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ESA And The Russian Clipper

Wed Sep 28, 2005 6:06 pm

The European Space Agency has proposed joining the Russian Soyuz replacement program, the Clipper. This would give the ESA access to the ISS and orbit without having to rely on either the US or the Russians for seats, as being a partner country in a manned program will allow them to allocate their own seats.

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RE: ESA And The Russian Clipper

Thu Sep 29, 2005 1:08 am

I think its an interesting development, especially when you consider that Germany which is paying quite a lot of the ESA budget already has a lot of connections to the Russians (the first German flew into space in 1978 on board a Soyus, for example, then there was the the Mir program, there are many other fields of cooperation, not only in the space sector), and that there are many interests to tie the Russians closer to Europe. For example, Gerhard Schr�der stated at the A380 reveal that he wished that the EADS would open their view towards the russians. Even if he primary meant the airliner programme, I would guess that a tense involvement in the space programme would also be of interest.
There are also other intentions: If you have something to offer together with the russians, you have a better position when negotiating with NASA...

I think that it is very important that ESA will get acces to their own manned program. This does NOT mean, by the way that this decision is something against the US. I think that the future of space travel still lies in cooperation, and the US-ESA projects are more important than ESA-Russian projects...

Yet I think that Russian space technology is one field where the Russians are really among the best in the world, therefore I think it is important, also in terms of security, to keep their scientists involved in international projects, so that they are not forced to give their know-how to doubtful countries...

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RE: ESA And The Russian Clipper

Fri Sep 30, 2005 12:54 am

Sensible, if ESA provide support to make Klipper a reality, it will benefit everyone, including NASA.
I bet from the ISS support perspective, NASA wished that Klipper was flying now.

So in 10 years, NASA will have the CEV, Russia the Klipper.
A better, more robust arrangement than the current Shuttle and Soyuz.
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RE: ESA And The Russian Clipper

Fri Sep 30, 2005 7:13 am

>> So in 10 years, NASA will have the CEV, Russia the Klipper.

NASA may even have the T/Space CXV at their disposal, if they continue on their incremental development. NASA has really come around to the idea of prototype demonstration rather than paper study, and T/Space may just be able to keep the funding dollars coming long enough to reach an opperational vehicle.

In this event, NASA would have both the CXV and CEV: CXV for dirt-cheap orbital access, CEV for payload lift and exploration missions.

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