While the spacecraft had originally been planned to fly on a Zenit, Russia finally launched its Elektro-L No. 3 geostationary weather sat. It was launched by Proton-M/DM-03 from Baikonur near Tyuratam at 1203 GMT on 24 Dec 2019. At under two metric tons mass, the relatively small size of the spacecraft allowed a launch to an orbit very close to a Geostationary Earth Orbit (GEO) using the Block DM-03 upper stage with its release taking place at 1840 GMT. It is thought that the final orbital raise of 300 km or so will take place using the spacecraft’s own thruster systems.
Proton M Block DM-03 launches Russian weather sat
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