On February 28, 2009 Russia successfully launched a Proton-K rocket from the launch pad No. 24 of the launch complex No. 81 of the Baykonur launch site. The launch took place at 07:10 MSK (04:10 UTC). The rocket, which was equipped with a DM-2 upper stage, deployed the satellite on an intermediate orbit with inclination of about 49 degrees. The satellite is a military communication relay satellite of the Raduga class (also known by their military designation, Globus) that will be eventually deployed in a geosynchronous orbit.

The satellite was given an international designation 2009-010A and the NORAD number 34264. The Space Forces report designated the satellite as "Raduga-1", but it is not clear whether it is an older Raduga-1 or a newer Raduga-1M (the first satellite of this class, Raduga 1M-1 was launched in December 2007).

The new satellite will join three other active Raduga/Globus satellites - Raduga 1M-1 (32373, launched on 9 December 2007, deployed at 70E), Raduga 1-7 (28194, 27 March 2004, 85E), and Raduga 1-5 (26477, 28 August 2000, 43E).

UPDATE 01/28/10: NORAD designated the satellite as Raduga 1-8, indicating that it is a satellite of the older Raduga class.