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Russian private firm MTKS to make four prototypes of reusable spacecraft for $136 mln

The main function of Argo is to deliver supplies to an orbital station

MOSCOW, July 15. /TASS/. A Russian private company MTKS will make four prototypes of the Argo reusable spacecraft at the price of $136 million, the company’s board chairman Sergei Sopov told TASS.

"The cost of creating four prototypes is $136 million. This includes manufacturing, stand-alone tests and all pre-launch works. The cost of the launch itself is not included into the fee," Sopov said.

The main function of Argo is to deliver supplies to an orbital station. The Soyuz-2.1b carrier rocket will be used during initial trials, while Soyuz-SPG methane-powered reusable rocket is being considered as a possible delivery vehicle for the spacecraft in the future. Earlier, Sopov said 58% of Argo will be made of composite materials. Some of the spacecraft’s components will be manufactured at a plant built in the Central Russian city of Voronezh in 2019.

The spacecraft has a cargo module of 11 cubic meters. Its diameter is 4.1 meters, height - 5.6 meters, total weight - 11.5 tonnes. It can deliver two tonnes of cargo to the orbit and bring one tonne back to the earth. The spacecraft can spend up to 300 in space as part of an orbital station, or one month in an autonomous flight. It can be reused at least 20 times.