Headlines > News > Seven Years Ago: Russia’s Zvezda Module Launched to Breath Life to ISS

Seven Years Ago: Russia’s Zvezda Module Launched to Breath Life to ISS

Published by Klaus Schmidt on Thu Jul 12, 2007 12:07 pm
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(Khrunichev) – Russian Proton launch vehicle blasted off Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, on July 12, 2000, carrying Russia–built Zvezda (Russian word for Star) service module for ISS- International Space Station. Zvezda was the third module launched to ISS. Also it was the second Russia-built module of the Station. The launch of Zvezda became an important milestone for ISS. Zvezda breathed life to ISS, as the module enabled both the habitability and continued assembly of the orbital station.

Once Zvezda was docked with the rest of the ISS modules – “Zarya (FGB 1) – U.S.Unity” stack, occupation of ISS by a crew for extended period became possible. The Expedition One crew comprising Yuri Gidzenko, Sergei Krikalev (Russia), W.Shepherd (USA) docked with the station in late October, 2000.

Zvezda was the critical component for the early assembly stages of ISS. The module provides living quarters and life support equipment, additional power, and propulsion systems to support numerous tasks, such as station orientation, docking/de-docking of Russian Progress and Soyuz ships, supporting experiments and spacewalks.

Currently Zvezda module is the heart of the Russian segment of the ISS. Russian part of the Station includes Functional Cargo Block (FGB 1) Zarya, Zvezda Service Module, Pirs Docking Compartment, Progress M and Soyuz TM vehicles.

Zvezda is the first entirely Russian module for ISS (fully Russia-built and funded). Its main developer was RSC Energia and main subcontractor was Khrunichev. Khrunichev built Zvezda, Functional Cargo Module Zarya (Russian word for Dawn), as well as Proton launch vehicle that was used to deliver both modules into orbit.

Khrunichev State Research and Production Space Center is a pillar of Russian space industry, renowned as a leading Russian designer and manufacturer of rocket and space technology.

Currently another multi-purpose module of the Russian segment of ISS – Multipurpose Laboratory Module – is under construction at Khrunichev’s premises. MLM is being built using Khrunichev –built FGB 2 module that was originally made as a backup of FGB 1 ( Zarya). MLM will be Russia’s research module as part of ISS. MLM is expected to be launched in 2009.

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