Two Planet Labs Satellites Launched into Orbit

One of the first images released by Planet Labs. (Credit: Planet Labs)
One of the first images released by Planet Labs. (Credit: Planet Labs)

Two Planet Labs satellites — Dove 3 and Dove 4 — were sent aboard a Ukrainian-Russian Dnepr in the second record-breaking launch of the week.

The American start-up company’s two Earth imaging satellites were among 32 spacecraft successfully deployed into orbit. This breaks the record of 29 satellites launched by a U.S. Air Force Minotaur I rocket on Tuesday evening.

The first two Dove satellites were launched into space in April as secondary payloads on an Orbital Sciences Corporation Antares launch vehicle. These small satellites provide high resolution images of the Earth.

Early next year, the company plans to launch Flock 1, which it describes as “the world’s largest constellation of Earth observing satellites.”

The Dnepr’s payloads also included the United Arab Emirates’ DubaiSat-2,  South Korea’s Science and Technology Satellite 3 (STSAT-3), and Skybox’s SkySat-1.