MOSCOW, July 3. /TASS/. The flight development tests of Russia’s promising super-heavy carrier rocket will be held in two stages from 2028 to 2035, Energia Rocket and Space Corporation (the rocket’s developer) said in its annual report on Tuesday.
Russian specialists are planning to create the super-heavy carrier rocket using units of the Soyuz-5 launch vehicle, stage by stage, with the start of flight development tests in 2028, the document says.
Under the document, the first stage will be implemented in 2028-2032. It envisages launching manned spacecraft, the lunar take-off and landing module and other payloads into the trajectory of flights around the Moon and in near-Moon orbits to test the elements of a manned space vehicle, creating a spaceport in the lunar orbit and making a landing on the Moon’s surface.
The second stage will be implemented in 2032-2035. This stage envisages launching the lunar take-off and landing module and other unmanned payloads for the purpose of building and operating a lunar base. This stage also envisages Russia’s participation in international programs for the exploration of Mars.
Energia’s report also says that flight development tests of Russia’s Soyuz-5 new medium-class carrier rocket will be held in 2022-2025 as part of the work on creating a space rocket compound with a super-heavy carrier rocket.
Energia Rocket and Space Corporation is the developer of this rocket. These tests are aimed at launching manned spacecraft into low near-Earth orbits, and also launching automated space vehicles into various orbits.
As was reported earlier, Russia’s State Space Corporation Roscosmos has placed an order for developing the design of a super-heavy rocket worth 1.6 billion rubles ($25 million). The conceptual design of the super-heavy space rocket complex is planned to be completed by October 31, 2019.
The new Russian super-heavy carrier rocket is intended to deliver over 70 tonnes of cargo into low near-Earth orbit. The construction of infrastructure for the new carrier rocket is expected to begin at the Vostochny spaceport in the Russian Far East in 2026.
The decree on creating the space rocket compound at the Vostochny cosmodrome was earlier signed by Russian President Vladimir Putin. The concept of its creation envisages maximally utilizing the accumulated potential. Also, basic elements and technologies of the Soyuz-5 medium-class rocket currently under development will be used to create the super-heavy launch vehicle.
According to Roscosmos’s calculations, the creation of the super-heavy carrier rocket and the construction of the corresponding infrastructure will cost 1.5 trillion rubles ($24 billion).
Soyuz-5 carrier rocket
The Soyuz-5 medium-class carrier rocket is being developed by Energia Rocket and Space Corporation. As was reported earlier, Roscosmos approved the rocket’s conceptual design after its finalization. Before that, the Energia Scientific and Technical Council approved the Soyuz-5 conceptual design at the end of last year but Roscosmos sent it back for finalization.
Currently, work is underway to develop working design documentation on the carrier rocket. The Soyuz-5 is expected to be created by 2021. The new rocket’s flight development tests are planned from the Baikonur spaceport in 2022.
It will be possible to use the Soyuz-5 carrier rocket for delivering the manned spacecraft Federatsiya (Federation) currently under development into low near-Earth orbit. The basic elements and the technologies of the carrier rocket will be used in developing the super-heavy launch vehicle.
As was reported earlier, the work to create the space complex with the Soyuz-5 medium-class carrier rocket will cost 61.2 billion rubles ($968 million). In particular, a total of 2.19 billion rubles ($35 million) is due to be allocated for the creation of the new space complex this year, 4.01 billion rubles ($63 million) in 2019, 7.58 billion rubles ($120 million) in 2020 and 47.4 billion rubles ($750 million) in subsequent years.