European Ariane-5 rocket, launched from Kourou at the north-east coast of South America, successfully put into orbit four communications satellites late Thursday.
Launched at 2209 GMT, the rocked put the four satellites, weighing together 7.4 tons, into orbit about half an hour later, making the first Ariane mission of the year a complete success, officials said.
Among the satellites was a Hot Bird 10 satellite of Eutelsat, to be used for digital and high definition television broadcasting in Europe. A second communications satellite and two French military microsatellites were also orbited.
The mission was the 187th launch of an Ariane rocket and the 43rd of an Ariane-5 type. Up to seven more are planned this year, dpa reported.