Russia says contact with satellite lost after launch

MOSCOW -- The Russian space agency says that a weather satellite has failed to enter a designated orbit following its launch, another blow to the nation's space program.

Roscosmos says it has failed to establish communications with the Meteor M 2-1 satellite that was launched atop a Soyuz-2 booster rocket Tuesday from Russia's new Vostochny launch pad in the Far East. The agency says it's trying to determine what happened.

Russia Space
A Russian Soyuz 2.1b rocket carrying Meteor M satellite and additional 18 small satellites, flies in the sky at the new Vostochny cosmodrome outside the city of Tsiolkovsky, about 125 miles from the city of Blagoveshchensk in the far eastern Amur region, Russia, Nov. 28, 2017. AP

Russian news agencies reported the likely cause was the failure of the booster's final stage, the Fregat. The booster also carried 18 micro satellites built in Canada, Germany, Japan, Norway, Russia, Sweden and the United States.

The glitch follows other failed launches in recent years that tarnished the reputation of Russian space industries. Some of the glitches were traced to manufacturing flaws.