AMERICAN SATELLITE LOST, DAMAGE UNDISCLOSED

American satellite Quick Bird launched today from the Plesetsk cosmodrome has failed to reach the targeted orbit. The Russian Space Agency has told Pravda.ru that the circumstances of the failure are now being clarified. It is clear by now, though, that the satellite is lost. The press service of the Strategic Rocket Forces (which are responsible for the launch) told our corespondent that the 2nd stage of the Cosmos-3M rocket carrier seems to have malfunctioned. As a result, the satellite, instead of the orbit, went along the ballistic trajectory. Apparently, American space ship has just burnt in the atmosphere. It is not clear so far whether the satellite was insured. Neither is it known whether the Russian side will have to pay the damages.