July 10, 2008

Converted Russian Missile to Launch Satellites for Germany

BAIKONUR, Kazakhstan. July 10 (Interfax-AVN) - An intercontinental ballistic missile was shipped from a Russian Strategic Missile Forces arsenal to the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan early on Thursday in order to be converted into a rocket that will launch satellites for Germany, a cosmodrome source said.

The space launch vehicle of the Dnepr class into which the RS-20 missile will be converted will put in orbit five remote sensing satellites for Germany's RapidEye space mission during a flight preliminarily scheduled to start August 13.

Turning RS-20 missiles into Dnepr rockets involves "an insignificant amount of work," the source told Interfax-AVN.

Dnepr rockets are launched from a silo at Baikonur.

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