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Kazakhstan, Russia agree to develop joint projects at Baikonur launch pad

The implementation of the projects is scheduled for 2022, according to the Kazakh president

SOCHI, October 12./TASS/. Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev said on Thursday that he had agreed with Russian President Vladimir Putin to develop the Russian-Kazakh project at the Baikonur launch pad that Russia leases from Kazakhstan to make Kazakhstan a space nation.

"We have agreed on carrying out a program at Baikonur, when at certain sites we will be developing joint ventures with Russia - Baiterek, in which we will be building a separate launch unit for the rocket with clean fuel - oxygen-hydrogen," Nazarbayev told reporters summing up the results of his talks with the Russian counterpart. He said the implementation of these projects is scheduled for 2022.

"Kazakhstan indeed becomes a space nation," the president stressed.

He said Kazakhstan already has four Earth remote sensing satellites. "Now we will participate in space launches and train our personnel," the Kazakh leader said.

The development of Russia’s new-generation carrier rocket Sunkar for the Baiterek compound at the Baikonur spaceport in Kazakhstan is expected to start in 2018, said Russian government documents released in spring.

"Kazakhstani partners have reached an agreement on establishing the Baiterek compound at the Baikonur space center with the use of the new Russian advanced carrier rocket whose development is planned in 2018," they said.

It was reported earlier that the Chemical Automatics Design Bureau, part of Russia’s Energomash Research and Production Association, had started developing a new engine for the Sunkar rocket. The power plant will be designed for oxygen-kerosene fuel components, using the engine 14D23, which is produced in Voronezh and features a record-high specific impulse of thrust among all oxygen-kerosene rocket engines in the world. The enterprise faces the task of making the engine more efficient, simpler in design, cheaper and competitive on the market.

The Sunkar is a new-generation medium-class carrier rocket for the Baiterek space rocket center, which Russia and Kazakhstan are building at the Baikonur space center. It will be similar to a carrier rocket for the Sea Launch project. The rocket’s first stage is also planned for use in a carrier rocket being developed for launches from the Vostochny spaceport in the Russian Far East as part of the Feniks R&D work. The Feniks will eventually become the basis for Russia’s super-heavy carrier rocket.