Khrunichev Prepares Angara Test Article

The Angara rocket family. (Credit: Allocer)

MOSCOW (Khrunichev PR) — The Khrunichev Space Center continue to process a test article for shipment to the Plesetsk launch base where this device will be used in the tests aimed at finalizing the design of the launch complex of the Angara Launch System.

At Plesetsk, engineers and technicians from the space industry together with combat teams of the Aerospace Defense Force will carry out a test sequence using this test article. The aim of these tests is to certify the ground Processing Facility and the Launch Complex belonging to the Angara Launch System and to verify this system’s operational availability.

Angara is a new generation of modular launch vehicles to be built around two common core boosters (URMs). These modules using LOX/kerosene engines are denoted as URM 1 and URM 2, respectively.

The Angara family includes four types of light-lift, medium-lift or heavy-lift launchers whose LEO lift capacity ranges from 1.5 to 25 metric tons (Angara A5) to 35 metric tons (Angara 7) if launched from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome.

All Angara family launches are intended to be performed from the Plesetsk Launch Base, Archangelsk Region.

The development of the Angara complex has been declared a task of prime national importance. The commissioning of the Angara SLS will provide to Russia the capability to launch any type of spacecraft from its own territory and will secure for this country an independent and guaranteed access to outer space.

The government customers are the RF Ministry of Defense and Federal Space Agency while the Khrunichev State Space Research and Production Center is the prime designer and developer.

The RD 191 main engine for URM 1 is designed by Energomash and it is Energomash who manufacture, in collaboration with the Voronezh Mechanical Plant, this type of engines. The RD 0124 engine for the URM 2 module is designed by the Voronezh Chemical Engineering Automation Design Bureau (KBKhA). All components were manufactured by subcontractors and the final integration of Angara launch vehicles will be carried out by the Space Rocket Plant (RKZ), KhSC.

As of today, the inter-departmental tests of the RD 191 engine for the URM 1 common core module and of the RD 0124 engine have been completed and these engines are ready for serial production.

System-level tests of the guidance, navigation and control system as well as software debugging at a dedicated test facility have been completed. The on-board avionics has been tested. The ground support equipment for the Processing Facility and the Multi-Purpose Launch Complex has been fabricated and installed.

All operations related to the development, design and fabrication of the Angara launch vehicle have proceeded in compliance with the General Schedule. The maiden flight of the Angara 1.2PP light-lift launch vehicle is to take place in December this year while that of the Angara 5 heavy-lift launcher is scheduled for 2013.

The light-lift vehicle is due to be ready for shipment to Plesetsk in December this year while the heavy-lift launcher is to arrive at the launch base in the early 3rd quarter of 2013.