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posted by martyb on Monday August 22 2016, @10:09AM   Printer-friendly
from the Privatized-International-Space-Station-==-PISS? dept.

NASA may sell/lease parts of the International Space Station in the next decade:

NASA has signalled its intention to offload the International Space Station (ISS) some time in the 2020s. News of the sale appeared in the video below, at about the 14:15 mark [YouTube] when Bill Hill, NASA's deputy associate administrator for exploration systems development, ponders the ISS' role in future missions.

"Ultimately our desire is to hand the space station to either a commercial entity or some other commercial capability so that research can continue in low-Earth orbit. We figure that will be around the mid-20s."

Hill and the other speakers in the video explain how NASA is preparing for a crewed Mars mission and outline how the agency is now well and truly in the market for ideas about how to get it done.

Also at SpaceFlight Insider and TechCrunch.

Related:
Russia to Build New Space Station with NASA after ISS
Russia Investigates Downsizing Space Station Crew From Three to Two


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  • (Score: 2) by turgid on Monday August 22 2016, @12:58PM

    by turgid (4318) Subscriber Badge on Monday August 22 2016, @12:58PM (#391598) Journal

    I thought ESA had already resupplied the ISS several times with Ariane/ATV?

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  • (Score: 3, Informative) by gman003 on Monday August 22 2016, @06:22PM

    by gman003 (4155) on Monday August 22 2016, @06:22PM (#391775)

    Yes, as has JAXA (with H-IIB/HTV). However, GP specified "heavy lift payload", which is defined as 20-50 tonnes (Mg), which I believe is

    However, this is a bit incorrect. The ESA's Ariane 5 has a payload capacity only 600kg less than Russia's Proton-M (their biggest flying rocket, and more powerful than what they flew to launch their ISS modules), so they could easily orbit a new space station module, if they built one. I could crunch the numbers for exact dV to ISS inclination but if ESA can't get 20Mg to the ISS, neither could Russia, so I don't see why it's relevant. Indeed, a quick check shows that an ATV massed just over 20Mg at launch, qualifying it as a "heavy lift payload", although less than half of that was actual cargo capacity.

    Japan would be hit harder, as the biggest H-II is almost 30% weaker than Ariane 5/Proton-M (it compares well to a 3- or 4-booster Atlas V 5xx, if that means anything to you).

  • (Score: 2) by NCommander on Tuesday August 23 2016, @04:09AM

    by NCommander (2) Subscriber Badge <michael@casadevall.pro> on Tuesday August 23 2016, @04:09AM (#391990) Homepage Journal

    You are in fact correct. And I was right they couldn't launch within the dV constrains from mainland Europe, Wikipedia says the launches were done in French Guiana.

    --
    Still always moving
    • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 23 2016, @07:42AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 23 2016, @07:42AM (#392024)

      ESA only has the launch site in French Guiana, so that would be the expected place to launch any kind of rocket towards orbit.