July 31, 2017 / 2:37 PM / a year ago

Two Israeli-made observation satellites to launch this week -IAI

JERUSALEM, July 31 (Reuters) - Two Israeli-built observation satellites will be sent into space this week, Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) said on Monday, the first launch since a SpaceX rocket explosion last year dealt a blow to the country’s satellite industry.

The OPTSAT3000, to be used by Italy’s Ministry of Defense, and Venus, which will help the Israeli and French space agencies research the environment, are scheduled to launch late on Tuesday from French Guiana.

State-owned IAI, which built both satellites, said it would be the first ever double launch for Israel.

The country’s satellite industry suffered a big setback last September when communications satellite Amos-6 was destroyed in the explosion of a Falcon 9 rocket belonging to Elon Musk’s SpaceX at Cape Canaveral in Florida. (Reporting by Ari Rabinovitch; Editing by Steven Scheer)

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