Inaugural Vostochny launch delayed 24 hours
The first planned launch from Russia’s newly built Vostochny Cosmodrome, located in the country’s Far East, was postponed 24 hours, according to the Russian News Agency TASS. The reason behind the Soyuz-2.1a launch delay is unclear.
A Soyuz-2.1a was slated to take a trio of Russian satellites to orbit. The rocket was scheduled to leave the pad at 10:01 p.m. EDT (02:01 GMT April 27), but the launch sequence was aborted less than two minutes from the planned liftoff time.
Russian President Vladimir Putin was reported to be on hand to watch the inaugural launch from the spaceport, located in the Amur region near the Chinese border.
“We have no information as to why the launch was delayed,” a Roscosmos representative told TASS.
It is hoped that this new facility will free Russia from paying $115 million a year in fees (according to a report appearing on Space Daily).
Stay tuned to SpaceFlight Insider for more information as it becomes known.
Derek Richardson is a student studying mass media with an emphasis in contemporary journalism at Washburn University in Topeka, Kansas. He is currently the managing editor of the student run newspaper, the Washburn Review. He also writes a blog, called Orbital Velocity, about the space station. His passion for space ignited when he watched space shuttle Discovery leap to space on Oct. 29, 1998. He saw his first in-person launch on July 8, 2011 when the space shuttle launched for the final time. Today, this fervor has accelerated toward orbit and shows no signs of slowing down. After dabbling in math and engineering courses in college, he soon realized that his true calling was communicating to others about space exploration and spreading that passion.