by Staff Writers
Moscow (RIA Novosti) Oct 25, 2011
Russia is planning to add four Glonass navigation satellites to its orbital grouping in November.
Three Glonass-M satellites will be launched on November 4 aboard a Proton-M carrier rocket from the Baikonur space center in Kazakhstan, while the fourth Glonass-M will be delivered to orbit by a Soyuz 2.1b launch vehicle at the end of November from the Plesetsk space center.
The fourth satellite was delivered to Plesetsk on Monday to undergo the necessary pre-launch procedures.
Glonass is Russia's answer to the U.S. Global Positioning System, or GPS, and is designed for both military and civilian uses. Both systems allow users to determine their positions to within a few meters.
Russia currently has a total of 28 Glonass satellites in orbit, although only 20 of them are operational.
According to the Russian Federal Space Agency, five Glonass satellites are under maintenance, one is on a standby, and two recently launched satellites are being integrated into the grouping.
The complete Glonass grouping needs 24 functioning and 2-3 reserve satellites to operate with global coverage.
Source: RIA Novosti
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Successful launch for Europe's satellite navigation system
London UK (SPX) Oct 24, 2011
Europe's first two fully operational Galileo satellites were successfully launched October 20 2011 from the European spaceport in French Guiana, South America. The satellite payloads were built in the UK by Astrium and will test the system's communication networks before becoming part of the final Galileo system. Minister for Universities and Science David Willetts said: "Today's lau ... read more
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