Starlab, the commercial space station operated by Voyager Space and Airbus designed to sustain a human presence in low Earth orbit, is one step closer to reality.
Between european space agency At the ESA Summit in Seville, Spain, the companies, together with ESA, star lab space station. The agreement outlined the department’s focus on science and technology development and how cooperation offers alternatives. low earth orbit destination. At this point, international space station (ISS), which is scheduled to be retired in 2030. It is scheduled It is expected to be completely de-orbited in 2031.
After the ISS ends, ESA and NASA Humanity is expected to increasingly turn to commercial space stations to maintain a human presence in space around Earth.
In the future, Star Lab will at least partially fulfill that role for the space agencies of each ESA member state. It is expected to be launched as early as 2028 and begin operations in 2029. This includes access for astronaut missions and the conduct of research, as well as providing opportunities for commercial business development. Starlab will also provide a complete “end-to-end” system in low-Earth orbit for European crew and cargo.
Related: Introducing Star Lab: A private space station scheduled to fly in 2027
“ESA appreciates the transatlantic industry initiative for the commercial Starlab space station and the potential that its strong European footprint brings to the significant contribution and utilization of European industry and institutions to the station. ” said Josef Aschbacher, ESA Director-General. said in a statement. “Our team looks forward to working closely with the Starlab teams here in Europe and the United States.”
Research that could be conducted at STAR Labs could include the kinds of life sciences that have already been conducted on the ISS for more than 20 years, such as investigating how microgravity in space affects living things. There is sex. Additionally, Star Labs could host advanced robotics and artificial intelligence research, all based on European technology, with the aim of advancing European science.
Voyager Space President Matthew Kuta said in a statement: “This agreement with ESA is extremely important as we foster international cooperation in space and move toward replacing the International Space Station with Starlab. It’s important.” “We look forward to working with Airbus and ESA to expand Europe’s reach into space and ensure they continue to be leaders in a new generation of commercial space exploration.”
ESA and Airbus are used to working together in low Earth orbit. In addition to providing a European service module for ESA; orion spaceship — as Europe’s contribution to NASA artemis Airbus supplied the space station’s Columbus module to ESA, as well as the five automated guided vehicles that fly to the ISS.
“At Airbus, we are very pleased that ESA continues to look to the future and has shown such strong interest in Starlab,” Airbus CEO Mike Scholhorn said in a statement. . “Our collaboration on this next-generation space station builds on ESA and Airbus’ long and successful partnership in the development and operation of a wide range of manned and unmanned spacecraft.”