P.CARRIL / ESA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY P.CARRIL / ESA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
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Rockot (or Rokot) launcher carrying Swarm satellites, artwork. Rockot is a Russian liquid-fuelled space launch vehicle which can carry a payload of 1,950 kilograms. It can reignite its engine during flight allowing satellites to be placed in different orbits. The payload of three identical satellites (top) make up the European Space Agency's Swarm mission, designed to gather data for modelling the Earth's geomagnetic field. The satellites, named Alpha, Bravo and Charlie, are currently in orbit, two almost side-by-side at the same altitude and the third satellite in a higher orbit at a slightly different inclination. They were successfully launched by Rockot from Plesetsk Cosmodrome, Russia, on 22nd November 2013.
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