Olimp-K, also designated Luch-Kh, is a Russian geostationary satellite built for the Russian Ministry of Defence and the Russian intelligence agency FSB. The objectives of the missions have not been published.
According a Komersant report, the satellite will serve in a dual role: One being electronic intelligence (SIGINT) and the other is providing secure communications for governmental use. The Luch designation hints to a data relay role. Therefore the Olimp-K designation might relate to the SIGINT payload while the Luch designation relates to the data relay payload. Another source reports, that the satellite is to provide navigation correction signals for the GLONASS system. An onboard laser communciations device has also been reported.
A connection to the Yenisey A1 (Luch 4) experimental satellite has also been speculated, but could not be substantiated.
Olimp is built on ISS Reshetnev's Ekspress-1000NTA bus with a launch mass of about 3000 kg. It is likely, that it will get a Kosmos designator after launch. Reportedly it will be located at the 167° east position. Reportedly the busses were repurposed from canceled communucation satellite projects, likely further Yamal 300K and Yamal-500 satellites.
The satellite was launched in September 2014. Seven months later, it moved to a position at 18.1° west directly between the Intelsat 7 and Intelsat 901 satellites, which are located within half a degree of one another in geostationary orbit 36,000 kilometers above the equator. In late September 2015, the satellite moved again to a location at 24.4° west longitude, right next to the Intelsat 905 satellite at 24.5° west. These colocation maneuvres caused criticism from Intelsat. In 2018 it maneuvered close to the Athena-Fidus satellite, causing again concerns for espionage.
A second satellite of this type was launched in March 2023.
|Type / Application:||Communications / SIGINT ?|
|Power:||2 deployable solar arrays, batteries|
|Mass:||~ 3000 kg|
|Luch-Kh/Olimp-K 1||2014-058A||27.09.2014||Ba LC-81/24||Proton-M Briz-M (Ph.3)|
|Luch-Kh/Olimp-K 2||2023-031A||12.03.2023||Ba LC-200/39||Proton-M Briz-M (Ph.3)|