Orbital Technologies commercial space station


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10 March 2010
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There's a press release at http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5j_VvXu5YSgMA1ABk0cR3fKt9ccdgD9IHK1V04?docId=D9IHK1V04 about a proposed new space station for space tourists. First part of the press release is:

MOSCOW — A Russian firm on Wednesday announced an ambitious bid to fill the vacuum in the space tourism market by stationing an orbiting hotel in the cosmos.

The Moscow-based Orbital Technologies has sky-high hopes that its planned Commercial Space Station can serve as a tourism hub for well-heeled travellers and offer overspill accommodation for the International Space Station and workspace for science projects.

But it's unlikely to come anytime soon — the company wants to launch a seven-room station by 2016 but may increase or decrease that capacity based on customer demand.

It also remained unclear whether the state-controlled RKK Energia company, named as the general contractor for the project, would have enough funds and capacities to carry out the plan. Energia builds Soyuz crew capsules and Progress cargo ships to deliver space crew and supplies to the International Space Station that would be the only link to space after planned retirement of the U.S. shuttle fleet next year.

Sergey Kostenko, Orbital Tehcnologies' chief executive, told The Associated Press in an interview that the planned station would be "a comfortable hotel in orbit, designed specifically for tourists."

"But it will be more comfortable than the International Space Station because there won't be any unnecessary scientific equipment," he said.

There's more information at http://orbitaltechnologies.ru/en/purpose-of-the-commercial-space-station.html, including the attached images. Thanks to hobbyspace for the pointer and I agree with Clark that there are a lot of Russian ideas out there that never attract funding ... surely at least one Russian billionaire has a strong space interest? I'd have thought that the bragging rights for having your own space station beats owning your own soccer team?!


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I like this, if only because: a) they painted it, and b) it looks sort of like the snooty S.I.D. from "U.F.O."

Seriously, spaceships look better with racing stripes...

But we've been here before. Anybody remember MirCorp2? That was MirCorp's proposal for a follow-on space station after they did such a great job with their first effort. And I think there has been at least one other proposal besides Bigelow (I like Bigelow, but I have my doubts that they will ever be successful).
blackstar said:
And I think there has been at least one other proposal besides Bigelow

Are you thinking of Excalibur Almaz? (http://www.excaliburalmaz.com/) Who plan to use Soviet military Almaz space stations as the basis of their commercial space stations (I'll start a new thread on them once I've sorted through some info).
FutureSpaceTourist said:
blackstar said:
And I think there has been at least one other proposal besides Bigelow

Are you thinking of Excalibur Almaz?

No, I have vague memories that there was somebody else. But maybe I'm wrong.
Roscosmos have issued a press release about their involvement in the Orbital Technologies space station:

[quote author=http://www.parabolicarc.com/2010/10/14/roscosmos-work-commercial-space-station-firm-contract-signed/]
Commercial space station to be built jointly by RSC-Energia and Orbital Technologies will be used to conduct scientific experiments, Head of Roscosmos Human Spaceflight Directorate Alexey Krasnov told news media.

Krasnov explained that heritage of the space missions showed that any flight should have its scientific justification. According to him, many non-professional space men are eager to carry out their experiments in microgravity. So, the new station will be widely used.

On the other hand, commercial station can become space haven for the ISS crew in case of contingency. According to Krasnov, space hotel has not been considered at all wrt the single-module commercial outpost.

However the implementation of the project will only start after a contract between Russian state-owned rocket and space corporation Energia and Moscow-based company Orbital Technologies is signed, the Energia head said.

“As of today, the company only has an agreement of intent. When we have a firm contract, there will be the terms and engineering design,” Vitaly Lopota said.

The project will cost hundreds of millions of dollars, Orbital Tehcnologies’ CEO Sergei Kostenko said in late September, adding that Russian and U.S. investors have already been found.

Not sure that 'agreement of intent' and 'investors found' means the project is actually funded (yet).
FutureSpaceTourist said:
Not sure that 'agreement of intent' and 'investors found' means the project is actually funded (yet).

Alas, they mean nothing of the sort. Then again, we've seen this for virtually all Russian projects of the past two decades. They issue a press announcement, then they eventually admit that there's no actual funding available, but they'll do it when funding becomes available.

But now that I think about it, this is no different than 99% of the commercial projects announced in the West. You've posted dozens of images of rocketships that somebody claimed to be building 5-8 years ago, and none of them got built.

And, being really cynical, this is no different than a lot of the US government human space programs. The one difference is that NASA seems to build a bit of hardware before the program gets canceled.

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