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Russia to Launch New Spy Satellite

The Russian military will launch a new reconnaissance satellite from the Plesetsk space center in northern Russia on June 8, a space industry source said.

"A Russian military satellite will be launched on board a Soyuz-2.1b carrier rocket from the Plesetsk launch site on June 8," the source, who asked to remain anonymous, told RIA-Novosti on Thursday.

According to previous reports, the satellite is the second in the new Persona series of electro-optical reconnaissance satellites based on the Resurs DK remote sensing satellite.

The first Persona satellite (Kosmos 2441) was launched onto a sun synchronous orbit in July 2008 but reportedly malfunctioned in February 2009 due to a failure in electronic components.

Russia operates a network of about 60-70 military reconnaissance satellites, featuring updated imaging technology and an extended lifetime of up to seven years, according to open sources.

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