The Russian Federation Prime Minister Vladimir Putin visited the 10th International Aerospace Show MASK-2011 in Zhukovskiy on August 17, 2011. According to RSC Energia, Putin showed a special interest in the full scale mockup of the PPTS, the next-generation Russian manned spacecraft.
The Prospective Piloted Transport System (PPTS) spacecraft is a 6 man crew vehicle that RSC Energia is developing along with industrial partners. Announced in 2009, the spacecraft is currently in the second phase of design. The vehicle will be deployed in multiple configurations, to perform missions to LEO, Lunar orbit and even near polar orbit. Designed to be launched on top of the RUS – a heavy lift also in development – the PPTS will be able to conduct fully automated and manual docking, to remain docked up to a year to the ISS, to reenter the atmosphere and perform a precision rocket powered landing.
According to the official timeline, the first unmanned launch will take place in 2015 from the new Vostochniy launch site, followed by a manned launch in 2018.