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India launches communications satellite
Posted: Sun, Sep 2, 2007, 7:07 PM ET (2307 GMT)
GSLV launch of INSAT-4CR (ISRO) India successfully launched a communications satellite in the return to flight of a launch vehicle that failed in its last launch over a year ago. The GSLV lifted off from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre on India's east coast at 8:50 EDT (1250 GMT, 6:20 pm local time) Sunday, placing the INSAT-4CR spacecraft into a geosynchronous transfer orbit. The launch was scheduled to take place two hours earlier, but the countdown was halted because of a last-second computer problem that eventually was resolved. The launch is the first for the GSLV since a July 2006 launch failure that was traced to a problem with a propellant regulator in one of the rocket's four liquid-propellant strap-on stages. INSAT-4CR is a replacement for the INSAT-4C satellite lost in that launch failure last year; it weighs 2,130 kg, making it the largest satellite launched by an Indian rocket to date. The satellite, which will operate from 74 degrees east in GEO, carries 12 Ku-band transponders to provide direct-to-home television and other video services. The launch is the third this year by India, with two more launches planned before the end of the year.
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