WSO is a planned space telescope dedicated for astronomical observations in the UV spectral range. It consists of a 1.7m primary mirror and a suite of instruments for spectroscopy and imaging. Launch was foreseen for 2015 with a Zenit-2SB into a geosynchronous orbit. The minimum life time is 5 years.
WSO will work as a space observatory with a core program, guaranteed time for the project partners and time open to the world-wide community.
The WSO project is led by the Institute for Astronomy of the Russian Academy of Sciences. Russia is responsible for the 1.7m telescope, the instrumentation, the spacecraft and the launch vehicle. The main instrument is a high-resolution spectrograph. It is augmented by a low-resolution long slit spectrograph. The imaging cameras are designed by the Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Spain. The Crimean Astrophysical Observatory (Ukraine) is responsible for coatings of optical elements. Germany is no longer part of this collaboration.