MOSCOW, December 5. /TASS/. Russia spent $500,000 on creating a Lada-2 greenhouse that was lost due to the crash of the Progress MS-04 cargo spacecraft, spokeswoman for the Institute of Medical and Biological Studies Margarita Levinskikh said on Monday.
The greenhouse was intended for the Russian segment of the International Space Station (ISS) to help cosmonauts grow sweet pepper, wheat and salad.
The equipment was lost in an accident with the Progress cargo spacecraft after its launch on December 1.
The spacecraft, which was launched by a Soyuz-U carrier rocket, was lost at an altitude of 190 km over the Republic of Tyva in south Siberia. Most of its fragments burned up in the dense layers of the Earth’s atmosphere.
"It is very hard to speak on this score as the greenhouse is a cycle of works. I believe that [it cost] no less than half a million of US dollars," she said.
It has not yet been decided on whether to create the greenhouse anew, the institute’s spokeswoman said.
"We can’t immediately answer whether it will be restored. The possibility to restore it exists," she noted.
It has now to be decided whether it is worth restoring the lost equipment or making it anew, she said.
Meanwhile, a source in the rocket and space industry told TASS that a new Russian greenhouse might be delivered to the ISS no sooner than 2019.
"It will take about three years to create a new greenhouse," the source said.