Korolyov, Moscow Region: Russia is all set to field a new generation of space transport systems over the coming decade. Russian aerospace company, Energia RSC, has said that flight tests of its new cargo spacecraft will start in 2016-17.
"We will make the new cargo ship more economical, less expensive than those used today," Vitaly Lopota, general designer, Energia RSC said Monday. Lopota also clarified that the cargo spacecraft would be part of a new transport system which would also include a new manned spaceship and a launch vehicle.
RSC Energia was the winner of a tender for a concept study for a new manned spacecraft.
According to Lopota, the new system will be launched from a new space center, Vostochny, in Russia's Far East. The space facility is expected to take five years to build and enter service in 2015.
Russia currently uses two sites for space launches - the Baikonur space centre in the Central Asian Republic of Kazakhstan, which has been on lease since the collapse of the Soviet Union, and the Plesetsk space centre in northwest Russia.