A Proton rocket lifts off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. Image credit: Roscosmos

Aug 20, 2015 Proton rocket explained

Sen—Preparations are currently underway at the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan for the August 28 launch of a Proton rocket with the Inmarsat-5 F3 satellite. It will be a return-to-flight mission for the Russian commercial workhorse after the launch failure on May 16. If successful, the make-or-break launch will open the floodgates for a busy flight manifest during the rest of the year, culminating with a historic launch of the European ExoMars-2016 mission at the beginning of the next year.

Below is visual guide to the Proton rocket, illustrating its current design, the history of the Proton family and a typical flight profile during the delivery of a satellite to an initial parking orbit.