|Russia Carrying Out Military Satellite Operations
Aviation Week & Space Technology
09/24/2007, page 23
New Russian military reconnaissance and navigation spacecraft operations are underway. On Sept. 11, a Russian Parus navigation satellite was launched into a 943 X 1,008-km. orbit inclined 83 deg. The mission was launched from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome on a small Cosmos 3B booster. The Parus navsat constellation operates with a minimum of six spacecraft, providing specialized navigation data and store-dump radio communications to Russian naval forces and ballistic missile submarines. In reconnaissance operations, a Russian Kobal’t-M-class imaging satellite landed on Aug. 22 after 76 days aloft. Launched as Cosmos 2427, this new class of reconnaissance satellite has two small film pods that it ejects midway through its mission, before the spacecraft’s larger reentry vehicle containing film and the reusable camera system is also returned to Earth for recovery.