MOSCOW, December 3. /TASS/. A Soyuz-2.1b carrier rocket with a Gonets-M satellite and a system which will be used by the Russian Defense Ministry has been launched from the Plestesk spaceport in Russia's northwestern Arkhangelsk Region, the Russian Defense Ministry said Thursday.
"A combat duty unit of the Russian Space Troops of the Aerospace Forces conducted a successful launch of a Soyuz-2.1b carrier rocket with a cluster of spacecraft of the Gonets-M low-orbit commercial system of satellite communication and spacecraft in in interests of the Russian Defense Ministry," the agency noted.
The launch took place at 04:14 am Moscow time. The ministry underscored that the pre-start processes and the launch itself were carried out as normal.
This is the sixth Soyuz-2 middle-class missile launch from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome this year, last launch was carried out on October 25, 2020.
The Gonets is Russia’s sole low-orbit satellite communications system designed for the global exchange of various types of information with mobile and stationary facilities, and for organizing re-broadcasting channels for various purposes. The system allows transmitting Glonass coordinate data from a mobile post to remote monitoring and communications centers, irrespective of a subscriber’s location.
The Gonets next-generation satellite system will offer communications, including telephone services, in hard-to-access places, including the Arctic, and provide infrastructure for the Internet of things. In a perspective, it will allow transmitting data online from any objects, including mobile. The orbital grouping is expected to comprise 28 satellites in low near-Earth orbit.
The Russian Aerospace Forces are now escorting the Soyuz-2.1b space rocket that was launched from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome Thursday, the Russian Defense Ministry informed.
The Fregat booster with the Gonets-M satellite spacecraft cluster and spacecraft launched in the interests of the Russian Defense Ministry has separated from the carrier rocket, the ministry added.