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The image above appears to be the latest Astrium design for the European Space Agency, Russian joint Crew Space Transportation System
What the fall out from today’s European Union summit over future EU-Russia relations means for such projects as CSTS, with the majority of ESA member states also being EU members, is anyone’s guess.
The Astrium slide in this blog post is from the lunar architecture presentation obtained by Ghostnasa.com
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the first image seems show the enlarged-SM version of the CSTS for lunar missions (with enough propellents for LOI and TEI) while, the (smaller)CM+SM+HM version, is a design that (about 18 months ago) I’ve suggested to adopt also for the NASA Orion since it may allow (in all lunar missions or as alternate/temporary option or just the early tests) to launch the Orion with a Space Shuttle:
and, we won’t forget that, just these days, there is an “hot discussion” at political and technical level about the opportunity and feasibility to shift the Shuttle retirement to 2015 and beyond
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