Perm plant "Proton-PM" will remain without orders for space

In connection with the refusal of the Russian Federation to operate reliable Soviet carrier rockets Proton, the Perm company of the same name will lose more than 30% of its revenue. It was previously brought rocket engines RD-276. To replace these drop-out incomes there is nothing.
The Russian authorities decided to complete the production in Perm of RD-276 engines for Proton carrier rockets in connection with the rapid abandonment of the use of this missile. Earlier RD-276 was positioned as the main production of Perm PJSC "Proton-PM". Today, space production accounts for 29.2% of the company's total sales. PAO can be oriented to serial production of RD-191 engines for the Angara launch vehicle. In the framework of the "Sphere" project, from 2022 it is planned to use 25 such carriers. The NPO Energomash believes that this will allow to load the Proton-PM capacities and the site of the NGO itself. Experts note that this project is still "raw", so a large order these enterprises may not get.

The production of RD-276 engines for the Proton-M rocket at the Perm-based Proton-PM will be stopped this year, Igor Arbuzov, Director General of NPO Energomash, told RIA Novosti. "If there are no new contracts for missile launches, Proton, then next year these engines will not be produced. In this situation, we are faced with the task of loading Proton-PM with other orders, including those related to diversification, "Mr. Arbuzov said.

PJSC "Proton-PM" (part of the integrated structure of rocket engine building of JSC "NPO Energomash") is one of the leading enterprises of the rocket and space industry in Russia. The loss of the company in 2017 amounted to 1.367 billion rubles. Now liquid rocket engines (RDD) RD-276 are called the main products of the Perm enterprise. RD-276, as part of a six-piece set, is part of the propulsion system for the first stage of the Proton-M heavy-duty launch vehicles. Proton-PM is their monopoly producer, as follows from the company's annual report, the share of PJSC in the LPRE market last year was 33%.

In the annual report it is reported that last year PJSC supplied JSC "GKNPTS im. M.V. Khrunichev "three sets of RD-276 for the amount of 1.639 billion rubles. At the same time, it was originally planned to ship five sets. But in the end, one set was not contracted, and the other was manufactured, but not shipped to the customer because of the late return of special wagons and containers by the customer. However, according to the accounts, the space theme is only 29.3%. In the structure of sales it is about 52%. The main revenue, more than 3.214 billion rubles., Proton-PM received from the sale of products for the defense industry. It is known about the "defensive" line of PAO's activities from open sources that the company produces "product 99" - a long-range propulsion unit PDU-99, the engine of the first stage of the RS-28 Sarmat ICBM. The main revenue from work on the "defense" direction, more than 2,175 billion rubles., PJSC received from the work for the manufacturer of missile systems for the Navy JSC GRC Makeyev. Another 15.1% of the sales volume of Proton-PM is accounted for by the sale of services to enterprises of the Perm engine complex. We are talking about the manufacture of parts and components for the aircraft engine PS-90, as well as gas turbine plants, the manufacture and assembly of gas turbine power plants, as well as testing GTU and GTES.

At the same time, PJSC "Proton-PM" in the long term can be oriented to the production of RD-191 engines for the Angara launch vehicle. In 2015, it was announced that by 2022 the Perm enterprise would be a serial producer of these engines. Now the Perm enterprise produces units and units for RD-191, which are supplied for their developer by JSC NPO Energomash. However, in the past year to the JSC this product was shipped only to 49.19 million rubles. As Mr. Arbuzov stated in an interview, only 40 RD-191 engines produced by Energomash have been manufactured at the moment. Sources "Kommersant" say that the question of who will become a serial producer of these products - Proton-PM or NPO Energomash, is still open and is "more political". Note that in June, Dmitry Rogozin announced that to launch into orbit the elements of the satellite group "Sphere" from 2022 will be used 25 carrier rockets "Angara". According to Igor Arbuzov, in year NPO Energomash and Proton-PM can produce up to forty RD-191, which are enough to equip eight Angara-A5, a heavy modification of the launch vehicle. Mr. Arbuzov is confident that with the successful implementation of the project it will be possible to load the capacities of both enterprises.

A source familiar with the situation in PJSC "Proton-PM" says that the company has orders for the production of RD-276 for the current year. In addition, the company must produce another such engine, which was not contracted last year. A senior source in the Cabinet said that the situation with the "Proton-PM" is under the control of the government. He redirected other issues to the top management of NPO Energomash and the Perm enterprise.

The scientific director of the Space Policy Institute Ivan Moiseyev believes that Energomash and Proton-PM will, if necessary, provide the required volume of production of RD-191. "The question is, will there be such an order. The "Sphere" project is a concept written recently on paper. As it will be implemented, it is still unclear, "- says the expert.

Pavel Luzin, an expert in the field of space policy, notes that in 2017, all engines of Energomash produced 15 engines for the Americans (11 RD-180 for Atlas-5 and 4 RD-181 for Antares) and some RD- 191. According to the expert's calculations, as of December 31, 2017, Energomash had four such engines in production. "Totally, it turns out that in 2017, about 20 engines were produced for the first stages of carrier rockets, which are based on the RD-170 engine. That is to bring the production of up to 40 RD-191 engines a year, even given that US companies complete the purchase of our engines, Energomash is unlikely to succeed in the coming years, "Mr. Luzin said. Even taking into account the fact that until recently Proton-PM produced up to 60 RD-276 per year, the areas liberated after the end of its operation can not simply be reoriented to manufacture RD-191, which is more difficult to produce. "As for the Sphere project, this is an ambitious bid, but who will produce these 600 satellites? We do not have either capacities or an element base. It seems that the "Sphere" is still a project, "- said Pavel Luzin.