View Full Version : Is the ISS going to be abandoned?

2008-Sep-10, 04:09 AM
Hello everyone. This isn't the sort of online forum I usually participate at. I was recovering from illness and some friends brought me some interesting magazines to read. I think my friend Natalie was trying to be funny when she gave me 'Sky and Space'. It was actually quite interesting. I've always been a star watcher but not the night sky variety. Hope I don't sound too foolish in asking this. Is the ISS being shut down?


Seems like a lot of money has been spent on that project.


2008-Sep-10, 01:55 PM
Hi Kylie,

Welcome to UT, I'm new too but there's load of stuff here to read if you've got time to kill, from the simple-simple to the in-depth technical stuff. It seems like a great place to get an answer and no-doubt somenone more informed than me will fill you in.

I do know that the US will have difficulty getting to Station after the shuttle fleet is retired because they don't have another man-rated launch vehicle, as yet. They were supposed to buy Soyuz flights from the Russians until such time when the new launch vehicle (called Orion) was ready for flight but since Russia's recent "invasion" of Georgia, cold war fears seem to be re-emerging (not to mention the Missile shield the US wants to deploy in Poland - on Russiažs border) and this solution looks increasingly unlikely.

Nasa seems to have understood this and is now looking around for alternatives. Unfortunately its budget is so tight it doesn't have many.
One might be helping the EU man-rate the ATV vehicle and using that for earth to station transport, another is keeping the shuttles on-line until the new vehicle is ready and there really isn't much to go on, yet.

As far as Station goes, it won't be abandoned - it is just about ready for 6 man crews so in reality it is only now getting up to speed... Remember the Eu, Japan & Russia have all invested a stash of money into it and they won't be leaving soon... shuttle or no shuttle.
Us europeans have no problems hitching rides with the Russians (we actually have no choice).
On a final note, the Chinese space agency will soon become the 3rd or 4th largest space player and they too might be interested in visiting Station, unless they build their own.

Sorry for long winded reply !

2008-Sep-10, 03:03 PM
They spent a lot of money on Skylab and Mir, too... didn't prevent them from being shut down, abondoned and streaking through the sky as firey lumps of molten metal.

As they said in "The Right Stuff", "No bucks, no Buck Rodgers."

2008-Sep-10, 08:49 PM
(Isn't it "Nikto"?)

2008-Sep-10, 09:42 PM
(Isn't it "Nikto"?)

Heh. That almost seems like someone wants to get someone else in trouble when G O R T does enter..

As to the OP, apolloman got it all. I might add to it that the current political situation seems to be pretty short term. Who knows how the situation changes in one or a couple of months? Then there's the next USA presidency. Who knows what he'll do? Abandoning seems quite too big a word, to me.