Roscosmos Suspends Soyuz Joint Launch Operations From Kourou, Recalls Personnel From Europe’s Spaceport

Soyuz-2 rocket launches 34 OneWeb broadband satellites from the Guiana Space Center. (Credit: Copyright ESA-CNES-Arianespace/Optique Video du CSG – P Piron)

Russia is suspending cooperation with Arianespace on the launch of Soyuz rockets from Europe’s Guiana Space Center and pulling its personnel from the South American spaceport over European Union (EU) sanctions imposed on the nation for the nation’s invasion of Ukraine. Roscosmos head Dmitry Rogozin tweeted: (Translated from Russian)

In response to EU sanctions against our enterprises, Roscosmos is suspending cooperation with European partners in organizing space launches from the Kourou cosmodrome and withdrawing its technical personnel, including the consolidated launch crew, from French Guiana.

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Aerospace Forces Conducts First Russian Launch of Year From Plesetsk Cosmodrome

Soyuz-2 rocket launches a military satellite from Plesetsk Cosmodrome. (Credit: Russian Ministry of Defense)

PLESETSK COSMODROME, Russia (Ministry of Defense PR) — On Saturday, February 5, at 10:00 (Moscow time) from the State Test Cosmodrome of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation (Plesetsk Cosmodrome) in the Arkhangelsk Region, the combat crew of the Space Forces of the Aerospace Forces successfully launched a Soyuz-2.1a medium-class launch vehicle with a spacecraft in the interests of the Russian Ministry of Defense.

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Arianespace to Serve OneWeb’s Ambitions, will Orbit 34 Additional Satellites with Soyuz

Soyuz-2 launches 34 OneWeb satellites. (Credit: Arianespace)
  • After the successful launch of NASA’s Webb Space Telescope on December 25 with Ariane 5, Arianespace is back to the Guiana Space Center (CSG) with Soyuz for a February 10 lift-off.
  • The first Arianespace mission of the year will orbit 34 additional OneWeb satellites.
  • With this mission, Arianespace will exceed 100 satellites launched on Soyuz from the CSG, while OneWeb’s fleet will be brought to 428 satellites on Low Earth Orbit.

SINNAMARY, French Guiana (Arianespace PR) — Scheduled for February 10 at 03:09 p.m. local time (06:09 p.m. UTC), Arianespace’s Soyuz Flight VS27 will mark the European launch service provider’s first flight of the year. Performed from the Soyuz Launch Complex (ELS) at Sinnamary, French Guiana, Flight VS27 will put 34 of OneWeb’s satellites into a near-polar orbit at an altitude of 450 kilometers. The total duration of the mission will be 3 hours and 33 minutes and will include nine satellite separations, after which the satellites will subsequently raise themselves to their operational orbit.

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Energomash Moves Forward on Developing Engines for Soyuz-5, Angara-A5M

Soyuz 5 launch vehicle

Translated by Google Translate

MOSCOW (Roscosmos PR) — General Director of the Research and Production Association Energomash named after Academician V.P. Glushko (part of the Roscosmos State Corporation) Igor Arbuzov, in an interview with the Roscosmos program Big Space, spoke about the results of the enterprise’s work in 2021.

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Axelspace to Launch GRUS Satellites on Russian Soyuz Launch Vehicle in 2022

Soyuz-2 launch (Credit: Roscosmos)

MOSCOW (Roscosmos PR) — The Japanese company Axelspace Corporation has signed a contract with GK Launch Services (a subsidiary of Glavkosmos, part of the Roscosmos State Space Corporation) for the launch of four GRUS satellites. The spacecraft will be launched on the Russian Soyuz-2 launch vehicle from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in 2022.

The satellites will complement the existing AxelGlobe constellation, which currently consists of 5 satellites in orbit.

GRUS satellites are smaller than conventional Earth observation satellites, but capable of taking high-quality images with a resolution of 2.5 meters. The service initially started with a single satellite in May 2019, and from June 2021, five satellites started taking images, which encouraged the growth in the number of the service customers and the demand for the satellite data in various industries across the world.

Axelspace Corporation. Main business focus: Solutions based on microsatellite technology, design and production of microsatellites and related components, launch arrangements and operational support, business related to microsatellite data.

Russia’s Sphere Satellite Constellation Moves Toward Implementation

Sphere constellation satellite orbits. (Credit: Roscosmos)
  • 264-satellite constellation will provide broadband and Earth observation capabilities
  • Russia’s first mega constellation would be deployed in medium orbit
  • Government plans to spend US $370 million through 2024

MOSCOW (Roscosmos PR) — After several stages of discussions and approvals in the government, the Federal Sphere project received a development plan supported by funding. In the coming years, emphasis will be placed on developing technologies and creating the first samples of spacecraft. The final decision on the number and composition of satellite constellations will be made based on the results shown.

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Russia Designed New Space Station, Continued Development of Vostochny in 2021

Russian Orbital Space Station will follow the International Space Station. (Credit: Roscosmos)

MOSCOW (Roscosmos PR) — In 2021, a decision was made to start the preliminary design of the Russian space station. The creation of a Russian space station will allow the Russian Federation to maintain its presence in low Earth orbit and ensure the fulfillment of a wide range of tasks. Based on the results of the preliminary design of the station, decisions on its appearance and orbit will be made. It is not excluded that foreign partners will be allowed to participate in the project of the new orbital station.

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Roscosmos Looks Back at Successful Launch Year

Soyuz rocket launches 36 OneWeb satellites from Baikonur Cosmodrome on Dec. 27, 2021. (Credit: Arianespace)

MOSCOW (Roscosmos PR) — For the third year in a row, Roscosmos ensured trouble-free launches of spacecraft from the Baikonur, Plesetsk and Vostochny cosmodromes. Russia has achieved the best indicators of accident-free launches in 5 years (about 97 percent) among the leading space powers (Russia, USA, China).

As of the end of 2021, 25 launches of space rockets were carried out, including 14 launches from the Baikonur cosmodrome, 5 launches from Vostochny, 5 from Plesetsk and 1 from the Guiana Space Center.

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Ten Years of Soyuz Launches at Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana

Launch of VS01, first Soyuz ST-B flight from Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana, on 21 October 2011, carrying the first two satellites of Europe’s Galileo navigation system. (Credit: ESA/CNES/Arianespace)

KOUROU, French Guiana (ESA PR) — On 21 October 2011, the first pair of Galileo navigation satellites was launched by a Russian-built Soyuz rocket from Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana.

The introduction of Russia’s Soyuz 2 rocket to Europe’s Spaceport was a milestone of strategic cooperation in the space transportation sector between Europe and the Russian Federation, and an exciting new opportunity for ESA.

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Japanese Satellite Company Synspective Signs Launch Agreement with Germany’s Exolaunch to Launch the third SAR Satellite StriX-1 on Soyuz-2

Synthetic aperture radar satellite (Credit: Synspective)

TOKYO and BERLIN (Exolaunch PR) – Synspective Inc., a SAR satellite data and analytic solution provider, announced a new Launch Agreement with a small satellite launch services provider, Exolaunch, to launch Synspective’s third demonstration SAR satellite “StriX-1” on a Soyuz-2 launch vehicle in mid-2022. The companies extended their collaboration after signing a launch agreement for the second Synspective’s demonstration SAR satellite “StriX-beta”, which is currently under the final preparations for launch later this year. 

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With Flight ST35 for OneWeb, Arianespace Sets New Mark by Putting More than 1,000 satellites in Orbit

Soyuz-2 launches 34 OneWeb satellites. (Credit: Arianespace)
  • Soyuz Flight ST35 placed 34 more satellites into orbit. Following this 10th launch for OneWeb, Arianespace has deployed 322 satellites for the global connectivity constellation.
  • Ninth successful launches and sixth Soyuz operated by Arianespace and Starsem since the start of the year.
  • With this launch, Arianespace will have deployed 1,021 satellite since its incorporation in 1980.

BAIKONUR COSMODROME, Kazakhstan (Arianespace PR) — Performed on Tuesday, September 14, at precisely 11:07 p.m. local time at Russia’s Baikonur Cosmodrome (06:07 p.m. UTC), Soyuz Flight ST35 lifted-off with 34 OneWeb satellites onboard, bringing, after the successful deployment, the size of the fleet in orbit to 322. Flight ST35 was the 60th Soyuz mission carried out by Arianespace and its Starsem affiliate, and the tenth mission to the benefit of OneWeb.

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Roscosmos Eyes Crewed Flights from French Guiana, Seeks Partners for Lunar Base with China

A Soyuz-2 launches the CSO-2 defense satellite on Dec. 29, 2020. (Credit: Arianespace)
  • Roscosmos head discussed launching cosmonauts from Kourou with French counterpart
  • Russian-Chinese lunar south pole base is rival to planned U.S. facility
  • Russia to begin design work on new Earth orbiting station by late summer

by Douglas Messier
Managing Editor

Roscosmos is exploring the possibility of launching spacecraft from the Guiana Space Centre in South America that would carry cosmonauts to the new Chinese space station and a base that Russia and China plan to build at the lunar south pole, according to media reports. Russia is also beginning work on a new Earth orbiting space station.

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Successful Launch from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome

PLESETSK COSMODROME, Russia (Roscosmos PR) — The Aerospace Forces successfully launched the Soyuz-2 carrier rocket from the Plesetsk cosmodrome. The launch of the carrier rocket and the insertion of the Pion-NKS 1 naval intelligence satellite into the calculated orbit took place in the normal mode. This is reported by the Department of Information and Mass Communications of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation.

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