Record Number of OneWeb Satellites Launched From Baikonur by Soyuz-2.1b Rocket
© AFP 2022 / Kirill KudryavtsevThe Soyuz MS-20 spacecraft carrying the crew of Russian cosmonaut Alexander Misurkin, Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa and his production assistant Yozo Hirano blasts off to the International Space Station (ISS) from the Moscow-leased Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on 8 December 2021.
MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Russia's Soyuz-2.1b launch vehicle with the Fregat upper stage and 36 communication satellites of UK-based OneWeb was launched from the Baikonur cosmodrome, according to a broadcast is on the Roscosmos website.
The flight of the Soyuz-2.1b rocket to the separation of the head unit with satellites at an altitude of 200 kilometers lasts a little less than 10 minutes, then the Fregat delivers the satellites to the 450-kilometer mark, after which they will reach their orbits on their own.
This is the first launch from Baikonur with so many OneWeb satellites. Prior to that, 36 satellites were launched on Soyuz rockets only from the Vostochny cosmodrome. The difference is due to the higher energy characteristics of the rocket when launched from Vostochny, in connection with which Roskosmos announced work on optimizing flight trajectories from Baikonur.
© Photo : Russian Space Agency RoscosmosIn this handout photo released by Russian Space Agency Roscosmos, the Soyuz-2.1b rocket booster with the Fregat upper stage and 36 UK OneWeb communications satellites blasts off from the Vostochny Cosmodrome, Amur region, Russia
In this handout photo released by Russian Space Agency Roscosmos, the Soyuz-2.1b rocket booster with the Fregat upper stage and 36 UK OneWeb communications satellites blasts off from the Vostochny Cosmodrome, Amur region, Russia
© Photo : Russian Space Agency Roscosmos/
To date, 11 out of 19 OneWeb satellites launches under the contract with Arianespace have been completed: four from Baikonur, six from Vostochny and one from Kourou.
In 2022, six launches are planned from Baikonur (in January, February, two launches in April, May and August), as well as one launch from the Kourou cosmodrome in French Guiana (10 February).
OneWeb devices are designed to create a space communication system that provides high-speed Internet access anywhere on Earth. OneWeb is set to deploy full first generation constellation by June 2022.