SPACEWARN Bulletin Number 544

01 March 1999
A publication of NASA's National Space Science Data Center/World Data Center-A for Rockets and Satellites as the WWAS for ISES/COSPAR

SPACEWARN Activities

All information in this publication was received between 01 February 1999 and 28 February 1999.

A. List of New International Designations and Launch Dates.

USSPACECOM Catalog numbers are in parentheses.
            1999-010A (25642) Raduga 104/Globus 1       28 FEB 99
            1999-009B (25639) SKYNET 4E                 26 FEB 99
            1999-009A (25638) Arabsat 3A                26 FEB 99
            1999-008C (25636) Sunsat                    23 FEB 99
            1999-008B (25635) Oersted                   23 FEB 99
            1999-008A (25634) ARGOS                     23 FEB 99
            1999-007A (25632) Soyuz TM-29               20 FEB 99
            1999-006A (25630) JCSAT 6                   16 FEB 99
            1999-005A (25626) Telstar 6                 15 FEB 99
            1999-004D (25624) Globalstar M40            09 FEB 99
            1999-004C (25623) Globalstar M38            09 FEB 99
            1999-004B (25622) Globalstar M23            09 FEB 99
            1999-004A (25621) Globalstar M36            09 FEB 99
            1999-003A (25618) Stardust                  07 FEB 99

B. Text of Launch Announcements.

1999-010A Raduga 104, also known as Globus 1, is a Russian geosynchronous military spacecraft that was launched by a Proton-K rocket from Baykonur at 04:00 UT. There are now a total of 33 Radugas in orbit of which only five are functional.
1999-009B SKYNET 4E is a British geosynchronous military spacecraft that was launched by an Ariane 44L rocket from Kourou at 22:44 UT. The parking longitude of the 1.5 tonne spacecraft is not available.
1999-009A Arabsat 3A is a geosynchronous communications spacecraft of that consortium that was launched by an Ariane 44L rocket from Kourou at 22:44 UT. The 2.7 tonne satellite will provide voice, video and digital communications to the Middle East, North Africa, and Southern Europe in 22 Ku-band channels after parking near 30 deg-E longitude.
1999-008C Sunsat is a South African research/education satellite that was launched by a Delta 2 rocket from Vandenberg AFB at 10:29 UT. It will carry out remote sensing of the Earth and encourage high school student participation. Initial orbital parameters were period 100 min, apogee 857 km, perigee 644 km, and inclination 96.5 deg.
1999-008B Oersted (Ørsted) is a Danish ionospheric science spacecraft that was launched by a Delta 2 rocket from Vandenberg AFB at 10:29 UT. The 62 kg spacecraft carries a fluxgate vector magnetometer, an Overhauser magnetometer (for field magnitude only), and particle detectors (for 0.03-1.0 MeV electrons, 0.2-30 keV protons, and 1-100 MeV Alpha particles). Initial orbital parameters were period 100 min, apogee 857 km, perigee 644 km, and inclination 96.5 deg. For further details, see
1999-008A ARGOS (Advanced Research Global Observation Satellite) is an American military spacecraft that was launched by a Delta 2 rocket from Vandenberg AFB at 10:29 UT. The three tonne spacecraft may be a technology demonstration model, but enbles observation of baseline data on Earth's atmospheric constituents. Among the instruments onboard are an ultraviolet imager, X-ray detectors, and plume detectors. Initial orbital parameters were period 102 min, apogee 842 km, perigee 822 km, and inclination 98.7 deg.
1999-007A Soyuz TM-29 is a Russian cosmonaut-transporting spacecraft that was launched by a Soyuz-U rocket from Baykonur to carry two cosmonauts to the Mir station. Initial orbital parameters were period 91.6 min, apogee 364 km, perigee 346 km, and inclination 51.7 deg.
1999-006A JCSAT 6 is a Japanese geosynchronous communications spacecraft that was launched by an Atlas 2AS rocket from Cape Canaveral. It will provide voice and video communications to East Asia and Japan through its 31 Ku-band transponders after parking over 124 deg-E longitude.
1999-005A Telstar 6 is an American geosynchronous communications spacecraft that was launched by a "Proton class" booster from Baykonur at 05:12 UT. The 3.8 tonne spacecraft carries 24 C-band and 28 Ku-band transponders to provide voice and video communications to the US and Canada, after parking over 93 deg-W longitude.
1999-004A, 1999-004B, 1999-004C, 1999-004D Globalstar M36, M23, M38, and M40 are low altitude American communications spacecraft that were launched by a Soyuz-U booster from Baykonur, each with a mass of 450 kg. They are the first four of the planned 48-spacecraft (plus four reserves) fleet that will enable voice and data relays from/to telephones far away from cellular networks. The network becomes customer-ready after the 32 become operational. (Plans are for seven Delta 2 launches of 28 spacecraft.) Initial orbital parameters of all four were similar: period 103.5 min, apogee 952 km, perigee 911 km, and inclination 52 deg.
1999-003A Stardust is an American interplanetary exploration spacecraft that was launched by a Delta 2 rocket from Cape Canaveral. The 350 kg spacecraft carries traps to collect cometary dust from Comet Wild 2, and "interstellar" dust and return them to Earth in a landing capsule in early 2006 for detailed chemical and isotopic analysis. The collector is an aerogel, an inert microphorous silica-based substance. One side of the collector will collect the cometary dust during the rendezvous in early 2004, while the other side will collect interstellar dust during October 1999-March 2000, and May 2002-October 2002. Stardust's rendezvous with the 4-km diameter comet will be at a distance of 150 km when the comet will be at 1.85 AU from Sun. Comet Wild 2 is a relatively fresh comet that was redirected by Jupiter to a low periapsis (1.583 AU) orbit during its September 1974 encounter. For further details, see

C. Spacecraft Particularly Suited for International Participation

Category I
  1. 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. A supplementary list appeared as a part of SPX 542. The full list will reappear only after further major updates.

  2. 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:  [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.

  3. 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 Russia.

    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.

    The latest additions to the GLONASS fleet are,

              1998-077A (25593) COSMOS 2362   Launched on 30 December 1998
              1998-077B (25594) COSMOS 2363         "       "
              1998-077C (25595) COSMOS 2364         "       "

  4. Actual decays/landings of payload spacecraft and rocket bodies (R/B) only. Additional information is not available.
    Designations         Common Name                       1999
    1998-062A   (25512)  PROGRESS M40                     05 Feb 
    1995-013B   (23529)  R/B Atlas 2AS                    06 Feb
    1993-017D   (22584)  R/B of NAVSTAR 31                10 Feb
    1999-005B   (25627)  R/B Proton-K                     17 Feb
    1999-007B   (25633)  R/B Soyuz-U                      21 Feb
    1986-031A   (16683)  MOLNIYA 3-28                     25 Feb
    1998-047A   (25429)  SOYUZ TM-28                      28 Feb

  5. Miscellaneous Items. (This section contains information/data that are entered on occasion and may not be repeated in each issue of the SPACEWARN Bulletin.)

    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 Office, Code 633, NASA/GSFC, Greenbelt, Maryland 20771, U.S.A., for specific information ( 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 trajectories can be executed through:

    Magnetospheric, Planetary, and Astronomical science data from many spacecraft may be accessed through links from the URL:

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Questions/comments about the content of these pages should be directed to:
The World Warning Agency for Satellites,
National Space Science Data Center, Mail Code 633
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD 20771

Page Curator:
Dr. Edwin V. Bell, II,, +1-301-286-1187
NSSDC, Mail Code 633, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD 20771

NASA Official: J. H. King,
V1.0, 02 March 1999
Last updated: 05 March 2003, EVB II