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Cosmos 2343



Cosmos 2343 was the sixth of the sixth generation photo reconnaisance satellites launched from the Baikonur cosmodrome using the Soyuz-U2 launch vehicle, which had otherwise been restricted to supporting Soyuz-TM and Progress-M missions. The spacecraft was inserted into an orbital inclination of 64.8 degrees with mean operational altitudes normally between 240 and 260 km. The sixth generation spacecraft, believed to carry both film return capsules and digital transmission capabilities, have only flown six times; once each year during 1989-1993 and once in 1997. After returning multiple film capsules, the spacecraft was deorbited. This satellite provided Russia with the photo resonnaisance capability after a break of 7 1/2 months. This launch came on the 40th anniversary of the first successful launch of the R-7 rocket, from which the Soyuz-U was derived. It was the 250th launch of the Soyuz-U from Baikonur, the 350th launch from Launch Complex 31, and the 666th launch of a Soyuz-U.

Alternate Names

  • 24805
  • Cosmos2343

Facts in Brief

Launch Date: 1997-05-15
Launch Vehicle: Soyuz-U
Launch Site: Tyuratam (Baikonur Cosmodrome), Kazakhstan

Funding Agency

  • Unknown (Russia)


  • Surveillance and Other Military

Additional Information

Questions and comments about this spacecraft can be directed to: Coordinated Request and User Support Office

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