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Jonathan's Space Report, No. 396

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  • Frits Westra
    Jonathan s Space Report No. 396 1999 Apr 29 Cambridge, MA
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 30, 1999
      Jonathan's Space Report
      No. 396 1999 Apr 29 Cambridge, MA
      Sender: owner-jsr@...
      Precedence: bulk
      Reply-To: jmcdowell@...

      Human spaceflight

      The next Shuttle launch, STS-96, is scheduled for May 20. Discovery and
      the STS-96 stack have been rolled out to pad 39B. No news yet on how
      long the delay to STS-93 will be because of the IUS-21 failure.

      Viktor Afanas'ev and Jean-Pierre Haignere remain on board the Mir
      complex. Orbit raising burns are underway with the Progress M-41 cargo
      ship's engine.

      Space Command have corrected the designation of Sputnik-99 to 1999-15C.

      Recent Launches

      * UoSAT-12

      Surrey's UoSAT-12 satellite is undergoing orbital checkout. I have
      confirmed that the SNAP-1 nanosatellite was not aboard the UoSAT-12
      launch. The two objects in circular orbit are UoSAT-12 and part of the
      Dnepr payload shroud; the object initially cataloged as 1999-22B/SNAP-1
      (now 1999-21B) is actually UoSAT-12. The object in eccentric orbit,
      1999-21C, is the Dnepr third stage. Although the R-36M2 is considered a
      two-stage vehicle, it in fact has a third stage maneuvring bus for
      dispensing multiple warheads (similar to the post-boost vehicle on
      Minuteman 3), and it is this bus which performed orbit insertion. The
      two main R-36M2 stages were suborbital. The Dnepr was launched at
      0459:03 UTC and the third stage separated from the payload at 0513 UTC
      on Apr 21.

      * Ikonos-1

      The Athena rocket has suffered its second launch failure. Ikonos-1 was
      launched at 1822 UTC on Apr 27 on a Lockheed Martin Athena-2, serial
      LM-005, from Vandenberg AFB. The Athena-2 uses the old MOL/Shuttle pad
      at SLC-6, and is launched from one of the SRB mount points. Athena-2
      has four stages: two Thiokol Castor 120s, one UTC Orbus 21, and one
      Lockheed Martin/Primex OAM (Orbit Adjust Module). The OAM performs
      transfer orbit insertion and an apogee burn. The flight was apparently
      successful through Orbus 21 burn and the beginning of the first OAM
      burn, but tracking stations downrange did not pick up the spacecraft.
      It was later determined from telemetry that the rocket nose fairing
      failed to separate 4 minutes after launch, and the extra mass caused the
      vehicle to reenter on the first partial orbit. The planned orbit after
      the first OAM burn was 220 x 689 km x 98.1 deg; the second OAM burn
      would have placed Ikonos in a 680 x 690 km x 98.1 deg circular orbit.
      Instead, the vehicle reentered over the South Pacific well before the
      planned second burn.

      Athena launches to date: (LLV-1 and LMLV-1 were earlier names for Athena-1)
      Date Serial Type Site Payload
      1995 Aug 15 DLV LLV-1 V SLC6 Gemstar (failed)
      1997 Aug 23 LM-001 LMLV-1 V SLC6 Lewis
      1998 Jan 7 LM-004 Athena-2 CC SLC46 Lunar Prospector
      1999 Jan 27 LM-006 Athena-1 CC SLC46 Rocsat
      1999 Apr 27 LM-005 Athena-2 V SLC6 Ikonos 1 (failed)

      Space Imaging's Ikonos 1 used an LM-900 bus built by Lockheed
      Martin/Sunnyvale. It carried a 1-m resolution panchromatic camera, the
      first commercial imaging satellite with this high a resolution. A 4-m
      resolution color imager was also aboard.

      * ABRIXAS

      A Kosmos-3M (11K65M) rocket was launched successfully on Apr 28, the
      first orbital launch since 1988 from GTsP-4 (State Test Range 4) at
      Kapustin Yar. The Kosmos-3M is built by Polyot of Omsk and marketed by
      OHB-System (Bremen)'s Cosmos International.

      The Kosmos-3M (11K65M) launch vehicle consists of a first stage derived
      from Yangel's R-14 (8K65) intermediate range missile, designated SS-5 by
      NATO. The upper stage, developed in the early 1960s, has a restartable
      engine. First launch of the 65S3 satellite launch vehicle was in August
      1964; the modified 11K65M version flew in 1967, and Polyot took over
      production in 1970. Kosmos-3M usually flies from Plesetsk (GIK-1), with
      occasional launches from GTsP-4 since 1973. I understand there used to
      be two launch pads at area LC107, LC107/1 and LC107/2 - I don't know
      which was used for this launch.

      GTsP-4 was first used for satellite launches in October 1961, with the
      first attempted launch of a small Kosmos satellite on the 63S1 (later
      11K63) rocket derived from the smaller R-12 (SS-4) missile from the
      Mayak-2 silo. In late 1964 launches switched to the LC86 complex's pads
      1 and 4. 11K63 orbital launches from LC86 stopped in 1973 shortly after
      11K65M launches from LC107 began.

      Payload of the Kosmos-3M on this launch was the DLR (German space
      agency) ABRIXAS satellite, built by OHB-System. Mass of ABRIXAS is 470
      kg. MPE/Garching and the Astrophysical Institute in Potsdam developed
      the scientific payload, a set of seven hard X-ray imaging telescopes
      with an X-ray CCD detector which will carry out an all-sky survey in the
      1-10 keV band with 30 arcsecond resolution. The last all-sky survey in
      this band was carried out in the 1970s by HEAO-1, which had no optics
      and therefore very poor spatial resolution. The new mission will
      complement MPE's existing all sky survey with the ROSAT satellite,
      carried out in the 0.1-2 keV soft band. It'll be interesting to see
      what kinds of objects turn up at the harder energies; it's possible that
      there are whole classes of sources which are obscured at ROSAT energies
      (the galaxy is much more transparent in the ABRIXAS band).
      Congratulations to Gunter Hasinger and his team and best wishes for a
      very successful survey.

      ABRIXAS separated from the Kosmos-3M second stage one hour after launch
      into a 544 x 603 km x 48.4 deg orbit. The 48.4 deg inclination was
      familiar to Soviet space watchers in the early 1960s, used by Kosmos
      satellites on 63S1 rockets from Kapustin Yar, but this is the first
      time it's been used since 1973. A secondary payload on the same launch
      was Megsat-0, a small technology development satellite built and owned
      by MegSat, the space division of the Gruppo Meggiorin companies based
      in Brescia (Italy). The 0.4-meter box has a mass of 35 kg. It carries an
      experimental high bit rate data transmission payload.

      Table of Recent Launches
      Date UT Name Launch Vehicle Site Mission INTL.

      Mar 5 0256 WIRE Pegasus XL Vandenberg Astronomy 11A
      Mar 15 0306 Globalstar M022 ) Soyuz-U/Ikar Baykonur LC1 Comsat 12A
      Globalstar M041 ) Comsat 12B
      Globalstar M046 ) Comsat 12C
      Globalstar M037 ) Comsat 12D
      Mar 21 0009 Asiasat 3S Proton-K/DM3 Baykonur LC81L Comsat 13A
      Mar 28 0130 DemoSat Zenit-3SL Odyssey, POR Test 14A
      Apr 2 1128 Progress M-41 Soyuz-U Baykonur LC1 Cargo 15A
      Apr 2 2203 Insat 2E Ariane 42P Kourou ELA2 Comsat 16A
      Apr 9 1701 DSP F19 Titan 4/IUS Canaveral LC41 Early Warn 17A
      Apr 12 2250 Eutelsat W3 Atlas 2AS Canaveral LC36A Comsat 18A
      Apr 15 0046 Globalstar M019 ) Soyuz-U/Ikar Baykonur LC1 Comsat 19A
      Globalstar M042 ) 19B
      Globalstar M044 ) 19C
      Globalstar M045 ) 19D
      Apr 15 1832 Landsat 7 Delta 7920-10 Vandenberg SLC2W Imaging 20A
      Apr 16 1030? Sputnik-99 - Mir, LEO Comsat 15C
      Apr 21 0459 UoSAT-12 Dnepr Baykonur LC108 Test 21B
      Apr 27 1822 Ikonos 1 Athena 2 Vandenberg SLC6 Imaging F01
      Apr 28 2030 ABRIXAS ) Kosmos-3M Kap. Yar LC107? Astronomy 22A
      Megsat-0 ) Technol. 22B

      Current Shuttle Processing Status

      Orbiters Location Mission Launch Due

      OV-102 Columbia OPF Bay 1 STS-93 Unknown
      OV-103 Discovery LC39B STS-96 May 20
      OV-104 Atlantis OPF Bay 3 STS-101 Oct 14?
      OV-105 Endeavour OPF Bay 2 STS-99 Sep 18

      MLP1/RSRM-69/ET-99 VAB Bay 1 STS-93
      MLP2/RSRM-70/ET-100/OV-103 LC39B STS-96
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