NOVOSIBIRSK, December 7. /TASS/. Russia plans to launch the full group of 28 Gonets-M1 communication satellites by 2033. The first spacecraft have to be orbited by 2028, Director of the Space Technologies Institute of the Krasnoyarsk Scientific Center of the Siberian branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences Nikolay Testoyedov told TASS.
"Gonets-M1 has completed the rough design, the full design is beginning. The group will be created for several years. At the threshold of 2030-2033, there will be a full group of 28 satellites. They will provide a major communication function," he said.
The first satellite is likely to blast off in 2027-2028. At least nine rocket launches will be necessary to orbit all satellites, he said.
At present, there is a group of Gonets-M satellites in orbit. Upgraded Gonets-M1 is a multifunctional system of personal satellite communications and data transmission. Additional equipment will make the group fulfil navigational tasks as well.
"The Gonets will receive the navigational signal and report its own position to the ground where it will be used to adjust the calculations of GLONASS signal," Testoyedov said.