Launching at 2142 GMT, 6 February 2020, a Soyuz 2-1B rocket has carried 34 OneWeb satellites to LEO. The launch, which lifted off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan, was part of a contract signed between OneWeb and Arianespace. This mission, utilising one of the Kazakh or Russian spaceports, was managed by joint Starsem – a joint European-Russian company through which commercial Soyuz rockets are purchased.
It took until 1 hour, 12 minutes after lift-off before the first two OneWeb satellites were deployed from the Fregat-M Upper-stage. The satellites were then deployed in groups of four until 3 hours, 45 minutes into the mission. Following completion, the Fregat-M was due to fire its thrusters to de-orbit itself at close to six hours following launch.
This is the second mission in service of the OneWeb constellation, bringing the total number of in-orbit satellites to 40. These satellites, in contrast to the six launched previously, were manufactured in the OneWeb Satellites factory located in Florida, USA.
The next OneWeb launch is planned for March.