Military Review

"Tundra" in space: space group SPRN resumes work


Preparations for the launch of the launch vehicle with the third Tundra satellite, September 26, 2019. Photo by the Russian Ministry of Defense

Currently, the basis of the Russian missile attack warning system (SPRN) are several types of ground-based radars. Current plans for its development include the reconstruction of a group of spacecraft capable of tracking missile launches and providing data on them. The other day it became known that the unified space system (CEN) “Dome” under construction has reached the minimum staffing level.

Fourth apparatus

On June 4, TASS, citing a source in the defense industry, announced the next step in deploying the Dome. So, on May 22, a new launch took place at the Plesetsk cosmodrome, during which the Tundra-type spacecraft, the fourth in its series, was launched into the calculated orbit.

Four of these products make up the minimum standard configuration of the CEN “Dome”, which provides a solution to the tasks. Now the system is able to track the launches of ballistic or space rockets in the United States and other areas and provide information on them.

The devices of the Tundra series are on duty in these orbits and monitor the situation in the northern hemisphere of the planet. According to news of the recent past, in the near future new launches with the commissioning of the next spacecraft should take place. Dates of such starts are not called.

Loss and construction

In 1991-2012. Eight warning satellites from the Oko-1 system were put into orbit. In 1996, this system went on alert and replaced the older Eye. Spacecraft in high elliptical and geostationary orbits could track missile launches on the continental territory of a likely enemy and in patrol areas of his submarines.

Start. Photo by the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation

In 2014, it became known that the bulk of the Oko-1 satellites are no longer functioning, and the rest can only work a few hours a day. By the beginning of 2015, all the devices were out of order, and the Russian SPRN was left without a space echelon. As is now known, ground-based radars for the next few years became the only means of detection and warning.

By the time Oka-1 was completed, work had begun on the fundamentally new CEN Dome. The first launch of its satellite 14F142 “Tundra” was originally planned for the end of 2014, but shifted by almost a year. By the end of the decade, it was planned to put into orbit up to a dozen vehicles, but these plans had to be reviewed. At the moment, only four satellites have been commissioned - the minimum staffing.

The first launch of the Tundra (Cosmos-2510) took place on November 17, 2015 using the Suz-2.1b launch vehicle from the Plesetsk cosmodrome. On May 25, 2017, the launch of the second Cosmos-2518 spacecraft took place. The third satellite (Cosmos-2541) was launched on September 26, 2019. The latest launch so far has taken place on May 22.

In the near future, new launches are expected. To get all the necessary capabilities, nine Tundra products must be placed in orbits. It is also possible to use a backup device, which, if necessary, can replace a failed one. According to the news of the recent past, the formation of a full group will last until 2022-23.

Product "Tundra"

The CEN Dome is built on the basis of the 14F142 Tundra spacecraft. The development of this satellite was carried out in the framework of cooperation between RSC Energia and Comet Corporation. The first created a space platform, the second a payload module with target equipment. As developers of individual units, other organizations were involved in the project.

"Tundra" in space: space group SPRN resumes work

Spacecraft 73D6 from the composition of the "Eye" systems. Figure

The exact tactical and technical characteristics of the Tundra are classified, but its general capabilities are known - as well as its advantages over the satellites of previous generations. New components and instruments used on 14F142 provide the solution of several tasks at once in the context of warning of an attack and command and control of strategic nuclear forces.

The Tundra product is launched into a highly elliptical orbit with a maximum height of 35 thousand km. Four satellites on duty are in different orbits located at an angle to each other. The orbits are selected in such a way that the minimum staffing of the "Dome" provides reliable tracking of the Northern Hemisphere. Accordingly, the new satellites will allow for the search for missiles all over the planet.

The Tundra uses modern infrared observation devices with increased sensitivity and accuracy. They are able to fix the torch of a rocket engine both against the background of outer space or atmosphere, and against the background of the earth. The satellite is capable of detecting the start of a large intercontinental missile or a compact operational-tactical missile with a lower engine power.

The new spacecraft can not only detect the launch, but also monitor the flight of the rocket in its early stages. In this case, the flight path is calculated and the approximate area of ​​the fall of the combat unit is determined. This information is transmitted to ground-based SPRN facilities and is used in further calculations.

The design of the device US-K from the composition of the "Oka". Figure

The Tundra is equipped with a combat control system. With the help of such satellites, the echelons of SPRN and missile defense can exchange data and orders, including on the use of weapons.

Restored features

Until 2014, the Russian SPRN included a space echelon in the form of the Oko-1 early warning system and a set of different types of ground-based radars. Then the space group crashed - but the operation of existing radars and the construction of new ones continued. In parallel, a new CEN “Dome” was being formed, although these works were not very fast.

A few weeks ago, the next Tundra spacecraft went into orbit, which ensured the formation of the minimum working configuration of the Dome system. Thus, now the Russian air defense and missile defense forces have at their disposal a full-fledged SPRN with space and ground echelons complementing each other.

It is not just about simply restoring previously lost opportunities, but also about getting new ones. As before, now the SPRN includes satellites and ground-based radars. However, these are products and complexes of new models with higher characteristics, other functions and increased efficiency. The overall effectiveness of the SPRN directly depends on the characteristics of the stations and spacecraft.

Modern radar SPRN "Voronezh-DM". Photo by the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation

So, modern radars of several projects of the Voronezh family are based on modern components and show high performance. At the same time, they differ in simplicity and speed of construction. It is especially important that now all radars are located only on Russian territory, and our SPRN is not dependent on third countries. New satellites, in turn, can not only determine the very fact of launch, but also provide additional data about the targets.

Comprehensive modernization

In its current form, the Russian SPRN is capable of detecting missile launches earlier and almost immediately identifying possible targets, and then tracking the flight and issuing target designation. First of all, it increases the available time for analyzing the situation and developing a response. The potential of missile defense, which receives new weapons, is also growing.

Thus, the construction and modernization of the systems responsible for the strategic security of the country continues. The restoration of a workable space constellation, now able to solve its tasks, is another important event in this area. The Russian armed forces can again monitor the strategic nuclear forces of a potential enemy from outer space, and this helps to strengthen defense.
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  1. Titsen
    Titsen 11 June 2020 04: 38
    When you learn about the untimely organization and implementation of work to strengthen the country's defense capabilities, you understand how comrade Stalin is lacking.

    Really lacking!
    1. siberalt
      siberalt 11 June 2020 06: 47
      In my Soviet youth, "tundra" was called a not very smart person, those who were previously called "Turks". How fast things are changing ...
      1. siberalt
        siberalt 11 June 2020 07: 06
        It seems that minus the Turkish citizen slapped. laughing
      2. ser56
        ser56 11 June 2020 20: 08
        really strange that not Eye-2 ... request
    2. Civil
      Civil 11 June 2020 07: 28
      Here it would be to understand who carried out the launch of the Ministry of Defense or Roscosmos.
      1. Brancodd
        Brancodd 12 June 2020 18: 54
      2. Brancodd
        Brancodd 12 June 2020 18: 59
        The tasks of Roscosmos, unlike NASA, include both the civilian and military spectrum of tasks. All launches in the interests of the armed forces are carried out by Roscosmos. In addition to launches, the tasks of Roscosmos include the development and production of intercontinental ballistic missiles. Votkinskiy (Yars) and Krasnoyarsk plant (Sarmat), kb. Makeeva, etc.
    3. Nasrat
      Nasrat 11 June 2020 08: 45
      Quote: Titsen
      When you learn about the untimely organization and implementation of work to strengthen the country's defense capabilities, you understand how comrade Stalin is lacking.

      Really lacking!

      Maybe enough to poke at every news of Stalin? And yet ... on the untimely and the implementation of work to strengthen the defense capability - an example to you Stalin Line - there is untimely and not doing work - there was no less than now .....
      1. Selevc
        Selevc 11 June 2020 15: 54
        And yet ... on untimeliness and the implementation of work to strengthen defense capability - an example to you Stalin Line
        The Finns built their Mannerheim line for 20 years and broke through it in two months assaulting frontally and what ??? .. The defenses of the URs were more in the heads of general staff officers than existed in reality and none of the URs during World War II fulfilled its main task - for a long time did not delay the advancing troops ...
      2. English tarantas
        English tarantas 11 June 2020 21: 41
        Given that for Stalin’s line at first there was a lot of money, and then where to spend this money, and also the border moved to both Finnish and European URs and Germans and we shot through without any problems, then we don’t need to compare the need for URs in the 40s and the need for the space component of the SPRN now. URs would still have struck and everyone knew that, but if they had struck, it would not have been a catastrophe, in fact, there would have been no catastrophe, but without SPRN, a future war could end in a day or two, and it was unimaginably sad and scary. The commentator above was completely right, lacking Stalin oh how not enough.
    4. Sckepsis
      Sckepsis 17 June 2020 18: 05
      Of course not enough. To shoot people like you.
  2. Peter Tverdokhlebov
    Peter Tverdokhlebov 11 June 2020 07: 43
    With the help of the resumed operation of the SPRN satellites, will we be able to deliver a counterattack on the enemy (that is, launch all missiles from the silos, from the APU PGRK to the RPM, SLBMs from the base of the SSBNs)?
  3. Operator
    Operator 11 June 2020 11: 51
    The most important difference between Tundra and previous domestic satellites for optical detection of ballistic missile launches is the ability to independently determine the trajectory of a missile flight without using a ground computing center, which makes it possible to determine the threat to the territory of Russia within a few seconds after the missile launch is detected (in the absence of cloud cover) or the operation of the rocket engine after lifting the rocket over the cloudiness - along the flight path.

    The place of launch of the rocket and / or the spectrum of the rocket torch allows determining the nationality of the enemy.

    This multiplies the time for the reaction of the Supreme High Command, Strategic Rocket Forces and the Russian Missile Defense to the fact of a missile attack.
  4. Mikle2000
    Mikle2000 11 June 2020 11: 56
    It would be interesting to know whether a stock of components for new devices has been created