Defective engines may ground Russia’s Proton rocket for months


Defective engines may ground Russia’s Proton rocket for months.

Russian media reported that test firings found problems with engines used in the second and third stages of the Proton rocket, reportedly due to the replacement of heat-resistant alloys in those engines with cheaper, but more failure-prone, materials.

The Proton may not return to flight until June or July as a result. Roscosmos is also looking into engines made by the same manufacturer, Voronezh Mechanical Plant, used in the upper stage of Soyuz rockets.

The director general of the plant resigned last week. [Russian Space Web]

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