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Russia launches rocket from newly-built Vostochny Cosmodrome

(Xinhua) Updated: 2016-04-28 14:49

Russia launches rocket from newly-built Vostochny Cosmodrome

A Russian Soyuz 2.1a rocket carrying Lomonosov, Aist-2D and SamSat-218 satellites lifts off from the launch pad at the new Vostochny cosmodrome outside the city of Uglegorsk, about 200 km from the city of Blagoveshchensk in the far eastern Amur region on April 28, 2016. [Photo/Agencies]

VLADIVOSTOK, Russia - Russia launched a Soyuz-2.1a space rocket from the newly-built Vostochny Cosmodrome in the Far Eastern Amur region in the early hours of Thursday, TASS news agency reported.

The rocket blasted off from the cosmodrome at 5:01 am Moscow time (0201 GMT), one day after the first launch attempt was aborted due to the failure of the rocket's automatic control system.

The Soyuz-2.1a is carrying three small satellites -- Lomonosov, Aist-2D and SamSat-218.

Russian President Vladimir Putin had flown thousands of kilometers from Moscow to the space port to witness the liftoff of the carrier rocket.

The construction of the Vostochny Cosmodrome with an area of some 700 square kilometers began in 2012.

It is projected to be the first national facility for civilian space launches, ensuring Russia's full-scale access to outer space and reducing Russia's dependence on the Baikonur space center in Kazakhstan.

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