The Ekran system (a.k.a. Stationar-T) was the Soviet Union's first operational geosynchronous satellite and the worlds first direct-to-home TV service. It provided colour television broadcast to Siberia and the Far North.
After discarding early exotic concepts of nuclear powered satellites requiring a Fluorine/Amine upperstage, the Ekran concept settled to a more conventional spacecraft. The KAUR-3 bus, which was introduced with the Raduga spacecraft, became the standard for soviet geosynchronous communication satellites. It was 3-axis stabilized using liquid propellant micro-engines and had a pointin accuracy of within 0.25 degrees of the earth's centre. The single-unit body was equipped with solar panels, and active liquid-gas phase-change thermoregulation system, and a corrective engine unit for making orbital adjustments. 25 square meters of solar panels provided 1280 W of power.
Ekran featured a 12 square meter phased array antenna, operating at 702-726 MHz at 200 W power.
The first flights used experimental satellites, but they already allowed 18 to 20 million additional Soviet citizens to see the Central Television program. Operations were delayed due to continuing problems with the Proton launch vehicle, which caused the loss sof several Ekran satellites.
In 1980 the system was accepted for operational service. The satellite broadcast 12 to 16 hours of television programming daily. By 1982 3000 receivers were in operation.
|Nation:||USSR / Russia|
|Type / Application:||Communication, direct broadcasting|
|Contractors:||NPO Prikladnoi Mekhaniki (NPO PM)|
|Equipment:||1 (+1) UHF 200 W transponder, C-band uplink|
|Power:||2 deployable solar arrays, batteries|
|Ekran 1 (Ekran 11L)||26.10.1976||TB LC-81/24||Proton-K Blok-DM|
|Ekran 2 (Ekran 12L)||20.09.1977||TB LC-200/40||Proton-K Blok-DM|
|Ekran (3a) (Ekran 13L)||27.05.1978||TB LC-200/40||F||Proton-K Blok-DM|
|Ekran (3b) (Ekran 15L)||17.08.1978||TB LC-200/40||F||Proton-K Blok-DM|
|Ekran (3c) (Ekran 14L)||17.10.1978||TB LC-200/40||F||Proton-K Blok-DM|
|Ekran 3 (Ekran 16L)||21.02.1979||TB LC-200/40||Proton-K Blok-DM|
|Ekran 4 (Ekran 17L)||03.10.1979||TB LC-200/40||Proton-K Blok-DM|
|Ekran 5 (Ekran 19L)||14.07.1980||TB LC-200/40||Proton-K Blok-DM|
|Ekran 6 (Ekran 20L)||26.12.1980||TB LC-200/40||Proton-K Blok-DM|
|Ekran 7 (Ekran 21L)||25.06.1981||TB LC-200/40||Proton-K Blok-DM|
|Ekran 8 (Ekran 22L)||05.02.1982||TB LC-200/40||Proton-K Blok-DM|
|Ekran (9a) (Ekran 23L)||22.07.1982||TB LC-200/40||F||Proton-K Blok-DM|
|Ekran 9 (Ekran 24L)||16.09.1982||TB LC-200/40||Proton-K Blok-DM|
|Ekran 10 (Ekran 18L)||12.03.1983||TB LC-200/40||Proton-K Blok-DM|
|Ekran 11 (Ekran 25L)||29.09.1983||TB LC-200/40||Proton-K Blok-DM|
|Ekran 12 (Ekran 26L)||16.03.1984||TB LC-200/39||Proton-K Blok-DM|
|Ekran 13 (Ekran 27L)||24.08.1984||TB LC-200/39||Proton-K Blok-DM|
|Ekran 14 (Ekran 28L)||22.03.1985||TB LC-200/40||Proton-K Blok-DM|
|Ekran 15 (Ekran 30L)||24.05.1986||TB LC-200/39||Proton-K Blok-DM|
|Ekran 16 (Ekran 29L)||03.09.1987||TB LC-200/39||Proton-K Blok-DM|
|Ekran 17 (Ekran 31L)||06.05.1988||TB LC-200/39||Proton-K Blok-DM|