The scientific apparatus was developed by the Ioffe Physics-Technical Institute (FTI), Saint Petersburg. It undertook fundamental astrophysics research in cosmic gamma rays. The mission was conducted in collaboration with NASA. The Konus-A was equipped with a gamma ray detector that allowed localization of astronomical gamma ray sources. The spacecraft carried 130 kg of scientific instruments, had a two year design life, and was placed in a 400 km altitude orbit. The US Wind spacecraft, deployed at the earths' L1 Lagrangian Point, synchronized its observations with Konus-A. The 1.5 million km separation between the two spacecraft allowed improved localization of gamma ray sources. The mission was completed in December 1995.
Gross mass: 3,500 kg (7,700 lb).