The space forces of the Aerospace Forces successfully launched the Angara-A5 carrier rocket from the Plesetsk cosmodrome.

This is reported by the Russian Ministry of Defense.

“Today, December 14, at 8:50 am (Moscow time), a test launch of a heavy-class carrier rocket was carried out by a combat crew of the Space Forces of the Aerospace Forces from the launch pad of site No. 35 of the State Test Cosmodrome of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation (the Plesetsk cosmodrome) in the Arkhangelsk Region "Angara-A5" with the overall mass model of the payload ", - said in the statement of the defense department.

It is noted that all pre-launch operations and the launch of the rocket "took place in the normal mode."

"The ground assets of the Space Forces of the Aerospace Forces monitored the launch and flight of the launch vehicle," the RF Ministry of Defense informs.

As the department clarifies, "Angara-A5" was "accepted for escort by ground means of the Main Testing Space Center named after G.S.

Titov of the Aerospace Forces Aerospace Forces "at estimated time.

“At 0900 hours, the Breeze-M upper stage detached itself from the Angara-A5 LV.

At the estimated time, in the radio visibility zone of the ground-based automated control complex of the Space Forces of the Aerospace Forces in the established areas of the Komi Republic, the Tomsk region and the water area of ​​the Philippine Sea, the separation of the I, II and III stages and the discharge of the head fairing of the ILV "Angara-A5" in a statement by the Russian Ministry of Defense.

It is also reported that 12 minutes after the launch, the orbital block as part of the Briz-M upper stage and the non-detachable overall-mass payload mockup separated from the third stage of the Angara-A5 LV.

“Further insertion of the orbital unit into the target geostationary orbit will be carried out using the Briz-M missile launcher according to a typical nine-hour three-pulse scheme with four starts of the main engine of the upper stage,” the RF Ministry of Defense notes.

Let us remind you that this is the second test launch of the Angara-A5 heavy-class launch vehicle.

The previous one was produced from the northern cosmodrome on December 23, 2014.

Load spectrum and height range

The second launch of the Angara-A5 rocket was commented on by the head of Roscosmos Dmitry Rogozin on his Twitter page.

"She's flying, damn it !!!"

- he wrote.

She's flying, damn it !!!

- ROGOZIN (@Rogozin) December 14, 2020

In addition, in his microblog Rogozin announced two test launches of missiles of this family, which will take place in 2021.

Let us remind you that Angara is a modern family of Russian launch vehicles, which are built on a modular basis.

All of them are created on the basis of universal rocket modules (URM) with oxygen-kerosene engines.

The creation of the Angara project began in the first half of the 1990s.

Then in Russia a competition was announced for the development of a heavy-class space rocket complex.

The need for its creation was motivated by the fact that after the collapse of the Soviet Union, some of the enterprises of the space industry, as well as the Baikonur cosmodrome, were outside the Russian Federation.

For this reason, based on the principles of strategic security, the country needed rockets that could be completely produced in Russia and launched from Russian spaceports.

In 1994, the project of the State Space Research and Production Center named after M.V.


The Angara launch vehicle variants are realized due to the different number of universal rocket modules (URM).

For the carrier of the light class "Angara 1.2", one URM will be enough, while the design of the heavy "Angara-A5" involves the installation of five such units.

As noted earlier by the Russian Ministry of Defense, the operational and energy characteristics of the Angara launch vehicles "make it possible to quite successfully compete on the international market with the best foreign rocket and space technology."

"The Angara space rocket complex is a component of the national system for launching spacecraft for various purposes into outer space, based entirely on the use of exclusively Russian scientific and industrial potential," the department reported.

It was also said that the Angara spacecraft would be able to "launch practically the entire range of promising payloads in the interests of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation in the entire required range of heights and orbit inclinations, including into geostationary orbit, ensuring the truly guaranteed independence of the domestic military space."

"You can expect new achievements"

As noted by Nathan Eismont, a researcher at the Space Research Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences, "Angara-A5" is "a reliable and rather powerful launch vehicle, which was proved by its second launch."

“It was developed according to the latest advanced technologies related to control and solving other problems, including those related to flights to objects of the solar system.

In addition, more environmentally friendly fuel will be used for Angara-A5.

This launch vehicle will replace Proton-M, which is launched on highly toxic heptyl fuel.

This is a really serious technological and organizational achievement, "the expert said in an interview with RT.

According to military expert Alexei Leonkov, Angara-A5 will be needed to update the satellite constellation in geostationary orbit.

  • Launch vehicle "Angara-A5"

  • © Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation

“That is, to put there more advanced military and civilian satellites, which, in terms of their mass and overall characteristics, exceed the capabilities of such a launch vehicle as Proton,” the analyst said in a conversation with RT.

According to Leonkov, carrier rockets of the Angara family can "launch various cargoes into both geostationary and low reference orbits, thus covering the entire spectrum of orbits."

The analyst believes that these launch vehicles will help "strengthen the satellite constellation" that works in the interests of the Russian Defense Ministry.

“First of all, we are talking about missile attack warning systems, all types of satellite reconnaissance systems - both optical-electronic and radio-technical.

This launch vehicle will also be able to resolve issues of launching satellites that provide stable secure communications in the interests of the Russian defense department, "he said.

Eismont, in turn, said that in addition to the military objectives of the "Angara-A5" is also intended to perform civilian tasks, including scientific ones.

As Eismont noted, the second launch of Angara-A5 is proof that "the difficult period of development is over."

“Production has already been established.

The difficulties that arose during the transfer of production from Moscow to the Omsk plant "Polet" were overcome.

It was not an easy task, then new specialists and technologies were needed, but it was successfully solved.

No other obstacles to the project are expected, ”the analyst said.

According to Eismont, "such encouraging results of the second launch indicate that further plans under the project will be successfully implemented."

“We can expect new achievements and some progress,” the expert concluded.