Photos: Soyuz launches French military satellite

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Check out imagery from Arianespace and the French space agency showing the launch of a Russian Soyuz rocket Dec. 29 from the Guiana Space Center in South America.

The Soyuz ST-A rocket and Fregat upper stage delivered the French military’s CSO 2 optical reconnaissance satellite to an orbit around 300 miles (480 kilometers) above Earth after blasting off from the French Guiana spaceport at 11:42 a.m. EST (1642 GMT; 1:42 p.m. local time) on Dec. 29.

The CSO 2 satellite, built by Airbus with an optical telescope from Thales Alenia Space, is designed to provide very high resolution images to the French Armed Forces.

Read our full story for details on the mission.

Credit: ESA/CNES/Arianespace – Photo Optique Video du CSG – P. Piron
Credit: ESA/CNES/Arianespace – Photo Optique Video du CSG – P. Piron
Credit: ESA/CNES/Arianespace – Photo Optique Video du CSG – P. Piron
Credit: ESA/CNES/Arianespace – Photo Optique Video du CSG – P. Piron
Credit: ESA/CNES/Arianespace – Photo Optique Video du CSG – P. Piron
Credit: ESA/CNES/Arianespace – Photo Optique Video du CSG – P. Piron
Credit: ESA/CNES/Arianespace – Photo Optique Video du CSG – P. Piron
Credit: ESA/CNES/Arianespace – Photo Optique Video du CSG
Credit: ESA/CNES/Arianespace – Photo Optique Video du CSG – P. Piron
Credit: ESA/CNES/Arianespace – Photo Optique Video du CSG – P. Piron
Credit: ESA/CNES/Arianespace – Photo Optique Video du CSG – P. Piron
Credit: ESA/CNES/Arianespace – Photo Optique Video du CSG – P. Piron
Credit: ESA/CNES/Arianespace – Photo Optique Video du CSG – P. Piron
Credit: ESA/CNES/Arianespace – Photo Optique Video du CSG – P. Piron

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