28th Nov 2005, 16:08
NASA is going to purchase Russian spacecraft:
29th Nov 2005, 22:16
Russian lift will be able to address the temporary grounding void of the Shuttle. When the insulation debonding problem on the external tank can be corrected, the three Shuttles will continue trucking until their retirement. (That's if another one doesn't fly apart).
The International Space Station (ISS) is no longer central to U.S. vision, but it is important to Europe, Canada and Japan. They joined the ISS program to gain human spaceflight experience and because they believed it was prudent to respond positively to the U.S. invitation to participate. Honoring it's international commitments should be important to the U.S. because a cooperative drive by other spacefaring nations will advance the ambitious goals in the Vision for Space Exploration of the cosmos.
(Let's all come back in a hundred years to check things out!!)