News Satellite

Soyuz launch of O3b satellites delayed

High winds force 24-hour postponement, countdown continues rn

The planned June 24 launch of the fifth flight of the Soyuz rocket carrying four O3b Ka-band, high-throughput satellites has been delayed for 24 hours due to high winds over the Sinnamary spaceport in French Guiana, according to O3b officials.

The launch has been rescheduled for June 25.

The potential wind shear at 12-14 km in altitude forced the delay, which was announced before the vehicle was fueled.

O3b Networks, based in Britain’s Channel Islands, has booked three Soyuz launches, each carrying four 700-kg satellites, scheduled to occur in June and September of this year and in early 2014.

The satellites are designed to operate in an unusual 8,063-km orbit over the equator to provide high-speed, low-latency broadband links to land-, air- and sea-based users between 45 degrees north and 45 degrees south latitude.