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"Space: Kosmos 2558" Topic


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Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP24 Nov 2022 8:09 p.m. PST

"The United States accuses Russia of deliberately launching their Kosmos 2558 satellite on August 1st and placing it in the same orbit as a new American spy satellite launched in February. Within 24 hours of launch Kosmos 2558 locked into the same orbit as the new American surveillance satellite, but 60 kilometers away and clearly capable of getting closer. This is what is known as an "inspector satellite" that closely examines other satellites to determine their capabilities and weaknesses.


Kosmos 2558 is not the first Russian inspector satellite. Since mid-2017 Russia has been putting into orbit maneuverable satellites that have been practicing, and obviously improving, their ability to get close to the most recently launched American espionage satellites. Kosmos 2542 was launched in November 2019 and was soon maneuvering very close to the new KH-11 photo satellite (also called USA 245). By late January 2019, Kosmos 2542 was within 298 kilometers (186 miles) of USA 245 and still closing in.

Back in 2017, Russia said its "inspection satellites" were for checking up on Russian satellites to closely examine damage or equipment failure with the intention of using such data to improve satellite design, or eventually enable repair or refueling satellites to restore crippled satellites to working order or just refuel satellites that use a lot of fuel to change orbits. This was one of the functions the American Space Shuttle program provided, using trained astronauts to make repairs. The Space Shuttle program was far more expensive than originally planned and it was not worth the cost. The last shuttle mission was in 2011. It was cheaper just to send new satellites up although the U.S. Air Force has had its X-37B unmanned mini-space shuttle launched and returned by itself several times since 2011. The X-37B stays in orbit for up to two years before returning. The air force won't say exactly what it is doing up there…"


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Armand

SBminisguy25 Nov 2022 8:00 a.m. PST

ASAT sats…lovely

Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP25 Nov 2022 3:01 p.m. PST

(smile)

Armand

Thresher0127 Nov 2022 10:49 a.m. PST

Reminds me of the olde Bond movie where the evil guy captures a US space vehicle.

The truth is frequently stranger, if not as good as fiction.

Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP27 Nov 2022 3:07 p.m. PST

Ha!…


Armand

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