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MOSCOW, November 28 (Itar-Tass) — The booster Soyuz-2.1b with a satellite of the Glonass global navigation satellite system will be launched from the Plesetsk spaceport on Monday.
“The booster Soyuz-2.1b with the upper stage Fregat and the satellite Glonass-M will be launched at 12.26 Moscow time on Monday,” a source in the Federal Space Agency told Itar-Tass on Sunday.
The satellite launch is seeking to increase the Glonass orbital grouping to the number, which will guarantee a nonstop navigation signal on the global scale. “The orbital grouping has 30 satellites, including 23 satellites used for their designation, three - at the stage of integration into the system, two – suspended for maintenance, one – in the orbital reserve, one – at the stage of flight trial” as of November 27, the Central Scientific-Research Institute of Machine Building said. At least 18 operating satellites are needed for the nonstop navigation signal on the whole territory of Russia and 24 satellites on the global scale.
The Reshetnev Information Satellite Systems designed and produced the navigation satellite Glonass-M. The satellite has a weight of 1,415 kilograms and an active service life of seven years. The satellites operate on the circular orbit with an altitude of 19,100 kilometres in three orbital fields with eight satellites in each field.
The civil part of the Glonass system is intended for the nonstop navigation signal, which makes it possible to find highly accurate coordinates and the speed of any moving objects equipped with the Glonass receptors. The Glonass system also accomplishes the tasks for Russian security.
A forthcoming launch will be the fourth one in 2011 under the federal targeted program of the global navigation system. On November 4, the booster Proton-M with three satellites Glonass-M was launched from the Baikonur spaceport. The Plesetsk spaceport launched a navigation satellite of new generation Glonass-K on February 26 and Glonass-M on October 3.