Pirs

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orienteer

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I have heard that the Pirs docking port on the ISS is to be jettisoned, and replaced with the MMR1 that Atlantis is carrying next month. Is this right, and when is the detachment?
 
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Zipi

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orienteer":id45ri6p said:
I have heard that the Pirs docking port on the ISS is to be jettisoned, and replaced with the MMR1 that Atlantis is carrying next month. Is this right, and when is the detachment?
Pirs will be detached when MLM "Nauka" is about to be launched: (current plan for MLM launch is Dec 2011)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nauka_(ISS_module)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internatio ... ce_Station

MRM1 will be docked to Zarya's nadir port which is free. Pirs is docked to Zvezda's nadir port.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/c ... en.svg.png
 
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Gravity_Ray

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Well we shall see if they launch that thing. The Russians have tried to launch that thing since the early 90s. But they seem to be serious this time ;)
 
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Zipi

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Gravity_Ray":1yw2v174 said:
Well we shall see if they launch that thing. The Russians have tried to launch that thing since the early 90s. But they seem to be serious this time ;)
The reason for postponement is replacing "foreign" parts with Russian ones... They want MLM to be 100% Russian hardware.
 
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PJay_A

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If Pirs is still healthy, mark my words that the Russians will want to keep it and will formally ask the Partners to allow its continued attachment and use. The Partners may agree - as long as there is no risk to the ISS and its crew for its continued use and if the module is recertified - because of the fact that it will add an additional docking port for Soyuz, Progress, and ATV (which is useful due to the fact that there's no more shuttle or Orion flights).

The Russians have made clear that they intend to keep and make use of their modules well beyond their expiration dates. Although the launch and docking of MPLM will formally mark the station's completion, the Russians have other plans. At least 3 more Russian modules will follow MPLM, according to Russian plans. If the Partners agree to extend the life of ISS, these new modules will be part of a larger station; if not, the new modules allow Russia to operate their modules independently of the the US/EU/Japan segment.

As of late last year, engineering work for Russia's next planned module (following MPLM) - a small 6-port "node" module - was well under way.
 
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Zipi

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PJay_A":22hiv7j5 said:
If Pirs is still healthy, mark my words that the Russians will want to keep it and will formally ask the Partners to allow its continued attachment and use.

As of late last year, engineering work for Russia's next planned module (following MPLM) - a small 6-port "node" module - was well under way.
There is no such docking ports available where Pirs could be docked... So when MLM arrives it has to be decommissioned. There are two different types of Russian probe & cone docking mechanisms and only Zvezda has those larger ones (Zenith port occupied by Poisk and nadir by Pirs). Also Zarya and Zvezda are berthed together with the larger docking port standard but those cannot even be considered for this use. Only way to get MLM docked is to undock Pirs or Poisk and decommission it.

And what comes to the 6 docking port nodal module, it is not funded. It exists only in paper and since international partners have agreed to keep ISS flying there is no need for such module... The only need for nodal module were the need for more electricity if Russian segment were kept as a separate space station. Then those solar array modules would have been berthed to it, but currently ISS have more than enough of electricity.
 
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PJay_A

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Zipi":389woelr said:
And what comes to the 6 docking port nodal module, it is not funded. It exists only in paper and since international partners have agreed to keep ISS flying there is no need for such module... The only need for nodal module were the need for more electricity if Russian segment were kept as a separate space station. Then those solar array modules would have been berthed to it, but currently ISS have more than enough of electricity.
Not true - I found several Russian-language (Google translated) articles dated from late last year stating that the Node Mode has been allocated funding for preliminary design and engineering work. This module will be necessary whether or not the Russian segment becomes independent and here's why...

First reason: The International Partnership agreement for ISS allots Russia power from the US segment (to make up for the difference their modules generates versus actual total power required by their segment). This allotment expires on a certain date (which I don't remember off-hand). So, to make full use of their segment after that date, at minimum, new arrays will be needed. The Node Module allows the addition of two Power Modules that fullfill this need. Additionally, the Node Module clears the way for Russia to proceed with ambitious plans for testing lunar-earth trans-orbiting spacecraft.
 
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Zipi

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PJay_A":14ei017v said:
Not true - I found several Russian-language (Google translated) articles dated from late last year stating that the Node Mode has been allocated funding for preliminary design and engineering work. This module will be necessary whether or not the Russian segment becomes independent and here's why...

First reason: The International Partnership agreement for ISS allots Russia power from the US segment (to make up for the difference their modules generates versus actual total power required by their segment). This allotment expires on a certain date (which I don't remember off-hand). So, to make full use of their segment after that date, at minimum, new arrays will be needed. The Node Module allows the addition of two Power Modules that fullfill this need. Additionally, the Node Module clears the way for Russia to proceed with ambitious plans for testing lunar-earth trans-orbiting spacecraft.
Please post Google translation links to those articles. Preliminary design and engineering work for nodal module is rather cheap since they just take Zvezda's docking compartment as basis and add two more docking ports to it. So even preliminary work is funded the construction of nodal module and other suggested modules have totally different price tag.

What comes to contracts about electricity transwer, those can be renewed pretty easily. USA needs ride to ISS and Russia needs electricity to their segment. USA has plenty of electricity and Russia has a reliable vehicle for ISS travels. There simply is no need for new ISS modules... There is enough interior space to conduct experiments and for stowage. Those rubles which would go building new modules are much better used for that new Russian deep space vehicle & launcher family.
 
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PJay_A

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Zipi":2ec317mr said:
PJay_A":2ec317mr said:
Not true - I found several Russian-language (Google translated) articles dated from late last year stating that the Node Mode has been allocated funding for preliminary design and engineering work. This module will be necessary whether or not the Russian segment becomes independent and here's why...

First reason: The International Partnership agreement for ISS allots Russia power from the US segment (to make up for the difference their modules generates versus actual total power required by their segment). This allotment expires on a certain date (which I don't remember off-hand). So, to make full use of their segment after that date, at minimum, new arrays will be needed. The Node Module allows the addition of two Power Modules that fullfill this need. Additionally, the Node Module clears the way for Russia to proceed with ambitious plans for testing lunar-earth trans-orbiting spacecraft.
Please post Google translation links to those articles. Preliminary design and engineering work for nodal module is rather cheap since they just take Zvezda's docking compartment as basis and add two more docking ports to it. So even preliminary work is funded the construction of nodal module and other suggested modules have totally different price tag.

What comes to contracts about electricity transwer, those can be renewed pretty easily. USA needs ride to ISS and Russia needs electricity to their segment. USA has plenty of electricity and Russia has a reliable vehicle for ISS travels. There simply is no need for new ISS modules... There is enough interior space to conduct experiments and for stowage. Those rubles which would go building new modules are much better used for that new Russian deep space vehicle & launcher family.
Okay, I just did a Google search for those articles. Haven't found the ones I was looking for, but I found an article from last summer in English (link and article below). I will keep looking for a more current article and the Russian-language ones I talked about.

Quote from article: "RKK Energia, Russia’s primary ISS contractor, has already started developing a customized node module for the Russian segment, which will serve as the foundation of the future station."

Russia To Keep Space Station Components In Orbit

Posted on: Saturday, 23 May 2009, 06:55 CDT

Russia is making preparations to separate its components of the International Space Station (ISS) and fly them away when the rest of the station de-orbits.

A BBC News report cited Russian officials who said they plan to keep their ISS modules in orbit for another ten years.

Although ISS partner nations are hopeful they will be able to extend funding for the project beyond the current deadline of 2015, observers agree that most of the ISS will have to be cancelled by 2020.

Russia’s plans call for the remaining Russian modules to form the core of a new orbital outpost, which would serve as a harbor and assembly shop for missions to the Moon, Mars and beyond.

RKK Energia, Russia’s primary ISS contractor, has already started developing a customized node module for the Russian segment, which will serve as the foundation of the future station.

A spherical-shaped compartment with docking ports on six sides would allow the new outpost to remain in space indefinitely, with individual components being replaced as needed. The current ISS design makes replacement of some of its critical modules virtually impossible.

Russian engineers are confident that even after twenty years in orbit, their modules will be able to serve as the basis of a new space station.

"We flew on Mir for 15 years and accumulated colossal experience in extending the service life (of such a vehicle)," a senior Russian official at RKK Energia told BBC News.

"I don't see any problems, with the exception of penetration of the module's skin by a meteoroid. (The vehicle) can fly twenty or thirty years and, if we don't have a direct hit, we can replace practically every internal component. We learnt a lesson from Mir that anything that can fail in this period of time can be replaced."

However, the notion of transitioning the Russian segment of the ISS into an independent space station creates major legal, political and financial issues, Russian officials acknowledged.

"I can tell you it is technically possible to separate the Russian segment (from the ISS) and fly free, however, (in this case) there are a number of issues with the... end of the station's life," said one Russian space official during an interview with BBC News.

Because the Russian plans call for flying a key service module away along with the rest of its segments, the remaining parts of the ISS would be left without propulsion capability. Such capacity would be needed to maintain the station's orbit or to send it back into the Earth's atmosphere over a safe area.

According to a BBC News report citing Russian sources, Russia has actively discussed their intentions with their American counterparts, but has so far failed to reach a satisfactory solution.

"Our position is that the primary integrator of the station (NASA) is responsible for a civilized end to the flight after the conclusion of the mission," a Russian official told BBC News.

"They (the Americans) said they understood the issue, but did not go beyond that."

To resolve the issue, Russian space officials are considering the European-built ATV spacecraft, whose propulsion system is strong enough to guide ISS towards a controlled destruction.

However, significant modifications would be necessary to implement the plan since the ATV can currently only dock with the Russian segment.

Manuel Valls, head of policy and plans at the European Space Agency’s (human spaceflight and exploration directorate, told BBC News that ESA had conducted preliminary studies about docking the vehicle to the American ISS segment.

But the agency’s priority is on reaching a quick agreement with its ISS partners on funding for the station until at least 2020.

"If and when the ISS will be de-orbited, which is, again, highly unlikely to happen before 2020, then the right vehicle to do the job would be the ATV," Mr. Valls said.

"However, by 2020, we will also have the HTV (a Japanese cargo vehicle designed to dock with the US segment) and probably American vehicles, which could be used as well. It is more than 10 years from now, so anything can happen."

Roscosmos, the Russian federal space agency, first announced plans to succeed the ISS with its own space station nearly ten years ago. However, several recent events helped bring the plan to the forefront of Russia’s long-term space strategy.

In 2004, the U.S. government decided to abandon the ISS in the middle of the coming decade, choosing instead to fund lunar exploration missions. NASA currently plans to end its participation in the ISS around 2015, precisely when the latest Russian ISS modules are set to reach the launch pad.

Last year, Roscosmos and ESA fell short on reaching a deal on a co-operative initiative to develop a next-generation manned spacecraft.

The Russian government has since committed to the independent development of a new manned spacecraft, which would ultimately support missions to the Moon or to Mars.

The initial launch of the new Russian spacecraft is optimistically set for 2018. Assuming the launch takes place by then, the craft would likely reach the launch pad before NASA ended its ISS support.

While the ISS served primarily as a platform for scientific research, Russia's future space station, known as the Orbital Piloted Assembly and Experiment Complex (OPSEK), would primarily function as a support station for deep space exploration.

Behind the scenes, Russian engineers have crafted aggressive plans for orbital stations around the Earth and the Moon, and ultimately in the orbit of Mars. The stations would be linked by re-usable tugs, shuttling between them continuously to support ongoing Solar System exploration.

After separating from the ISS, the station's 20-ton service module could ultimately be replaced by a 40-ton living quarters that would be launched by a new family of vehicles.

This module could eventually serve as a base and building site for the Martian expedition complex, which could be assembled while in Earth’s orbit in the mid-2030s to transport the first humans to Mars.

http://www.redorbit.com/news/space/1694 ... index.html
 
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