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Russia to launch three GLONASS satellites next week

The GLONASS satellite.

MOSCOW (BNS): As part of its plans to put six GLONASS satellites into orbit this year, Russia will launch three of them on September 25, Ria Novosti reported on Tuesday.

Russia will launch a Proton-M carrier rocket on September 25 from the Baikonur space centre in Kazakhstan to orbit three Glonass navigation satellites, the report said quoting the country’s Federal Space Agency Roscosmos.

The Global Navigation Satellite System – GLONASS – is an alternative and complementary system to the United States' Global Positioning System (GPS), China’s Compass navigation system, and the planned Galileo positioning system of the European Union.

The satellite is designed for both military and civilian purposes. It allows users to determine their positions within a few meters.

The system requires 18 satellites for continuous navigation services covering the entire Russian Federation, and 24 satellites to provide services worldwide.

The Russian government had sanctioned $170 million and $360 million from the federal budget in 2006 and 2007 respectively for installing the system. Prime Minister Vladimir Putin signed an order on September 12, 2008, allocating an additional $2.6 billion to develop the system, the report said.

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