Thursday, April 03, 2008

ESA's Jules Verne Module Docks With ISS

As US space capabilities begin to wane, others are taking up the slack. A cargo-hauling module built by the European Space Agency has docked - by itself - with the Space Station. Given how pleased ESA representatives were with themselves when the ATV (Autonomous Transfer Vehicle) was launched on March 9, they must be peeing on themselves now!

In my funk over America's space policy woes, I'm tempted to point out that it will be filled with over 6.5 tons of garbage over the next few months, then burn up in the atmosphere, making it basically a high-tech trashcan, but that would be mean-spirited and wrong.

Actually, the ATV is quite a triumph, which I'm sure we'll be told again and again by our ESA partners.

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