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A joint European-Russian company established in 1996 to market commercial launches of Soyuz spacecraft. Starsem oversees the marketing and management of commercial launch services, including mission preparations at the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, payload deployment, and satellite tracking. Its headquarters are in Paris, France.

The company launched the European Space Agency's (ESA's) Mars Expres probe on 2 June 2003. In March 2004 it signed a contract with Arianespace and the ESA to launch two experimental Galileo satellites on Soyuz rockets, the first by 2005.

Starsem is composed of four space organizations: the European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company (EADS), Arianespace, the Russian space agency Rosaviakosmos, and the Samara Space Centre in Russia.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics.

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