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Proton-M rocket with two satellites to be taken to Baikonur

April 23, 2014, 19:13 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The rocket was in the pre-flight preparation facility for two days for refueling, which was completed successfully
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© ITAR-TASS/Roscosmos

MOSCOW, April 23. /ITAR-TASS/. Russia’s state commission has ordered a Proton-M rocket with a Briz-M booster and two satellites — the Russian relay satellite Luch-5V and the Kazakh communication satellite KazSat-3 — to be taken to the launch pad area at the Baikonur spaceport in Kazakhstan, the Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) press service told ITAR-TASS on Wednesday, April 23.

The rocket was in the pre-flight preparation facility for two days for refueling, which was completed successfully. On Thursday morning, the state commission made the decision to take the rocket to the launch pad area where it will be put in an upright position for pre-flight checks.

The rocket is to be launched at 04:25 GMT on April 28.

KazSat-3 is Kazakhstan’s second satellite designed to ensure its information independence and security.

“Our country will launch three satellites this year: KazSat-3 on April 28; two days before that a French Vega rocket will take a high-resolution Earth remote sensing satellite to orbit from the Kourou space centre in French Guiana. Another such satellite will be launched in June,” National Space Agency (Kazcosmos) Head Talgat Musabayev said earlier this month.

KazSat-3 will be able to act as a backup for KazSat-2 launched several years ago. “With the launch of KazSat-3 our country will get a complete communication system with a backup satellite in orbit and the main and backup control centers on the ground. This is will ensure our information independence,” Musabayev said.

He admitted that it could be cheaper to lease foreign satellites, but “Kazakhstan needs its own system, control centers and personnel to ensure our information independence”.

KazSat-3 is designed to provide communication services, carry television broadcasts and ensure broadband Internet access in Kazakhstan and adjacent countries. It was designed and made under contract with the Republican Space Centre (Kazakhstan) and assembled by Russia’s Reshetnev Information Satellite Systems.

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