Proton-M/Briz-M Launch: Ekspress-AMU3 and AMU7 Satellites

The Russian Khrunichev State Research and Production Space Center is scheduled to launch a Proton-M rocket carrying two Ekspress communication satellites to geostationary orbit for The Russian Satellite Communication Company. Launch is scheduled for 12:07 UTC on 2021-12-13.

This is a Roscosmos live stream with commentary in Russian, but with status banners that alternate between Russian and English. Here is an Everyday Astronaut prelaunch preview of the mission. This is the second flight of the Proton-M in 2021, with the first launching the Nauka module to the International Space Station.

The launch was successful (at least through completion of the third stage burn and insertion of the payloads and Briz-M upper stage into its initial parking orbit). The live stream does not cover the subsequent injection into geostationary transfer orbit. I have cued the replay to start one minute before liftoff. This is a “classic” Russian launch—Russians do not count down.