Russia’s Glonass-M satellite put into orbit

Russia sent another Glonass-M navigation satellite into orbit on Monday, said Alexei Zolotukhin, spokesman of Russian Space Forces.

The Soyuz carrier rocket with the satellite on board was launched from the Plesetsk space center earlier in the day.

Mission control specialists have been holding a steady connection with the satellite, Zolotukhin said. The satellite’s onboard systems are operating normally.

The Glonass-M will augment a group of 30 Glonass satellites already in orbit. This was the last launch of a Glonass satellite this year.

Glonass is Russia’s answer to the U.S. Global Positioning System, or GPS, and is designed for both military and civilian uses. Both systems allow users to determine their positions to within a few meters.

Russia’s Glonass system currently has 23 operational satellites, while a total of 24 is needed to provide global coverage.

On November 4, three reserve Glonass-M satellites were launched from the Baikonur space center in Kazakhstan after three Glonass-Ms were destroyed in a failed launch last year.

User feedback to help Moscow expand its mobile horizons

City hall is working on a mobile app that will allow users to send feedback on the quality of the phone service they are getting.

If you are irritated by interrupted calls and slow 3G in Moscow, you might soon be able to have your say.

Moscow authorities have decided to check the quality of mobile service in the capital with the help of crowd-sourcing, inviting mobile phone users rather than mobile operators to give feedback.

The only thing the customer is required to do is to install a mobile phone application that will closely monitor all the interruptions and noises in the course of phone calls, as well as the speed of data transfer. The data collected will be sent to a special server and collected by IT specialists who will analyse the information and draw conclusions.

Subscribers will also be able to use an interactive map of Moscow to send in the reports of “black holes” around the city, areas where the mobile service is not available. This will help officials to understand where the new towers need to be installed.

The application and the map will be available in November at the website of the Information Technology Ministry.

The “big three” mobile operators told RT that they learned about the initiative from the mass media.

This is not the only good news for mobile phone owners. Lucky iPhone 4S users can now count not only on a better signal, but also on better navigation. As it turned out, the new phone enables them to track their location using the GLONASS system, the Russian rival of GPS. Samsung and Russian mobile provider MTS have also released devices supporting both systems.

Navigation satellite Glonass-M sent into orbit

Navigation satellite Glonass-M sent into orbit

Published: 03 October, 2011, 03:57
Edited: 03 October, 2011, 10:24

(RIA Novosti / Andrey Morgunov)

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Peter Oliver,
Marina Dzhashi

The booster Soyuz-2.1b, carrying a Global Navigation Satellite System (Glonass) satellite, was successfully launched from the Plesetsk spaceport and put into orbit. Space Troop teams monitored the launch through the ground automated control system.

“The launch of the booster and the orbiting of the satellite passed as scheduled,” a spokesman for the Russian Space Troops, Aleksey Zolotukhin, told Itar Tass on Monday. “The satellite Glonass-M was put under control at 3:55 a.m. Moscow time.”

The satellite weighs 1,415 kilograms and is expected to serve for seven years.

More Glonass launches are scheduled for this year. A Proton-M rocket with a Briz-M booster will launch a Glonass-M trio from Baikonur on November 4, while a Soyuz-2-1B rocket with a Fregat booster will bring another Glonass-M into orbit from Plesetsk on November 22.

The Glonass satellite constellation consists of 24 space vehicles, evenly distributed in three orbital planes. Satellites operate in circular orbits at altitudes of 19,100 kilometers. This configuration permits uninterrupted global coverage of the Earth’s surface and terrestrial space by the navigation field.

Data from NIS Glonass

The Global navigation satellite system Glonass is intended for determining location, speed and exact time by military and civilian users.

The system will provide continuous year-round global navigation support globally regardless of weather conditions. The system is available to a vast number of users on the Earth’s surface and at elevations of up to 2,000 kilometers.

The first Glonass test flight took place in October 1982, and by 1993 the Glonass system was brought into operational testing. In 1995 the full orbit group of 24 satellites was formed. However, a reduction in funding in 1990 for Russia’s space industry led to a deterioration of the Glonass project.

In 2002, the Russian government approved a number of policy documents, including the “Global Navigation System” federal program, which brought new life and funding to the navigation system.

According to Russia’s Federal Space Agency, the main difference between Glonass and GPS is the signal and its structure. The GPS system uses code-division channeling. Glonass uses frequency-division channeling. Also, Glonass satellites’ motion is described as using fundamentally different mathematical models.

While Glonass consists of 24 satellites, GPS can be fully functional with 24 satellites but is currently using 31 of them.

02.10, 23:10


Today: 06:52

Nay Lin Maung
October 03, 2011, 04:20

Do we see space war in the Sky or not?