07:16 GMT09 April 2020
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    The first launch of the Angara super-heavy carrier rocket is planned for 2021, according to Igor Komarov, the head of Russia's space agency Roscosmos.

    NOVO-OGARYOVO (Sputnik) — The first launch of the Angara super-heavy carrier rocket will take place in 2021, Igor Komarov, the head of Russia's space agency Roscosmos, said Monday.

    "The first launch is planned for 2021, while in 2024 we hope for a spacecraft with cosmonauts to dock at the orbital station," Komarov told Russian President Vladimir Putin.

    Earlier on Monday, Putin said Russian space experts should study the possibility of launching super-heavy rockets from the Vostochny space center, under construction in Russia's Far East, the launch facilities of which will be needed for the Angara rocket carriers.

    The Angara family of space launch vehicles has been in development since 1995. According to Roscosmos, new Angara rockets will give Russia independent access to space and opportunity to reach a new level in technological development.

    The heavy-class Angara-5 rocket, part of the Angara family of rockets designed to replace the Proton used previously to put space vehicles into a low Earth orbit, was first successfully launched in December 2014.

    The family's super-heavy version that Roscosmos' Komarov announced will be launched within the next decade expects to have a much higher payload and will require a separate launch pad, according to spacecraft manufacturer Khrunichev State Research and Production Center.


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