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MOSCOW, May 19. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered designing a Russian space station, Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin said on Tuesday.
"The task to create a new orbital station has been set by the president. This week we will report plans on the development of piloted cosmonautics to the president," Rogozin said.
The head of the science and engineering council of Russia’s Roscosmos agency, Yuri Koptev, in April confirmed Russia's plans of orbiting a new space station saying it may happen in the middle of the next decade.
Earlier it was reported that the operation of the existing International Space Station (ISS) could be extended to 2024. In 2017-2019, the Russian segment of the ISS is expected to be replenished with a multifunctional laboratory module, a node and a scientific-energy module.
The Russian side does not rule out that new modules could be separated from the ISS to create a national orbital station after 2024. A draft Federal Space Program for 2016-2025 says the space station could in 2025 be replenished with two more modules - a transformable one and an energy one.
There were also reports saying Russia is ready to propose to the BRICS group member states (comprising Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) the creation of a joint orbital station. Yuri Koptev said the joint orbital station development may be started if the International Space Station (ISS) operation is stopped due to political disagreements between the current ISS partners.