In retaliation for US sanctions over Ukraine, Russia has chosen to suspend delivering rocket engines to the US, according to Dmitry Rogozin, the director of the national space agency Roscosmos.
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“In a situation like this we can’t supply the United States with our world’s best rocket engines. Let them fly on something else, their broomsticks, I don’t know what,” Rogozin stated on Russian official television.
Ever since 1990s, Russia has supplied a sum of 122 RD-180 engines to the United States, 98 of which were utilized to power Atlas launch vehicles, as per Rogozin.
Roscosmos will also discontinue repairing rocket engines it earlier sold to the United States, according to Rogozin, who added that the United States still possessed 24 engines that would be left without Russian technical support.
In response to Western sanctions over Ukraine, Russia has already stated that it would cease collaboration with Europe on space launches from the Kourou spaceport in French Guiana.
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Moscow has also asked British satellite business OneWeb to ensure that its satellites will not be used for military reasons. On Thursday, OneWeb, a company in which the British government has a shareholding, announced that all launches from Russia’s Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan will be halted.
According to Rogozin, Russia will now concentrate on developing dual-purpose spacecraft to meet the needs of Roscosmos and the Defense Ministry.