MOSCOW, January 10. /TASS/. Russia’s State Space Corporation Roscosmos will launch the new multifunctional laboratory module Nauka (Science) to the International Space Station (ISS) in 2020, Roscosmos Chief Dmitry Rogozin said in an interview with RBC media holding on Thursday.
Speaking about the commercialization of the orbital outpost’s operation, the Roscosmos chief noted that it was possible no sooner than 2020 as the Russian segment was now compact and was needed for cosmonauts’ work.
"But in early 2020, we are planning to send the multifunctional laboratory module there to expand the workplace’s floor space in the Russian segment and we are going to dispatch two more modules in 2022: the docking and the power module. In this situation, we will surely get a vacant place both for increasing the number of experiments on the ISS and attracting commercial companies," the Roscosmos chief said.
It was reported earlier that the new module Nauka was expected to be launched to the orbital outpost aboard a Proton-M carrier rocket from the Baikonur Cosmodrome already this year.
The Nauka module has a launch weight of over 20 tonnes and can accommodate up to 3 tonnes of scientific equipment. The module is designed to provide a docking port for Soyuz and Progress spacecraft, ensure the pumping of fuel from Progress spacecraft’s fuel tanks to the ISS and take care of the station’s roll control with the help of engines. The module is also expected to generate oxygen for six people and regenerate water from the urine.