AT THE BAIKONUR COSMODROME in Kazakhstan, a Soyuz-2.1a/Fregat rocket is being prepared for launch with a payload of six communications satellites for the Globalstar company.The Soyuz is one of the world’s most reliable commercial launch vehicles. On October 19, 2010 a Soyuz booster was used to successfully launch six new Globalstar second-generation satellites. It was also successfully utilized on eight previous occasions to launch Globalstar’s first generation satellites. Later this year Globalstar plans to conduct two additional launches of six satellites per launch also using the Soyuz. The human-rated Soyuz launcher is used to transport astronauts and cosmonauts to the international space station.
The Globalstar second-generation satellite constellation is designed to last for 15 years, twice the lifespan of Globalstar’s first generation satellites.
Launch is due for 0258 GMT on July 11. To get an idea of what it will be like, here’s a video of a similar Russian launcher lifting off from Baikonur:
And here’s a bunch of photos of the Soyuz being prepared for launch:
Adapted from information issued by Roscosmos PAO / Yuzhny Space Centre / Globalstar.
Get SpaceInfo.com.au daily updates by RSS or email! Click the RSS Feed link at the top right-hand corner of this page, and then save the RSS Feed page to your bookmarks. Or, enter your email address (privacy assured) and we’ll send you daily updates. Or follow us on Twitter, @spaceinfo_oz
Like this story? Please share or recommend it…