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OneWeb launches 34 communications satellites from Kazakhstan
by Paul Brinkmann
Washington DC (UPI) Mar 21, 2020

A Soyuz rocket carried 34 satellites toward orbit from Kazakhstan on time at 1:06 p.m. EDT Saturday in the third such launch for OneWeb spacecraft made in Florida.

The launch will boost OneWeb's global network of satellites to 74 as it strives to provide high-speed Internet access to remote areas.

OneWeb previously launched 40 satellites from space centers in Kazakhstan and South America. Saturday's launch came from Russia's Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on a Soyuz rocket purchased through French space firm Arianespace.

OneWeb is one of several U.S. companies competing to launch vast new constellations of satellites to provide high-speed, reliable internet around the globe.

SpaceX has the largest constellation so far, at 362 satellites, and plans for up to 42,000.

OneWeb Satellites, a subsidiary and a joint venture with European aerospace company Airbus, opened a satellite factory in Florida in 2019.

The company said it dedicated Saturday's launch to the late Russian cosmonaut Alexei Leonov, who became the first person to walk in space in 1965. He died in October.

OneWeb satellites are about the size of a small refrigerator. The spacecraft will be headed to a near-polar orbit about 280 miles up, after which they travel to their final orbit of approximately 745 miles high.

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SpaceX launches Starlink mission from Florida
Orlando FL (UPI) Mar 19, 2020
SpaceX successfully launched its sixth Starlink satellite cluster from Florida at 8:16 a.m. Wednesday, using a first-stage booster for the fifth time. The company had hoped to land the first-stage booster for the rocket on a barge in the Atlantic Ocean, but SpaceX said the booster failed to make the landing. SpaceX has been recovering boosters by flying them back to Earth since December 2015. Wednesday's launch also used a recovered fairing, or half of the rocket's nosecone. SpaceX ann ... read more

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