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Russia Delivers More Rocket Engines to U.S.

June 30, 2017 (EIRNS)—Despite U.S. sanctions against it, Russia continues to send rocket engines to the United States, some of which power rockets used to launch military spy satellites. Russia’s Energomash announced it has sent another 4 RD-180 rocket engines used on the United Launch Alliance-built Atlas 5 rockets.

"Another four RD-180 rocket engines have been sent to a U.S. contractor. To date, Atlas-family rockets have conducted 77 successful flights in a row with the use of the RD-180 engines,"

Energomash said in a statement, reported TASS.

Energomash CEO Igor Arbuzov told TASS last December that his company planned to deliver 19 rocket engines to the United States in 2017. Eleven of them are to be installed on ULA’s Atlas rockets and eight on Orbital ATK-made Antares rockets.

Yuri Vlasov, the CEO of the United Rocket and Space Corp., estimates that the deliveries of Russian-made rocket engines to the United States will continue until 2024. The deliveries are part of an agreement signed in 1997 to send 101 RD-180 rocket engines to the United States at an estimated cost of $1 billion.

The U.S. Congress imposed a ban on the use of these engines after 2019, but the ban had to be lifted because the U.S. was unable to supply its own engines by that date. Immediately after that, the ULA consortium ordered an additional 2 RD-180 engines from Energomash until 2020.