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Sterkh was a Russian satellite-based search and rescue system, which formed part of the International Search and Rescue Satellite-Aided System (COSPAS-SARSAT).[1]


Sterkh was developed as a replacement for the older Nadezhda system. Unlike their predecessors, Sterkh satellites did not carry navigation systems, since this function had been taken over by GLONASS. Sterkh satellites were smaller than their predecessors and were designed to be launched as secondary payloads with other satellites.[2]

The satellites had a mass of 160 kg. Their overall dimensions were 750 x 1350 x 2000 mm in shipping condition, and 976 x 2957 x 10393 mm in operational condition, with opened solar panels and risen gravitational bar. The satellites incorporated the air-borne radio rescue complex RK-SM.[2] They were expected to have an operational lifetime of 5 years. The satellites were designed and manufactured by Production Corporation Polyot.

The first satellite in the series, Sterkh-1, was launched on 21 July 2009 aboard a Kosmos-3M carrier rocket along with a Parus.[3]

Sterkh-2 was launched on 17 September 2009 on a Soyuz-2.1b along with 7 other satellites.[4]


  1. ^ "Sterkh 2 - NSSDC ID: 2009-049B". NASA NSSDC. 
  2. ^ a b "Small spacecraft "Sterkh"". PO Polyot. Retrieved 2009-09-20. 
  3. ^ Yang, Fang (2009-07-21). "Russia launches two satellites". Xinhua. Retrieved 2009-07-21. 
  4. ^ "Soyuz-2.1b Successfully Lifts Off From Baikonur". Roscosmos. 2009-09-17. Retrieved 2009-09-18. [dead link]