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Technical area control system installation complete at Vostochny spaceport

October 16, 2015, 15:49 UTC+3 YEKATERINBURG

Russian President Vladimir Putin earlier said the first rocket from the new cosmodrome may be blasted off by the Cosmonautics Day (April 12, 2016)

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© TASS/Igor Ageenko

YEKATERINBURG, October 16. /TASS/. Specialists of the Yekaterinburg-based Scientific and Production Association of Automatics (NPO Avtomatiki) have completed the installation of the technical area control system at the Vostochny cosmodrome in the Russian Far East, the company CEO Leonid Shalimov told TASS on Friday.

"Our equipment in the technical area — the firing desk and flight control — has been installed, now we need to couple it with the other allied equipment and then with the rocket’s controls," he said.

According to Shalimov, the installation of the ground equipment has not yet begun on the cosmodrome’s launching base. "We are waiting when the premises will be ready. The launching base and technical areas have the same equipment, like at the Kourou spaceport in French Guiana, It’s very convenient as makes it possible to replace any failed unit within several minutes," he said.

Shalimov said that representatives of the space sector support the proposals to shift the date of the launch of the first rocket from the Vostochny spaceport from December 2015 to spring 2016. "Space never forgives haste. We must carefully calculate how many days are needed to complete the construction. The builders should leave the spaceport and only then the rocket engineers will start setting up the equipment. The rocket work cannot be done simultaneously with running water and electricity," he said.

The Russian president has previously allowed the builders to shift the time of the first launches from the Vostochny spaceport to April 2016. According to him, the first rocket from the new cosmodrome may be blasted off by the Cosmonautics Day (April 12, 2016). At the same time, Putin said that the timing is important, but quality is of top priority.

According to Putin, the government commission accepted works worth only 32 billion rubles ($0.5 billion) for the Vostochny cosmodrome construction compared with the spaceport’s total financing at 188 billion rubles ($3 billion). Work still has to be carried out to streamline the ventilation, water, heat supply and fire-extinguishing systems and complete construction and finishing works.

In general, the Vostochny cosmodrome construction scope is impressive, Putin said after inspecting the launch facility. Overall, builders have to build more than 400 facilities, including 120 structures of the technical and launch compounds, 11 aerodrome facilities with a take-off and landing strip 4,500 meters long and automobile and railway roads with a total length of over 170 km.

The Lomonosov and Aist satellites will be the first to be launched from the Vostochny cosmodrome with the help of Soyuz-2 carrier rockets to transmit scientific experimental data to the Earth. In 2016, Russia will start building launch and technical facilities for the new Angara carrier rocket as the second stage of the Vostochny cosmodrome construction.

The Scientific and Production Association of Automatics is one of the largest enterprises of Russia in the field of development and manufacturing of control systems and radio-electronic equipment for the space-rocket hardware, and also for automation of technological processes in various industries.

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