The U.S. authorities may adopt before the yearend the deal on selling the Sea Launch project to a Russian investor, a source at the space sector told TASS on Aug. 20.
The source said it would take about two years to re-start the project and make a carrier, thus launches, which were terminated in 2014, may resume not earlier than in 2018.
TASS does not have official confirmation of this information.
The Sea Launch project, using Zenit rockets for launches from a floating platform in the Pacific Ocean, has been sold, the head of the Roscosmos corporation, Igor Komarov said earlier.
"I cannot name the investor or disclose the value of the contract by virtue of certain circumstances. I do hope I will be able to say more by the end of April," Komarov replied to a question. He added that investors in the United States, Europe, China and Australia had been among the bidders.
According to earlier reports the project, suspended in 2014, may get back to the market of launch services in 2016. At the end of last year (2015) Segey Gugkayev told TASS that the project would join "proactive competition for new contracts in the first quarter of 2016 after the deal with the investor has been structured."
Sea Launch is an international project for building and operating a sea-based space rocket complex.
For its implementation a same-name company was established back in 1995, with the United States’ Boeing, Russia’s space rocket corporation Energiya, Norway’s ship-building enterprise Kvaerner (currently Aker Solutions) and Ukraine’s design bureau Yuzhnoye and industrial association Yuzhmash acting as co-founders. The Sea Launch company declared bankruptcy in the summer of 2009. Energiya gained the commanding positions in the project after reorganization in 2010.
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