Russia Bans U.S. From International Space Station: A Golden Opportunity for Elon Musk and SpaceX?

You've got to hand it to Elon Musk -- he called it.

Night liftoff of SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket. Photo: SpaceX.

Musk testified before the Senate Appropriations Defense Subcommittee in March, you see, trying to convince the Senators to open up competition on contracts to launch military satellites into space. And he warned the Senate that the company that currently has a near monopoly on this business, the Boeing (NYSE: BA  ) and Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT  ) joint venture United Launch Alliance, has a fatal flaw:

By relying on Russia to supply the engines for its Atlas V rockets, ULA risks having its supply chain interrupted. This might happen if Russia should decide, for example, to embargo sale of these engines to America in retaliation for sanctions imposed over Russia's invasion of Crimea.

Well, surprise surprise. America did impose sanctions on Russia (and not just sanctions). And Russia has decided to retaliate.

Red ire rising
Upset at America's imposition of travel restrictions on Russian government and industry officials -- himself included -- Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin lashed out at the U.S. this week. In public statements and in tweets, Rogozin promised to block the sale of NPO Energomash RD-180 rocket engines to ULA, objecting to their use in launching U.S. military satellites into space.

Russia's RD-180 rocket engine is one powerful piece of machinery -- if you can get your hands on one. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

What's more, Rogozin advised that Russia "doesn't plan to continue cooperation" with the U.S. on the International Space Station after 2020. That could be a problem, given that right now, the only way we can get our astronauts to the ISS is by renting rides on Russian rockets -- at $70 million a pop -- and that the current contract securing astronauts' right to ride these rockets expires in 2017. After that, Rogozin quipped: "I propose that the United States delivers its astronauts to the ISS with the help of a trampoline."

Rogozin's threat may even raise implications for space firm Orbital Sciences (NYSE: OA  ) , which uses Russian NK-33 rocket engines to power its Antares light-to-medium-lift launcher -- used to ferry supplies to the ISS. Orbital is currently in the process of tying the knot with peer space firm ATK (NYSE: ATK  ) to form a new firm, Orbital ATK, which could soon feel the brunt of Russia's ire.

Blame the whistleblower
How did we get to this point? The U.S. sanctions against Russia lie at the core of the matter, certainly. But according to Boeing and Lockheed Martin, the real culprit here is none other than Elon Musk himself.

Following up on his warning that ULA was overly dependent on Russia, Musk's firm, SpaceX, filed a protest against a recent Air Force decision to award a sole-source contract for 36 space launches to ULA -- cutting SpaceX out of the loop. This protest spurred a federal judge to order a temporary ban (since lifted) on purchases of RD-180 rocket engines from Russia, irking Rogozin. It also inspired ULA to complain "that SpaceX's irresponsible actions have created unnecessary distractions, threatened U.S. military satellite operations, and undermined our future relationship with the International Space Station."

So you see, the root cause of this problem isn't ULA outsourcing a key element of America's critical defense missions to a supplier from a hostile country. It's really all Elon Musk's fault, for pointing out what ULA did.


Well, here's another fine mess you've gotten me into, Elon...
Whoever's to blame for the mix-up with Moscow, this impasse cries out for resolution. Otherwise it could damage the space businesses of both Boeing and Lockheed Martin -- which generate in excess of $8 billion in revenues apiece, annually, for the two firms -- and imperil U.S. national security to boot.

I see three likely beneficiaries here, and two likely losers, as the situation shakes out. The losers, obviously, are Boeing and Lockheed Martin. Whether they lose access to key rocket parts entirely or are simply forced to switch suppliers to someone more expensive -- cutting into profits -- either way, things are not looking good for the members of the United Launch Alliance.

Is SpaceX's Falcon Heavy, "the world's most powerful rocket," ready to take its place among the stars? Photo: SpaceX.

On the beneficiaries side, meanwhile, it seems certain that one of the key missions of the new Orbital ATK space firm, once ATK and Orbital finalize their merger, will be to develop an independently produced rocket engine capable of lifting ULA's space packages into orbit. The companies will have a guaranteed customer in ULA, and probably gain others around the globe, as Russia's one-time embargo on rocket engines creates uncertainty among the country's other customers.

Separately, ULA's declamations aside, Elon Musk makes an excellent point in noting that SpaceX builds its engines internally, and does not rely on Russian suppliers for its ability to support Air Force launch missions. That's going to be a big factor in SpaceX's favor when the Senate agrees -- as I believe it must -- to open up military space launch missions to price-based competition.

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  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 12:50 PM, Albert0Knox wrote:

    Elon Musk is on quite a run. Things have been falling his way for quite a while. On the other hand, I was raised to believe that "Luck" was recognising opportunity and being prepared to take advantage of it.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 12:52 PM, typingfast wrote:

    That's a fine mess we got ourselves into. We exported all of our manufacturing jobs over seas, and now we can't even build a can opener ourselves. So, who was the brain child that decided we don't have to build rocket engines and get them from Russia. If we should ever have to go to war with them, we will simply have to surrender due to the lack of rocket engines, and all the other parts we need for our war machine. We have NASA build a space station and yet we have no way to get their. Reminds me of the days when I was young, I had a drivers license and nothing to drive. I had to use my thumb and catch a ride. Just like NASA is doing now to get to the space station. Just what exactly is NASA doing. We are space explorers with no ship. Kind of like being President and no country to govern.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 1:04 PM, LingoSouth wrote:

    You keep on Putin and Obama is going to call you another bad name...

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 1:06 PM, tramnesia wrote:

    I think the problem began when the US entered into an agreement with a group of known liars, thieves, and bullies. Did the US really expect cooperation, understanding, restraint, respect, and assistance from a bunch of global thugs? Rely on Russia? REALLY????

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 1:13 PM, pgagno wrote:

    sell the station to china a s a p. they will take it over soon anyway,get some $$$$ for it.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 1:14 PM, pgagno wrote:

    hurry and sell the station to china ,there goinr to take it over antway so get some money for it..

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 1:15 PM, thinkinstupid wrote:

    I guess some one has a bad case of indigestion!

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 1:17 PM, thinkinstupid wrote:

    I wouldn't share a two seater toilet with those thugs. Let alone a space station!

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 1:18 PM, rlv1 wrote:

    The title of this article is inflammatory and misleading as the ISS is an international facility spearheaded by the US. We used to make rocket engines here in the US and I suppose that the absence of those manufacturers is due to short-sightedness on our government regarding how important a future in space is to the US and all of us on spaceship earth.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 1:21 PM, JodeT wrote:

    Here is a great example of what happens to a country that can outsource its real needs to a foreign country. They can hurt you if you depend on them. We as a nation should never outsource our military or science capabilities to any country, it cam leave you vulnerable! Bring back our Industries and keep them here in America. Just think, you just may create jobs!

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 1:22 PM, phillipzx3 wrote:

    " So, who was the brain child that decided we don't have to build rocket engines and get them from Russia."

    A hint:

    His first name started with a "G" and last name started with a "B". :-)

    Also, a good chuck of this country constantly screams that the private sector can do thing better and cheaper than the government. Here's a chance for them to prove it.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 1:27 PM, Malique2 wrote:

    That's what you get for turning your back on NASA and the space program! Its time to bring it back and become the best space program on earth!!

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 1:29 PM, Malique2 wrote:

    Typingfast, the government cut a huge budget away from NASA. Many people lost their jobs and then they retired the Space Shuttle program before having a replacement. This is nothing new....and it has been mentioned many times. So sad!

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 1:30 PM, AdmitYourGuilt wrote:

    What is required is a U.S. space station. We have no reason to support the legitimization of the Russians.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 1:31 PM, camtelee wrote:

    US meddling of foreign affairs is the root cause of the whole mess!

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 1:34 PM, jespina wrote:

    Rewarding yes-men, and pushing out competent people within NASA can only get you so far. I'm afraid it's time for all of us to take a drink from the Russian firehose and hopefully learn from the experience.

    The people within NASA and the US govt. should have listened 10 years ago when a few brave,, and reckless souls warned them.

    By the way, we can't even build Saturn V rockets, if we wanted to today. Ask NASA why not.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 1:47 PM, barkleyvt wrote:

    American aerospace companies are well capable of providing rockets etc. Stop the negative talk!!! Get the job done!!!

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 1:56 PM, dannystrong wrote:

    Does every flippin' article in the Fool have to sing slavish praises of Elon Musk? He was not the only one to warn about using Russian engines, but he was the only one looking to make a mountain of money out of the issue by trying to make himself a sole-source. He was the only one to sue his supposed competitors to try and make it happen. He had to do that now, because (as the article says), ULA is going to be building its own engines soon. If he didn't destroy them as a perceived competitor now, he can't.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 2:12 PM, itsmedbldee wrote:

    Just wait until they stop getting their $70 mil per ride. They won't be quite the wise guy then.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 2:14 PM, vet212 wrote:

    Not so surprising as this president has unusually for a Democrat is so inept even his domestic policy is a total failure. The man does not think but acts on a strict party line on autopilot

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 2:20 PM, Hamcallk5co wrote:

    Russia's star is rising; the USA is falling, thanks to our Democrat party of total fools.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 2:29 PM, Tysan wrote:

    Elon Musk after hearing the threats from Russia few weeks back was crossing his fingers and thinking "please Russia, please go through with your threat." and the same time had $$$ signs in his eyes. He's loving the news.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 2:36 PM, macarthur1 wrote:

    Let's call out the Elephant in the room:

    The only reason NASA has been dragging it's feet and preventing the SpaceX from developing new rockets is because of: Public Unions

    The space shuttle was PROMISED to send men to the moon and cut costs in half - IT DID NEITHER OF THOSE, it was a failed project that followed the wildly successful Saturn V...

    So why was nothing done about it for 30 years? Because the Public Unions wanted an inefficient boondoggle to milk as much money as possible out of the Space Shuttle.

    "Inefficiency" means LOTS of holes where money can pour out of into the hands of public unions. The government has an "endless" supply of taxpayer money, there is no incentive to fix the "inefficiency" - THAT IS THE PROBLEM.

    SpaceX is part of the private industry - Inefficient boondoggles with endless money CANNOT exist for very long in the private industry.

    It's time to put Scott Walker into the Presidency (or a Tea Party Conservative). Public Unions should not be legal - WAY too much conflict of interest in them electing their own bosses. It's time to bust them because our whole country is just one "inefficient boondoggle" now.

    and if you don't know the difference between "Private Sector Union" and "Public Sector Union", you NEED to study the differences because they are NOTHING alike.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 2:39 PM, mark204 wrote:

    jfelano in a way they can. if Russia says America can't use their rockets to get to the station. Then they won't allow any spacecraft except Soyuze to dock there.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 2:39 PM, Chuckalm wrote:

    Two things. One, why rely on Russia or any other country for any parts? Make them all in the USA!

    Two, If Russia attempts to block us from the Space Station, don't we have the capability to just shut it down? At least until they wise up and realize that it is the "International" Space Station!

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 2:40 PM, rav55 wrote:

    From Musk's mouth to Rogozin's ears. I smell a rat.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 2:47 PM, mark204 wrote:

    macarthur1 the shuttle was never PROMISED to send men to the moon, Where would it land also it has no way to take off. The shuttle was promised to deliver objects to Earth obirit cheaper than a rocket

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 2:48 PM, speculawyer wrote:

    Perhaps we should thank Putin for getting the USA back into Space under its own power. Give the contract to SpaceX and let's blast off.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 2:49 PM, einih wrote:

    i dont think this is true.the russian have decline from imposing any sanction against the united state in regards to space.please verify your source

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 2:54 PM, eyeforeye42 wrote:

    If Musk can do it cheaper and possibly safer, it sounds like capitalism at its best!

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 2:58 PM, GORN wrote:

    We're already tooled-up and rarin' to go here in (Canoga Park) CA Pratt&Whitney Rocketdyne. Who needs a bunch of mobsters telling us anything? It's time to get our priorities straight and get the space program back on track! Tell the Russians they can watch our "Mars Mission" on T.V. with the rest of the world. Who needs 'em,,? Right... Nobody.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 3:43 PM, EmilyGoodall wrote:

    Yeah . . . and never forget this either . . . we numbuh 1 (um . . . could we hitch a ride with you to the space station?)

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 3:49 PM, Sigio wrote:

    The United States Government, comedy at its best!

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 4:05 PM, TerrifiedCitizen wrote:

    This window into the strategic and financial management of U.S. space exploration, when compared point-black to the return on our tax dollars, or really any tangible return or useable benefit whatsoever, should convince any American that the money we pay goes down the political drain in absolutely obscene excess, nearly as ghastly as the huge unaccountable sums consumed by federal inventions like the DHS and it's redundant sister king's guards.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 4:13 PM, kabella wrote:

    Just goes to show you how stupid Russia is. Russia can ban anyone from going up in their vehicle but can't ban anyone from going to the space station.

    Putin, what a worthless human being he is. The sanctions are hurting Russia and now they're crying wolf, just like they've always done and have been...losers.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 4:18 PM, 1ringtail wrote:

    ok I just don't understand what the heat is all about. Someone please explain, Is it you hate me so I'm going to hate back, to me it a lots childless

    things between the childless country's If your not going to play my way I'll just go home Come on President or what ever you call yourselves It say

    when I be came a man I put away childless things Russia why do you hate the USA so bad To me The problem lies with your people in High office everywhere. I would like to really know what the everyday person thinks about each other. Most of all they don't no each other I might be wrong I don't think were born with hate were told what to hate and who to hate and we let hate kill us I hope when I die I take my hate with me. Someone Please explain You know my toys are bigger than yours Oh they are not! do really see what you can't control ,(YOUR TONGUE) then we all lose.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 4:25 PM, 12xxl wrote:

    Just copy the thing like they did to us jk lol

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 4:29 PM, Accession wrote:

    @typingfast You are really clueless or just want to rant for the sake of ranting. Recapping: you believe we can't build a can opener but SpaceX is doing a fine job at making rocket launch vehicles in the US. I'll take a SpaceX rocket to 30 can opener factories any day. I figure if we can still build rockets we can reverse engineer any can opener we don't already have the plans to. The answer to "So, who was the brain child that decided we don't have to build rocket engines" is the same person who taught you how to read, of course.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 4:33 PM, Accession wrote:

    @Hamcallk5co If you can read this article and really believe that. I will buy the one way ticket over there so you too can rise with Russia. Now start hemming and hawing on why you don't want to.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 5:41 PM, mbee1 wrote:

    Obama has done the usual. turned some situation in a foreign country into a problem for the US taxpayers. First he bribes the Kiev thugs to overthrow an elected government for 31 billion in taxpayer funds, than he gets mad when the Ukrainians say they do not like that and vote to leave the thugs and join Russia. Now he is going to cost the US taxpayers a lot of money to even get to our space station. We paid the Russians 66 million a person to ride on their rockets, what do you think the cost will be on our rockets? Musk will make a fortune off your and my taxes.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 5:44 PM, mbee1 wrote:

    the Russian rocket engines they are talking about are more efficient due to the design than ours. They are somewhere around 5 percent more efficient. That translates into a huge difference when you send something to orbit so the price of the Russian engines is a bargain even as we buy them for half what an American engine, that is less efficient, would cost.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 6:16 PM, eeyaw wrote:

    Better idea is to plea to China if US can join them in their brand new space station.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 6:18 PM, eeyaw wrote:

    Barry is famous for saying "Yes we can" in his message of Hope! Now this???

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 6:24 PM, stockingshorts wrote:

    "Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin lashed out at the U.S. this week. In public statements and in tweets, Rogozin promised to block the sale of NPO Energomash RD-180 rocket engines to ULA, objecting to their use in launching U.S. military satellites into space."

    "Russia Bans U.S. from Space Station".....and the the people of a Free World outright BAN the Russians from Humanity. After all, that must be where the missing Neanderthals settled.....sorry Pootie.......we call 'em as we see 'em!

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 7:53 PM, TWK1954 wrote:

    Just like China has said the territory claimed is theirs and they are just taking over it by moving in. Now the Russians are playing the same game with space and our investment property. They are moving in, not letting us get near it, and will claim it by proxy. Reason: Same as China's. The US is so controlled by outsource and inept corrupt Congressional Politics it will not stand up to anyone. We need new politicians that respect and love America.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 8:57 PM, liberalhawk wrote:

    With the inception of the ISS all the countries involved put up a certain monetary share of the cost. The U.S. supported the biggest piece of that pie, even to the point of "helping" the Russians. We should have seen this coming, it was ever so clear. To say they will 'ban' us from that space station is a real leap. Possibly they may think they can keep us from occupying it by denying us the rocket engine we should never have out-sourced to them is a 'leap' on their part. It's only a matter of time (short at that) until that engine will either be replaced by an American company or one of the U.S. Companies, such as Space X, will replace the entire transportation system. What we don't want to see is a war in space, or a physical fight over the ISS. Why our then Pres. G. Bush ever trusted Russia, I'll never know. Knew it was wrong then, and know it is now.

    @macarthur1 What this country doesn't need is a tea party'er for a president - most of them don't know the Earth revolves around the sun and think the sun revolves around the Earth. Can't see them approving anything positive for our Space Program.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 9:22 PM, quasimodo007 wrote:

    the US does not need the EVIL russian rockets.

    Ask China if the USA could join to joint space adventures . They would be better allies than the EVIL czar putin/Hitler and EVIL russians..

    EVIL czar putin/Hitler has had a VERY DEEP Hatred of the USA ever since the Fall of Evil corrupt ussr.

    EVIL czar putin /Hitler has always consider the USA is DEAF/Blind / Greedy /Arrogant/Ignorant /and Down Right DUMB. EVIL czar putin/Hitler will do anything to humiliate the USA/and EVIL NsA/ Evil CiA.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 9:28 PM, yaposter wrote:

    Russia has banned no one from the International Space Station. Let me repeat that. Russia has banned no one from the International Space Station. They have responded to the US attempts to cripple their economy with sanctions by refusing to give US astronauts rides on their rockets. Russia has banned no one from the International Space Station.

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 9:50 PM, RDGnNC wrote:

    Who died and left Russia in charge? I believe it is called the International Space Station..

    Is this the same thought pattern / mentality that is being used in Ukraine

  • Report this Comment On May 18, 2014, at 11:42 PM, Spiritedreason wrote:

    This represents the possible ascent of the US, in both private and public space industry; and likewise the descent of the Russians in those industries either private or public; they don't have the resources to pursue space exploration on their own. This is a boon to the US; Ground floor ... and literally the sky could be the limit.

  • Report this Comment On May 19, 2014, at 12:14 AM, arm357 wrote:

    Time to push US rocket capabilities. History has shown that nation that depend on others for key technologies usually end up well behind them in growth and power.

    Commercial space flight is in its infancy, time to push it to adulthood.

  • Report this Comment On May 19, 2014, at 12:23 AM, James04 wrote:

    When I was a child, I used to play Marbles with my pals, the object being to 'shoot' a marble with your thumb and forefinger and try to knock an opponent's marble outside a defined circle, whereupon the opponent's marble became part of your own collection. Sometimes, one of the players would get angry, pick up his marbles and go home. It's a juvenile game and a juvenile response. Now, it seems, the Russians are threatening to "pick up their marbles and go home". I have two comments; 1) The Saturn rocket took our astronauts to the Moon in the 60's and early 70's. That rocket and the engines that powered it were built in the USA. So, why can't we build our own rocket engines today? 2) The Shuttle program was terminated before a replacement vehicle was developed. Why?

  • Report this Comment On May 19, 2014, at 12:57 AM, KevinJCruz wrote:

    Russia needs a transportation embargo- no automobiles, no planes, they've flown through everybody's radar except their own... and it's questionable whether they would be able to fly without the European Space Agency... but that's for Govm't insiders like Exxon and IBM to know.

  • Report this Comment On May 19, 2014, at 1:59 AM, Swordedge wrote:

    A golden opportunity. And the ability to thumb Russia in the nose

  • Report this Comment On May 19, 2014, at 3:17 AM, Edward1956 wrote:

    All these ass-drilling American pompous sanctions sooner or later will Give American folks the creeps. There are most definitely roots for it, and these idiots are called Obamas and Baidens who have too many of illusions of their rightness, but the reality is rather opposite.

    If they don't engage their brains eventually, they will face bigger problem, but American folk will pay it back

  • Report this Comment On May 19, 2014, at 4:01 AM, ncoros wrote:

    @ jespina

    CCNet interviewed Paul Shawcross, from NASA’s Office of Inspector General. Shawcross said the Saturn 5 blueprints are stored at the Marshall Space Flight Center on microfilm.

    “There is no point in even contemplating trying to rebuild the Saturn 5 … The real problem is the hundreds of thousands of parts that are simply not manufactured any more.”

    “The Federal Archives in East Point, Georgia, also has 2,900 cubic feet of Saturn documents,” he said. “Rocketdyne has in its archives dozens of volumes from its Knowledge Retention Program. This effort was initiated in the late ’60s to document every facet of F 1 and J 2 engine production to assist in any future restart.”

  • Report this Comment On May 19, 2014, at 4:08 AM, Redoubt wrote:

    First of all, ULA is a monopolistic alliance and wholly dependent on a foreign nation to launch this nation's most critical space hardware. This should have never, ever been allowed to happen to begin with.

    SpaceX is a rising star in the sky and is one of the few bright spots in America's space industry right now. The old and haggard Boeing/Lockheed look on in contempt just because they've been around for so long and think they own the board. They just can't accept that they made their bed... and now ours look and smell so bad.

    PS- Musk's Dragon Mk2 (manned) can be ready to go as soon as NASA crawls from the senior citizen bingo table and gumming its Melba toast.


  • Report this Comment On May 19, 2014, at 6:37 AM, admiralt wrote:

    I believe everyone is missing the point,we need a major overhaul of our economy I can still remember although vaguely when made in the usa was on most items we bought and for some odd reason that gave me a since of pride but now it is even hard to find a U.S FLAG made in the USA and for some odd reason this scares me

  • Report this Comment On May 19, 2014, at 7:06 AM, RayX1946 wrote:

    This is no surprise. The US should have it's own launch equipment. This will not last long the next

    time something goes wrong will the Russians be

    able to fix it?

  • Report this Comment On May 20, 2014, at 9:23 AM, Georgielle wrote:

    Using Russian rockets to put our satellites and who's monitoring the marriage of those two units? Do our government aware of what I call the " sleeping stowaway "? It attach itself to the satellite before the divorce (separation) of the two and wait for the signal below then.....

  • Report this Comment On May 30, 2014, at 3:39 AM, lowmaple wrote:

    Before we blame the Unions be aware that anything you build to send to space is extremely sophisticated and must be built precisely and tested forever so people don't die going up there. Hence the costs. . Any nation that does not go to space will regret it in the future.

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