Russia showed a model of its own space station

The recently appointed head of the space agency, Yuri Borisov, said at the end of July that Russia would withdraw from the international project after 2024 and that Roscosmos’ priority in the field of manned cosmonautics would be to build its own station.

On Monday, Roskosmos exhibited a model of its intended orbital station at the “Armija-2022” military-industrial forum, which began in Patriot Park outside Moscow. In a statement, the space agency said the new station would be built in two phases, without specifying dates.

Four modules should start operating in the first phase, followed by two more and a service platform. Together, this should be enough for up to four astronauts and scientific equipment.

Russian state media indicated that the start of the first phase is planned for 2025–26, no later than 2030. The start of the second phase for 2030–35.

The Russian space station does not count on a permanent human presence, but on being manned twice a year, for a longer period of time. Roscosmos said that ROSS would give Russian cosmonauts a much wider view of Earth for monitoring purposes than they have in their current segment on the ISS.

The White House and the US space agency NASA said after Boris’ recent statements that they had not received an official message about Russia’s withdrawal from the international project.

The head of Roscosmos subsequently noted that the exact date of Russia’s departure from the ISS will depend on its technical condition. The current agreement of the participants in the ISS project envisages that the orbital complex, the creation of which began in 1998, should operate until 2024. However, the project partners have expressed their intention to extend the operation of the station until 2028 to 2030.

The news of Russia’s intention to leave the ISS comes at a time of extraordinary tension between Moscow and the West over Russia’s military aggression in Ukraine. However, despite the split, NASA and Roskosmos recently agreed to continue joint flights to the ISS, according to the AP.

The International Space Station currently remains one of the last areas of cooperation between Moscow and the West, which has imposed a series of sanctions on Russia over its invasion of Ukraine.