Booster "Angara" is inferior to available space transportation companies and almost superior to the "union", which it will replace. A high-latitude location for the main rocket launch site — Plesetsk in the Arkhangelsk region — only exacerbates the problem, on the condition of anonymity, explained the expert rocketeer.
"Today, Russia has two carrier rockets" Proton "and" Zenith "with roughly equal efficiency into orbit payload mass — 3.1% of the starting weight of the rocket. A family of rockets "Soyuz", where the rate does not exceed 2.6-2.7%, depending on the version. And planning is known, that is not yet implemented, the rate for a missile "Angara" — 2.8% ", — said the" Interfax "a source in the space industry.
Thus, he said, the new Russian carrier rocket will be only a few tenths of a percent better established over half a century ago, the rocket "Soyuz" and less effective than the "Proton" and "Zenith". "And that's not to mention the heavy launch vehicle" Energy ", for which the rate was 4% of the weight of their own home, and eventually planned to increase it to 5%," — said the source.
Complicating the situation location Russian spaceports. According to the expert, to launch into low-Earth orbit 1 kg of payload with equatorial launch site, for example, the Guiana Space Centre or the platform used for the project "Sea Launch" enough to spend 29 kg booster designs, fuel and an oxidant. To run the same weight with the latitude of Baikonur to be used up for 32 kg, and from Plesetsk — and at 35 kg.
"And in order to run away from the equator 1 kg of payload into geostationary orbit requires about 175-180 kg — total weight of the rocket configurations, fuel, oxidizer. With the launch site at Cape Canaveral to have 230 kg, from Baikonur — 350 kg, and from Plesetsk — is necessary to spend 700 kg launch mass-media "- said the expert.
"Angara" will launch in 2013
The family of launch vehicles "Angara", developed in 1995, includes the modification of light, medium and heavy classes that can be put into orbit spacecraft from 1.5 to 25 tons. Depending on the class of the missile rocket is equipped with universal modules in an amount from one to five units.
The first launch of the carrier rocket "Angara" was planned for 2005 from Plesetsk, but then it was postponed several times, first in 2011, then in 2012. A new date for the launch of the first "Angara" is currently classified in 2013 — at the latest rocket wants to see in action, particularly by President Vladimir Putin.
At the end of last year it became known that the "Angara" chosen as perhaps the main "mate", "Soyuz-U", the latest launch which, recall, was held last week. Then it was announced that the government has abandoned development of a new rocket for manned launches "Rus-M".
"Rus-M" was to start from the cosmodrome "East" in the Amur region, there is now planned to start the construction of a complex for the upgraded rocket "Soyuz-2". But "Angara", is expected to start not only from Plesetsk, but also from Baikonur. Now, together with Kazakhstan to solve the problem of funding the project "Baiterek" — launch pad for the "Angara". The project is estimated at $ 1.6 billion.