MOSCOW, July 3 (RIA Novosti)
Russia's Energia space corporation is holding talks with U.S. aerospace giants Boeing and Lockheed Martin over manufacture of docking sites and thermal protection equipment for space capsules for the U.S. firms, Izvestia daily newspaper reported on Tuesday citing Energia head Vitaly Lopota.
"We are in talks with Boeing and Lockheed to make unified interfaces for our products. They are ready to discuss various opportunities, even to allow us to make component parts," Lopota told the paper.
Boeing and Lockheed Martin declined to comment on the information to the paper.
The component parts will be made for Boeing's CST-100 seven-seater spacecraft, designed for short-distance flights to the International Space Station from 2015, and for the $8 billion Orion long-distance spaceship, designed by Lockheed Martin.
"[Russian] achievements in docking sites and [thermal protection equipment] production are quite competitive, but I am not sure that the Americans will accept our offer because they not only have the task of building a spaceship but also of gaining competence in this matter," Dmitry Payson, director of the space and telecommunication technology department in Russia's Skolkovo hi-tech hub, told Izvestia.
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Any response would likely boomerang on Russia – the partnership between Rosneft and ExxonMobil is a case in point. The United States has hit Russia with a third round of sanctions. This time the Americans went with a higher caliber weapon, targeting Russia’s biggest energy companies (Rosneft and Novatek) and banks (VEB and Gazprombank).