Launch of CSO-2 optical/infrared satellite gives France a ‘tip and cue’ reconnaissance capability

by Peter B. de Selding

LANRELAS, France — The successful Dec. 29 launch of the French-led CSO-2 optical and infrared reconnaissance satellite gives military users in France, Germany, Sweden and Belgium access to a tip-and-cue system with satellites in different orbits and performing different functions.

CSO-2, placed into a 480-kilometer, 97.3-degree-inclination orbit aboard an Arianespace Soyuz rocket operating from Europe’s Guiana Space Center, follows the CSO-1 satellite launched in December 2018 and operating from 800 kilometers. The final CSO-3 satellite, expected to launch . . .

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