The UK Ministry of Defence has launched its latest Skynet satellite.
The Skynet 5C satellite will be capable of beaming communication signals between headquarters in the UK and British forces deployed around the world once initial testing is complete.
Work is now beginning to correctly position the satellite in order to establish full operating capability.
Skynet 5C will be employed as an in-orbit reserve for Skynets 5A and 5B, which were launched in 2007.
Minister for Defence Equipment and Support Baroness Taylor said the Skynet 5 constellation is a huge step forward in data capacity.
"With the successful commissioning of Skynets 5A and 5B, and now the launch of Skynet 5C, we have a very significant improvement in our global communications systems and the means of assuring it."
By Elizabeth Clifford-Marsh