NASA announced today the arrival date of the new space station and when it will halt ISS operations.
Last October, it emerged that Jeff Bezos” Blue Origin spaceflight company plans to build its own commercial space station in low Earth orbit. NASA then announced that it had chosen the program to fund the Space Act Agreement to improve the station’s design.
While discussions are currently raging about what will replace the International Space Station (ISS), the iconic orbital station is likely to go nowhere anytime soon. Because the station that will replace it is still in its infancy.
NASA will resume ISS operations until 2030!
The ISS, home to astronauts from around the world, has been in constant use for more than 20 years. In addition, the station is constantly integrating new technologies, such as an ongoing upgrade to the power system, which includes the installation of new solar arrays that began last year.
But the fact is that the ISS is now quite obsoleting. Although NASA is constantly upgrading, the systems and skeleton that form the basis of the station are 24 years old. Although it contains the best technology of the 20th century, astronauts now need a new home built by today’s standards.
China recently successfully put the first part of its space station into orbit. NASA also announced that three private companies would work on plans for a new space station. Jeff Bezos’s Blue Origin space company plans, which we mentioned at the beginning of the story, are moving in this direction.
Although the number of companies that can carry out this work is quite sufficient, it takes months to test even the rocket, which is fully ready to be launched. So the longer NASA can keep the ISS in space, the better.
Because the timing is critical. For example, this new station is expected to be completed by the end of the 2020s. It will then make a successful launch and abandon the old ISS. If there’s a mistake with the launch, it could take many years to rectdo. Unlike Elon Musk’s rockets, they can’t be backed up because they’re projects that cost billions of dollars.
NASA administrator Bill Nelson said in a statement:
The International Space Station is a sign of peaceful international scientific cooperation and has made tremendous scientific, educational and technological advances to benefit humanity for over 20 years. I am pleased that his administration has committed to continue station operations until 2030.
The United States’ continued participation in the ISS will increase innovation and competitiveness, while at the same time advancing the research and technology needed to send the first woman and the first non-white person to the moon under NASA’s Artemis program, paving the way for sending the first man to Mars.
As more and more nations are active in space, it is more important than ever for the United States to continue to lead the world in modeling growing international alliances, rules and norms for the peaceful and responsible use of space.