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April 1st, 2011
Soyuz Launch Site Ready for First Flight

The Soyuz site at Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana is now ready for its first launch. ESA yesterday handed over the complex to Arianespace, marking a major step towards this year’s inaugural flight.C onstruction of the Soyuz site began in February 2007, although initial excavation and ground infrastructure work began in 2005 and 2006, respectively. Russian staff arrived in French Guiana in mid-2008 to assemble the launch table, mobile gantry, fuelling systems and test benches. The first two Soyuz launchers arrived from Russia by sea in November 2009 to be assembled in the new preparation and integration building. Read More