Russia postpones satellite launch due to lack of components from Ukraine

RIA Novosti reports, citing its source in the rocket and space industry, that the launch of three Gonets-M low orbit communication satellites using the Rokot carrier from the Plesetsk cosmodrome had been postponed from May to June due to the lack of control system equipment produced by Ukraine.

“They cannot launch Gonets-M [satellites] since 2017 due to a lack of components from Ukraine, needed to control systems of the upper stage Briz-KM. System hardware equipment is produced at the Kharkiv company Khartron. After 2014, Ukraine stopped the delivery of this equipment to Russia,” said the source of RIA Novosti.

According to him, the control system was supposed to be taken from the Russian Ministry of Defense which had the reserve equipment remained after the launch of Rokot [space launch vehicle] with military satellites, however, its transfer was delayed.

“Therefore, the possibility of further delays of Gonets-M launch is possible,” stated the source.

According to him, the Briz-KM upper rocket stage has not been sent to Plesetsk [cosmodrome] yet and is located in the center of Khrunichev [State Research and Production Center] waiting for Ukrainian equipment.

In December 2015, it was reported that the Gonets-D1M satellite communications system successfully passed flight tests and a request was sent to the government commission to approve its launch.

  Russia, Ukraine, Plesetsk cosmodrome, Gonets