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Heavy lift is key to International Space Station future says Boeing

14 Apr 2010, 16:03 UTC
Heavy lift is key to International Space Station future says Boeing
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credit: NASA / caption: NASA’s proposed Ares V cargo launch vehicle mode in a windtunnel A heavy lift rocket is needed to sustain the International Space Station (ISS) because when Shuttle retires key parts of the station are too large for any of the existing rockets available or those plannedIn an exclusive interview Boeing vice president and ISS programme manager Joy Bryant stressed the need for a heavy lift capability and downmass - to bring back experiments – to ensure the station is full realised as a laboratoryBoeing has been NASA’s prime contractor for the US segment of the ISS since 1993. On 5 March this year the company officially “delivered” the outpost to NASA but Boeing will continue to service the station on a “sustaining” contract. In Bryant’s view to sustain the ISS a heavy lift launcher is needed
Ever since the 2004 decision to retire Shuttle in 2010 the ISS has faced a problem of having components, notably its Control Movement Gyroscopes, that are too large for any launcher other than NASA’s orbiters. The CMG and other large components, known as Orbital Replacement Units (ORU), could be redesigned to enable delivery by other vehicles as sub-assemblies that then ...

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