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Dnepr launches European satellites
Posted: Wed, Jun 16, 2010, 7:11 AM ET (1111 GMT)
Dnepr launch of Prisma and Picard (Kosmotras) A Dnepr rocket successfully launched a group of small French and Swedish satellites on Tuesday. The Dnepr vehicle lifted off from the Yazny launch base in southern Russia on schedule at 10:42 am EDT (1442 GMT) and placed into a Sun-synchronous orbit the Picard and Prisma satellites. Picard is a satellite developed by the French space agency CNES to study the Sun, including measuring variations in activity. The Prisma mission, by the Swedish Space Corporation, features two satellites launched together; they will separate to demonstrate autonomous formation flying and rendezvous technologies. The Dnepr also carried a Russian avionics experiment that remained attached to the rocket's upper stage.
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