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  Friday, February 21, 2020
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The launch of a modified Zenit carrier rocket with an Israeli
The launch of a modified Zenit carrier rocket with an Israeli communications satellite on board from the Baikonur space center in Kazakhstan has been postponed until Monday, a Russian space agency spokesman said Friday.

The Zenit-3SLB rocket was scheduled to orbit the Israeli AMOS-3 satellite on Thursday after a number of delays, but was put off until Friday and then postponed indefinitely again. The rocket and the satellite will remain at the launch pad.

The launch was called off at the last minute due to a malfunction in the device used to raise the rocket into its launch position.

Russia started preparations for the first launch of a three-stage Zenit-3SLB rocket from a land-based launch site in October last year.

All previous launches of this type of Zenit rocket were conducted as part of the Sea Launch program from the Pacific Ocean.

The $170-mln Israeli satellite is to join the AMOS-2 satellite, replacing AMOS-1. It would increase capacity, expand coverage, and enhance direct cross-Atlantic links connecting the Mideast to Europe and the U.S. East Coast, according to the fleet's operator, Space Communications Ltd.


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