First flight of new Russian rocket

The first launch of a heavy-lift version of Russia’s Angara rocket was declared a success Tuesday, placing a dummy payload into orbit. The Angara A5.1L lifted off from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome in northern Russia at 12:57 am EST (0557 GMT, 8:57 Moscow time) Tuesday. The Angara 5 is a more powerful version of the Angara 1 rocket tested earlier this year, using five “universal rocket module” cores, powered by engines using liquid oxygen and kerosene propellants, for the first stage, along with a second stage and a Briz-M upper stage. The rocket placed a dummy satellite, which remained attached to the Briz0M, into geostationary orbit; the upper stage then maneuvered the payload into a graveyard orbit. Russia developed the Angara to allow it to launch payloads to geostationary orbit from Russian facilities, without requiring the use of Proton rockets from Baikonur, Kazakhstan. Development of Angara, though, suffered many years of delays. (copied from spacetoday.net)

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Image credit: RIA Novosti/Russian Defense Ministry

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