MOSCOW, November 23. /TASS/. The Russian space agency Roscosmos may set a world record for the payload weight that a Soyuz-2 carrier rocket will deliver to the International Space Station (ISS) with the launch of the Prichal nodal module, cosmonautics historian Alexander Zeleznyakov told TASS on Tuesday.
"If we are talking about the flights [with the use of Soyuz-2 rockets] to the ISS, then this is, indeed, a record mass," he said.
Upon its launch, the Soyuz-2 carrier rocket will carry the payload actually at its utmost capacity, he stressed. Previously, Soyuz-2 rockets delivered payloads of a similar weight but not to the ISS, he added.
A Soyuz-2 rocket can carry a maximum payload of 8.25 tonnes. The launch vehicle is expected to deliver a payload of 8.18 tonnes to the orbital outpost on November 24.
The launch of the Progress M-UM spacecraft with the Prichal nodal module atop a Soyuz-2.1b carrier rocket from the Baikonur space center in Kazakhstan is targeted for 16:06 Moscow time on November 24. The cargo spacecraft-module’s docking with the Russian Nauka multi-purpose laboratory module that parked with the orbital outpost on July 29 is scheduled for November 26.
Roscosmos Chief Dmitry Rogozin said that the new module would boost the capabilities of Russian spaceships, including the latest Oryol spacecraft, to dock with the ISS
The spacecraft-module is also due to deliver about 700 kg of various cargo to the ISS, including expendable equipment and consumables, water purification, medical control including sanitary and hygienic supplies, maintenance and repair tools, as well as standard food rations for the 66th Main Expedition crew.