Launch of Glonass navigation satellites

On December 25, 2005 Russia successfully launched Proton-K rocket from the Baykonur launch site. The launch was performed at 08:07 MSK (05:07 UTC) from the launch pad No. 23 of the launch complex No. 81. The rocket, equipped with DM-2 upper stage, delivered three navigation satellites into orbit – Cosmos-2417, Cosmos-2418, and Cosmos-2419. The satellites will join the Glonass constellation, bringing the number of satellites in the constellation to 17.

The Space Forces reported that the satellites reached their intended orbits at 11:38 MSK. The orbits are semi-synchronous circular with altitude of 19137 km and the inclination of 64.8 degrees. The satellites received international designations 2005-050A, 2005-050B, and 2004-050C, the NORAD catalog numbers they were assigned are 28915, 28916, and 28917. Information about association between various designations will be updated later.

According to the Glonass Information Center of the Ministry of Defense, the satellites have internal numbers 798 (Cosmos-2417), 713 (Cosmos-2418), and 714 (Cosmos-2419). Two of the satellites – Glonass-713 and Glonass-714 – are satellites of the Glonass-M type. The satellites will be deployed in points 19, 24, and 23 of the third orbital plane of the constellation. The Glonass-723 satellite (Cosmos-2396), currently deployed in point 23, will be moved to point 20. Glonass-788 (Cosmoc-2376), deployed in point 24, is one of the oldest Glonass satellites in orbit and will probably be replaced by the new satellite in point 24 when it becomes operational.

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