Energia, Russian rocket firm is developing a new launch vehicle that might help the company to regain its position in the launch vehicle market. The new vehicle which is called Soyuz-5 is a medium class vehicle.
The company increased the pace at which this vehicle is developing to make it ready earlier than expected. The new vehicle will be replacing the Soyuz rocket which has been the transporting vehicle for cosmonauts and astronauts.
Russian officials are anticipating the completion of the Soyuz-5, and they are hoping this vehicle will be able to stand the fierce competition posed by SpaceX.
Officials are hoping that preliminary work will be completed on the rocket by the end of this year. Energia has also scheduled that the vehicle will be on the market by the end of 2021.
The rocket is a three-stage rocket that will be fueled by Kerosene, and RD-171 engines will power it.
Considering SpaceX’s ambition, the Soyuz-5 would not be competing with Falcon 9. SpaceX would have launched the final version of the Falcon 9 booster by then. That is probably not the only trick up their sleeves. SpaceX would also be able to launch a new vehicle that costs even less around the time that Soyuz-5 would be launching.
Russia was the most influential player in the global launch market until other companies started setting in. As at 2013, Russia still held a significant share in the market owing to its massive rockets and spacecraft.
Other companies started taking over at the beginning of 2014, and Russia has not recovered since. One significant company that seems to dwarf other companies is SpaceX. SpaceX is performing well in the commercial launch market compared to Russia.
This year alone, Russia’s launch vehicles made 17 launches into orbit. However, less than half of the number were for commercial customers. Most of the launches were for the Russian government. SpaceX on the hand has made 16 orbital launches out of which 11 of them were for commercial customers.
Apparently, Russia would only meet the current flight rate of SpaceX if SpaceX stands still. This is also very unlikely because SpaceX reveals more plans each day. SpaceX is one of the Space companies that is growing at a significantly fast rate.
The company which has a goal of colonizing Mars has made more strides than any privately owned space company.