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Report: Progress funding problem threatens future ISS missions
Posted: Thu, Apr 25, 2002, 10:24 AM ET (1424 GMT)
ISS illustration (NASA) A funding shortfall in Russia has delayed the construction of several Progress resupply spacecraft, and unless funding is restored the station may need to be evacuated as soon as November, reported Thursday. The report cited a senior official with RSC Energia, who said that a lack of funding from the Russian space agency Rosaviakosmos has delayed the assembly of several Progress spacecraft. The report said that unless "millions of dollars" are freed up within a few months, they will not be able to finish in time a Progress that "must" fly in January. In that event the station would have to be evacuated in November, either during a shuttle mission or through the Soyuz spacecraft docked there. Funding problems have already forced Russia to reduce the number of planned Progress launches, including delaying one scheduled for May until mid-July.
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