Khrunichev Announces Launch Periods for KSLV-1 and Angara Rockets

The Angara rocket family. (Credit: Allocer)

Russian rocket maker Khrunichev has announced that the third launch attempt of South Korea’s KSLV-1 rocket will take place at the end of 2012. Meanwhile, the first test flight of Russia’s new Angara launch vehicle is due in the second quarter of next year.

Khrunichev made the announcement on Saturday in a press release that covers Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin’s visit to the company’s headquarters. Prime Minister Vladimir Putin appointed Rogozin as a space and defense czar to clean up inefficiencies and corruption in these crucial industrial sectors.

Khrunichev builds KSLV-1’s first stage, which is powered by a scaled down version of Angara’s first-stage engine. The second stage is supplied by South Korea. All launches take place at Korea’s Naro spaceport.

Two previous launch attempts of KSLV-1 have ended in failure. The first KSLV-1 rocket fell into the ocean after the payload shroud failed to separate. South Korean and Russian investigators have failed to agree on the reason for the second failure, which resulted from a malfunction in one of the two launch stages.

The Angara is a modular family of rockets that has been under development since the early 1990s. It is designed to replace a number of existing rockets. The first launch will feature the Angara 1.2.PP, a light variant of the rocket capable of lifting 3.8 metric tons into low Earth orbit.

Russian officials have previously stated that they will also test the larger Angara A5 variant by the end of next year. However, the press release does not mention when that test will take place.