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First launch from Vostochny cosmodrome scheduled for April 25, 2016 — head of space center

December 24, 2015, 12:28 UTC+3
The Progress State Research and Production Space Center’s specialists are completing component tests of the equipment at the cosmodrome’s technical and launch complexes
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© Igor Ageenko/TASS

SAMARA, December 24. /TASS/. The first launch from the Vostochny spaceport in Russia’s Far East is scheduled for April 25, 2016, Director General of the Progress State Research and Production Space Center Andrei Kirilin has told reporters.

"To date, the schedule of the first launch campaign envisages the launch from Vostochny at late April — on April 25," Kirilin said.

According to him, the company’s specialists are completing component tests of the equipment at the cosmodrome’s technical and launch complexes. This works are due to be completed this year, and there are no preconditions for their disruption, he noted.

On January 18, experts will begin work on the preparation of the carrier rocket and the Volga launch unit, and the spacecraft for the first launch will be delivered to the spaceport on January 20. Earlier reports said that during the first launch the Soyuz-2.1a carrier rocket would power into orbit the Lomonosov satellite, the Aist-2D satellite and the first students’ nanosatellite SamSat-218.

Earlier it was planned to carry out the first launch from Vostochny in late December. In mid-September Russian President Vladimir Putin proposed to postpone it for spring. According to him, April 12 marked in Russia as Cosmonautics Day could be the date of the first launch from the new cosmodrome.

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