A RUSSIAN SPACE delegation, led by officials from the Russian Space Agency and Khrunichev, is to visit Australia in November to discuss joint space ventures, including a joint commercial project to launch Cosmos boosters from the Woomera rocket range, delivering small satellites to low-Earth orbit.

Also being discussed will be a new proposal by the Lockheed-Khrunichev-Energia International Launch Services (ILS) organisation to establish a commercial spaceport in northern Australia.

Former proposals to establish spaceports in Queensland, Australia and Papua New Guinea, have collapsed, however, because the projects were too expensive. Despite this, the Queensland-based Space Transportation Systems group - which is promoting the spaceport project - claims that northern Australia would be a cheaper option.

Source: Flight International