MOSCOW, October 5. /TASS/. An upgraded reusable first stage of Russia’s advanced Amur methane-fueled rocket can be used to develop a super-heavy carrier rocket, Roscosmos Executive Director for Long-Term Programs and Science Alexander Bloshenko told TASS on Monday.
As a follow-up of the Amur program, Russia is also considering developing a carrier with an increased lifting capacity or using the rocket’s methane-fueled first stage in the heavy launch vehicle, the Roscosmos official said.
"Designers have already put forward proposals on using the methane-fueled rocket’s first stage to create a carrier with an increased lifting capacity. It will weigh over 440 tonnes and be able to deliver 17 tonnes of payload into low orbit. The same stage could potentially be used as a side core of a super-heavy rocket," he said.
Russia’s State Space Corporation Roscosmos and the Progress Space Rocket Center signed a contract on Monday on the conceptual designing of the Amur-SPG space rocket center for a new Amur methane-fueled rocket. The rocket will get a reusable first stage and will be launched from the Vostochny spaceport in the Russian Far East.
As Roscosmos specified for TASS, Russia’s reusable rocket will have a take-off weight of about 360 tonnes and will be 55 meters high and 4.1 meters in dimeter. The launch vehicle will comprise a reusable first stage and a non-recoverable second stage. Both of them will use methane-fueled engines.
The Amur rocket with a reusable stage will be able to deliver up to 10.5 tonnes of payload to a low near-Earth orbit while its expendable version will have the capacity to orbit 12.5 tonnes.