[time-nuts] Russian Timing Geosync Sats?

Peter Bell bell.peter at gmail.com
Wed Mar 13 00:44:38 EDT 2013

Tsikada was (maybe still is?) the Russian version of TRANSIT - it used
150MHz and 400MHz carriers, but I'm pretty sure the orbits were (like
TRANSIT) low polar rather than Geosynchronous.  You may also run into the
name "Parus" - which was the name of the system before it was released to
civilian use.  The same satellites also carried the receivers for the
original COSPAS system (aka SARSAT in english) - they also apparently had
some sort of datalink capability, although the exact details are not clear
- my guess is that now GLONASS is fully operational this datalink is the
main reason for retaining them in operational status.

It's also interesting that even after both the Tsikada and COSPAS programs
were public knowledge the satellites were still given a cosmos-xxx
designation which was normally only used for soviet military satellites
(and launch failures).  This strongly suggests that there was more stuff on
board that they weren't talking about.

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