Ekran-M telecommunications satellite orbited

The three blocks of the new Proton-M booster worked as expected, bringing the Briz-M booster stage and the Ekran-M telecommunications satellite into a reference orbit, after which the engines of the booster stage were turned off, RIA Novosti was told by Sergei Zhiltsov, press secretary of the Khrunichev space design and production centre, which produced the booster and the booster stage.

The satellite headed for the estimated point of its geosynchronous orbit over a specified part of the Earth at an altitude of 36,000 kilometres. The satellite will cover the distance in about six hours, after which it will part from the booster stage at 2:31 p.m., Moscow time, on April 7. After reaching the estimated point in its geosynchronous orbit, the satellite will start relaying television programmes of the central television directly to Siberia and the Far East. "In this way it will take over from the previous relay satellite, whose warranty service time expired in mid-March this year," Zhiltsov said.