Igor Arbuzov, NPO Energomash General Director, held a meeting to the employees of NIIMash while making his business trip to Nizhnyaya Salda (Sverdlovsk Region). He told about the stages that the enterprise should go to be under NPO Energomash management. He also mentioned short-term aims and goals.
Igor Arbuzov explained that Integrated Structure was being created those days. This Structure would integrate the leading Russian rocket engine production enterprises under the NPO Energomash management. KB Khimavtomatika (KBKhA) located in Voronezh and OJSC “Proton-PM” located in Perm have already been integrated into the Structure. In September 2018, 100% of NIIMash stocks were transferred to the trust management. It is planned that finally the structure will be set by the end of 2019 as such three enterprises as the Chemical Engineering Design Bureau named after A.M. Isayev (KBKhM) located in Korolyov, Voronezh Mechanical Plant (VMZ) located in Voronezh and Experimental Design Bureau “Fakel” located in Kaliningrad are being integrated into it.
For the most effective work and harmony of Integrated Structure, NPO Energomash specialists develop a whole range of proprietary standards and regulations that will be used for enterprises in the Integrated Structure. General Director noted: “The creation of corporate structure is controlled by SC “ROSCOSMOS”. The management assigned a task to implement systems that would provide quality, production efficiency and formation of integrated technical policy in all enterprises of Integrated Structure.”
In the view of Igor Arbuzov, the main task of intermediate stage is to ensure NIIMash stable operation, keep the team, pay salary and all social guarantees in time as well as fulfill Contract obligations. In order to solve these problems, a working group consisting of NPO Energomash specialists is being created nowadays. Igor Arbuzov added: “Coming changes shall not lead to social tension among NIIMash employees. It is important for me that the process of integration goes smooth and calm. As for the issues related to NIIMash integration into the engine production structure, we also plan to cooperate actively with the Administration of Nizhnyaya Salda city”.
In the scope of NIIMash integration process NPO Energomash specialists will conduct series of audits in order to assess financial, economic and production activities as well as a quality management system. Igor Arbuzov highlighted: “These days we have to find the optimal solution in order to create and implement best practices in the field of quality systems and technical policy for the best operation.” He also added: “As for the short-term goals there won’t be any changes associated with the nomenclature of manufactured products at the enterprise and with the number of personnel. Nevertheless, some steps directed to optimize manufacturing volumes and to reduce production and design costs will be made.”
A separate part of the interview was devoted to NPO Energomash as a head company in Integrated Structure. General Director noted that the choice of Energomash as the head company of the structure is not accidental. The history of Soviet and nowadays, Russian rocket engines started from NPO Energomash. Today NPO Energomash is one of the profitable enterprises in the rocket and space industry. Large funds are invested into its modernization. Much attention is given to improve the quality of products: the company constantly conducts audits and improves the existing quality management system. A large amount of work is associated with the introduction of digital design methods (PLM) as they help to speed up the processes of rocket engine creation. Besides, EPR system has been implemented and all divisions and types of processes have been integrated into it.
Nowadays, NPO Energomash is developing and manufacturing RD171MV engine for potential rocket “Soyuz-5”. Design documentation is being issued these days. The preparation for manufacturing and a test bench base are being conducted. NPO Energomash shall deliver the first production engine to RKTs Progress in 2021 for the first unmanned launch of rocket “Soyuz-5” which is scheduled in 2022. In order to perform a manned rocket launch, scheduled in 2024, the engine needs to be delivered in 2023.
Another serious project for NPO Energomash is to create engines for the super heavyweight rockets by 2028.
As for the international cooperation, General Director told about two contracts with the United States. These contracts provide the delivery of RD180 (for Atlas V) and RD181 (for Antares) engines. One more important area of cooperation is with People's Republic of China (PRC). This year in November, following the consultation meeting, NPO Energomash and the Sixth Academy of the Chinese Space Corporation of Science and Technology signed a protocol. Igor Arbuzov added that NIIMash will be actively involved in the activities with Chinese partners.
At the end of his interview, Igor Arbuzov highlighted: “Current volumes of domestic market cannot fully solve the problems of enterprises load. That’s why we need to search for the solutions related to export supplies and continue diversification processes.” He underlined that additional social responsibility was imposed on the city-forming enterprise NIIMash related to this issue.