MOSCOW, September 11 (RIA Novosti) – Future commercial launches of Russian Proton launch vehicles will be able to compete with the US Space X’s Falcon 9 rockets but on certain conditions, the Deputy Director General in charge of Economics and Finance of the United Rocket and Space Corporation said Thursday.
“If Space X enters the market with the prices and features it is talking about, if it can launch the Falcon 9 to a geostationary transfer orbit for $55.5 million, then it aims for the below 4.5-ton satellite segment, which is a quite large segment. We can reach this cost price, not exactly this one, a little bit higher,” Pavel Popov told journalists.
He added that should the Falcon Heavy launch vehicle with its $81 million price tag be successful, then a different price format would prevail on the market but the Russian corporation would still be able to compete.
International Launch Services, a subsidiary of Khrunichev State Research and Production Space Center will continue the marketing of the Proton launch vehicles in the United States, Europe and Latin America, Andrey Kalinovsky, new Director General of Khrunichev Space Center said Thursday.
ILS, headquartered in Virginia, provides a range of launch services for satellite operators, from contract signing to mission management and on-orbit delivery. The company has exclusive rights to market Proton launch services for commercial and civil satellite programs.
ILS was founded in 1995 and has launched more than 80 commercial Proton rockets since then. Khrunichev has direct oversight and controls as much as 70 percent of all Proton rocket manufacturing, including all engine systems.