Russian Military and Dual-Purpose Spacecraft: Latest Status and Operational Overview
Author: Anatoly Zak | Creator and Publisher, RussianSpaceWeb.com
In this CNA Occasional Paper, Anatoly Zak, a noted expert on the Russian space program, examines Russia’s military and dual-purpose spacecraft. He discusses the resurgence of the Russian space program in the past two decades, both the military and civilian components. The paper identifies different satellite classes operated by both the country’s military and the civilian space agency, providing a detailed overview of radar imagery and early warning technologies in service today. Zak provides a detailed description of antisatellite capabilities in Russian service, and goes over some of the significant detriments to further progress, such as corruption and quality control issue in the Russian space service. He argues that the “growing pains” of the Russian space industry in the post-Soviet period could eventually be resolved or at least mitigated, allowing more effective use of available resources, cutting the development time, and producing more reliable systems in the future.