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ISS Columbus Orbiting Facility
Part of ISS Family
ESA Columbus COF
ESA Columbus COF
ESA Columbus Orbiting Facility. ESA Columbus Man-Tended Free-Flying Platform and Crew Transfer Vehicle (fallback option). If the International Space Station were cancelled, the fallback plan was to convert the COF module into a small Man-Tended Free Flying platform. A manned Crew Transfer Vehicle space capsule and Automated Transfer Vehicle (logistics, resupply) would then give Europe an autonomous manned spaceflight capability. The COF module is small enough to be launched on an Ariane-5 rocket rather than the Shuttle, although this option was abandoned in the mid-1990s. In 1992, Daimler Benz Aerospace and Russia's NPO Energia also investigated the possibility of building a joint European/Russian free-flying platform as part of Russia's "Mir-2" program before the Russian space station merged with the US-led International Space Station project.

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