Get the latest updates as we post them — right on your browser

. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Rocket Booster Plan

Russia has decided to develop a new giant booster rocket which will have a reusable first stage and burn a special, safer low-pollution fuel mixture, a space official said Tuesday.

The rocket, Angara-24, would be particularly suitable for a new Far Eastern launch site if Russia decides to build it as an alternative to the Baikonur space center in Kazakhstan. Special systems would allow controllers to guide the discarded first stage back to earth, close to the launch site.

Russian Military Space Forces official Sergei Gorbunov said the Energia rocket-maker and Khrunichev Space Center were competing for the project. He said Energia had joined with an ex-top secret space center in Miass, in the Ural mountain region.

The heavy Angara-24 would have two stages, the first of which would fall near the launch point, guided to earth by a radionavigation system.

The booster will be tested in 1998 and the first launch is planned for 2000.