The Russia Aerospace Force successfully launches a Glonass-M navigation satellite into orbit , the Russian Defense Ministry disclosed in a statement.
A Soyuz-2.1B carrier rocket blasted off from northwest Russia’s Plesetsk Cosmodrome at 9:23 a.m. Moscow time (0623 GMT), and the navigation satellite has been working normally in space.
Glonass is a global navigation system operated by the Russian Aerospace Force for both military and civilian use.
Rockets are known to trigger lightning as they ascend through thick clouds or thunderstorms. Famous past incidents of lightning striking a launch vehicle include the Apollo 12 moon mission’s Saturn 5 rocket,
Which was hit by lightning twice in the first minute after liftoff from Florida in November 1969, with the discharge following the Saturn’s exhaust plume to the ground.
It is a Russian equivalent to the U.S. Global Positioning System and China’s BeiDou navigation system, providing real-time positioning and speed data for land, sea and airborne receivers worldwide.