Russian military launches Bars-M 3 cartography reconnaissance satellite on Cosmos 2503 rocket

by | May 19, 2022 | Launches, Military space, Russia, Satellites

The Russian Ministry of Defence has successfully launched a Soyuz 2-1A from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome in Northern Russia at 0803 GMT on 19 May 2022. The rocket is thought to have launched an electro-optical area surveillance satellite to a lower Earth Orbit (LEO) Sun-synchronous orbit. The satellite, which has since been given the codename Cosmos 2556 (Kosmos 2556), is thought to be Bars-M 3, the third in a series of Bars-M used to provide stereoscopic cartography. Its predecessors include the Cosmos 2503 (Bars-M 1) was launched in February 2015 and the Cosmos 2515 (Bars-M 2) launched just over a year later.

Around nine minutes after launch, the third stage of the Soyuz 2-1A completed orbital insertion with the deployment of the 4,000 kg satellite. Within half an hour Russian military confirmed that the satellite had reached its planned orbit.

Derek Goddard contributed to this story

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