Another Yuzhnoye NPO product is the railmobile and silo-based RS-22 missile noted above. Ukraine is proposing to develop this solid-propellant missile into a 3- or 4-stage launch vehicle called Space Clipper with a low altitude, polar payload capacity of up to 1,750 kg or an equatorial GTO payload capacity of 800 kg. The booster would be carried aloft inside an An-124 cargo plane and then pushed out the rear cargo door at an altitude of approximately 10 km. A small parachute would briefly stabilize the vehicle prior to first stage ignition (References 474, 478-480).
In 1994 Yuzhnoye and the French firm Dassault were reportedly exploring yet another family of small launch vehicles. Four variants of the launcher named Talisman would possess payload capacities of 250-750 kg for a 600 km, 90 degree inclination orbit. The boosters would use a small hypergolic (UDMH and N204) upperstage for final orbital insertion in addition to 2-3 solid propellant lower stages.
The Space Clipper and the Sea Launch ventures noted above would provide Ukraine with more control over the launch of its space boosters. Other options under investigation are the use of a domestic floating platform in the Black Sea and the conversion of the Varyag aircraft carrier (References 482-484).
474. Y.A. Smetanin, "Rocket Space Transportation Systems, Produced by 'Yuzhnoye' Rocket-Space Association", Paper IAF-92-0862, 43rd Congress of the International Astronautical Federation, 28 August-2 September 1992.
475. Technical brochure distributed by Yuzhnoye NPO, circa 1992.
476. L. David, "SS-18 Missiles Eyed For Mars Exploration Missionsn, Space News, 12-18 June 1995, p. 26.
477. A. Podnek, Delovoy Mir, 9 May 1992, p. 5.
478. Space Clipper Commercial Space Launch System, technical brochure distributed by Yuzhnoye NPO, undated.
479. "Soviets Eye Air-Launched ICBM To Put Civil Satellites in Orbits, Aviation Week and Space Technology, 14 October 1991, pp. 72-73.
480. P.B. de Selding, "Soviets Seek Partner For Launch Business With Refitted SS-24s", Space News, 23-29 September 1991, p. 4.
481. P. Langereux, "Une Famille De Petits Lanceurs Pour L'Europe, Le 'Talisman' De Dassault - Youjhnoye
(Ukraine)", Air & Cosmos, 17 April 1994, pp. 44-46.
482. ITAR-TASS News Agency, Moscow, 10 November 1994.
483. INFOBANK, Lvov, 11 May 1995.
484. POST-POSTUP, Lvov, 12-18 May 1995, p. 3.