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Russia's space agency will unite major national space companies into several holdings by 2015
Russia's space agency will unite major national space companies into several holdings by 2015, the agency head said Wednesday. Anatoly Perminov, currently attending Farnborough International Airshow in England, said the agency would seek to form three or four holdings. "The space agency's reform as part of a federal space program envisions the formation of 8-10 large integrated structures by 2010 to be merged into three or four holdings by 2015," he said. Perminov also said that two leading space companies - the Energia Space and Rocket Corporation and the Khrunichev Center - would not be merged in the first stage of the reform but would be enlarged separately. He also said the agency had canceled a tender for a new piloted shuttle Clipper after it was decided that the project would be managed by Energia with recommendations from the European Space Agency. The first stage of the program proposed by Energia includes overhauling reputable spacecraft such as Soyuz, Perminov said. "After new digital equipment and other advanced technologies are installed, the spaceship [Soyuz] will be able to fly to the International Space Station and make flights to the Moon," the agency head said, adding that the European Space Agency had approved of the initiative. Scientists are working to design the Soyuz-2-3 as a crucial upgrade for Soyuz launch vehicles for the Clipper project to develop a six-person spacecraft potentially for trips to the Moon or Mars. The Clipper's first lift off is scheduled for 2012, with the first manned flight expected a year later.
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