Russia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan capable of building super heavy rocket to Moon in 3-4 years

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Aug. 28, 2012, 9:11 a.m. | Russia and former Soviet Union — by Interfax-Ukraine

Technicians work on the assembly of Soyuz-U, the launch vehicle of the Progress M-15M cargo ship, at the Russian leased Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, on March 22, 2012, prior to its scheduled launch on April 20, 2012 when it will carry equipment for the International Space Station.

MOSCOW - Russia in cooperation with Ukraine and Kazakhstan is capable of building a new super heavy carrier rocket for manned flights to the Moon, Vitaly Lopota, President of Russia's Energia rocket and space corporation, told reporters at an aerospace congress in Moscow on Monday, Aug, 27.

"Within three or maximum four years we will be able to create a super heavy carrier rocket capable of putting a manned transportation complex on its path to the moon," he said, adding that the project would require the participation of Ukrainian and Kazakh specialists.

He believes the RD-171 engine used in Zenith rockets may be borrowed.

Representatives of Ukraine and Kazakhstan had contacted him on the issue, Lopota said, and he also has the support of Roscosmos chief Vladimir Popovkin.

To deliver a 20-ton manned spacecraft to a 200-km orbit, the rocket must have a lift capacity of 60-70-tons, he said.

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