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I'm just wondering how long it takes satellites from launch to orbiting in MEO.

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closed as unclear what you're asking by Hohmannfan, duzzy, TildalWave, ForgeMonkey, Fred Mar 18 '16 at 2:42

Please clarify your specific problem or add additional details to highlight exactly what you need. As it's currently written, it’s hard to tell exactly what you're asking. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • $\begingroup$ This is a very broad question, that can vary considerably depending on the exact type of orbit, rocket, fuel spent, etc. You could ask for something like the shortest orbit to a GPS satellite's orbit, for instance, but as this stands, it's a bit broad. $\endgroup$ – PearsonArtPhoto Mar 18 '16 at 12:43
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It will vary quite a bit with the exact MEO orbit and launcher used, but typically it would be something like:

  • 10-15 minutes launch from surface to a MEO transfer orbit
  • Coasting to apogee, anywhere from half an hour to several hours
  • Circularization burn taking a few minutes

That gets the satellite into the desired orbit, but the satellite's mission may require it to be in a particular position in that orbit as well; depending on the satellite's capabilities, the phasing maneuvers could take days or even weeks (for ion thruster-powered sats, e.g.) to carry out.

Here's a typical example of a launch to 20,000km circular orbit inclined at 55º:

  • ~4 minutes ascent on the first stage
  • ~13 minutes on the second stage
  • 3 hour coast to apogee
  • about 1.5 minute circularization burn
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