OneWeb to Begin Launching Satellites Again as Early as December

EVRY, France (Arianespace PR) — Arianespace and OneWeb will resume launch operations to continue the deployment of the OneWeb constellation.

The next Soyuz launch is planned as soon as December 2020 from the Vostochny Cosmodrome.

Pursuant to an amended launch contract with OneWeb, the London-based communications company, Arianespace will perform 16 more Soyuz launches from three spaceports (Kourou, Baikonur and Vostochny) beginning in late 2020 and continuing through 2022. These launches will enable OneWeb to complete the deployment of its full global constellation of Low Earth Orbit satellites by the end of 2022.

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Angara Launch Pad Arrives at Vostochny Cosmodrome

Inaugural Angara A5 launch (Credit: Khrunichev)

VOSTOCHNY COSMODROME, Russia (Roscosmos PR) — On September 3, 2020, the Angara space rocket complex launch pad and vacuum unit arrived at Amur Gas Processing Plant.

The operations to unload and transport the equipment from the temporary berth to the Vostochny Cosmodrome will be performed stage by stage and take four days. The vacuum unit of more than 9 meters in diameter, as well as the launch pad bulky parts will be moved on seven hauling rigs.

The transportation process will be done mostly at night not to interfere with road traffic. The convoy will cover the 60-kilometer route under escort. The launch pad elements will be unloaded at the storage site and will be installed in November 2020 in accordance with the schedule adopted by Roscosmos. The vacuum unit will be transported to the technical unit depot where it will be installed for future operation.

The launch pad and vacuum unit for Angara were sent to Vostochny on the Barents vessel from Severodvinsk on July 17, 2020. The bulky equipment weighing over 2,000 tons was delivered to the cosmodrome via the Northern Sea Route for the first time.

ILS Names New President, Launch Opportunities

WASHINGTON, D.C., March 11, 2020 (ILS PR) — Today ILS International Launch Services, Inc. (ILS) announces the appointment of Tiphaine Louradour as President.

Tiphaine joins ILS with over two decades of Space Industry and management experience, most recently as President of Global Commercial Sales at United Launch Alliance (ULA). Prior to this role, Tiphaine held a number of positions of increasing responsibility in finance, risk management, strategy, commercial sales and marketing and also gained international business experience while serving as a consultant to international consulting firms in the US and Europe.

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Rogozin Crows About a Year Without an Anomaly

Roscosmos head Dmitry Rogozin. (Credit: A. Savin)

Roscosmos Director General Dmitry Rogozin is taking a bow for the state corporation’s successful 2019 launch campaign, which was the first since 2003 to not record a single partial or complete failure.

An Interfax report highlighted one under appreciated advantage of not losing satellites year after year.

Rogozin said the year 2019 was not an easy one for global aerospace insurers from the angle of indemnities. European insurers were affected by the failed launch of the Vega satellite in summer 2019, their U.S. colleagues incurred losses from incidents involving low-orbit crewed ships, and there were also unsuccessful missions in China.

Rogozin assured Russian insurers and Western reinsurance companies that Roscosmos “will stay committed to the policy of transparency” in their interaction.

For instance, Roscosmos will be holding traditional annual meetings with aerospace insurers, and three international meetings will be arranged abroad in 2020. The developing dialogue between Roscosmos and the insurers “will allow them to discuss a package insurance agreement,” Rogozin said.

He invited insurers to visit Vostochny Cosmodrome in the middle of this spring.

Arianespace Looks Break Launch Records, Debut New Boosters in 2020

Artist’s view of the configuration of Ariane 6 using four boosters (A64) (Credit: ESA – D. Ducros)

COURCOURONNES, France (Arianespace PR) — Arianespace is heading into 2020 fully prepared to capitalize on the latest commercial opportunities for Ariane 5 and to succeed with Vega’s return-to-flight, planned for March. Arianespace also is aiming to set three new records:

  • For the number of launches during the year, with up to 12 opportunities identified from the Guiana Space Center in French Guiana, along with the first flights of Vega C and Ariane 6; and eight more from the cosmodromes at Baikonur and Vostochny. (from these two cosmodromes, this launch cadence could be augmented based on satellite availability),
  • For the number of satellites placed into orbit – more than 300 – taking into account the continued deployment of OneWeb satellites and the SSMS rideshare mission with Vega, and
  • For the number of launch pads at its service: four at the Guiana Space Center (for Ariane 5, Ariane 6, Soyuz and Vega/Vega C), along with one each at the Baikonur and Vostochny cosmodromes for Soyuz.
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Putin Angered by Continued Corruption at Vostochny Cosmodrome

Russian President Vladimir Putin tours Vostochny Cosmodrome in September 2019. (Crredit: Roscosmos)

Russian President Vladimir Putin, whose net worth is reportedly to be as high as $200 billion, is shocked — repeat, shocked — by the scale of the embezzlement during construction of the $1.4 billion Vostochny spaceport. Tass reports

A total of 11 billion rubles (about $169 million) were stolen during the construction of the Vostochny spaceport in the Russian Far East and only 3.5 billion rubles ($53.8 million) were returned to the state coffers, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Monday….

According to Peskov, “at the first stage, 128 criminal cases were opened, which were later consolidated into 32 criminal cases and at the next stage the Investigative Committee singled out 21 cases and transferred them to the court of law and 18 persons were sentenced at the time,” Peskov said…

The Russian leader spoke about the need to ensure strict, purposeful and transparent spending of budget funds in the defense sphere and noted that he had numerously made similar demands in other areas, including the construction of Russia’s first civilian spaceport in the Far East.

“It has been stated a hundred times: you must work transparently because large funds are allocated. This project is actually of the national scope! But, despite this, hundreds of millions, hundreds of millions [of rubles] are stolen! Several dozen criminal cases have already been opened, the courts have already passed verdicts and some are serving their prison terms. However, things have not been put in order there the way it should have been done,” the Russian president said.

Putin can’t really be that shocked by this situation. For 20 years, he has presided over a country where corruption runs rampant. Putin has diverted billions from the state for the benefit of himself and his allies.

One wonders whether Roscosmos Director General Dmitry Rogozin’s job is on the line. The former deputy prime minister took over as head of the Russian space corporation in May 2018.

While serving as deputy prime minister, Rogozin had overseen Russia’s space and military agencies. During that period, corruption on the Vostochny spaceport was rampant and the nation suffered a long string of launch failures.

Vostochny Cosmodrome Construction Begins Second Phase, Maintenance Work Conducted

Workers work on a concrete foundation at Vostochny Cosmodrome. (Credit: Roscosmos)


TSIOLKOVSKY, Russia (Roscomos PR) — The second phase of construction is at full speed at the Vostochny Cosmodrome. The Kazan industrial and construction association are carrying out the foundation armament of structures placed at the Angara carrier rockets family launching complex.

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Vladimir Putin Tours Vostochny Cosmodrome

Russian President Vladimir Putin gets a briefing on the progress of Vostochny Cosmodrome in September 2019. (Credit: Roscosmos)

TSIOLKOVSKY, Russia (Roscomos PR) — The President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin visited Amur Oblast and held a meeting to discuss the matters of the Vostochny Cosmodrome infrastructure development, as well as on perspective rocket complexes.

Right before the meeting, the President visited the Cosmodrome itself to inspect the objects and get acquainted with the status of the Angara space rocket launch complex construction.

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Putin: New Spaceport Will Make Russia Independent, More Competitive in Space

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin tours RSC Energia in July. (Credit: Russian Federation Government)

The Roscosmos website has a fascinating transcript of Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin’s visit to Uglegorsk, which is adjacent to the nation’s future Vostochny National Space Port. Putin gave formal remarks, engaged in a discussion with Roscosmos Head Anatoly Perminov, and spoke with villagers. The transcript, reproduced at this end of this post, brings to light a great deal of information about the new Russian facility.

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Russia Set to Begin Construction of New Far East Spaceport in 2011

Anatoly Perminov

All decisions made to start work on Vostochny space site 2011
ITAR-TASS

All necessary decisions are in place for launching the construction of the spaceport Vostochny in the Amur region in 2011, the head of the federal space agency (Roscosmos), Anatoly Perminov, said at a meeting of the Scientific and Technical Council devoted to the sketch of a future high-capacity next-generation space rocket complex of middle-class for the spaceport Vostochny.

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Russian Military Cuts Could Impact Angara, New Launch Complex

Russian Defense Cuts Could Affect Space
Aviation Week


President Vladimir Putin has assured government and industry space officials that the revised 2009 draft budget, intended to take into account the worsening economic downturn, contemplates no reduction in allotments for the development of new space projects. Almost 82 billion rubles ($2.4 billion) is to be allocated for three programs, Putin said, without saying which ones. However, he said the new Angara launcher would be among the priority programs, along with communication, navigation and remote Earth sensing spacecraft development.

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