The American rocket without the Russian RD-180 is almost ready for launch

The American Vulcan Centaur rocket, which in the future should replace the Atlas 5 carrier with the Russian RD-180 engine, is almost ready for its first launch. About it writes SpaceNews.

According to the publication, currently all the main components of the rocket are located at the cosmodrome in Florida. In particular, the upper stage of the Centaur carrier arrived at the site on November 13. The lower stage – Vulcan – was already at the cosmodrome.

SpaceNews recalls that during the first launch, Vulcan Centaur should launch, in particular, the lunar landing module Peregrine into space.

According to the head of the United Launch Alliance (ULA), preparations for the first launch of the carrier are proceeding according to schedule.

The leader admitted that the second launch of the rocket will take place in the first or second quarter of 2024. The rocket should launch the promising Dream Chaser cargo ship into low-Earth orbit.

In October U.L.A. statedthat the first launch of the Vulcan Centaur rocket will take place on December 24.

In January, the first stage of the Vulcan Centaur rocket arrived to the spaceport in Florida.

The promising Vulcan Centaur rocket should replace the Atlas 5 carrier. The first is equipped with an American BE-4 engine, the second with a Russian RD-180. Two single-chamber BE-4s installed on the Vulcan Centaur first stage will collectively produce more thrust than one twin-chamber RD-180 of the Atlas 5 first stage. Unlike the RD-180, which runs on kerosene, the BE-4 uses methane.

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