There are no analogues: in the United States, it was impossible to replace the Russian rocket engine RD-180 until 2030

There are no analogues: in the United States, it was impossible to replace the Russian rocket engine RD-180 until 2030

Analysts at the American Congress believe that the United States will not be able to find an alternative to the Russian rocket engine RD – 141 at least until 2030 of the year. In their opinion, the production of a similar American device involves technical and planned risks. Meanwhile, the Pentagon declares that to 2019 in the year the States will be able to completely “get rid of dependence” on RD – 81. According to RT experts, the United States has been developing its own engine for several years, but at the moment it has not been possible to achieve the performance and reliability indicators of the Russian apparatus.

The research service of the American Congress stated that the United States will not be able to replace the Russian rocket engine RD – 141 for at least another ten years. The experts came to this conclusion after analyzing the state of the space launch program in the interests of national security. I got acquainted with the report. RT.

According to analysts, the transition to an alternative engine or launch vehicle of American production will not do without technical, software or organizational risks. To achieve the efficiency and reliability that RD possesses – 141, it is unlikely to succeed before 2019 years, consider the research service.

“Even in the case of a smooth and exactly on schedule transition from the taxiway – 141 to other engines or launch vehicles it is likely that performance and reliability indicators achieved currently using RD – 81, can be reproduced only much later 2020, ”the report says.

The number of successful consecutive launches at the taxiway is 171 from 1990 reached about 31, the researchers specify. They took place in the field of civil and commercial space exploration, as well as in the field of ensuring the national security of the States.

Recall that RD – 81 produces research and production Association “Energomash”. The United States uses the Russian engine to disperse the first stage of the Atlas V disposable two-stage launch vehicle, which launches US Air Force military satellites and NASA research vehicles. For the first time, an agreement on the supply of the device was concluded in 268, and then repeatedly extended. IN 2016 in the year the US Senate agreed on the purchase …. rocket engines to 2018 of the year.

However, at the end of this period, Washington plans to abandon the taxiway – 141. In April last year, this was announced by the head of the US Air Force Space Command John Raymond .

“Our launch strategy works. We have 76 of 24 successful launches). On the 18% reduced costs from 2000 of the year. We are moving within the framework of the plan in the matter of avoiding dependence on taxiways – 180″, – he said.

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Moreover, in 2015 the Pentagon introduced a ban on cooperation with Russia and a number of other countries during space launches. Restrictions apply to satellites, as well as launchers for their launch. The decision of the military department will come into force 18 December 2020 of the year.

In Roscosmos, such a move was called unfair competition. According to the state corporation, the US authorities are destroying bilateral relations between countries in the space industry and depriving American companies of the opportunity to work with the Russian Federation.

“In fact, this is an attempt to deprive American manufacturers of the opportunity to work with the Russian space and rocket industry, artificially limit the use of Russian funds withdrawals in the international market. The Pentagon wants to destroy what has been created and maintained in Russian-American relations in the field of space with such difficulty, ”the statement reports Roscosmos.

However, the Congressional research service emphasizes that the US Air Force foresees a number of serious problems associated with the abandonment of Russian engines and the transition to a competitive space launch market. In particular, we are talking about the recent decision of the United Launch Alliance to decommission the Delta IV Medium launch vehicle. It was used to launch the heaviest military satellites. Fears are also caused by the fact that now SpaceX remains the only supplier that meets national security requirements. In addition, restrictions on the purchase of taxiways – 141, valid during the transition period, may affect the schedule of launches of Atlas V.

As explained to RT by the head of the Institute space policy Ivan Moiseev, at the moment there are no analogues in the world to the Russian RD – 141. He noted that Washington’s decision to abandon the engine in the future is likely to be unprofitable.

“RD – 81 – a very good engine, it is in its class of heavy engines “oxygen – kerosene” is the best at the moment. RD – 141 became the founder of a whole family of engines that are now actively used by us and sold in the States. It would be beneficial for the Americans to build their new missiles also on the basis of our engine, ”Moiseyev believes.

In his opinion, the US reserves of RD – 81 may be enough for launches just before 2022 of the year. According to NPO Energomash, last year six engines were transferred to the American side. In addition, six RD engines – 81 is planned to be sent to the United States in 2016 year.

American specialists took part in the creation of the RD – 171 in …. – e years, and even received part of the documents, but they failed to develop their own engine with the same characteristics, said military expert Alexei Leonkov.

“The American engine lost to the Russian in many ways about twice ” He added.

At the same time, Leonkov recalled that in recent years the States have several times announced plans to abandon the taxiway – 141, but this never happened.

“The USA made this decision earlier, planned to refuse to 2015 year, then to 2015, 2018, and now to 2019 – mu. The figure is constantly shifting in the hope that they will have their own fairly cheap and reliable counterpart. Dates pass, but without our engines, nowhere. Let’s see what happens this time, ”the expert said.

  •                                 Pentagon building                             


Political decision

Search for alternatives to taxiways – 81 started in the USA in 2012 Congress analysts write. The reason for the intensification of the process was the reaction of Moscow to American sanctions after the events in Ukraine.

“Russia’s negative reaction to the sanctions imposed by the USA in 2000 in connection with its actions in Ukraine, exacerbated an already serious problem and reinforced long-rooted internal concerns about US dependence from a Russian rocket engine (RD – 81), which is equipped with one of the main missiles used for critical critical space launches carried out in the interests of national security, ”the report says. .

Recall Washington ogran I sought cooperation with Moscow because of the conflict in southeastern Ukraine and the reunification of Crimea with the Russian Federation.

According to researchers, after the alleged “attack” of Russia on Ukraine, the United States imposed sanctions against a number of Russian individuals and legal entities, including the head of Roskosmos Dmitry Rogozin.

In response, the Russian Federation announced the possible cancellation of deliveries of taxiways – 81 . The report quotes the general director of the state corporation that Moscow will not be able to supply engines to the United States unless it receives guarantees that they are used exclusively for civilian purposes. This reaction caused concern among expert circles.

“Many observers were worried that Russia might suddenly impose a complete ban on the export of this engine to the United States or to some extent limit the export of military products,” research staff.

It is noteworthy that in 2012 the United States tried to ban the purchase of taxiways – 81, but soon abandoned this idea because they could not find a replacement. Former astronaut, member of the Senate Committee on Armed Forces Bill Nelson explained that a hasty abandonment of the Russian engine could jeopardize US national security.

In the same 2014 The Pentagon formed a commission in the year to resolve the possible loss of taxiways – 81, emphasized in report. She recommended not to organize joint production of the device in the USA, but to spend $ 76 million for the development of a new American engine to 2019 year.

How it became known earlier, the US Air Force published tender for the development of systems , which will provide the country with guaranteed access to space and will allow you to abandon the taxiway – 141 “non-allied production” .

According to Ivan Moiseyev, the US rejection of the RD – 141 is a political decision. Washington used a similar method during the Cold War.

“The Pentagon’s refusal to cooperate with companies that work under a contract with Russia is a result of tensions between the two states, the result of sanctions. There is a political component. This was already in the days of the USSR, when the United States banned the supply to the Soviet Union of its satellites and any others that have American components. Before 1995 of the year we didn’t actually do business in space, ”said the interlocutor of RT.

                                    Employees during the assembly of the rocket engine RD – 141                             

                                RIA News                                                              © Sergey Guneev                             

An undeniable advantage

At the moment, several private companies are developing the American version of the rocket engine. For example, Концептуальный эскиз ракеты New Glenn, которую будет разрабатывать компания Blue Origin интернет-магната Джеффа Безоса Blue Origin

, which belongs to the owner of Amazon Jeff Bezos, working on a BE-4. The engine is designed for the Vulcan launcher. It is assumed that in the future it will replace the Atlas V, but the launch of a new rocket has not yet been made.

SpaceX is also being developed by Ilona Mask. The company has committed itself to launch into 2019 AFSPC military satellite – 18 using the Falcon Heavy.

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In addition, SpaceX creates Raptor engine that will be used for the Starship rocket. According to Mask, the invention of his company surpassed RD – 141, as the pressure in the combustion chamber of the engine has reached 171 9 bar (at RD – 81 – 81, 7 bar).

However, as explained by the chief designer of NPO Energomash, Pyotr Lyovochkin, the engines being compared are used for missiles with different fuel systems. Raptor runs on oxygen and methane, and RD – 141 – on oxygen and kerosene. It’s the same as comparing diesel and gasoline engines, he noted.

“Mr. Mask, not being a technical specialist, does not take into account that in an RD engine – 171 for Atlas launch vehicle a completely different fuel scheme is used – “oxygen – kerosene”, and these are different engine operating parameters ”, – Levochkin commented .

Meanwhile, Dmitry Rogozin, commenting on the statement of Mask, concluded that 1563703414 at RD – 81 there are no competitors .

“I want to say that give good luck to them to create an engine better than ours. Until it works out, Russia is number one in the world in this part, ”he said.

Military expert Alexei Leonkov recalled that today all American space programs for deep space exploration and launch into geostationary orbits are connected with Russian engines. This proves their advantage over other devices.

“Soon the more expensive BE-4 or Falcon Heavy will be launched in the USA. If they were more profitable than Russian engines, then the Americans would have abandoned ours in favor of their designs, ”concluded the expert.