Russia Fears ISS Will Suffer “Irreparable” Damage Due To Its Age
The ISS has been in orbit for many years and hasn’t aged as gracefully as we might have liked. The harsh environment the station operates in makes the station challenging to repair and costly to replace. All of the partner countries are working to extend the life of the station, but parts are starting to break down.
Russia recently found more cracks in some of its modules on the ISS. Its space authorities are now warning that they fear the aging station code suffer “irreparable” hardware failures due to age. Russia says that about 80% of the flight systems aboard its segment of the ISS are past their expiration date.
The cracks discovered in the Russian module are feared to get worse as time goes by. The failing hardware and age of the station have led Russia to say it might leave the ISS partnership in 2025.
It did deliver its laboratory module last month after many years of delays. However, according to the Russians, a glitch that might have been human error did fire the new module’s thrusters and pushed the ISS out of orientation. It remains to be seen if Russia stays or abandons the ISS and what impact its decision will have on the other partner nations.