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Launch of Russia communications satellite goes awry: Official

Published on Dec 9, 2012 4:54 PM

MOSCOW (AFP) - Russia failed to put a communications satellite into designated orbit on Sunday, in the latest setback for the once-pioneering space industry, officials said.

"On Dec 9, during the placing of Yamal-402 satellite vehicle into designated orbit, the separation of the satellite vehicle occurred four minutes ahead of schedule," Russia's Roskosmos state space agency said in a statement.

The space agency added it had taken control of the satellite and was looking to fix the problem.

The satellite had been launched by a Proton-M carrier rocket from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan at 1313 GMT (9.13pm Singapore time) Saturday.

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