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They will continue maintaining the International Space Station together, though

According to The New York Times, NASA announced yesterday that it is halting many forms of contact with Russian government representatives due to Russia's "ongoing violation of Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity."

Russian and American relations have become a bit strained after Russia annexed Crimea, a Ukrainian peninsula with past ties to Russia. In response, the U.S. has imposed sanctions.

Despite these issues, the two space agencies have managed to maintain a normal relationship. The retirement of the U.S. space shuttle program in 2011 means that the U.S. doesn't have a way to launch astronauts to the International Space Station (ISS), so it depends on Russian Soyuz capsules to get there instead. Russia also benefits because it receives $70 million for every astronaut it launches. 

But it seems even the space agencies have problems now, as NASA has decided to sever many ties with the Russian government -- except when it comes to operating the ISS. 

[SOURCE: Mashable]

"Given Russia's ongoing violation of Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity, NASA is suspending the majority of its ongoing engagements with the Russian Federation," said NASA in a statement. "NASA and Roscosmos will, however, continue to work together to maintain safe and continuous operation of the International Space Station. NASA is laser focused on a plan to return human spaceflight launches to American soil, and end our reliance on Russia to get into space.  

"This has been a top priority of the Obama Administration’s for the past five years, and had our plan been fully funded, we would have returned American human spaceflight launches – and the jobs they support – back to the United States next year. With the reduced level of funding approved by Congress, we’re now looking at launching from U.S. soil in 2017. The choice here is between fully funding the plan to bring space launches back to America or continuing to send millions of dollars to the Russians. It’s that simple. The Obama Administration chooses to invest in America – and we are hopeful that Congress will do the same."

NASA is reportedly suspending travel to Russia, teleconferences, visits by Russian government officials to NASA facilities and even the exchange of emails with Russian officials.

Source: The New York Times

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RE: Cold War II
By maven81 on 4/3/2014 1:11:57 PM , Rating: 2
I can't believe it, but I'm actually going to agree with you Reclaimer.
This is a dumb move by NASA. The Russian federal agency may just be the one part of their government that has nothing to do with politics. In fact they function on pure capitalism, they will launch whoever, whenever as long as you pay them. Scientists are also historically apolitical, they are more interested in progress then in borders. In fact, during the height the missile crisis a team at Baikonur rolled out one of the few available ICBMs and used it to launch a mars probe. Imagine that!
I can pretty much guarantee that after the ISS is decommissioned this will mean there won't be another ISS.

RE: Cold War II
By coburn_c on 4/3/2014 1:27:46 PM , Rating: 2
What if this is a move to get deficit/war hawks in congress to fund NASA?

RE: Cold War II
By maven81 on 4/3/2014 1:46:16 PM , Rating: 2
It's not impossible. NASAs administration has been saying for years now about how shameful it is to rely on russia for space launches and so on.
But if this is their intention it's the worst way of going about it. Russia is intertwined with US space industry. The RD-180 powers the Atlas 5. The NK-33 derivatives are being used on the new Antares rocket.
Mostly as a fan of spaceflight in general it pains me when instead of cooperation we get "oh yeah! in your face!".

RE: Cold War II
By Jeffk464 on 4/3/2014 4:09:38 PM , Rating: 2
What are you going to do Russia came up with a superior product? Its the same reason we all drive Honda's and Toyota's instead of products from US auto companies(can't really say US cars anymore).

RE: Cold War II
By delphinus100 on 4/3/2014 7:25:00 PM , Rating: 2
Don't confuse 'superior product' with 'only alternative product.'

When that happens, superiority is irrelevant. It's simply the only game in town. At least with cars we can still choose among imports...

RE: Cold War II
By Jeffk464 on 4/4/2014 12:21:56 AM , Rating: 2
I was talking about the engine on the atlas 5 no soyuz it seems pretty solid, but its a little dated.

"Intel is investing heavily (think gazillions of dollars and bazillions of engineering man hours) in resources to create an Intel host controllers spec in order to speed time to market of the USB 3.0 technology." -- Intel blogger Nick Knupffer

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