This photo released by the European Space Agency (ESA) and taken Wednesday, July 30, 2014, shows the liftoff of the Ariane 5 launcher from Europe' spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana, carrying ESA's last Automated Transfer Vehicle to the International Space Station. Arianespace launched a rocket from French Guiana carrying a robotic cargo ship to deliver provisions to the International Space Station. The unmanned "automated transfer vehicle" will bring food, water, oxygen and other supplies for the resident crew aboard the space station. (AP Photo/Stephane Corvaja, ESA)
BRUSSELS: A Soyuz rocket carrying two Galileo satellites, the fifth and sixth of Europe's Galileo global satellite navigation system, lifted off from the spaceport in French Guiana Friday, the European Space Agency (ESA) has announced.
The Soyuz Flight VS09 lifted off at 12.27 p.m. GMT. The two satellites are scheduled to deployed into free-flight orbit three hours and 47 minutes after launch, 23,522 km above the Earth, Xinhua reported citing an ESA statement on its website.
The launch of the two Galileo satellites, originally scheduled for Thursday, was postponed due to unfavourable weather conditions in European spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana.
The two satellites are the first of a new series which is fully owned by the European Union (EU).
The satellites, called Doresa and Milena, were named by two schoolchildren who won an European Union-wide drawing competition.
Galileo is Europe's own global satellite navigation system, providing a highly accurate, guaranteed global positioning service under civilian control.
It is inter-operable with GPS and Glonass, or the US and Russian global satellite navigation systems.
The fully deployed Galileo system will consist of 30 satellites and their ground infrastructure.
Four Galileo satellites have already been launched in pairs in October 2011 and October 2012.
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