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Russia defines technical layout of new Soyuz-5 carrier rocket

The Soyuz-5 carrier rocket is expected to replace the Zenit launcher

MOSCOW, November 21. /TASS/. Specialists have defined the technical layout of Russia’s new Soyuz-5 medium-class carrier rocket at a meeting of the scientific and technical council on the results of developing the launcher’s conceptual design, State Space Corporation Roscosmos reported on Tuesday.

"Specialists of the Progress Rocket and Space Center [the developer of the Soyuz-5 carrier rocket] reported on the results of developing the conceptual design. Specifically, the work resulted in defining the technical layout, the basic characteristics, technical and technological solutions on the new rocket to ensure the launches of automated space vehicles and transport manned spacecraft," Roscosmos said.

The Progress representatives also said that modern additive technologies would be used to develop the carrier rocket.

The press office of the Energiya Rocket and Space Corporation earlier told TASS that the work on the conceptual design of the Soyuz-5 medium-class launcher would be completed at the end of the year. After that, the approval and the defense of this conceptual design will take place, which may take some time, the press office said.

The Soyuz-5 carrier rocket is expected to replace the Zenit launcher. The new medium-class rocket will be used instead of the Angara-A5P carrier to launch Federatsiya (Federation) spacecraft. The first launch of a Soyuz-5 carrier rocket is scheduled for 2021. The first manned launch is scheduled for 2022.

The idea of creating a new mono-block two-stage rocket to take up the niche between the Soyuz and Zenit carrier rockets belongs to Russia’s Progress Rocket and Space Center. The cluster configuration integration scheme envisaged creating a family of rockets ranging from a light carrier (capable of delivering three tonnes of payload into a low orbit from the Vostochny cosmodrome) to a heavy launcher (26 tonnes of payload). Liquefied natural gas was initially intended to be used as the rocket’s propellant.