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Function Carrier rocket
Manufacturer Yuzhmash, JSC "Khartron" (control system)
Country of origin Ukraine
Stages 3
Associated rockets
Family R-36, Tsyklon
Comparable Zenit
Launch history
Status Development
Launch sites Baikonur Site 90
Plesetsk Site 32
First Stage - 11K69
Engines 1 RD-261 + RD-855 Vernier engine
Thrust 3,032 kilonewtons (682,000 lbf)
Specific impulse 298.21 sec
Burn time 119 seconds
Fuel N2O4/UDMH
Second Stage - 11S692
Engines 1 RD-262 + RD-856 Vernier engine
Thrust 941 kilonewtons (212,000 lbf)
Specific impulse 313.5 sec
Burn time 162 seconds
Fuel N2O4/UDMH
Third Stage
Engines RD-861К
Thrust 7,91 ts
Specific impulse 330 sec
Burn time 450 sec
Fuel N2O4/UDMH

The Tsyklon-4[1] or Cyclone-4, also known as Tsiklon-4, is a Ukrainian carrier rocket which is being developed for commercial satellite launches. Derived from the Tsyklon-3, it has a new third stage, a larger payload fairing, and a modernised flight control system compared to its predecessor.[2] Control system has been developed by JSC Khartron.[3][4]


Tsyklon-4 is a three-stage-to-orbit expendable launch system built on the successful Tsyklon-3 rocket and it uses its first two stages. The new features are mostly concentrated in the newly developed third stage:

  • The third stage has a three times larger propellant capacity;
  • The new rocket engine RD-861K with multiple ignition capability (3 to 5 times);
  • A modern western-like control system capable of precise orbit injections;
  • A new fairing derived from Ariane 4 is under development. It has a diameter of 4 meters, controlled temperature and cleanness conditions inside.

Tsyklon-4 will also improve the fueling system, allowing safe capture of toxic vapors from the Tsyklon's hypergolic propellant.

The new system, operated from a near-equatorial launch facility, will be able to deliver 5,300 kg into low Earth orbit, or up to 1,600 kg into a geostationary transfer orbit.[5]

Launch facilities[edit]

Tsyklon-4 will be launched primarily from the Baikonur and Plesetsk Cosmodromes. A preliminary attempt to develop a Ukrainian-Brazilian rocket launching center ended up in a big fiasco. Due to severe financial problems in the South American developing country and to strong political pressures from Russia, the project was cancelled in 2015.

Development history[edit]

Development began in 2002, with the maiden flight aimed for 2006. Following a series of production delays, this has slipped, and is now scheduled for sometime after 2015.

The planned payload capacity of the Tsyklon-4 is 5,500 kilograms (12,100 lb) to a 500 kilometre circular low Earth orbit, or 1,700 kilograms (3,700 lb) to geosynchronous transfer orbit.[6]

See also[edit]


External links[edit]