Dataset of Military Satellites in Space
This dataset contains 403 entries.

  Overview

This is a dataset of military satellites, based on UCS Satellite Database compiled by the Union of Concerned Scientist (UCS).

Most military satellites are launched for the purpose of earth observation (49.6%).Most military satellites are launched for the purpose of earth observation (49.6%).Majority of these satellites are LEO satellites, with around 286 (71.0%) launched so far.


  Data Table

Preparing data

  More..

Insights from the military satellite dataset

  Which year saw the most military satellites launched?

That year is 2021, which saw 44 military satellites launched.

  Who operates or owns the most military satellites?

Ministry of Defense owns/operates the most number of military satellites (76 - 18.9% of the satellites in this dataset).

  Which country operates or owns the most military satellites?

USA owns/operates the most number of military satellites (189 - 46.9% of the satellites in this dataset).

  Which rocket has delivered the most military satellites to space?

The rocket that has delivered the most military satellites to space is Atlas 5 which has delivered 60 satellites (14.9%).

  Which launch site has launched the most military satellites to space?

The launch site that has delivered the most military satellites to space is Cape Canaveral which has launched 102 military satellites (25.3%).

  What is the most common type of satellite orbit?

Non-Polar Inclined orbit is the most common type of orbit (145 satellites - 36.0%).

  Apogee, Perigee & Period

The perigees (point of the orbit closest to the Earth's center of mass) of the satellites range from 150km to 35,897km, with the average perigee being 8,701.3km from the Earth, while the apogees (point of the orbit farthest from the Earth's center of mass) of the satellites range from 150km to 39,966km, with the average apogee being 10,625.4km from the Earth. The longest period a satellite takes to orbit around the Earth is 1,439 minutes.

  Satellite Mass

The launch masses (include fuel) of the satellites range from 1kg to 20,000kg, while the dry masses (excluding fuel) of the satellites range from 260kg to 10,000kg.


Highlights on some of the military satellites:

MUOS-2.

U.S. Navy's second Mobile User Objective System (MUOS-2)

  Heaviest satellite launched by DoD And US Navy into space at 6,804 kg

MUOS-2 is a military satellite operated by DoD and US Navy (USA) for the purpose of communications.

Constructed by Lockheed Martin Missiles & Space (USA), it was launched into space using Atlas 5 as the launch vehicle from Cape Canaveral on 19 July 2013. MUOS-2 orbits around the Earth as a GEO satellite.

Designed with an operational lifetime of 12 years, MUOS-2 has a launch mass of 6,804 kg and navigates with the COSPAR ID 2013-036A and NORAD ID 39206.

MUOS-2 orbits along the longitude of -100 degrees at an inclination of 4 degrees.

The satellite's perigee, which is the point of the orbit closest to the Earth's center of mass, is 35,550km while its apogee, which is the point of the orbit farthest from the Earth's center of mass, is 36,023km. Its orbit has an eccentricity of 5.61E-03 and it takes 1,436 minutes to orbit the Earth.

 

 Compare MUOS-2 with Athena-Fidus from France/Italy.

 Compare MUOS-2 with Zhongxing 20A from China.


Cosmos 2550.

The Russian Kosmos Satellites

  Second heaviest satellite launched by Russia into space at 6,500 kg

Designed for earth observation (Radar Imaging and Electronic Intelligence), Cosmos 2550 is a military satellite operated by Ministry of Defense (Russia).

Constructed by KB Arsenal, RKTs Progress (Russia), it was launched into space on 25 June 2021 using Soyuz 2.1b as the launch vehicle. Cosmos 2550 orbits around the Earth as a polar LEO satellite.

Designed with an operational lifetime of 5 years, Cosmos 2550 has a launch mass of 6,500 kg and navigates with the COSPAR ID 2021-056A and NORAD ID 48865.

Taking 96 minutes to orbit the Earth, the satellite's perigee, which is the point of the orbit closest to the Earth's center of mass, is 587km while its apogee, which is the point of the orbit farthest from the Earth's center of mass, is 599km. The eccentricity of the orbit is 8.62E-04 and it orbits at an inclination of 35 degrees to the equatorial plane of the Earth.

 

 Compare Cosmos 2550 with Starlink-2135 from USA.

 Compare Cosmos 2550 with Starlink-1327 from USA.


Aerocube 14A.

AeroCubes - The Aerospace Corporation

Aerocube 14A is a military satellite operated by Aerospace Corporation (USA) for the purpose of technology development.

Constructed by Aerospace Corporation (USA), it was launched into space using Nanorack Deployer as the launch vehicle from Cygnus on 31 January 2020. Aerocube 14A orbits around the Earth as a non-polar inclined LEO satellite.

Aerocube 14A orbits around the Earth with the COSPAR ID 2019-071D and NORAD ID 45114.

Taking 94 minutes to orbit the Earth, the satellite's perigee, which is the point of the orbit closest to the Earth's center of mass, is 459km while its apogee, which is the point of the orbit farthest from the Earth's center of mass, is 474km. The eccentricity of the orbit is 1.10E-03 and it orbits at an inclination of 52 degrees to the equatorial plane of the Earth.

 

 Compare Aerocube 14A with USA 314 from USA.

 Compare Aerocube 14A with Starlink-2651 from USA.


USA 314.

The NRO: America's Eyes and Ears in Space

  Second heaviest satellite launched into space at 20,000 kg

Operated by National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) of USA, USA 314 is a military satellite launched for the purpose of earth observation (Optical Imaging).

Constructed by Lockheed Martin (USA), it was launched into space on 26 April 2021 using Delta 4 Heavy as the launch vehicle from Vandenberg AFB. USA 314 orbits around the Earth as a sun-synchronous LEO satellite.

With a launch mass of 20,000kg, USA 314 is designed to operate in space for a lifetime of 5 years. It orbits around the Earth with the COSPAR ID 2021-032A and NORAD ID 48247.

With an orbital eccentricity of 1.67E-02, the satellite's perigee, which is the point of the orbit closest to the Earth's center of mass, is 524km while its apogee, which is the point of the orbit farthest from the Earth's center of mass, is 758km. It takes 98 minutes to orbit the Earth at an inclination of 98 degrees to the equatorial plane of the Earth.

 

 Compare USA 314 with OneWeb-0065 from United Kingdom.

 Compare USA 314 with SMAP from USA.


STPSat-4.

Time Lapse of Deployment of STPsat-4 From the ISS

  Third heaviest satellite launched by USAF Space Test Program into space at 10 kg

STPSat-4 is a military satellite operated by USAF Space Test Program (USA) for the purpose of technology development.

Constructed by USAFSpace Force Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC)NASA (USA), it was launched into space using Manual deployment as the launch vehicle from International Space Station on 28 January 2020. STPSat-4 orbits around the Earth as a non-polar inclined LEO satellite.

STPSat-4 has a launch mass of 10 kg and is expected to have a operational lifetime of 1 years. It navigates with the COSPAR ID 1998-067QY and NORAD ID 45043.

Taking 93 minutes to orbit the Earth, the satellite's perigee, which is the point of the orbit closest to the Earth's center of mass, is 415km while its apogee, which is the point of the orbit farthest from the Earth's center of mass, is 422km. The eccentricity of the orbit is 5.16E-04 and it orbits at an inclination of 52 degrees to the equatorial plane of the Earth.

 

 Compare STPSat-4 with Chao Fenbianlu from China.

 Compare STPSat-4 with Iridium Next 173 from USA.


Monolith.

tron launches Monolith

  Second heaviest satellite launched by Air Force Research Laboratory into space at 20 kg

A military satellite, Monolith is operated by Air Force Research Laboratory of USA for the purpose of technology development.

Constructed by Space Dynamics Laboratory, Utah State University (USA), it was launched into space on 29 July 2021 using Electron as the launch vehicle from Rocket Lab Launch Complex 1. Monolith orbits around the Earth as a non-polar inclined LEO satellite.

Monolith has a launch mass of 20 kg and navigates with the COSPAR ID 2021-068A and NORAD ID 49052.

With an orbital eccentricity of 7.89E-04, the satellite's perigee, which is the point of the orbit closest to the Earth's center of mass, is 598km while its apogee, which is the point of the orbit farthest from the Earth's center of mass, is 609km. It orbits the Earth at an inclination of 37 degrees to the equatorial plane of the Earth.

 

 Compare Monolith with Yaogan 30-9-1 from China.

 Compare Monolith with Proba 5 from ESA.


Get more insights from these satellite datasets

  Full datasets:  All satellites by launch date   |   The Heaviest Satellites That Are Launched to Space

  By Use Type:  Civil-use satellites   |   Commercial satellites   |   Government satellites   |   Military satellites

  By Country:  USA   |   UK   |   France   |   Germany   |   Japan   |   China   |   Russia   |   Australia   |   Canada

  By Orbit Class/Type:  LEO satellites   |   MEO satellites   |   GEO satellites   |   Elliptical orbit   |   Polar orbit   |   Equatorial orbit   |   Non-polar inclined orbit   |   Sun-synchronous orbit   |   Molniya orbit

  By Operators:  SpaceX   |   EUTELSAT   |   SES   |   European Space Agency (ESA)   |   Planet Labs   |   Iridium   |   Spire Global   |   OneWeb   |   Swarm Technologies   |   NASA - Dataset of Satellites Launched (National Aeronautics and Space Administration)   |   Canadian Space Agency (CSA) - Dataset of Satellites Launched

  By Launch Vehicle:  Falcon 9   |   Ariane 5   |   Ariane 5 ECA   |   Delta 2   |   Dnepr   |   Electron   |   Falcon Heavy   |   Long March 2C   |   Long March 2D   |   Long March 3B   |   Pegasus   |   Proton   |   Proton M   |   PSLV   |   Rokot   |   Soyuz   |   Soyuz-2.1b   |   Vega

  By Launch Vehicle:  Cape Canaveral   |   Baikonur Cosmodrome   |   Guiana Space Center   |   International Space Station   |   Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center   |   Plesetsk Cosmodrome   |   Rocket Lab Launch Complex 1   |   Satish Dhawan Space Centre   |   Taiyuan Launch Center   |   Vandenberg AFB   |   Xichang Satellite Launch Center   |   Boeing Satellite Systems   |   Airbus Defense and Space   |   EADS Astrium   |   Lockheed Martin Commercial Space Systems   |   Space Systems/Loral   |   Surrey Satellite Technology   |   Technical University Berlin   |   Thales Alenia Space


  Interactive Chart

Chart 1: Major Operators
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Chart 2: Satellites by Purpose
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Chart 3: Satellites by Country
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  Attributions

No attribution sources specified.
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