June 04, 2012

How Many Hubble Class or Better Spy Satellites does the US have ?

It was revealed today that NASA was given two better than Hubble-class space telescopes that were extra spy satellites. So how many Hubble or better spy satellite space telescopes ?

Strategy Page - details about the Keyhole Spy satellites were leaked or accidentally revealed over the last two decades.

About 15 KH-11 Hubble class spy satellites were launched but only four are left.

Global Security - ADVANCED CRYSTAL / IKON - Often called ADVANCED CRYSTAL or more recent third, fourth and fifth generations called IKON. In fact “KH-11 KENNON” no longer exists and was replaced by the nuclear war, laser, and battle hardened ADVANCED CRYSTAL imaging spacecraft now the more recent third and fourth generations called IKON.

There also appear to be about five KH-12 spy satellites with 2.9 to 3.1 meter mirrors (larger than the Hubble and KH-11 2.4 meter mirrors).

So there should be at least 9 Hubble Class or better US spy satellites and there were 11 others that were launched but then had their orbits decay after many years of usage.

The IMPROVED CRYSTAL’s sophisticated electronics provides sharper images than the KH-11, comparable in quality to the best of the film return satellites, with a resolution approaching ten centimeters.




Follow-on Advanced Crystal designs

There was work towards spy satellite space telescopes with folding mirrors and a constellation of spacecraft. There was a spy satellite program canceled in 2007. There were more improvements made into the previous spy satellite designs but which were more conservative than the more radical designs.



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