Monday, November 23, 2009

Russia searches, seeks and explores its space station future

Go here for NASA's picture of the Mini-Research Module (MRM) 2 "Poisk" module that docked with the Russian International Space Station segment Zvezda's zenith docking port on 12 November. In the photo you can only really see the propulsion module

According to the US space agency Poisk is a Russian word that can mean search, seek or explore while you can read about Poisk's arrival and the fact that it it delivered 750kg (1,650lb) of cargo here at the Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) website

Go here for a picture of MRM 2 under construction. Roscosmos says of the Poisk, "Its original name was Docking Module 2 (Stykovochniy Otsek 2 (SO-2)), as it is almost identical to Pirs already on the station. It will be added to the zenith port of the Zvezda module, and will serve as an additional docking port for Soyuz and Progress spacecraft and as an airlock for spacewalks. Poisk will also provide extra space for scientific experiments, and provide power-supply outlets and data-transmission interfaces for two external scientific payloads to be developed by the Russian Academy of Sciences."

Poisk will be joined by MRM 1 in May 2010 when Space Shuttle Atlantis delivers it, a mission that was previously scheduled for April 2010 and using the Discovery orbiter. The arrival of MRM2 marks a new phase in Russia's contribution to the ISS


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