On the eve of the 28th independence Day of the Ukrainian flagship rocket CB “South” conducted tests of the carrier rocket “Cyclone-4”, once again proved that knowingly eat their own bread. However, this is not all the surprises prepared by the world space Ukraine in the near future.
Every year the Ukrainian power a little gets lost in the global space arena position. This time the main enterprise Ukrkosmos plans to surprise the market the latest on all parameters of development — booster “lighthouse-3.9 S”. According to General Director of KB “southern” Alexander Degtyarev, their new creation will far surpass the visiting card of the enterprise and the pride of the space of Ukraine — the legendary rocket “Zenit”, still used in the international program “Sea launch”. “The specialists of the design Bureau managed to develop PH “lighthouse-3.9 S”, significantly superior in its parameters to its direct competitor, the rocket “Zenit”, — said Alexander Degtyarev on meet the press.
Continued use of Zenit rockets is irrational, since it involved 70% of Russian components. Her “heart” — the first stage engine RD-171М and control system are the Russian developments (engine developed by the Russian machine-building holding company “Energomash”). The assurance of Alexander Degtyarev, the rejection of all Russian after 2014 was not a verdict for the Ukrainian space industry. Its businesses provide a full cycle of production and are capable to solve the issues of import substitution at the expense of internal and partner products, not inferior in quality to the Russian. However, the rocket “Zenit” morally and technically obsolete, so, both financially and in terms of innovation, it is more profitable to create a structurally new, and most importantly, competitive missile, which would be widely demanded in the market of launch services. The plans of CB “South” to return with “lighthouse-3.9 S” on Baikonur under the program “Land launch”, or individual, discussions were under way with the Kazakh side.
According to A. Degtyarev, for a new missile specialists CB “South” was developed by a completely new engine RD-815 thrust of 250 tons. In the first stage “the lighthouse-3.9 S” requires the presence of three such units, the total characteristics that exceed the similar parameters of the engine 171 used in “Zenith”.
Such “activation” of the activities of the flagship of the Ukrainian rocket attributed to failure of the operator of the “Sea launch” — corporations with Russian capital S7 Space — from the use of the Zenit 2022. Ukrainian missiles are planned to be replaced by more promising Russian “beacon-5”. At the same time, this solution S7 was made post factum, after the Ukrainian enterprises Yuzhnoye and Yuzhmash in 2014 withdrew from the consortium “Sea launch” and ceased to serve its missiles in the framework of the project. in 2017, S7 tried to resume cooperation with the Ukrainian side and signed a contract with “Yuzhmash” 12 missiles “Zenit-3SL”. In 2019, the Russian media spread a rumor about early termination of the agreement, however, the Russian space Agency denied this information. It is obvious that Russia is simply nothing to replace the Ukrainian “Zenith” in the near future is not expected.
Recall that the “Sea launch” is not the only international space project with the participation of Ukraine. CB “South”, “Pivdenmash” and “Khartron” presented in the European program launches “VEGA” and the American “Antares”. Also, the CB “South” is implementing a joint Ukrainian-canadian project “Cyclone-4M”. With the advent of the carrier rocket “the lighthouse-3.9’s” Ukrainian expansion on the international market has the potential to expand.
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