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First flight of recoverable rocket stage scheduled for 2021-2022

A design bureau is being created as tasked with developing light-class reusable rockets, according to a source

MOSCOW, July 9. /TASS/. The first flight of the Russian recoverable stage of the Krylo-SV launch vehicle is scheduled for 2021-2022, Director-General of the Russian Foundation for Advanced Research Projects Andrei Grigoryev told TASS on Tuesday.

"The flights are scheduled for 2021-2022," he said.

According to Grigoryev, it is planned to create several demonstrators of the stage. During the flight along the trajectory, in a controlled mode the stage will first accelerate from zero to hypersonic speed, and then perform a deceleration in the atmosphere and complete the flight by landing on an airfield.

A source in the rocket and space industry told TASS earlier that a new experimental design bureau will be created at the Central Research Institute of Machine-Building (TsNIImash), the main scientific and research institution of Russia’s space corporation Roscosmos.

"In line with the Roscosmos head’s decree, an experimental design bureau named after [Italian-born Soviet aircraft designer Robert] Bartini is being created. Its first task will be to design light-class reusable rockets," the source said.

According to the source, the project will be based on the preliminary design of the Krylo-SV project to create a recoverable rocket stage, earlier prepared by the Prospective Research Fund (FPI).

The bureau will employ young Roscosmos specialists and engineers who resigned from the Ilyushin Aviation Complex.

On Tuesday, a defense industry source told TASS that about 80 employees resigned from Ilyushin. A company spokesperson later told TASS that a group of managers and administrative sector employees were leaving their posts due to ongoing optimization of the management system.