Russians Could Help
Modernize Cape Canaveral;
Atlas Launch Pad
INTERFAX 03-30-95 06:00 PET

Engineers from Moscow's Transport Machine-building Design Bureau may help modernize launching facilities for Atlas rockets at America's Cape Canaveral space center, bureau chief Gennady Biryukov told a Thursday press conference in Moscow.

Biryukov declined to say how much US corporation Lockheed-Martin would pay for his bureau's services, but did say that modernization at the Canaveral launch pad would enable the Americans to both increase capacity for commercial launches from the current six and boost reliability.

The bureau still carries out 80% of its orders for the Russian Space Agency and the Military Space Forces and 10% of the Russian Navy. Eight percent of orders are placed under defense conversion programs. Foreign orders account for just 2% of the bureau's books.

The Transport Machine-building Design Bureau, one of the best of its kind in Russia, was set up back in 1948 to develop rocket systems for the Russian military and has taken part in the Interkosmos, Vertikal, Kosmos, Tsiklon, Zenit and manned Vostok programs.