Two satellites for Europe’s Galileo navigation network lifted off at sunset Friday aboard a Soyuz rocket from a tropical launch pad at the edge of South America’s Amazon rainforest.
The 15-story Soyuz rocket fired its kerosene-fueled engines and vaulted away from the Guiana Space Center in French Guiana at 6:46 p.m. local time (2146 GMT; 5:46 p.m. EDT), about six minutes after sunset. The rocket’s Fregat upper stage successfully delivered the Galileo satellites to orbit nearly 15,000 miles above Earth about 3 hours, 48 minutes later.
Look back at the picturesque liftoff with a video replay and launch photos.
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