Angara (rocket family)
The Angara rocket family
|Country of origin||Russia|
|Height||42.7 metres (140 ft)-64 metres (210 ft)|
|Width||Angara A1.2 2.9 metres (9 ft 6 in)
Angara A5 8.86 metres (29.1 ft)
|Mass||171,500 kilograms (378,100 lb)-790,000 kilograms (1,740,000 lb)|
|3,800 kilograms (8,400 lb)-24,500 kilograms (54,000 lb)|
|5,400 kilograms (11,900 lb)-7,500 kilograms (16,500 lb)|
|Comparable||Naro-1 used a modified URM-1 first stage|
|Launch sites||Plesetsk Site 35
|Total launches||1 (A1.2PP: 1)|
|Successes||1 (A1.2PP: 1)|
|First flight||A1.2PP: July 9, 2014|
|Boosters () - URM-1|
|No boosters||4 (see text)|
|Thrust||1,920 kilonewtons (430,000 lbf) (Sea level)|
|Total thrust||7,680 kilonewtons (1,730,000 lbf) (Sea level)|
|Specific impulse||310.7 seconds (3.047 km/s) (Sea level)|
|Burn time||214 seconds|
|First Stage - URM-1|
|Thrust||1,920 kilonewtons (430,000 lbf) (Sea level)|
|Specific impulse||310.7 seconds (3.047 km/s) (Sea level)|
|Burn time||Angara 1.2: 214 seconds
Angara A5: 325 seconds
|Second Stage - Modified Block I, URM-2|
|Thrust||294.3 kilonewtons (66,200 lbf)|
|Specific impulse||359 seconds (3.52 km/s)|
|Burn time||Angara A5: 424 seconds|
|Third Stage (Optional, Angara A5) - Briz-M|
|Thrust||19.6 kilonewtons (4,400 lbf)|
|Specific impulse||326 seconds (3.20 km/s)|
|Burn time||3,000 seconds|
|Third Stage (Optional, Angara A5) - KVTK, under development|
|Thrust||68.6 kilonewtons (15,400 lbf)|
|Specific impulse||463 seconds (4.54 km/s)|
|Burn time||1,350 seconds|
The Angara rocket family is a family of space-launch vehicles being developed by the Moscow-based Khrunichev State Research and Production Space Center. The rockets are to put between 3,800 and 24,500 kg into low Earth orbit and are intended, along with Soyuz-2 variants, to replace several existing launch vehicles.
After the dissolution of the Soviet Union, many formerly-Soviet launch vehicles were built in or required components from companies now located in Ukraine, such as Yuzhnoye Design Bureau, which produced Zenit-2, and Yuzhmash, which produced Dnepr and Tsyklon. Additionally, the Soviet Union's main spaceport, Baikonur Cosmodrome, was located in Kazakhstan, and Russia encountered difficulties negotiating for its use. This led to the decision in 1992 to develop a new entirely Russian launch vehicle, named Angara, to replace the rockets now built outside of the country, and ensure Russian access to space without Baikonur. It was decided that this vehicle should ideally use the partially-completed Zenit-2 launch pad at the Russian Plesetsk spaceport, and be able to launch military satellites into geosynchronous orbit, which Proton could not due to lack of a launch pad at Plesetsk. Several companies submitted bids for the new rocket, and in 1994 Khrunichev, the developer of Proton, was selected as the winner. The commercial success of Proton over the next two decades would be an advantage to Khrunichev, as the Angara project immediately ran into funding difficulties from the cash-strapped Russian government.
Khrunichev's initial design called for the use of a modified-RD-170 for first stage propulsion and a liquid hydrogen powered second stage. By 1997, the hydrogen-powered second stage had been abandoned in favor of kerosene, and the RD-170 was replaced with a modular design which would be powered by the new RD-191, a one-chamber engine derived from the four-chamber RD-170. In late 1997 Khrunichev was given approval from the Russian government to proceed with their new design, which would both be able to replace the ICBM-based Dnepr, Tsyklon, and Rokot with its smaller variants, as well as be able to launch satellites into geostationary orbit from Plesetsk with the Proton-class Angara A5. This new modular rocket would require construction of a new launch pad.
By 2004, the design of Angara had taken shape and the project proceeded with development of the launchers. In 2008, NPO Energomash, the builder of the RD-191, reported that the engine had completed development and burn tests and was ready for manufacturing and delivery, and in January, 2009 the first completed Angara first stage was delivered to Khrunichev. The next year Vladimir Nesterov, Director-General of Khrunichev, announced that the first flight test of Angara would be scheduled for 2013, and 2013 the first prototype Angara rocket arrived in Plesetsk. On July 9, 2014, first suborbital test flight of the Angara took place successfully, 22 years after Angara's original conception.
All Angara launch vehicles will have a modular design based on a common Universal Rocket Module (URM-1). Depending on configuration, either two or four additional URM-1s are added to the first stage, though only the four-booster design, the Angara A5, is currently being developed. This is similar in concept to the Delta IV Heavy or the Falcon Heavy launch vehicles, though the Angara boosters are much smaller.
The URM-1 is a unitary structure that includes an oxidizer tank, a fuel tank (both tanks being coupled by a spacer) and a propulsion bay, with a mass of 141.5 tonnes fully fueled and just under 10 tonnes dry. Each URM-1 has one 1,920 kN RD-191 engine, using liquid oxygen and RP-1 as fuel. The RD-191 is a single-chamber derivative of the four-chamber RD-170 designed for the Energia launcher, which is also the basis of Zenit's RD-171 and the dual-chamber RD-180 that powers ULA's Atlas V. When the URM-1 is used as a booster or as a core with no boosters, the RD-191 operates at full thrust for approximately 214 seconds. When used as a core sustainer, the RD-191 is operated at full thrust for lift off, then throttled down to 30% to conserve propellant. The core is throttled back up after the boosters have depleted their fuel and separated and continues burning for another 110 seconds.
The second stage of the Angara, designated URM-2, is derived from the Block I stage of the Soyuz-2, and uses one RD-0124A engine. This stage will have a diameter of 2.66 m for Angara 1.2 and 3.6 m for the Angara A5 and potential future Angara variants.
Versions under development
The smallest Angara under development is the Angara 1.2, which consists of one URM-1 core and a modified Block I second stage. It has a lift-off mass of 171 tonnes and can deliver 3.8 tonnes of payload to a 200 km x 60° orbit.
The second Angara expected to be developed is the Angara A5, which will use one URM-1 core and four URM-1 boosters, the enlarged 3.6m URM-2 second stage, and an upper stage, either the Briz-M (currently used for the Proton-M rocket), or a new high energy liquid hydrogen powered stage, the KVTK. Weighing 773 tonnes at lift-off, Angara A5 will have a payload capacity of 24.5 tonnes to a 200 km x 60° orbit. The Angara A5 can deliver 5.4 tonnes to GTO with the Briz-M, or 7.5 tonnes to the same orbit with the KVTK.
A modified Angara 1.2, called Angara 1.2PP (Angara-1.2 pervyy polyot meaning Angara-1.2 first flight), made Angara's inaugural suborbital flight on July 9, 2014. This flight lasted 22 minutes and carried mass simulator weighing 1,430 kilograms (3,150 lb). Angara 1.2PP weighed 171,000 kilograms (377,000 lb) and consisted of a URM-1 core stage and a partially fueled 3.6 m URM-2 allowing all components of the Angara A5 to be flight tested before its first launch, expected later in 2014.
Initial plans called for an even smaller Angara 1.1 using a Briz-KM as a second stage, with a payload capacity of 2 tonnes, but this version was cancelled as it fell into the same payload class as the Soyuz 2-1v, which made its debut flight in 2013.
The Angara A3 would consist of one URM-1 core, two URM-1 boosters, the 3.6m URM-2, and a Briz-M. This 481 tonne vehicle has no current plans for use since its payload class (14.6 tonnes to 200 km x 60°, 2.4 tonnes to GTO with Briz-M or 3.6 tonnes with a hydrogen upper stage) is mostly covered by the Soyuz-2, but could be developed given the modular nature of Angara.
Proposals exist for a super-heavy Angara A7, weighing 1133 tonnes and capable of putting 35 tonnes into a 200 km x 60° orbit, or delivering 12.5 tonnes to GTO with an enlarged KVTK-A7 as a second stage in place of the URM-2. There are no current plans to develop this vehicle as it would require a larger core URM-1 to carry more propellant and would have to await the development of the hydrogen powered engine for KVTK. The Angara A7 would also require a different launch pad.
Additionally, Khrunichev has proposed an Angara A5 capable of launching a new crewed spacecraft weighing up to 18t: the Angara 5P. This version would have 4 URM-1s as boosters surrounding a sustainer core URM-1 but lack a second stage, relying on the spacecraft to complete orbital insertion from a slightly suborbital trajectory, much like the Space Shuttle or Buran. This has the advantage of allowing all engines to be lit and checked out while on the ground, eliminating the possibility of an engine failing to start after staging.
|Version||Angara 1.2||Angara A5|
|Second stage||Modified Block I||URM-2|
|Third stage (not used for LEO)||–||Briz-M/KVTK|
|Thrust (at sea level)||1.92 MN||9.61 MN|
|Launch weight||171.5 t||759 t|
|Height (maximal)||41.5 m||55.4 m|
|Payload (LEO 200 km)||3.8 t||24.5 t|
|Payload (GTO)||–||5.4/7.5 t|
|Payload (GEO)||–||3/4.6 t|
Cancelled or proposed
|Second stage||Briz-KM||Modified Block I||–||–||–|
|Third stage (not used for LEO)||–||Briz-M/RCAF||–||KVTK-A7||KVTK-A7|
|Thrust (at sea level)||1.92 MN||5.77 MN||9.61 MN||13.44 MN||13.44 MN|
|Launch weight||149 t||481 t||713 t||1,125 t||1,184 t|
|Height (maximal)||34.9 m||45.8 m||?||?||?|
|Payload (LEO 200 km)||2.0 t||14.6 t||18.0 t||36.0 t||40.5 t|
|Payload (GTO)||–||2.4/3.6 t||–||?||–|
|Payload (GEO)||–||1.0/2.0 t||–||7.5 t||9 t|
Angara will primarily be launched from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome, and later at the Vostochny Cosmodrome under construction in Eastern Russia. Commercial launches of Angara A5 may also take place from Baikonur Cosmodrome, where the lower inclination would allow slightly higher payloads to be placed in orbit. This would allow the phase out of Proton, a rocket whose operation Kazakhstan has objected to due to its use of large amounts of highly toxic UDMH and N2O4 and reliability issues.
Testing and manufacturing
The production of the Universal Rocket Modules and the Briz-M upper stages will take place at the Khrunichev subsidiary Production Corporation Polyot in Omsk. In 2009, Polyot invested over 771.4 million RUB (about $25 million) in Angara production lines. Design and testing of the RD-191 engine is done by NPO Energomash, while its mass production will take place at the company Proton-PM in Perm.
The South Korean launch vehicle Naro-1 used a first stage derived from Angara's URM-1 (fitted with a lower-thrust version of the RD-191 engine called RD-151). The vehicle made its first flight on August 25, 2009. The flight was not successful; however, according to Khrunichev, the first stage encountered no problems. A second launch on June 10, 2010 ended in failure, when contact with the rocket was lost 136 seconds after launch. The Joint Failure Review Board failed to come to a consensus on the cause of the failure. The third flight on January 30, 2013 successfully reached orbit.
Together with NPO Molniya, Khrunichev has also proposed the reusable Baikal booster, based on Angara's URM-1. The vehicle consists of one URM-1 fitted with a wing, an empennage, a landing gear, a return flight engine and attitude control thrusters, to enable the rocket to return to an airfield after completing its mission.
|Date/Time (UTC)||Configuration||Serial number||Launch pad||Outcome|
|9 July 2014
|Angara 1.2PP||Plesetsk Cosmodrome Area 35 Start 1||Successful|
|1,430 kilograms (3,150 lb), Boilerplate||suborbital|
|Non-standard Angara 1.2PP allowed flight testing of both URM-1 and URM-2|
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