Ukrainian Sich-2-30 satellite shows up in US Space Force database

18 February 2022, 05:33 AM

The recently-launched Ukrainian Sich-2-30 satellite has appeared in U.S. Space Force databases, after falling out of contact not long after launch, according to a Facebook post by Servant of the People MP Roman Hryshchuk on Feb. 16.

 According to Hryshchuk, who is chairman of the parliamentary committee on education, science, and innovation, this means that the Space Force was able to establish a stable connection with the satellite, and was able to identify it beyond simply classifying it as random space debris.

“In the catalog, this is space object 51030 with the preliminary name Object AY. Now it is already displayed on the visualization as Sich-2−30 (Sich-2−1)! Thus, flight development tests of the Earth observation satellite Sich-2-30 (Sich-2-1) are continuing, which should be completed in mid-March,” Hryshchuk wrote.

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The satellite can be found using space object tracking service Celestrak. The Yuzhnoye Design Office, and the National Space Facilities Control and Test Center, both responsible for either manufacture or maintenance of the satellite, have not yet commented on this report.

On Jan. 13, the Sich-2-30 satellite was launched into its target orbit by a SpaceX Falcon 9 launch vehicle.

Following the satellite’s launch, the Yuzhnoye Design Office said that it was not possible to establish a stable connection with the satellite, due to “a number of external factors associated with cluster launch features.” However, the satellite managed to reboot on its own and resume operating in power-saving mode.

Ukraine has not launched its own satellite into space since 2011, when the Sich-2-30 satellite was assembled. The Yuzhnoye Design Office insists that the satellite’s components had been brought up to modern standards since then.

The digital images provided by the satellite may be used in agriculture, forestry, mapping, water resources control, emergency and disaster monitoring, as well as in security and defense “when illegal actions are detected,” the Office of the President of Ukraine has stated.

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