U.S., Russia to build lunar space station

By Brooks Hays  |  Sept. 27, 2017 at 9:50 AM
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Sept. 27 (UPI) -- Roscosmos, Russia's space agency, announced Wednesday it would join the United States in the construction of a lunar space station. The moon-orbiting space station, dubbed Deep Space Gateway, would serve as a stepping stone for manned-missions to Mars.

Russia signed on to the DSG cooperation agreement at the astronautical congress held in Adelaide, Australia, this week.

In a press release, Roscosmos said it would work with the United States to ensure a standardization process during the design phase -- an effort to ensure space technology from participating countries would be compatible with the modules and docking stations.

"Roscosmos and NASA have already agreed on standards for a docking unit of the future station. Taking into account the country's extensive experience in developing docking units, the station's future elements will be created using Russian designs," Roscosmos said. "Developed standards will be used by all countries in the development and creation of their space technology."

According to NASA, the Deep Space Gateway will be outfitted with a "power bus, a small habitat to extend crew time, docking capability, an airlock, and serviced by logistics modules to enable research."

During discussions between Russia and the United States in Adelaide, Roscosmos officials pushed for the eventual use of their Proton-M and Angara rockets for construction of the DSG's infrastructure. NASA already has plans to utilize its Space Launch System rocket, but according to the statement issued by Russia's space agency, both Russian and U.S. rockets could be used to build the lunar station.

"The main work on the creation of the lunar station will begin in the mid-2020s," Roscosmos said.

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