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Minotaur 4 launches technology demonstration satellites
Posted: Sat, Nov 20, 2010, 8:25 AM ET (1325 GMT)
Minotaur 4 launch of STP-S26 (NASA) A Minotaur 4 successfully placed a group of civil and military science and technology demonstration satellites into orbit Friday night. The Minotaur 4 lifted off from the Kodiak Launch Complex in Alaska at 8:25 pm EST Friday (0125 GMT Saturday) and placed six spacecraft into orbit. The primary payload was the 180-kilogram STPSat-2, a 180-kilogram satellite from the Air Force's Space Test Program to test sensors and related technologies. The rocket also carries several NASA spacecraft, including the Organism/Organic Exposure to Orbital Stresses or O/OREOS science spacecraft and the Fast Affordable Science and Technology Satellite (FASTSAT) tech demo mission; that spacecraft will deploy another satellite, NanoSail-D2, designed to demonstrate solar sail concepts. The Minotaur 4 is a rocket that uses recycled Peacekeeper IBCM motors for its lower stages; this was the second orbital launch for the rocket. The launch was also the first orbital mission from Kodiak since 2001.
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