The National Orbital Service Station will be built on a high-latitude orbit at an inclination of 96-98 degrees to begin tasks that were unavailable on the ISS.
The new Russian orbital service station, or ROSS, which is to replace the ISS in the coming years, will be built on a high-latitude orbit with an inclination of 96-98 degrees, as it is "ideal" for observing the Earth (particularly Russia and much of the Arctic), Roscosmos CEO Dmitry Rogozin said.
"On the orbit with an inclination of 51.6 degrees (where the International Space Station is located. - Ed.) Everything is clear and has long been studied, we can not continue to work within the framework of manned space, without forming for ourselves a task that is fundamentally different from what has already been done, what the Soviet and Russian cosmonautics," - he said in a comment for RIA Novosti.
The point is also that the route for launching the spacecraft with the crew of the new station, which will be launched from Vostochny, will go over land: according to Rogozin, this will reduce the risks for cosmonauts in case of emergency situations, because if the launch were held from the same spaceport, but to an orbit of 51.6 degrees, the rocket would be flying for a long time over the Pacific Ocean.
A couple of months ago, Rogozin announced that ROSS would operate in automatic mode: manned spaceflight, in his opinion, is needed only when automatic systems cannot solve the problem. Crews on manned missions would therefore only deliver hardware ("expensive and high-precision") to the new station, install it and test it, and then return home. Faulty units, according to the plan, can be brought back to Earth and then replaced.
"The station <...> will also fly without humans and perform these tasks, and the hardware will be turned on when humans have the least impact on that hardware," the head of the state corporation said.
On the fact that Russia after 2024 may end participation in the International Space Station program, talk is not the first month (not even the first year, but called different terms). In early April, Roscosmos received responses from the heads of NASA, ESA and CSA to a demand to lift sanctions against the state corporation's companies in order to continue cooperation on the ISS, but they turned out to be "carbon copy" and clearly hinted at refusal. Rogozin stated that the situation will be reported to Vladimir Putin, and then the decision will be communicated to partners - the US, Europe and Japan, but there is no talk of a "demarche". So far there is no clarity.
Now the Rocket and Space Corporation Energia is preparing a conceptual design of ROSS, its deadline is the third quarter of 2023. Then the design documentation will have to be developed. The first module of the station will be the science and energy module (NEM), which was initially built for the ISS; its preparation will begin before the preliminary design is completed.
Among other components of ROSS will be the Prichal node module, launched to the ISS in November 2021, and the multifunctional orbital laboratory Nauka, docked to the Zvezda service module.