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Russia “must cut launch costs”

August 22, 2017

By Chris Forrester

Russian news agency TASS is reporting that the nation’s deputy prime minister Dmitry Rogozin has called for lower costs for its rocket launches.

Russian scientists must respond in an “asymmetrical” way to their US counterparts – in particular SpaceX – who have developed technologies for returning launch vehicle first stages to the launch site, he said. In this respect, Rogozin called American developments a “costly history.”

“This is a debatable idea, but it has been publicly varnished and needs our response,” he said. “Only one response is possible here: to make the production and launch parts as cheap as possible, make our prices for launch services on the commercial market not heavy, but lower than the Americans have, no matter how hard they try.”

The deputy prime minister believes that Russia should use all possibilities to make its launches cheaper than American ones by applying technologies and cost-reduction approaches. “Then we will defend this market and will be making good money for the country,” Rogozin added.

Earlier, Director General of the Energomash scientific production association Igor Arbuzov said that the new Russian Soyuz-5 carrier rocket must be competitive in its price with the American Falcon-9 rocket produced by SpaceX. This task was set before the designers, he is quoted as saying.

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