit should provide several things minimum. There should be sections with 1G gravity, .38G gravity, .16G gravity, micro gravity, and zero gravity. It should include areas and facilities for being at least partially self sustaining. It should provide internal dry docks for maintaining and repairing spacecraft. That is what I would call viable.
    Viable also considers economics. What is important to NASA is microgravity experiments and Earth observation. The rest is just commercial and dreams.

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    A .38G gravity level would allow testing for long term effects of Mars gravity on humans, plants, and devices. A .16G gravity level would allow the same for the Moon. Zero G chamber in the center would allow for onboard easier assembly of large and massive components and structures without space suits. All these would be valuable for future missions to the Moon, to Mars, and elsewhere.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MentalAvenger View Post
    A .38G gravity level would allow testing for long term effects of Mars gravity on humans, plants, and devices.
    When we travel to Mars, the big issue is the long travel time in zero-G, and radiation effects. If, and when, humans do travel to Mars, they can leave experiments there.

    Quote Originally Posted by MentalAvenger View Post
    A .16G gravity level would allow the same for the Moon.
    So would a moon base. Why simulate that level of gravity when it can be done on the moon?

    Quote Originally Posted by MentalAvenger View Post
    Zero G chamber in the center would allow for onboard easier assembly of large and massive components and structures without space suits.
    So, spending billions of dollars for a spacedock is better than a few spacewalks?

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    Quote Originally Posted by MentalAvenger View Post
    As long as we continue to make baby steps, we will remain babies.
    My guess is that we will remain babies. It is not what I would wish for, but I think it is the reality. I just don't see the US spending the money on a new station; I'm not convinced the Russians will either; I know even less about them, but their economy is really hurting at the moment.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    My guess is that we will remain babies. It is not what I would wish for, but I think it is the reality. I just don't see the US spending the money on a new station; I'm not convinced the Russians will either; I know even less about them, but their economy is really hurting at the moment.
    You left out China and it has published plans for a space station in 7 years and the money to do it.

    The other country that will have money to do something come 2024 will be India. By then it will have the world’s third largest economy. It should already have mastered manned space travel by then and is a country the the US can work with. Unless it works with China on their space station they will be looking at building their own.

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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    The other country that will have money to do something come 2024 will be India. By then it will have the world’s third largest economy. It should already have mastered manned space travel by then...
    There's a big difference between "mastering manned space travel" and building and supporting a space station. There's a lot more technology required for lengthy habitation.
    At last count, it looks like India's first manned launch will be 2020. Given the history of manned flight, I wouldn't expect something from them until nearly 2030.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NEOWatcher View Post
    There's a big difference between "mastering manned space travel" and building and supporting a space station. There's a lot more technology required for lengthy habitation.
    At last count, it looks like India's first manned launch will be 2020. Given the history of manned flight, I wouldn't expect something from them until nearly 2030.

    USSR 1961 to 1971 (Salyut)
    USA 1962 to 1973 (Skylab)
    China 2003 to 2011 (Tiangong 1)
    True if they do it on they own. That is why I expect them to team up with one or more countries and shorten the process.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MentalAvenger View Post
    As long as we continue to make baby steps, we will remain babies.
    Look at how space is treated in politics - it's a toy of those interested in prestige and influence. We are babies in this, we will make baby steps. Considering how manned spaceflight efforts are torn about by political winds a more capable ISS 2.0 plus some manned excursions to the Moon might well be considered a win. If we could throw in a couple of small private manned LEO stations I'd be thrilled and amazed.

    I have two thoughts on an ISS successor:

    1: It might be that the goverment built core would be smaller, but designed to accomadate considerable expansion from private companies, as an incentive to develop private efforts in habitate building.

    2: A small centrifuge, to allow experiments on biology at a range of different g's, would be a good idea.
    Last edited by marsbug; 2015-Apr-07 at 03:46 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MentalAvenger View Post
    As long as we continue to make baby steps, we will remain babies.
    I understand. In the 60s, I was imagining a different path for space exploration. Lots of disappointments along the way. But now, I'm amazed at how quickly the industry is developing. NASA, ESA, China, India, SpaceX, Mars, asteroids, microsatellites, Planetary Resources, JWST, space tourists, etc,: A killer app for space (mining, solar energy, whatever) is not yet there but it can't be far. It seems to me we're a long way from the baby steps of decades ago.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NEOWatcher View Post
    When we travel to Mars, the big issue is the long travel time in zero-G, and radiation effects. If, and when, humans do travel to Mars, they can leave experiments there.
    Although humans will probably be able to remain healthy long term in .38 gravity, it would be useful to know for sure before making the huge investments required for colonization.

    Crews can be shielded from radiation, and the solution to Zero G is a rotating vessel or section of a vessel enroute.

    Quote Originally Posted by NEOWatcher View Post
    So would a moon base. Why simulate that level of gravity when it can be done on the moon?
    It is possible that humans will not be able to thrive in 1/6th G long term. Again, that information may be vital in deciding what to do on the Moon.

    Quote Originally Posted by NEOWatcher View Post
    So, spending billions of dollars for a spacedock is better than a few spacewalks?
    Maintaining equipment in space with an active space program would require more than a few spacewalks. Working in space in space suits is clumsy, slow, and inherently dangerous. Working in zero-G in an Earth normal atmosphere would eventually be the only practical way to maintain reusable vessels. It would also be a preferable environment for orbital assembly of vessels and components.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 7cscb View Post
    I understand. In the 60s, I was imagining a different path for space exploration. Lots of disappointments along the way. But now, I'm amazed at how quickly the industry is developing. NASA, ESA, China, India, SpaceX, Mars, asteroids, microsatellites, Planetary Resources, JWST, space tourists, etc,: A killer app for space (mining, solar energy, whatever) is not yet there but it can't be far. It seems to me we're a long way from the baby steps of decades ago.
    I saw just the opposite. In the early days of the space program, we made giant leaps in technology and capability. Since then, it has slowed down dramatically.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MentalAvenger View Post
    “We, the government, want another viable space station before this one ends,” Sam Scimemi, ISS director at NASA Headquarters, said during a Feb. 17 workshop on ISS utilization here."
    I think the key word here is “viable”. I believe a space station in Earth orbit should provide several things minimum. There should be sections with 1G gravity, .38G gravity, .16G gravity, micro gravity, and zero gravity. It should include areas and facilities for being at least partially self sustaining. It should provide internal dry docks for maintaining and repairing spacecraft. That is what I would call viable.
    And while you're wishing, hook me up with a free pony, would ya?
    Quote Originally Posted by MentalAvenger View Post
    As long as we continue to make baby steps, we will remain babies.
    And how would we achieve a "viable" station of such size and complexity on a NASA budget? We just don't have the feet to take more than baby steps for the foreseeable future.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

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    Grant NASA the right to open casinos near major US cities. Funding problem solved.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MentalAvenger View Post
    Grant NASA the right to open casinos near major US cities. Funding problem solved.
    I strongly suspect that if a government agency were to open casinos, that agency would at the very least be shut down pending a Congressional investigation, and at worst disbanded entirely. Either way, they certainly would not be allowed to keep the profits.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

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    I apologise if this seems condescending, but there are a lot of folk passionate about space, and they are also creative and determined. They're looking for solutions and ways forwards. Hence if a there's a seemingly simple way to overcome NASA's budget woes and build us an ISS on steroids then there's very likely a huge roadblock for it as well.

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    No mention of the space station they already have. Not a word on building on to everything we paid to boost up there in the first place. " We just like shiny new things " . What's wrong with that picture?

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    Quote Originally Posted by danscope View Post
    No mention of the space station they already have. Not a word on building on to everything we paid to boost up there in the first place. " We just like shiny new things " . What's wrong with that picture?
    No word on building anything...
    I'm sure if there wasn't a push earlier, they would have started making plans for expansion and replacement of aging modules. But; this was also an international effort that also throws a wrench into the idea.
    I don't see it as "shiny new things", but more of lack of foresight. In fact, they even cancelled some of the ideas such as artificial gravity (Nautilus-x and Japan's CAM).

    Mir aged. It lasted 20 years. ISS is going for 25.
    The Russians have stated they want to re-use their components, but they haven't said which ones. Some of them are very recent additions.

    But; as we speak, another concept has come up. A space mushroom.
    Unfortunately, that's just a concept from a company probably looking for funding or publicity. At $300 billion, it just doesn't seem to be possible.

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    Quote Originally Posted by danscope View Post
    No mention of the space station they already have. Not a word on building on to everything we paid to boost up there in the first place. " We just like shiny new things " . What's wrong with that picture?
    You don’t build a Cadillac by adding onto a donkey cart, you start over.

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    Quote Originally Posted by marsbug View Post
    I apologise if this seems condescending, but there are a lot of folk passionate about space, and they are also creative and determined. They're looking for solutions and ways forwards. Hence if a there's a seemingly simple way to overcome NASA's budget woes and build us an ISS on steroids then there's very likely a huge roadblock for it as well.
    It was a joke.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MentalAvenger View Post
    You don’t build a Cadillac by adding onto a donkey cart, you start over.
    And refurbishing an old Cadillac can cost more than buying a new one.

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    Quote Originally Posted by danscope View Post
    No mention of the space station they already have. Not a word on building on to everything we paid to boost up there in the first place. " We just like shiny new things " . What's wrong with that picture?
    What's wrong with your picture is, the old ISS is old and parts of the structure are worn out and becoming unreliable. Not something you want in your only protection against various forms of death. You need reliable working systems in space, and the ISS just wasn't built for longevity.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

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    I'm sure they learned something from those two space stations. We'll stay tuned.

    Best regards ,
    Dan

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    Quote Originally Posted by MentalAvenger View Post
    It was a joke.
    Ah, my lack of social skills strikes again!

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    I do not think the US government will spend money on a new space station in the current environment. Even next year with the launch of China's Tiangong-2 will not move the decision makers in the US to allocate more money for a new space station.

    Come 2018 with the launch of the Tiangong-3 (the initial module of China's space station), things might change. One factor will be if China manages to win support from one or more of the other major space faring countries to join them in this venture. ESA is being actively wooed by China and France is already involved in providing technology for Tiangong-2. The danger of their(US) international partners joining China and diminishing the US role in international space ventures might make the US lawmakers change strategy and seriously consider the new station.

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