Vostochny Cosmodrome’s First Launch Slated for December 2015
[Via Satellite 08-21-2015] Russia is pushing to have the first launch mission from the Vostochny Space Center conducted by December this year, according to an Aug. 20 statement from the Russian government. The government has created and approved a list of the minimal number of launch facilities and a plan including specific deadlines for commissioning the facility, assembling the launch vehicle, installing its payload and delivering them to the space center. The first mission is a Soyuz 2 launch.
Russia’s Enterprises of the Federal Agency for Special Construction, Spetsstroy Rossii, is building the Vostochny Space Center in Russia’s Far East. Vostochny has received increased scrutiny to prevent the project from falling behind schedule. The Russian government has allocated almost 188 billion rubles ($2.74 billion based on Aug. 2015 conversion rates) to what it considers the country’s most ambitious national construction project in terms of funding and labor. This funding is for the first stage of Vostochny.
According to the statement, 8,500 people, are working at the site, though Russia admits local housing is roughly 30 percent complete — a figure Dmitry Medvedev, prime minister of the Russian Federation, described as “inadmissible.” More than 1,000 students are included in the 8,500, which have come from 32 regions to Vostochny, which is located in the Amur Region in Russia’s Far East. Russia is including students from Crimea in its count. People are working in two shifts without days off or holidays to complete the project.