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Russia plans first test flight of new spacecraft in 2023

Russia's Soyuz MS-04 spacecraft blasts off from the launch pad at Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on April 20, 2017. (Xinhua/Mikheev)

Xinhua | 2019-12-17 Tuesday

The first test launch of Russia’s new generation Oryol (Eagle) spacecraft is slated for August or September 2023, head of the state space corporation Roscosmos, Dmitry Rogozin, said Monday.

The spaceship will be sent into space using the heavy-lift Angara-A5 carrier rocket, Rogozin said at a press conference at the Vostochny Cosmodrome in Russia’s Far Eastern region of Amur.

He also examined the construction site of the launch complex for the Angara-A5 rocket and instructed that the facility be completed by the end of 2022.

The development of the Oryol spacecraft, formerly named Federatsiya (Federation), has been ongoing for 10 years.

The first unmanned test launch of the ship was initially planned for 2015 and the first manned flight for 2018, but the dates have been changed several times.

Russia plans to test the Oryol spacecraft, including crewed flights to the International Space Station, before landing astronauts on the moon using the vehicle.

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