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France, Russia working on advanced space rocket


MOSCOW (BNS): Russia and France have joined hands to develop an advanced reusable space rocket system, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has said.

"Russian and French engineers are already working in this direction under Project Ural," Putin told a news conference after a meeting of the Russian-French cooperation commission, Ria Novosti reported.

Space agencies of the two countries are expected to work out a roadmap in this regard, the report said.

The two sides had agreed to work on the 'Ural' project in 2005.

The new rocket launch system that will be developed under the 15-year Ural project would replace the existing carrier rockets used by Russia and France in conducting space missions.

The project is still at the conceptual stage as the type of rocket engine - hydrogen, kerosene or methane fueled - is yet to be determined, the Russian news agency said.

According to earlier reports, the new Ural rocket will be a reusable one, fueled by liquid hydrogen and liquid methane, and would replace the Russian Soyuz and French Ariane carriers some time in 2020-30.

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