Re-Entry: Molniya 3-3 Communications Satellite

Molniya-3 – Image: ISS Reshetnev

The Molniya 3-3 (Molniya-3 13L) communications Satellite re-entered the atmosphere on November 19, 2017 after over 40 years in orbit. Launched from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome in November 19751 atop a Molniya rocket, the 1,750-Kilogram satellite operated from a highly elliptical orbit with its high point over the northern hemisphere to deliver secure communications to the Russian military and civilian users up into the high latitudes where Geostationary Satellites are not sufficient for full coverage.

NORAD ID: 8425
Origin: Russia
Object: Molniya 3-3
Type: Molniya 3 Civilian Communications Satellite

Manufacturer: ISS Reshetnev
Mass: ~1,750kg
Inclination: 61.1°
Launched:November 14, 1975 – 19:14UTC
Launch Vehicle: Molniya 8K78M
Launch Site: Plesetsk, Russia

Re-Entry Prediction: November 19, 2016 – 14:41 UTC +/-7 Minutes
Re-Entry Zone: Southern Indian Ocean

Re-Entry Orbit
Image: Spaceflight101/Orbitron