Satellite Stuff
Russia temporarily loses control of civilian satellite fleet

A report by RIA Novosti warns that Russia may have lost control of most of its civilian satellites for at least two days.

According to the state news agency, a basic road repair project in the Moscow region accidentally cut a communications cable used by the Russian civilian space agency. A source in the space industry then informed RIA Novosti that civilian ground-based tracking, and command and control stations have lost communications with each other.

The source said that the severed communications cable will take at least 48 hours to repair or replace, and may delay the return of three personnel from the International Space Station (ISS.)

In response, the Federal Space Agency Roscosmos stated that communications with the Russian segment of the ISS was unaffected by the emergency.

Alexander Semerikov, deputy head of the Earth Monitoring Center, added that the Russian-operated fleet of Earth remote sensing satellites are similarly untouched. The geo-satellites continue to send their data to their dedicated ground control centers.

RIA Novosti also confirmed that the constellation of military satellites operated by the Defense Ministry had not been affected because they use separate communications channels from the ones severed by the accident.

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