Moscow, Russia: Russia restored contact on Wednesday with a military satellite, GEO-IK-2. The satellite went missing the day before, after entering into the wrong orbit. It has been designed to create a detailed three-dimensional map of the Earth and help the Russian military to locate the precise positions of various targets.
The Russian Defense Ministry has set up a joint commission with Russia’s space agency Roscosmos to investigate the possible causes of the incident and to attempt bringing the satellite to the designated orbit.
The mishap follows a failed launch two months ago of three satellites at the centre of a Russian global satellite navigation network designed to rival the US-made GPS system.
“The parameters of the satellite’s orbit have been established. Currently, there is stable contact with it,” Russia’s Space Forces Commander, Lieutenant General Oleg Ostapenko, said in a defence ministry statement.
The low-orbit Geo-IK-2 was designed to probe the Earth’s gravitational field for potential military use in guiding ballistic missiles. Its civilian use included monitoring tectonic plate movement, ice conditions and ocean tides.