Soyuz at Guiana space center

One of the key international projects for Glavkosmos is Soyuz at the Guiana Space Center.

The Russian-French cooperation began in May 2002 when Rosaviakosmos, the French company Arianespace, and the Russian-French joint-stock company Starsem signed an agreement on the creation of Soyuz Launch System in Kourou space center (French Guiana, South America, Department of France).

The major partners from Russia in this project are ROSCOSMOS State Space Corporation and its subsidiary Glavkosmos, JSC SRC Progress, NPO Lavochkin, and TsENKI.

About fifteen other Russian space companies are also in the partnership.




For Soyuz at the Guiana Space Center Project, Glavkosmos acts as a prime contract integrator for all the Russian companies involved and coordinates interaction with Arianespace, the Guiana Space Center operator, at all phases.

Under this cooperation, at the initial phase of the project, Russian space companies (enterprises of the Russian Cooperation Group) developed the initial data to design facilities of the Guiana Space Center and technical systems of the Soyuz Launch Complex. They also designed, produced, delivered and assembled the ground support equipment for the Soyuz Launch Complex.

Currently the main tasks of the Russian space companies per this project are the following: adaptation of Soyuz-ST launch vehicle, Fregat upper stage, and ground support equipment to specific missions; production and delivery of the Launcher with the Upper Stage and propellants; LV pre-launch processing; and operation of the ground support equipment of the Soyuz Launch Complex.




Soyuz-ST launchers for the European space center in French Guiana are the modified enhanced Soyuz-2 launchers for payload injection into the high-energy orbits (geostationary transfer and geostationary orbits).

The very first Soyuz-ST launch from the Guiana Space Center was performed in October 2011. As of today, the number of launches amounts to 20.



Soyuz-ST (with Fregat upper stage) launches from Guiana space center from 2012

Launch campaign Date/Time (msk) Mission under the contract Launch vehicle Upper stage Spacecraft
VS01 21.10.2011, 14:30:26 8 Soyuz ST-B Fregat-MT Galileo IOV M1 (2 SC)
VS02 17.12.2011, 06:03:48 2 Soyuz ST-A Fregat Pléiades-HR1, Elsa (4 SC), CCOT
VS03 12.10.2012, 22:15:01 9 Soyuz ST-B Fregat-MT Galileo-IOV M2 (2 SC)
VS04 02.12.2012, 06:02:51 1 Soyuz ST-A Fregat Pléiades-HR2
VS05 25.06.2013, 23:27:03 11 Soyuz ST-B Fregat-MT O3b-F1 (4 SC)
VS06 19.12.2013, 13:12:19 12 Soyuz ST-B Fregat-MT Gaia
VS07 04.04.2014, 01:02:26 4 Soyuz ST-A Fregat-M Sentinel-1A
VS08 10.07.2014, 22:55:56 14 Soyuz ST-B Fregat-MT O3b-F2 (4 SC)
VS09 22.08.2014, 16:27:11 13 Soyuz ST-B Fregat-MT Galileo FOC-F1 (2 SC)
VS10 18.12.2014, 21:37:00 15 Soyuz ST-B Fregat-MT O3b-F3 (4 SC)
VS11 27.03.2015, 18:46:18 16 Soyuz ST-B Fregat-MT Galileo FOC-F2 (2 SC)
VS12 11.09.2015, 05:08:10 17 Soyuz ST-B Fregat-MT Galileo FOC-F3 (2 SC)
VS13 17.12.2015, 14:51:56 18 Soyuz ST-B Fregat-MT Galileo FOC-F4 (2 SC)
VS14 26.04.2016, 00:02:13 22 Soyuz ST-A Fregat-M Sentinel-1B, FYS (3 SC)
VS15 24.05.2016, 11:48:43 19 Soyuz ST-B Fregat-MT Galileo FOC-F5 (2 SC)
VS16 28.01.2017, 04:03:34 20 Soyuz ST-B Fregat-MT Hispasat Ag-1
VS17 18.05.2018, 02:03:34 20 Soyuz -A Fregat-M SES-15
VS18 09.03.2017, 01:03:34 21 Soyuz ST-B Fregat-MT 03B-F4
VS19 07.11.2018, 03:47 27 Soyuz ST-B Fregat-M "MetOp-"
VS20 19.12.2018, 19:37:14 26 Soyuz ST-A Fregat-M CSO-1
VS21 28.02.2019, 00:37:00 29 Soyuz-ST-B Fregat-M OneWeb
VS22 04.04.2019, 20:03 33 Soyuz-ST-B Fregat-MT O3b
VS23 18.12.2019, 11:54:20 25 Soyuz-ST-A Fregat-M

Cosmo-SG,Cheops, OPS-SAT/EyeSat/ANGELS


Interesting facts

Glavkosmos took an active part in launches of the Indian satellites. In 1988, the Indian satellite IRS-1A was launched from Baikonur, soon followed by the IRS-2B and IRS-1C satellites.

Interesting facts

In 1991, Glavkosmos signed a contract for the development and delivery of a batch of cryogenic oxygen-hydrogen blocks for the third stage of the Indian GSLV rocket. Later, Glavkosmos also designed and supplied equipment for upgrading the cryogenic test facilities in Mahendragiri (ISRO test facility, India).

Interesting facts

The first truly commercial spaceflight of the Japanese journalist Toyohiro Akiyama was performed under the contract between Glavkosmos and Tokyo Broadcasting System (TBS in December of 1990).

Interesting facts

In 1987, Glavkosmos started coordinating international human spaceflight projects under contracts with Interkosmos: the first Syrian cosmonaut Muhammed Faris flew to the Mir space station.

Interesting facts

In 2015 Glavkosmos contributed to the implementation of the contract between KazCosmos and Roscosmos - the first cosmonaut of the independent Kazakhstan Aidyn Aimbetov flew to the International space station (ISS).

Interesting facts

In 2019, Glavkosmos participated in preparation of the mission of Hazzaa Al Mansoori, the first astronaut from UAE, who flew to the International space station (ISS) and safely returned to Earth.

Interesting facts

On July 15, 1975 Soyuz-19 spaceship was lifted aboard Soyuz-U launch vehicle. It was the first international space flight with the docking of Apollo, a US spaceship. The famous Soyuz-Apollo docking was a historical event and a symbol of rapprochement between the two superpowers in the period of detente during the long-lasting Cold War.

Interesting facts

On April 4, 2019, Glavkosmos JSC, under a contract with Arianespace, launched four communication satellites of O3b Networks, a subsidiary of Luxembourg-based satellite communications operator SES. The name O3b stands for "Other 3 billions", which refers to the world's population, where broadband Internet is not available right now. Thanks to the O3b satellites, the Internet will come to them.

Interesting facts

Soyuz-2.1a became the first rocket launched from the new Russian space center Vostochny. The historical launch was conducted on April 28, 2016.