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Russia Set to Launch 3 Military Satellites

RIA Novosti

21:05 24/12/2013

MOSCOW, December 24 (RIA Novosti) – A Russian Rokot carrier rocket will lift off from the Plesetsk space center in northern Russia early on Wednesday to put three military satellites into orbit, the Defense Ministry said.

The launch of the rocket, to carry Kosmos-series satellites, has been scheduled for 4:31 a.m. Moscow time (00:31 GMT), ministry spokesman Col. Dmitry Zenin said.

The satellites are expected to reach their designated orbits about two hours later, he said.

The official did not specify the tasks assigned to the satellites, but said they were designated Kosmos-2488, Kosmos-2489 and Kosmos-2490.

It will be the fourth Rokot launch from Plesetsk this year.

The Rokot launch vehicle, developed by the state-run Khrunichev Center, is a modification of the RS-18 (SS-19 Stiletto) two-stage ballistic missile that is being decommissioned from Russia's Strategic Missile Forces.

The rocket is designed to put spacecraft weighing less than two tons into near-earth orbits.

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