Ukraine Says Its ‘People’s Satellite’ Has Pierced Russian Camouflage And Hit 1500 Targets

In a bold move, Ukraine has utilized a crowd-funded satellite, the “People’s Satellite,” to gain intelligence on Russian forces. ICEYE, a California-based company, has supplied this satellite, which has been crucial in organizing multiple attacks that have seriously damaged Russian property.

The Defence Intelligence Directorate (GUR) of Ukraine claims that the Kremlin has suffered losses totaling billions of dollars as a result of these operations.

Over the past few years, the GUR reports that Ukraine has received 4,173 images from the ICEYE satellite. These images have been pivotal in strategizing strikes against Russian targets. “The entire array of data obtained thanks to ICEYE was used for direct preparation of fire damage to the enemy,” stated GUR, emphasizing the significant financial toll on Russia due to these efforts. “This is billions of dollars in losses for Russia, and the price of its aggression will grow!”

A former U.S. official told The War Zone last year that Ukraine was successfully using the ICEYE satellite in its military operations despite the difficulty of verifying these claims. The satellite has enabled Ukraine to observe and target a variety of goals that would not have been possible without it, along with over two dozen others.

GUR specialists have captured 4,173 photos of enemy positions during the satellite’s operation. These photographs include 370 airfields, 238 sites for air defense and radio technical intelligence, 153 fuel depots and oil depots, 147 missile and ammunition storage facilities, and 17 naval bases. These photos show Russian training grounds, military towns, mobilization centers, and permanent deployment sites.

ICEYE has committed to transferring the full capabilities of one of its Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) satellites already in orbit for Ukraine’s use. This SAR technology allows capturing radar images even in cloudy, smoky, or dusty conditions and at night, offering a significant advantage over optical satellites. The active radar sensor in SAR can effectively detect metal objects, making it difficult for enemy units to remain hidden.

The company boasts “the largest constellation of synthetic aperture radar satellites in the world” and employs over 700 people across the United States, Finland, Poland, and Spain. GUR highlighted the satellite’s effectiveness: “The huge advantage of the ICEYE space vehicle is its ability to clearly see a cluster of even carefully camouflaged enemy mechanized units with its equipment. What do you think happens to them later?”

The Serhiy Prytula Charitable Foundation and blogger Ihor Lachenkov spearheaded the fundraising campaign for the People’s Satellite in June 2022.

Reflecting on the initiative’s success, former Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksiy Reznikov noted, “One satellite fully operates for the needs of our defense; nearly two dozen more are involved when necessary.”

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