17 Dec 2019 12:26

Launch of Soyuz-ST-A rocket carrying European satellites delayed for one day due to faulty control system - Roscosmos

MOSCOW. Dec 17 (Interfax) - The launch of a Soyuz rocket carrying five European satellites from the Kourou Space Center in French Guiana has been delayed for a day due to a faulty control system, Roscosmos said in a statement.

"Automatic equipment detected a failure of the control system in the course of final operations carried out before launching the Soyuz-ST-A LV and a set of commercial satellites," Roscosmos said.

"Causes are being analyzed in order to fix the defect. A decision has been made to move the launch to 11:54 a.m. Moscow time on the alternate date, December 18, 2019," it said.

The launch of the Soyuz rocket with the Fregat-MT booster stage was scheduled to take place at 11:54 a.m. Moscow time on December 17.

The Russian rocket was due to transport the European Space Agency (ESA) telescope CHEOPS (CHaracterising ExOPlanets Satellite) which is designed to search for and study exo-planets, the Italian dual-use remote sensing satellite of the COSMO-SkyMed series, and three micro-satellites, including the French research nano-satellites EyeSat and ANGELS.

Russian rockets are launched from Kourou in South America consistent with the Soyuz at the Guiana Space Center program of cooperation between Roscosmos and the ESA, which began in 2007. Soyuz-ST-B launch pads were built in Kourou for this purpose.