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Russia launches military satellites

Updated: 2013-12-25 09:10
( Xinhua)

MOSCOW - Russia has successfully brought three military satellites into orbit, the Aerospace Defense Forces announced Wednesday.

A Rokot rocket carrying three military satellites blasted off from the Plesetsk Space Center in northwestern Russia at 04:31 Moscow time (0031 GMT), said Dmitry Zenin, spokesman of the Aerospace Defense Forces.

"The satellites were successfully brought on the designated orbit at the scheduled time at 06:16 Moscow time (0216 GMT)," he told the press.

The first and second stages of the rocket as well as the payload fairing are expected to fall into waters of the Barents Sea and the Arctic Ocean.

The third stage of Rokot, powered by a Briz-KM rocket, will be removed from orbit 15 minutes after the separation of the satellites, he said.

The orbital period of the satellites will be one hour and 55 minutes.

Produced by the Khrunichev space center, the Rokot light rocket is a modified version of decommissioned RS-18 (NATO codename Stiletto) two-stage intercontinental ballistic missile. The carrier rockets were put into service in 2000. This is the fourth Rokot mission conducted from Plesetsk this year.

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