Hold onto your sat nav. The Russian government has just threatened to end cooperation with America on major space projects, including maintenance of the GPS system. The policy will also prevent NASA from accessing the International Space Station from 2020, as well as blocking the supply of components for America’s Atlas V rockets, which are currently vital for sending military and commercial satellites into space. With regards to GPS, Deputy PM Dimitry Rogozin says that he’ll shut down Russian base stations that keep the system going, unless the US promises to house reciprocal stations to support the competing GLONASS platform.
Russia cast doubt on the long-term future of the International Space Station, a showcase of post-Cold War cooperation, as it retaliated on Tuesday against U.S. sanctions over Ukraine. Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin said Moscow would reject a U.S. request to prolong the orbiting station’s use beyond 2020. It will also bar Washington from using Russian-made rocket engines to launch military satellites. Moscow took the action, which also included suspending operation of GPS satellite navigation system sites on its territory from June, in response to U.S. plans to deny export licences for high-technology items that could help the Russian military. “We are very concerned about continuing to develop high-tech projects with such an unreliable partner as the United States, which politicises everything,” Rogozin told a news conference.