Vostochny Cosmodrome: 5 Years Since the First Launch

On April 28, 2016 at 05:01 Moscow time, the first launch was carried out from the new Russian Vostochny cosmodrome. The Soyuz-2.1a launch vehicle took off successfully, the Volga launching unit delivered the Lomonosov, Aist-2D and SamSat-218 spacecraft to the calculated orbits. This launch showed the readiness of the Russian cosmodrome for regular operation.


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The first launch was provided by specialists of the joint calculation of preparation and launch from Baikonur, development organisation and manufacturering of components for space rocket and ground technological equipment was carried out by the State Space Corporation ROSCOSMOS.

From 2016 to the present day, eight launches have been carried out. In 2021, the intensity of launches is increased. Among the planned launches are commercial launches of spacecraft of the OneWeb company and the launch of the Russian automatic station "Luna-25", which is being created within the framework of the "Luna-Glob" project by the Lavochkin Research and Production Association (part of the ROSCOSMOS State Space Corporation). This device will study the near-polar region of the natural satellite of the Earth, as well as work out the technology of soft landing on its surface.

The start of launches from the first civilian cosmodrome in Russia was preceded by many organisational and technical consultations, comprehensive assessments, design and survey work and the deployment of large-scale construction. One of the most important conditions for choosing a site for the construction of a new cosmodrome was its geographical location at a latitude close to the Baikonur cosmodrome and a set of possibilities for creating a ground-based space infrastructure.

“The Vostochny Cosmodrome has a unique, interesting and eventful history. A large number of Russia's  rocket and space industry and institutions and orgnisations are involved in the construction of the cosmodrome, as well as in the preparation and implementation of spacecraft launches. Through the work of a team of many thousands in harsh climatic conditions, the "space gate" of Russia has been erected on the territory of the Amur Region, and today Vostochny is the largest research and development center where real professionals work, "said Ruslan Mukhamedzhanov, General Director of TsENKI (Center for Operation of Space Ground-Based Infrastructure).

The launch complex of the Vostochny cosmodrome for the Soyuz-2 launch vehicles is operating normally. The ground space infrastructure of the most modern cosmodrome in Russia has already provided eight launches of Soyuz-2 carrier rockets, and several more are being prepared at the same time. Now at Vostochny, the construction of the second launch complex is underway - the space rocket complex "Angara". The first launch of the Angara launch vehicle is scheduled for the end of 2023.


On Monday, April 26, Dmitry Rogozin announced plans of ROSCOSMOS to create a technopark on the basis of the Vostochny cosmodrome.

“Here, at the Vostochny cosmodrome, in general, we still see great prospects in creating a technopark in the future, and maybe even in the future there will be a branch of one of the universities that trains specialists for the space industry,” he said.

At the same time, the head of ROSCOSMOS did not name the timeframe and did not specify which university branch was in question. “We already feel that the more we are engaged in this enlightening, educational work, the more talented young people come to us - first to universities, and then to the industry,” stressed the General Director of the State Corporation.

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