Meteor-M was launched earlier on Tuesday from Russia's new
Vostochny cosmodrome in the Far East.
Roscosmos said the satellite had not reached its designated
orbit, and that it could not make contact with it. Roscosmos
experts were analyzing the situation, it said in a statement.
Along with the Meteor-M, 18 smaller satellites were launched
from Vostochny at 0841 Moscow time (0341 a.m. GMT), Roscosmos
said. It said it would take more than five hours to place them
to their designated orbits.
These satellites belong to scientific, research and commercial
companies from Russia, Norway, Sweden, the United States, Japan,
Canada and Germany, Roscosmos said.
The Vostochny spaceport, laid out in the thick taiga forest in
the Amur Region, is the first civilian rocket launch site in
Russia, intended to phase out Russia’s reliance on the
Soviet-era Baikonur cosmodrome, which Moscow leases from
In April last year, after delays and massive costs overruns,
Russia launched its first rocket from Vostochny, a day after a
technical glitch forced an embarrassing postponement of the
event in the presence of President Vladimir Putin.
(Reporting by Shamil Zhumatov; Writing by Dmitry Solovyov;
Editing by Andrew Osborn)
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