SPACEWARN Bulletin Number 532
A publication of NASA's National Space Science Data Center/World Data Center-A for Rockets
and Satellites as the WWAS for ISES/COSPAR
All information in this publication was received between
01 February 1998 and 28 February 1998.
A. List of New International Designations and Launch Dates.
USSPACECOM Catalog numbers are in parentheses.
1998-014A (25239) INTELSAT 806 28 Feb 1998-009A (25167) Cosmos 2349 17 Feb
1998-013A (25237) HOT BIRD 4 27 Feb 1998-008D (25165) GLOBAL STAR L-2 14 Feb
1998-012B (25234) BATSAT 26 Feb 1998-008C (25164) GLOBAL STAR L-1 14 Feb
1998-012A (25233) SNOE 26 Feb 1998-008B (25163) GLOBAL STAR U-2 14 Feb
1998-011A (25175) COMETS 21 Feb 1998-008A (25162) GLOBAL STAR U-1 14 Feb
1998-010E (25173) IRIDIUM 54 18 Feb 1998-007C (25159) ORBCOMM FM-4 10 Feb
1998-010D (25172) IRIDIUM 53 18 Feb 1998-007B (25158) ORBCOMM FM-3 10 Feb
1998-010C (25171) IRIDIUM 52 18 Feb 1998-007A (25157) GFO 10 Feb
1998-010B (25170) IRIDIUM 56 18 Feb 1998-006B (25153) INMARSAT 3F5 04 Feb
1998-010A (25169) IRIDIUM 50 18 Feb 1998-006A (25152) BRASILSAT B-3 04 Feb
B. Text of Launch Announcements.
INTELSAT 806 is a geosynchronous communications spacecraft of
that 142-nation consortium that was launched by an Atlas 2AS
rocket from Cape Canaveral Air Station at 00:21 UT. The 4,000 kg
spacecraft is the latest member of the current INTELSAT fleet,
now totalling 26 spacecraft. It will be parked over the Atlantic
ocean enabling voice and vedeo communications to Europe and the
American countries by means of its 28 C-band, and six Ku-band
transponders after parking at 40 deg-W longitude.
HOT BIRD 4 is a geostationary communications spacecraft of the
EUTELSAT consortium that was launched by an Ariane 42P rocket
from Kourou. The 2,885 kg spacecraft will enable voice and video
communications to the European nations after parking at 13 deg-E
BATSAT (Broadband Advanced Technology SATellite) is an American
communications satellite that was launched at 07:05 by a Pegasus XL
rocket carried aboard an L1011 cargo plane flying out of Vandenberg
AFB. The 120 kg test satellite was later renamed as T1 (shorter
version for Teledesic 1). It may be the first spacecraft to carry
a Ka-band transponder in low Earth orbit. The Teledesic
constellation known as "Internet-in-the-sky" may consist of 288
mini-satellites in low Earth orbit. Initial orbital parameters
were period 95.8 min, apogee 580 km, perigee 535 km, and inclination
SNOE (Student Nitric Oxide Explorer) is an American research
spacecraft that was launched at 07:05 UT by a Pegasus XL rocket
carried aboard a L1011 cargo plane flying out of Vandenberg AFB.
The 125 kg mini-satellite, built by the faculty and students of the
University of Colorado, Boulder, carries instruments to monitor the
stratospheric ozone, auroral UV (2-bands), and solar x-rays
(5-bands). Initial orbital parameters were period 95.8 min, apogee
580 km, perigee 535 km, and inclination 97.7 deg.
COMETS (COMmunications and broadcast Engineering Test) is a
Japanese test spacecraft that was launched by an H-2 rocket from
Yoshinobu launch pad in southern Japan at 07:55 UT. A malfunction
in the second stage resulted in an orbit well short of
geostationary. It was designed to be a relaying satellite between
ground stations and orbiting satellites. Initial orbital parameters
were period 106.5 min, apogee 1,882 km, perigee 249 km, and
inclination 30.0 deg.
1998-010E, 1998-010D, 1998-010C, 1998-010B, 1998-010A
IRIDIUM 54, IRIDIUM 53, IRIDIUM 52, IRIDIUM 56, and IRIDIUM 50
are American low altitude communications spacecraft that were
launched by a Delta 2 rocket from Vandenberg AFB at 15:38 UT.
These five join the constellation of previously launched 46 IRIDIUMs
which enable mobile phones to reach out beyond the area of cellular
networks. Initial orbital parameters were similar: period 97.4
min, apogee 643 km, perigee 625 km, and inclination 86.5 deg
Cosmos 2349 is a Russian military photographic (2-meter resolution)
spacecraft that was launched by a Soyuz-U rocket from Baykonur at
10:35 UT. It is to provide topographic map of the USA in accordance
with a Russian-American contract. Initial orbital parameters were
period 89.2 min, apogee 293 km, perigee 204 km, and inclination
1998-008D, 1998-008C, 1998-008B, 1998-008A
GLOBAL STAR L-2, GLOBAL STAR L-1, GLOBAL STAR U-2, and GLOBAL
STAR U-1 are communications spacecraft of that international
consortium that were launched by a Delta 2 rocket from Cape
Canaveral Air Station at 14:34 UT. It will enable remote or mobile
telephones to reach out to anywhere in the world. Initial orbital
parameters of all four were similiar: period 110.5 min, apogee
1,258 km, perigee 1,245 km, and inclination 52.0 deg.
ORBCOMM FM-4 and ORBCOMM FM-3 are American low altitude
communications spacecraft that were launched by a Taurus rocket
from Vandenberg AFB at 13:20 UT. These ORBCOMM FM fleet of satellites
enable global voice and data links to/from fixed or mobile
industrial sites such as oil rigs, cargo trucks and ships. Initial
orbital parameters were period 101.5 min, apogee 878 km, perigee
784 km, and inclination 108.0
GFO (Geosat Follow On) is an American military spacecraft that was
launched by a Taurus rocket from Vandenberg AFB at 13:20 UT. The 410
kg satellite carries a radio altimeter and a water vapor radiometer
to measure sea levels and glacial heights. Initial orbital
parameters were period 101.4 min, apogee 878 km, perigee 775 km,
and inclination 108.0 deg.
INMARSAT 3F5 is a geosynchronous communications spacecraft of
that international consortium that was launched by an Ariane 4
rocket from Kourou at 23:29 UT. It will enable communications among
maritime vehicles in the Atlantic and its shores.
BRASILSAT B3 is a Brazilian geosynchronous communications
spacecraft that was launched by an Ariane 4 rocket from Korou at
23:29 UT. It carries 28 C-band transponders to provide voice and
video communications to Brazil and other countries, after parking
at 70 deg-W longitude.
C. Spacecraft Particularly Suited for International Participation
- Spacecraft with essentially continuous radio beacons on frequencies
less than 150 MHz, or higher frequencies if especially suited for ionospheric
or geodetic studies.
The last full list appeared as a part of SPX 520.
The list will reappear only after major updates to the list are available.
METEOSAT 3 in that list is no longer operational.
- Global Positioning System satellites useful for navigational
purposes and geodetic studies. ("NNN" denotes no national name. SPACEWARN
would appreciate suggestions to update this list. An asterisk [*] denotes
changes in this issue.)
High precision (<20 cm) GPS constellation tracking data obtained from
the network of about 80 dedicated global stations that are of interest to
geodetic study may be obtained through the following services provided
by the International Association of Geodesy (IGS)
FTP: igscb.jpl.nasa.gov [directory /igscb]
The standard format of the GPS situation appeared in SPX-518. It will not
be repeated since an excellent source of trajectory- and science-related GPS information is at
It provides many links to GPS related databases.
The latest member of the GPS fleet is NAVSTAR 38 (1997-067A), launched on 6 November 1997.
- Russian Global Navigational (Positioning) Spacecraft, GLONASS
constellation. (SPACEWARN requests updates/additions from readers to this list.
Entries marked "*" are updates or additions to the list.)
All GLONASS spacecraft are in the general COSMOS series. The COSMOS numbers
(nnnn) invoked by USSPACECOM have often differed from the numbers (NNNN)
associated in Russia; when different, the USSPACECOM COSMOS numbers are shown
in parentheses. The corresponding GLONASS numbers are Russian numbers, followed
by the numbers in parentheses that are sometimes attributed to them outside
The operating frequencies in MHz are computed from the channel number K.
Frequencies (MHz) = 1602.0 + 0.5625K and L2 = 1246.0 + 0.4375K.
The standard format of the GLONASS situation appeared in SPX-515. It
will not be repeated in view of the excellent updated source at:
maintained by the Coordinational
Scientific Information Center (CSIC),Russian Space Forces.
- Actual decays/landings of payload spacecraft and rocket bodies (R/B)
only. Additional information is not available.
Designations Common Name 1998
1998-009B (25168) R/B SOYUZ-U 21 Feb
1997-038A (24886) SOYUZ TM-26 19 Feb
1981-054A (12512) MOLNIYA 3-16 10 Feb
1998-004B (25147) R/B SOYUZ-U 31 Jan
- Miscellaneous Items. (This section contains information/data that
are entered on occasion and may not be repeated in each issue of the
NSSDC/WDC-A-R&S is an archival center for science data from many spacecraft.
Some data are on line for electronic access. Please contact the NSSDC Request Coordination
Code 633, NASA/GSFC, Greenbelt, Maryland 20771, U.S.A., for specific
Information on the current
status of the instruments on board from the investigators will be most
welcomed. Precomputed trajectory files
and orbital parameters of many magnetospheric and heliospheric science-payload
spacecraft may be FTP'ed from NSSDC's ANON_DIR:[000000.ACTIVE] and its
several subdirectories. (See About the SPACEWARN Bulletin
for access method; a file in the ACTIVE directory named AAREADME.DOC, outlines the contents.)
It can also be accessed via the WWW at:
This URL also enables executing several codes related to the orbits
of many geocentric science payload spacecraft. The codes related to
the heliospheric spacecraft trjectories can be executed through:
Magnetospheric, Planetary, and Astronomical science data from many spacecraft
may be accessed through links from the URL:
SPACEWARN Bulletin Index
About the SPACEWARN Bulletin
About Spacecraft Categories
Questions/comments about the content of these pages should be directed to:
The World Warning Agency for Satellites, firstname.lastname@example.org
National Space Science Data Center, Mail Code 633
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD 20771
Dr. Edwin V. Bell, II, email@example.com, +1-301-286-1187
NSSDC, Mail Code 633, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD 20771
NASA Official: J. H. King, firstname.lastname@example.org
V1.0, 04 March 1998
Last Updated: 17 April 1998, EVB II