Russia prepared for beating SpaceX?

 

Russia has been an active partaker in developing Space technology. From the early days of building rockets and going to the moon, Russia has stayed ahead of several if not the leader it was neither a mere follower. Russia has a plan to develop a Soyuz rocket, but information of insufficient funds has spread like a fire in the forest. Russia keeps such information tightly sealed, but this time Roscosmos may suffer a reduction in the finances. Sputnik, a government-controlled news agency has declared that the state corporation may undergo a shortage of about 150 billion rubles ($2 billion approximately) in the coming three years.

2019 to 2021 may not be a very favourable time for Russia’s rocket launch industry since the reduced budget may compel Russia to either change the timeline or look out for alternative financial aid to compete with the rocket launch by SpaceX – Falcon 9 and a new super-heavy lift booster. The development of a rocket as powerful as Falcon-9, which is reusable too, is a practically an impossibility if there are financial restrictions along.   

Currently, there are three big launches that Russia had planned, including Soyuz-5, the competitor for Falcon-9 and a massive variant of Russian Angara rocket. The plans will have to be reshuffled as the ultra-heavy booster is not a necessity right now. There are no payloads or missions set for it, and even the designing element has raised an expenditure of a billion dollars. 

Ivan Moiseev, Russian Space Agency’s leader state that it was pointless to waste the resources on this project. While talking to Lenta.RU, a Russian publication, he mentioned that developing new boosters was impractical at this point of time. The payload which is available to be taken by the rocket is reasonably lower than the capacity of this more significant and more massive project. Additionally, there is not stability visible in this project as of now. 

Soyuz-5 is powered by first stage RD-171 engines that will burn kerosene as fuel. It has been so designed to carry cosmonauts and astronauts along with commercial payloads.  If the funds were appropriate, Soyuz-5 could be ready by 2022 for service. 

SpaceX, with its destructive practices has decreased the cost for commercial payloads and offers fierce competition to other space agencies. The booster reusability phenomenon saving cost is not seen in any other organisation. Moiseev is adamant if there would be need of launching commercial payloads, they can change the boosters if they are not capable of lifting the load instead of building a new more massive rocket.