Russian Military Publishes First Video From Successful Anti-Satellite Missile Test

© Photo : Russian Ministry of DefenceScreengrab of Russian Defence Ministry video showing the orbit of the International Space Station relative to debris from the Tselina-D satellite destroyed Monday by a Russian anti-satellite missile.
Screengrab of Russian Defence Ministry video showing the orbit of the International Space Station relative to debris from the Tselina-D satellite destroyed Monday by a Russian anti-satellite missile. - Sputnik International, 1920, 16.11.2021
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Earlier in the day, the Defence Ministry confirmed that Russia had successfully conducted an anti-satellite test on Monday, hitting a long-defunct Soviet satellite floating lifelessly in orbit. The military dismissed claims made by US officials that the test creates thousands of pieces of debris “threatening the interests of all nations.”
The Russian Ministry of Defence published a video Tuesday modeling the orbit of the destroyed Tselina-D satellite compared to that of the International Space Station, showing that at no point did the debris from the satellite threaten the safety of the station.
The one minute, 49 second clip started off by showing the orbit of the ISS relative to the satellite bits, going on to point out that fragments from the spacecraft ascended over 40 km above the ISS’s low Earth orbit route. The video also showed that even at its theoretical closest point, the debris did not come anywhere near the station as it flew past.
Tweet containing the video published by Russia's RBC newspaper. Tweet reads: "The Russian Ministry of Defence has modeled the movement in orbit of the ISS and fragments of the spacecraft destroyed in testing of the anti-satellite system. Earlier, the United States accused Moscow of the destroying an old satellite and creating a threat to the safety of the ISS due to debris."
In a statement accompanying the model, said to be based on real-world data, the MoD indicated that “the video clearly shows that the objects [the station and the debris] move at orbits with different inclinations and in different planes. Furthermore, the ISS is located 40-60 km below the fragments of destroyed satellite.”
The ministry stressed that Russia’s space monitoring systems are capable of monitoring each individual orbit of all objects in space, and are capable of predicting the movement of these objects.
“From the moment of their appearance, the fragments from the former satellite did not pose any threat to the ISS. Statements about alleged risks to the ISS do not correspond to reality,” the MoD said.
Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu confirmed Tuesday that Russia had successfully tested a new anti-satellite weapons system, with the system “precisely” knocking out an old satellite launched in 1982 by the Soviet Union and orbiting lifelessly around the planet for decades before being destroyed.
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Shoigu’s comments followed a statement by the military earlier in the day emphasizing that US officials were perfectly aware that fragments from the satellite posed no threat to space stations, other satellites, or space activities in general.
On Monday, US State Department Spokesman Ned Price accused Russia of acting in a “dangerous and irresponsible manner” in carrying out the test, claiming that it generated over 1,500 pieces of trackable debris, and “hundreds of thousands of pieces of smaller orbital debris,” posing a danger to astronauts, cosmonauts, and global satellite operations.
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The MoD accused US officials of acting “hypocritically” in accusing Russia of causing “risks” to the ISS and the international community as a whole after spending decades rejecting Russian initiatives at the United Nations to outlaw the deployment of weapons in outer space, and openly declaring that the US would not be “bound by any obligations” in the potential war-fighting domain. The military pointed to the unannounced testing of new strike capabilities, such as the X-37 robotic orbital space plane, and the creation of the US ‘Space Force’, whose explicit goals include establishing and maintaining US superiority in space, as evidence of the disingenuous nature of Washington’s sentiments about being “concerned” by Russian activities.
Orbit space ship - Sputnik International, 1920, 16.11.2021
Russian MoD: US Perfectly Aware Fragments of Downed Satellite Pose No Threat to Space Activities
The destroyed satellite was a Tselina-D, a radio-surveillance satellite developed by the Dnipropetrovsk, Ukraine-based Yuzhnoye Design Bureau in the 1970s. The satellite in question was launched in 1982.
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