Soyuz Launch of O3b Satellites Delayed by High Winds

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KOUROU, French Guiana — The planned June 24 launch of the fifth flight of the Europeanized Soyuz rocket carrying four O3b Ka-band high-throughput satellites has been scrubbed because of high winds over the spaceport here, according to O3b officials.

The launch has been rescheduled for June 25.

The potential wind shear at 12 to 14 kilometers in altitude forced the delay, which was announced before the vehicle was fueled.

O3b Networks, based in Britain’s Channel Islands, has booked three Soyuz launches, each carrying four 700-kilogram satellites, scheduled to occur in June and September of this year and in early 2014.

The satellites are designed to operate in an unusual 8,063-kilometer orbit over the equator to provide high-speed, low-latency broadband links to land-, air- and sea-based users between 45 degrees north and 45 degrees south latitude.