Kliper spacecraft

Kliper spacecraft

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Credit: SPUTNIK/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Kliper spacecraft in a hanger. Announced in 2004 as part of the Russian space program, the Kliper (also called Clipper) spacecraft has been designed to replace the Soyuz spacecraft. It can carry up to six people, and is lifted into orbit mounted on top of a rocket booster stage (not seen). When it returns from orbit, the small wings allow it to glide through the atmosphere and land like NASA's space shuttle. The Kliper spacecraft design, by the Russian rocket and space company RKK Energia, was displayed at several air shows in 2005, and the Japanese and European space agencies are also working on the project. It is scheduled to launch in 2010-11. Photographed at an RKK Energia site.

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