Raumfahrt - Gonets-M satellites first time orbited by Soyuz-2.1b rocket from Plesetsk


Earlier, such satellites were orbited by the converted missile Rokot


A Soyuz-2.1b rocket carrying three communication satellites Gonets-M and 19 smaller satellites blasted off from the space site Plesetsk on Monday, the Defense Ministry's press service said.

"A delivery vehicle Soyuz-2.1b carrying a cluster of space satellites Gonets-M and a payload of 19 smaller satellites has been launched," the Defense Ministry's news release reads. The rocket blasted off at 14:20 Moscow time.

This is the first launch of Gonets-M satellites this year and the first one carried out by a rocket of the Soyuz-2.1b family. Earlier, such satellites were orbited by the converted missile Rokot.

All pre-launch preparations and the launch itself were normal. The Aerospace Force's ground systems monitored the launch and the rocket's flight, the press service said.

It was the fourth launch of a medium class rocket Soyuz-2 from Plesetsk this year. The previous one was on May 22.

Gonets-M satellites

In September, the CEO of the Reshetnev Information Satellite Systems, Nikolai Testoyedov, told TASS in an interview that two Gonets-M satellites were due to be put in space in 2020: one in September, and the other, in November. A source in the space rocket industry told TASS that the second launch might take place on November 16.

Gonets is Russia's sole low-orbit system of mobile satellite communication, meant for global information exchanges with mobile and stationary facilities and also for creating relay communication channels for various purposes.

Quelle: TASS

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