Russia fails to get satellites into orbit

5th December 2010, Comments 0 comments

Russia failed Sunday to send three Glonass navigation satellites into orbit after they were launched by a rocket from Baikonur cosmodrome, space industry sources told Russian news agencies.

"The ballistics experts have checked everything: the upper-stage rocket with the satellites is not on the main, intermediate nor emergency orbit," a source told the RIA Novosti news agency.

"Our calculations show that the upper-stage rocket with the satellites probably fell into the Pacific Ocean near Hawaii," the source said.

The Glonass system is designed by the Russian government as a rival to the United States government's Global Positioning System (GPS).

Russia launched the rocket carrying three of its Glonass navigation satellites into space shortly after 1:00 pm (1000 GMT) Sunday from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, the Interfax news agency reported.

© 2010 AFP

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