Status: Study 1984. Gross mass: 6,000 kg (13,200 lb). Span: 240.00 m (780.00 ft).
These reflectors would be placed in sun synchronous orbits at 1700 km altitude / 103 deg inclination. Each satellite would be 240 m in diameter and have a mass of 5 to 6 metric tons. Each satellite would have a ten year life and be usable 8 hours daily, and illuminate a 17 km diameter circular area on the earth's surface. The concept was tested on two Znamya 25 m diameter reflectors deployed from Progress M-15 and M-40 spacecraft in 1993 and 1998. Deployment problems prevented either test from being successful.
The satellite's equipment module would include solar panels, a KAR gyroscopic pointing system, and a laser unit to scan and control the form of the reflector. Pressure from the solar wind would be used to make orbital corrections.
The illuminators would be orbited 10 to 12 at a time. A single Energia launch would put a 69 metric ton payload into a 450 km / 103 deg orbit. A solar electric engine interorbital tug would take the satellites to the higher operational orbit and then deploy them.