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Fwd = Jonathan's Space Report, No. 505

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  • Frits Westra
    Forwarded by: fwestra@hetnet.nl (Frits Westra) Originally from: owner-jsr@head-cfa.harvard.edu Original Subject: Jonathan s Space Report, No. 505 Original
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 3, 2003
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      Forwarded by: fwestra@... (Frits Westra)
      Originally from: owner-jsr@...
      Original Subject: Jonathan's Space Report, No. 505
      Original Date: Fri, 1 Aug 2003 09:37:58 -0400 (EDT)

      ========================== Forwarded message begins ======================

      Jonathan's Space Report
      No. 505 2003 Aug 1, Cambridge, MA

      Shuttle and Station

      The Expedition 7 crew, Yuriy Malenchenko and Edward Lu, remain on board
      the Space Station. Novosti Kosmonavtiki magazine has published its
      account of the Soyuz TMA-1 landing, including the actual landing time
      of 0204:25 UTC on May 4 - I haven't seen this time published in English

      The Columbia investigation board has a nice analysis of the foam impact
      on http://www.caib.us/news/documents/impact_velocity.pdf. One
      implication they don't draw is that, counter to the gut assumption made
      in pre-accident discussions, low density foam is arguably WORSE than
      high density ice. The change in velocity due to drag is proportional to
      one over the density, so the kinetic energy of impact is (1/2) mass
      times velocity squared, which is proportional to density times
      (1/density) squared, which is (1/density): the velocity change wins out
      over the mass increase, and low density material packs MORE bang
      (energy) and the SAME wallop (momentum m dv) as more dense material.
      However, it has been pointed out to me that the physics of the collision
      is a bit more complicated, for example due to differences in elasticity
      the foam collision probably deposits a smaller fraction of its energy,
      so that may cancel out the effect. Clearly from the imagery there are
      pieces of foam debris after the collision which still have significant

      Recent Launches

      On Jul 17 Lockheed Martin launched AV-003, the first 500-series Atlas V.
      It is a 521 variant with a 5-m fairing, two Aerojet strapon solid
      boosters, and a single-engine Common Centaur upper stage; the previous
      two Atlas V launches were 400-series missions using a smaller fairing
      and no strapons. The enormous fairing made AV-003 highly reminiscent of
      a Titan IV. The vehicle entered a 167 x 4166 km x 27.1 deg parking orbit
      15 min after launch, according to Spaceflightnow.com (Justin, thanks
      again for continuing to include these figures in your commentary, as the
      ILS webcast commentators never bother to quote them). The Centaur
      restarted near apogee and delivered the payload to a high-perigee
      geostationary transfer orbit of 3815 x 35761 km x 17.5 deg.

      This was the first flight of the Aerojet Atlas V SRM boosters, which
      with a mass of 46t and a size of 19.2m long, 1.6m diameter are
      comparable to the first stage of the MX/Peacekeeper ICBM (shorter and
      fatter at 10.7m long 2.3m diameter) - much bigger than the Delta
      GEM strapons, but much smaller than the Ariane 5 and Titan 4 SRBs.

      AV-003's payload is Rainbow 1, a satellite built by Lockheed Martin in
      Sunnyvale (the rocket is built by the Denver branch of LM). The A2100AX
      class satellite has a launch mass of 4328 kg and will be used by
      Cablevision Systems Corp of Bethpage, NY. By Jul 23 Rainbow 1 had used
      its Leros engine to reach an orbit of 10529 x 35746 km x 8.8 deg,
      and by Jul 29 it was on station at 62 deg W in a 35644 x 35931 km x 0.1
      deg geostationary orbit.

      Canada's MOST astronomy satellite is successfully undergoing on-orbit
      checkout, with first light expected in the coming weeks.

      Questions For Readers

      I'm trying to improve my log of objects in the geostationary corridor,
      adding debris that is not in the Space Command satellite catalog. It
      turns out that a number of geostationary weather satellites have ejected
      lens caps into orbit: Meteosat Second Generation (MSG 1) ejected two,
      although the recent GOES satellites have their cooler covers on hinges
      rather than ejecting them. I would be grateful if anyone who has worked
      on the earlier Meteosat, GOES/SMS, or NASDA GMS satellites can tell me
      whether or not these satellites ejected cooler covers. (For extra
      credit, provide ejection dates/times, dimensions and mass, and the same
      info for the ejected lower despun sections containing the spent apogee
      motors). Anyone else littering the geostationary band is encouraged
      to own up (e.g. telescope covers like those ejected from the DSP

      One funky example I came across in this search was the Canadian CTS
      (Communications Technology Satellite), launched in 1976. As with many
      satellites, it was spin-stabilized during the coast to geostationary
      orbit and prior to deploying its main solar array wings. Unusually, it
      got power during this period from an extra set of solar arrays mounted
      outside the folded-up array wings. Once CTS reached geostationary, it
      ejected these extra arrays, called JBSA (Jettisonable Body Solar
      Arrays), reducing its angular momentum and allowing the main wings to
      unfold (Acta Astronautica 5, 343). The 1.8-meter JBSAs do not currently
      appear in the satellite catalog, which is noticeably incomplete for
      older objects in high equatorial orbit - until the late 1980s, the US
      sensor net was still optimized for quickly distinguishing satellites
      from incoming missiles, and tracking high altitude debris was not a
      priority. CTS pioneered Ku-band satellite communications, and was
      used for early tests of broadcasting to remote locations in both
      Canada and Australia.

      Fun (Educational) Toys

      Dave Doody, from Cassini Flight Ops, draws my attention to

      Other News Sources

      Brian Webb asked me to draw readers' attention to his free email
      newsletter concentrating on the Vandenberg area,

      The spaceflightnow.com site, Stefan Barensky's site, www.orbireport.com,
      and Aleskandr Zheleznyakov's site (in Russian)
      www.cosmoworld.ru/spaceencyclopedia/hotnews/, remain the best other
      general sources of timely on-line space information which contain original
      (primary source) information.

      Table of Recent Launches

      Date UT Name Launch Vehicle Site Mission INTL.

      Jun 2 1745 Mars Express Soyuz-FG/Fregat Baykonur LC31 Probe
      Jun 4 1923 Kosmos-2398 Kosmos-3M Plesetsk Navigation
      Jun 6 2215 AMC-9 Proton-K/Briz-M Baykonur LC200/39 Comms
      Jun 8 1034 Progress M1-10 Soyuz-U Baykonur LC1 Cargo
      Jun 10 1356 Thuraya 2 Zenit-3SL Odyssey, Pacific Phone comms
      Jun 10 1758 MER-A Spirit Delta 7925 Canaveral SLC17A Mars probe
      Jun 11 2238 BSAT-2c ) Ariane 5G Kourou ELA3 Comms
      Optus/D C1 ) Comms
      Jun 19 2000 Molniya-3 Molniya-M Plesetsk LC43/3 Comms
      Jun 26 1853 Orbview-3 Pegasus XL Vandenberg RW30/12 Imaging
      Jun 30 1415 Monitor-E mockup) Tech
      Mimosa ) Science
      MOST ) Rokot Plesetsk LC133 Astronomy
      CUTE-I ) Tech
      Quakesat ) Science
      Can X-1 ) Tech
      Cubesat XI-IV ) Tech
      AAU-Cubesat ) Imaging
      DTUSat ) Tether
      Jul 8 0318 MER-B Opportunity Delta 7925H Canaveral SLC17B Mars probe
      Jul 17 2345 Rainbow 1 Atlas V 521 Canaveral SLC41 Comms

      | Jonathan McDowell | phone : (617) 495-7176 |
      | Harvard-Smithsonian Center for | |

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