MOSCOW, March 24. /TASS/. Russia needs to create a new carrier rocket capable of lifting cargos of 35-37 metric tons for the Defense Ministry, a high-ranking official from the Federal Space Agency Roscosmos said Tuesday.
The current fleet of launch vehicles does not ensure the ministry’s needs to orbit heavy military satellites, head of Roscosmos’ scientific and technical board Yury Koptev told journalists.
"There are a number of projects in the interests of the Defense Ministry where we don’t ensure putting payload into target orbit, and we have to remove some apparatuses," Koptev said.
The Roscosmos official said the new Angara-A5V rocket with an oxygen-hydrogen third stage will be able to put into geostationary transfer orbit 12-12.5 tons of payload, whereas an Angara-A5 with a hydrogen upper stage - only seven tons.
According to a Roscosmos assessment, the cost of building a new modification of the Angara-A5V carrier rocket will be 37 billion rubles ($638 million).
"This development will cost approximately 37 billion rubles," he said, adding that he entire program to create Angara-A5V with account for construction and fitting out all ground infrastructure for the carrier will cost 150 billion rubles ($2.6 billion).
Delta Heavy, a promising US heavy lift launch vehicle, is expected to deliver cargos of 12-14 tons to the geostationary transfer orbit, the European Ariane 6 - 10-11 tons, and the Chinese heavy rocket up to 10.
The new Russian Angara A5 heavy-load rocket was successfully test-launched on December 23, 2014. Infographics by TASS