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Molniya-3K (14F33)

Molniya-3K [NPO PM]

The Molniya-3K series satellites are improved versions of the Molniya-3 satellites. As their precedessors, they provide both civil and military communications for Russia.

The Molniya were Soviet communication satellites operating from an inclined highly elliptical earth orbit of 500 km × 40000 km with 12 hour period for coverage of high northern latitudes.

The Molniya satellites feature a unique configuration. The pressurized, three-axis stabilized KAUR-2 satellite bus features six non-articulated solar arrays and is operated in a sun-pointed mode. The antennas are mounted on two telescopic arms and are pointable. Each antenna features an optical tracking system which provides information to direct one of the two antennas to the Earth.

The KAUR-2 bus features the 11D414NS engine on Molniya-3K.

The Molniya-3K satellite are equipped with Omega-S transponders.

Nation: Russia
Type / Application: Communication
Operator:
Contractors: NPO Prikladnoi Mekhaniki (NPO PM)
Equipment:
Configuration: KAUR-2
Propulsion: 11D414NS
Power: 6 deployable solar arrays (1470 W), batteries
Lifetime: 5 years
Mass: 1740 kg
Orbit: 500 km × 40000 km, 62.8 (typical)
Satellite COSPAR Date LS Launch Vehicle Remarks
Molniya-3K 11L (Molniya-3K 1) 2001-030A 20.07.2001 Pl LC-43/4 Molniya-M (Blok-ML)
Molniya-3K 12L (Molniya-3K 2) 2005-F01 21.06.2005 Pl LC-16/2 F Molniya-M (Blok-ML)
Molniya-3K 13L (#3) - 2010 ? Pl Molniya-M (Blok-ML) cancelled
Further Molniya missions: