Posts: 28443 From: Houston, TX Registered: Nov 1999
posted 12-28-2013 10:41 AM
Russia's Defense Ministry confirmed the launch Saturday (Dec. 28) of a new model Soyuz rocket, the Soyuz-2.1v, from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome. RIA Novosti reports:
The ministry said the launch took place at 16:30 Moscow time (12:30 GMT).
The rocket put into designated orbit a small research satellite built by students and young scientists.
The new rocket, dubbed the Soyuz-2.1v, [features] a completely reworked first stage powered by a NK-33 (14D15) rocket engine built by the NK Engines Company in the Russian city of Samara. The rocket lacks the characteristic four boosters that Soyuz and its ancestors have had since the R-7 missile that launched Sputnik in 1957.
(The NK-33, originally built for the Soviet N-1 moon rocket, is the same [modified] engine used by Orbital Sciences for its Antares launch vehicle.)