March 21 (UPI) -- A Soyuz rocket carried 34 satellites toward orbit from Kazakhstan on time at 1:06 p.m. EDT Saturday in the third such launch for OneWeb spacecraft made in Florida.
The launch will boost OneWeb's global network of satellites to 74 as it strives to provide high-speed Internet access to remote areas.
OneWeb previously launched 40 satellites from space centers in Kazakhstan and South America. Saturday's launch came from Russia's Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on a Soyuz rocket purchased through French space firm Arianespace.
OneWeb is one of several U.S. companies competing to launch vast new constellations of satellites to provide high-speed, reliable internet around the globe.
SpaceX has the largest constellation so far, at 362 satellites, and plans for up to 42,000.
OneWeb Satellites, a subsidiary and a joint venture with European aerospace company Airbus, opened a satellite factory in Florida in 2019.
The company said it dedicated Saturday's launch to the late Russian cosmonaut Alexei Leonov, who became the first person to walk in space in 1965. He died in October.
OneWeb satellites are about the size of a small refrigerator. The spacecraft will be headed to a near-polar orbit about 280 miles up, after which they travel to their final orbit of approximately 745 miles high.