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Upper stage broken in two Proton rocket abortive launches planned to be tested third time

December 30, 2014, 18:59 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The emergency rocket flight on December 5, 2010 was caused by an excessive weight of upper stage rocket DM-03 due to a design error, the second crash occurred on July 2, 2013
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MOSCOW, December 30. /TASS/. Russian upper stage rocket DM-03 which caused the loss of three GLONASS global navigation system satellites in 2010 due to overfuelling will undergo another attempt for a launch next year.

“Two upper stage rockets DM will ensure launches of spacecraft under federal programs,” aerospace corporation Energia, which develops and produces upper stage rockets, said in a statement posted on its website.

According to plans for the next year, an upper stage rocket DM is planned to be used for a launch of a Russian telecommunications satellite Express-AM7 and a new upper stage DM-03 to orbit three satellites Glonass-M.

Upper stage rockets DM are used as a fourth stage in launches of rocket carriers Proton. DM-03 was earlier used only in two lift-offs. Both ended in the crash.

On December 5, 2010, rocket carrier Proton-M with upper stage DM-03 failed to place on orbit three GLONASS satellites. According to findings of the inter-departmental committee, the emergency rocket flight was caused by an excessive weight of upper stage rocket DM-03 due to a design error.

The second crash occurred on July 2, 2013, when launch vehicle Proton-M with upper stage rocket DM-03 and three Russian navigation satellites Glonass-M fell down at the Baikonur space center a minute after the take-off. The rocket dropped 2.5 kilometres away from the launch site.

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