From Khrunichev Press Release

BAIKONUR COSMODROME, Kazakhstan, Oct. 26, 2007 – A Khrunichev-made Proton K launch vehicle, carrying three satellites for the Russian government's GLONASS constellation, was successfully launched today at 11:35 Moscow time (7:35 GMT) from Baikonur. The launch marks the 328th Proton mission.

The launch was carried out by a Russian Space Forces launch crew. The Proton rocket performed normally. The GLONASS trio of spacecraft successfully separated about 3 1/2 hours later from the Block DM upper stage (made by Russia's RSC Energia).

The launch was conducted under the Russian Federation's Global Navigation Satellite System Program. GLONASS is a dual-purpose global navigation system designed to serve the Russian Ministry of Defense and civil users. The system is intended to provide continuous navigation coverage allowing an unlimited number of domestic and foreign users at sea, in the air and on land to determine precise coordinates, velocity and time.

The Proton heavy-class launch vehicle is manufactured by Khrunichev Space Center. The powerful launcher has remarkable operational capabilities. Proton is currently used for implementation of national programs and commercial launches for satellite operators worldwide.


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