|Operator||RKA (Until 1996)
Gonets SatCom (1996-Present)
|Major contractors||NPO Prikladnoi Mekhaniki ru:НПО ПМ|
|Carrier rocket||Tsyklon-3 (D & D1)
Kosmos-3M (One D1M)
|Launch site||Plesetsk Cosmodrome|
|Mission duration||5 years|
|Homepage||Gonets SatCom (Russian)|
|Power||40 Watts from solar panels|
|Data rate||Up to 64kb/s|
Gonets (Russian Гонец, Messenger) is a Russian civilian low Earth orbit communication satellite system. It consists of a number of satellites, derived from Strela military communication satellites. The first two satellites, which were used to test and validate the system, were launched by a Tsyklon-3 carrier rocket from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome on 13 July 1992, and were designated Gonets-D. The first operational satellites, designated Gonets-D1, were launched on 19 February 1996. After launch, the first three satellites were given military Kosmos designations, a practice which was not continued with the other satellites.
Ten operational satellites and two demonstration spacecraft have been placed in orbit. A further three were lost in a launch failure on 27 December 2000. A new series of modernised Gonets satellites, Gonets-D1M, will supplement and eventually replace the satellites which are currently in orbit. A single first D1M satellite was launched by a Kosmos-3M rocket on 21 December 2005. A second D1M satellite was launched by a Rokot carrier rocket on 8 September 2010.
See also 
- "GONETS". Small Satellites Home Page. Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd. Retrieved 2008-05-11.
- Wade, Mark. "Strela". Encyclopedia Astronautica. Retrieved 2008-05-11.
- Krebs, Gunter. "Gonets". Gunter's Space Page. Retrieved 2010-09-08.
- Krebs, Gunter. "Gonets-M". Gunter's Space Page. Retrieved 2010-09-08.
- "Leosat system "Gonets"". Gonets SatCom. Archived from the original on 2008-05-10. Retrieved 2008-05-11.