Russia Today has provided an English language version of this Russia 24 news channel interview with Energia space corporation head Vitaly Lopota about the country’s new Advanced Crew Vehicle and how it could be used to go to the Moon. Energia is the Russian government’s prime contractor for ACV
Interestingly the first unmanned flight of ACV was given as 2015 but the first manned flight was stated as 2018, later than previously stated and quite a gap at three years. Why not launch in 2016? Perhaps the 2015 flight will not use the Rus-M rocket that is designated as the launcher for ACV? Is Rus-M the long pole in Russia’s manned spaceflight plans?
In the video Lopota says that his company will not address space tourism for many years to come because of its focus on the International Space Station. And in this text only Russia Today article it is reported that Russian Federal Space Agency head Anatoly Perminov has explained that tourism flights are not going to happen for years to come and that the country’s Angara rocket family’s first launcher’s first flight is suffering further delays and is now expected in 2012