Russia grounds launches of Rokot carrier rocket

Published: 23/02/2011 05:00



Russian Space Forces have
grounded launches of Rokot light-class carrier rocket after its failed launch
with military satellite Geo-IK-2, local reports said on Monday.

The launches have to be halted until
the completion of a investigation on Rokot’s failure on Feb. 1, in which the
rocket’s Briz-KM upper stage failed to place the satellite in a designed orbit.

The next launch of Rokot was
scheduled at the end of March, but investigative commission said it would not
complete its work by the deadline.

“Rokot’s launches have been
suspended to fulfill recommended measures to ensure the necessary level of
quality and reliability…the Rokot will be evaluated by the state-owned
enterprise TsNIImash and four institutes of the Defense Ministry,” local reports
quoted a source from the forces as saying.

The three-stage Rockot is a rocket
developed on a basis of the pensioned-off two-stage intercontinental strategic
ballistic missile RS-18 (or SS-19 by NATO classification). It is capable to
deliver up to two tons of load to a low orbit.


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