NASA launches new communications satellite into space [PressTV]
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US space agency, NASA has launched its third-generation satellite into orbit in an attempt to strengthen the communication network between Earth and the International Space Station.
It's a Tracking and Data Relay Satellite and will be a member of NASA's global communications system. The satellite is expected to allow for nearly uninterrupted video and data transmission between ground controllers and the space station. The network also supports the Hubble Space Telescope and a number of other scientific crafts. Of the 11 previous TDRS satellites, six are currently in service. The newly launched one will serve as an extra spare. It cost about 350 million dollars and has a 15-year design life-time. The next spacecraft in this series will be ready in late 2015.