An upper stage Block DM has completed the orbital insertion of three navigation satellites belonging to the Russian GLOobal NAvigation Satellite System (GLONASS) into their target low-Earth orbit.

The upper stage carrying the spacecraft was launched from a low-Earth orbit into which they had been put by a Proton-K launch vehicle launched from Baikonur on December 25 at 08:07 Moscow Time. In accordance with the mission profile, after two consecutive flawless burns of the upper stage main engine, the spacecraft separated from the upper stage and switched to free-flight mode at 11:39 Moscow Time.

The upper stage stand-alone processing at the launch site and its processing when integrated into the orbital module and into the integrated launch vehicle were conducted under technical direction of S.P.Korolev RSC Energia. The technical director was the first vice president of the Corporation, first deputy designer general V.I.Verkhoturov.

The launch and monitoring of the upper stage operations were supported by the Corporation specialists.

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For the upper stages of Block D and DM types that was the 255th successful mission since they have been put into operation and the 7th launch in 2005.

Upper stages of Block D and DM type developed and manufactured by S.P.Korolev RSC Energia were designed for transporting spacecraft from low-Earth orbits to high-energy orbits, including GEO, as well as for spacecraft injection into trajectories that would take them to the Moon and planets of our solar system.

They have been in use since 1967, there have been 11 modifications, out of which 6 have been developed since mid-1990s. They are power by environmentally friendly propellant components (liquid oxygen and kerosene). Currently they are operated together with heavy-class LV Proton-K and medium-class LV Zenit-2S included into the sea-going space launcher system Sea Launch.