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LAUNCH PAD
Russia Sends Three Satellites Into Space

File image.
by Staff Writers
Moscow, Russia (XNA) Sep 09, 2010
Russia has sent three satellites into space early Wednesday, said spokesman for Russian Space Forces Alexei Zolotukhin.

A Rokot launch vehicle blasted off from the Plesetsk space center in northern Russia at 07:30 a.m. Moscow time (0330 GMT), with two military satellites of "Cosmos" series and the "Gonets-M" satellite atop.

The launch was completed in normal mode, said Zolotukhin, adding that the Breeze-KM third stage with three satellites on board is scheduled to separate from the carrier rocket at around 09:14 a.m. Moscow time (0514 GMT) on Wednesday.

The Cosmos satellites will be used for military communications, while the Gonets-M communications satellite will be part of Russia's Glonass satellite navigation system, an equivalent of the U.S. GPS system.

A total of 26 Glonass satellites were currently in orbit, two of which were not functional. The system requires 18 operational satellites covering Russian territory and at least 24 satellites to provide worldwide navigation services.

Previous launch of a Rokot launch vehicle from the Plesetsk space center was on June 2 this year.



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LAUNCH PAD
Vega Launcher Production Contracts Signed By ESA, Arianespace And ELV
Paris, France (ESA) Sep 09, 2010
As Vega's development is coming to an end with the qualification flight scheduled in 2011, two contracts were signed to allow the project to move on to the next phase. Yesterday ESA and Arianespace signed the work order for production of the first Vega launcher, after qualification, as part of the Vega flexibility demonstration flights frame contract signed in December 2009. At the s ... read more







LAUNCH PAD
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