Second satellite launched European Galileo navigation system
A second satellite planned for use in the European navigation system Galileo was launched early Sunday from the Russian space centre in Baikonur, Kazakhstan.
The 700-kilogram spacecraft was launched at 2216 GMT Saturday atop of Soyuz cargo rocket, the dpa reported.
The GIOVE-B satellite is bound for orbit about 23,000 kilometres above the Earth. An earlier launch of the GIOVE-A satellite in 2005 was the first piece of infrastructure placed into orbit for the Galileo system, which is planned for operation by 2013 with a network of 30 satellites and several Earth stations.
European governments hope for the Galileo system to gain a foothold in commercial and consumer applications against the US- operated Global Positioning System (GPS) satellite network.