NASA Logo, National Aeronautics and Space Administration
NASA Space Science Data Coordinated Archive Header

Cosmos 2515



Bars-M No.2 is the second of a new series of area reconnaissance satellites, designed to produce wider-angle images of the Earth than Russia’s other reconnaissance satellites such as Persona. Its images, which have a lower resolution than its counterparts, can be used for cartography and analysis of wider areas.

The Bars-M series of satellites replace the Yantar-1KFT film-return satellites operated by Russia, and previously the Soviet Union, between 1981 and 2005.

Also known as Kometa and Siluet, the 1KFT was able to remain in orbit for 45 days at a time before separating its film capsule for return to Earth. By contrast, Bars-M is designed to remain in operation for at least five years – downlinking images electronically rather than storing them on film for a later return to Earth.

The Bars-M spacecraft was developed by TsSKB Progress, with its Karat camera produced by the Leningrad Optical-Mechanical Association (LOMA).

With a mass of around four tonnes (4 Imperial or 3.6 US tons), the Soyuz-2-1a carrier rockets are used and operated in sun-synchronous orbits.

The spacecraft introduce a new bus and a propulsion system, designated SVIT, instead of the Yantar-derived buses and propulsion systems used by most of Russia’s imaging satellites.

Alternate Names

    Facts in Brief

    Launch Date: 2016-03-24
    Launch Vehicle: Soyuz-2.1a
    Launch Site: Plesetsk, Russia

    Funding Agency

    • Unknown (Russia)


    • Other

    Additional Information

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

    [] NASA Logo -