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posted by n1 on Thursday April 03 2014, @03:43PM   Printer-friendly
from the sabre-rattle-heard-in-space dept.

NASA has released a statement indicating that they are "suspending the majority" of "ongoing engagements with the Russian Federation". Cooperation will continue "to maintain safe and continuous operation of the International Space Station." They have taken this action citing violations Ukraine's sovereignty by Russia.

NASA apparently is focusing on regaining human spaceflight capabilities and ending dependence on Russia. The statement goes on to say: "The choice here is between fully funding the plan to bring space launches back to America or continuing to send millions of dollars to the Russians." According to time.com the "information initially came to light from a leaked memo".

This comes after a recent statement by Charles Bolden a NASA administrator indicating that relations with Russia were fine. There are currently Two Americans, Three Russians, and the Japanese Commander aboard the ISS Expedition 39.

 
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  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by JeanCroix on Thursday April 03 2014, @04:14PM

    by JeanCroix (573) on Thursday April 03 2014, @04:14PM (#25662)
    When I saw this announced this morning, I started to wonder - what could the U.S. really do if Russia decided that no more American astronauts were allowed to use Soyuz craft? Sure, more economic sanctions, but that hasn't been effective so far. If things continue to sour between the two, they could effectively lock the U.S. out of the space station. Does anyone here have their finger on the pulse of the relations between the various space programs, and have thoughts on how such a scenario might play out, if at all?
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  • (Score: 5, Funny) by hybristic on Thursday April 03 2014, @04:19PM

    by hybristic (10) on Thursday April 03 2014, @04:19PM (#25666) Journal

    They tried this once with the Stargates DHD and with the help of SG-1 we were able to get the DHD and save Teal'c. So if it ever comes to that we just need Daniel Jackson to go talk with Putin and sort all of this out.

  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by jmoschner on Thursday April 03 2014, @05:34PM

    by jmoschner (3296) on Thursday April 03 2014, @05:34PM (#25697)

    what could the U.S. really do if Russia decided that no more American astronauts were allowed to use Soyuz craft?

    Right now there isn't much the U.S. can do. Putin knows he can pretty much do what he wants and nobody will stop him. He is going to keep pushing until it hits a breaking point (like a small war). Then he'll back off, let things coll down, then start over again.

    To get back to the ISS the U.S. would have to first look to China. Right now China is really the only other country doing manned launces that can reach the ISS. The U.S. would have to work closer with them and likely would.

    I don't see congress giving more funding to NASA for manned flights.

    Other options would include investment in U.S. efforts to get manned flight going again or working with one of the other space agencies that isn't doing manned launces yet. Most likely India or Japan. Then there is the hope that private companies like Space X, will develope and have manned flight capabilities sooner rather than later.

    • (Score: 4, Informative) by tibman on Thursday April 03 2014, @06:56PM

      by tibman (134) Subscriber Badge on Thursday April 03 2014, @06:56PM (#25760)

      SpaceX would love to send humans in to space but was basically told it could not. They are taking direction from NASA and on their timeline. http://www.spacex.com/dragon [spacex.com]

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    • (Score: 2) by frojack on Friday April 04 2014, @12:31AM

      by frojack (1554) on Friday April 04 2014, @12:31AM (#25943) Journal

      The ISS is an aging dinosaur anyway. Everything of value that the ISS can deliver was delivered in the building and design phase. And the US was the major benefactor of that knowledge.

      There is little useful science being done on the ISS these days. Its a huge Kludge, waiting for a disaster to happen.

      Russia is playing a waiting game, until the US formally abandons it. It will then be theirs.

      About all that the ISS routinely gets from the US is the use of Communications networks. As soon as something breaks down NASA astronauts end up going outside to fix it.

      Note: I'd feel the same about it if the Russians lost interest in it. It is an expensive budget sucking toy. Build it on the moon and I'll get interested again.

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