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No plans to turn Kapustin Yar testing range into space center — chief

October 18, 4:14 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The testing range chief said the project will require time and money, and appears unfeasible

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© Yevgeny Karmayev/TASS

MOSCOW, October 18. /TASS/. Russia has no plans to turn its Kapustin Yar training range into a space launch center, the facility's chief Maj. Gen. Oleg Kislov has said.

Kislov said the project will require time and money, and appears unfeasible as Russia already has the Vostochny space center in the Far East, the Plesetsk space center in Northern Russia and the Baikonur space center it leases from Kazakhstan.

"Earlier, tasks similar to those of a space launch center, were indeed carried out at the testing range, but still it was designed with a purpose to test missiles and military equipment. The testing range can be used as a launch center, but it would require financial expenditures to create the required infrastructure, and, of course, it will take time," he said.

"This [the replacement of Baikonur with Kapustin Yar] is unfeasible, because, at present, Russia has the 1st State Testing Cosmodrome Plesetsk and also the Vostochny space center, which are fit for the purpose [of space launches]. At the moment, the Baikonur Space Center successfully copes with tasks to take payloads into space for various purposes," the official went on.

"The capacities of the existing and newly built launch centers fully cover the needs for modern spacecraft launches," he added.

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