Infrastructure


2008 – China Launch, Human

In 2003, China became the third nation to achieve orbital human spaceflight. The Long March 2F vehicle and its Shenzhou capsule are similar in design and function to the Soyuz…

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2005 – China Launch, Human

China’s Shenzhou (“Divine Vessel”) launched two taikonauts into orbit in 2005 for a mission lasting more than 115 hours. It was China’s second human launch, following the launch of one…

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2013 – Russia Launch, Human

Russia operates the only crewed vehicle currently serving the ISS, and is expected to retain that monopoly through 2018, when the first flights of the new NASA-supported commercially developed vehicles…

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2012 – Russia Launch, Human

Russia has retained the ability to send cosmonauts into orbit since the launch of Yuri Gagarin, the first human in space, in 1961. Currently, Russia is the only nation ferrying…

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2011 – Russia Launch, Human

Russia’s ambitious plans to develop a new human-rated rocket system to eventually replace the Soyuz came to an official halt in October when Roscosmos, the Russian space agency, announced its…

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2010 – Russia Launch, Human

The second Russian launch vehicle under development is the Rus-M system. Much like Angara, it will be a modular system capable of multiple configurations to suit the needs of different-sized…

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2009 – Russia Launch, Human

Russia increased in its human spaceflight operations significantly in 2009 by doubling the launch rate of its Soyuz spacecraft. Russia had been launching Soyuz missions twice a year, roughly six…

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2008 – Russia Launch, Human

Russia’s Soyuz is the most frequently launched human-rated vehicle. The Soyuz typically performs five to six missions per year at regular intervals to ferry crew and cargo to the ISS.…

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2007 – Russia Launch, Human

The Clipper (Kliper) vehicle, under design by Russia’s Energia, has not yet found a customer. Clipper may become a follow-on to the Soyuz vehicle, and has attracted interest from the…

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2005 – Russia Launch, Human

Russia’s Soyuz has been the workhorse of Roscosmos, having been in production for more than 40 years. The vehicle’s separated reentry capsule and laboratory module optimize space with a minimum of…

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