Cyclone-4M Overview

Cyclone-4M (C4M) lift vehicle is a two-staged monoblock medium-lift rocket launcher produced to satisfy the fast-growing current industry demand for commercial launch missions to polar and sun-synchronous orbits. Its design is based on engineering solutions that were mission-proven on other integrated launch vehicles developed by Yuzhnoye SDO.


Height 39.2m

Payload unit 9.7M


Second stage 4.0M

First stage 25.5M


  • Low Earth orbit-oriented launch vehicle (including sun-synchronous orbit and International Space Station orbit, if required)
  • Capable to launch single Space Craft (SC), as well as SC aggregation for the purpose of SC constellation deployment.
  • New two staged design of the launch vehicle based on proven elements and solutions.
  • Transition to “ecologically friendly” propellants.

Payload unit

The payload unit (PLU) is an individual engineering assembly unit. The PLU comprises a payload fairing, spacecraft, SC adapter (or dispenser in the case of a cluster mission), and a payload adapter.


Components and Assembly 

The payload unit is an individual engineering assembly unit. The PLU comprises a payload fairing, spacecraft, SC adapter (or dispenser in case of a cluster mission), and a payload adapter. All the PLU sections meet the cleanliness requirements and are suited for use in the environment defined as ISO 14644-1 Class 8. To maintain required temperature and humidity for SC between the PLU integration and the launch, a ground-based system supplies the air with controlled temperature, humidity, and cleanliness inside the PLU. 

payload adapter height: 725 MM
upper ring diameter: 2660 MM

Propellant Compartment

The propellant compartment is an all-welded leak-proof sphero-conical tank comprising two reservoirs: a sphero-cylindrical oxidizer reservoir and a conical fuel reservoir.

First stage

The Stage 1 basic structure is made of an aluminum alloy and features reinforcement by structural elements made by machining and providing overall reinforcement of the structure. Environmentally friendly kerosene and liquid oxygen are used as propellants. 

Stage 1 Engine

The Stage 1 main engine RD874 burns liquid oxygen and kerosene. It is designed to generate thrust and control thrust vector in all attitude and stabilization axes during Cyclone-4M Stage 1 flight.

Engine ISP: 275 S
Nominal thrust (sea level): 317.2 TF
Nominal thrust (vacuum): 357.52 TF



Second stage

The Stage 2 basic structure comprises a joint propellant compartment accommodating and securing the main engine, liquid jet system, PHS elements, avionics, and the thermal control system. In addition, the propellant compartment provides a mechanical interface between Stage 2 and the interstage and the payload unit. 

Engine ISP: 481 S
Nominal thrust in vacuum: 7.916 TF
Nominal specific impulse in vacuum: 330 TF

Payload Fairing

The payload fairing is designed to protect spacecraft against thermal and aerodynamic loads at liftoff and in atmospheric flight, and against exposure to the environment during ground operations with the spacecraft integrated with the LV and the PLU. The PLF consists of two halves fastened with locks.

Stage 2 Engine

The RD861K main engine is a single-chamber five-burn open-cycle engine with a turbopump feeding system and injection of a producer gas into the supersonic nozzle section. Thrust vectoring is provided by gimballing the engine in two perpendicular planes..

Oxidizer Tank

The oxidizer tank comprises a cylindrical body and two spherical domes. The oxidizer tank body consists of smooth sections. Like the oxidizer tank, the fuel tank comprises a circular-shaped body and two spherical domes. The fuel tank body consists of cylindrical waffle sections. 


four RD870 engines

Each of the RD870 engine blocks is a single-chamber single-burn liquid-propellant rocket engine with a turbopump propellant-feeding system and an oxidizer-rich preburner. Thrust vectoring is achieved by gimballing each of two swiveling engine blocks in two perpendicular planes.