SPACEWARN Bulletin Number 574

01 September 2001
A publication of NASA's National Space Science Data Center/World Data Center for Satellite Information as the WWAS for ISES/COSPAR

SPACEWARN Activities

All information in this publication was received between 1 August 2001 and 31 August 2001.

A. List of New International Designations and Launch Dates (UTC).

USSPACECOM Catalog numbers are in parentheses.
    INT.ID    CAT. #      NAME                 DATE (2001)
   2001-039A    (26900)  Intelsat 902            30 August
   2001-038A    (26898)  LRE                     29 August
   2001-037A    (26892)  Cosmos 2379             24 August
   2001-036A    (26890)  Progress M-45           21 August
   2001-035A    (26888)  STS 105                 10 August
   2001-034A    (26884)  Genesis                 08 August
   2001-033A    (26880)  USA 159                 06 August

B. Text of Launch Announcements.

2001-039A Intelsat 902 is a geosynchronous communications spacecraft that was launched by an Ariane 4 rocket from Kourou at 06:46 UT on 30 August 2001. It will provide telecommunications and television broadcast to Europe, sub-Saharan Africa, Central Asia, the Far East and Australia through its 44 C- and 12 Ku-band transponders. Parking longitude is unknown.
2001-038A LRE (Laser Reflecting Equipment) is a Japanese test spacecraft that was launched from the Tsukuba Space Center on Tanegashima Island by an H-2A rocket at 07:29 UT on 29 August 2001. The main goal was to launch the H-2A successfully after its earlier version, H-2, had failed a few times. The H-2A is a modified version with (unlike the H-2) many components procured on the international market. The 87 kg LRE is a passive mirror ball of diameter 51 cm and carries 24 glass sheets and 126 prisms on its surface, and was ejected from the H-2A just to ascertain the rocket's potential capability for precisely launching four-tonne payloads with the help of light echoes from the LRE. Though the eventual goal of H-2A is to launch geosynchronous spacecraft with capabilities comparable to some of the rockets in other countries, but at a lower cost, the LRE will remain merely in a "transfer orbit". The initial orbital parameters were, approximately, period 642 min, apogee 36,200 km, perigee 250 km, and inclination 28.5 deg.
2001-037A Cosmos 2379 is a Russian geosynchronous military reconnaissance spacecraft that was launched by a Proton-K rocket with a DM-2 final stage from Baikonur at 20:39 UT on 24 August 2001. It is to provide early warning of missiles launched from the United States with the help of a heat-sensing array of detectors. [According to the Moscow Kommersant newspaper, these early warning geosynchronous satellites belong to the US-KMO group, also known as Prognoz fleet, while the highly elliptical complement belongs to the US-KS group, also known as Oko fleet, both supplemented by about eight ground-based radars.] Parking longitude is unknown.
2001-036A Progress M-45 is a Russian automatic cargo ship that was launched by a Soyuz-U rocket from Baikonur at 09:32 UT on 21 August 2001. It docked automatically with the ISS on 23 August and delivered 2.5 tonnes of fuel, water, oxygen, equipment and spare parts. Initial orbital parameters were period 88.6 min, apogee 245 km, perigee 193 km, and inclination 51.7 deg.
2001-035A STS 105 is an American shuttle spacecraft that was launched from Cape Canaveral at 21:10 UT on 10 August 2001 to dock with the ISS. It carried a crew of 10, including three to-be-stationed long endurance astronauts (one American and two Russian), five tonnes of supplies, hardware, and a bedroom suite to accommodate a third astronaut in the Destiny module. The crew installed in the station two new science experiment racks that were carried in the Leonardo container which was first lifted out of the shuttle and bolted to the Unity module. Leonardo then carried back all the trash from the ISS back to the shuttle. They installed also the MISSE (Materials International Space Station Experiment) container outside the ISS to test the effect of radiation on materials, and some low cost science experiments such as microgravity cell growth studies inside the station. The shuttle landed back in Cape Canaveral at 18:23 UT on 22 August 2001, ferrying back three astronauts (one Russian and two American) who had spent over five months in the station. The initial orbital parameters of the shuttle were period 92.3 min, apogee 402 km, perigee 373 km, and inclination 51.6 deg.
2001-034A Genesis is an American solar research spacecraft that was launched by a Delta 2 rocket from Cape Canaveral at 16:13 UT on 8 August 2001. The mission is among NASA's Discovery Program and Genesis seeks to discover the origin/genesis of solar system. The spacecraft was directly injected into the Langrangian-1 (L-1) region (located at about 1.5 million km in the sunward direction) where it will arrive in November 2001 and collect solar wind samples from October 2001 to April 2004. The 633 kg, 2.3 m diameter, and 7.9 m length spacecraft carries four instruments in a returnable capsule of 1.5 m diameter and 1.3 m length: a wide angle ion collector, a concentrated-ion collector, an ion spectrometer and an electron spectrometer. The wide angle collector is a circular mosaic of one meter diameter consisting of many hexagonal tiles made of diamond, gold, ultra-pure silicon, sapphire, aluminum or germanium. All kinds of ions will be implanted in the wide angle collector whereas the carbon, nitrogen and oxygen ions (presumably, ions lighter than these also) will be focussed on to the concentrated-ion collector made up of hexagonal shaped diamond or silicon carbide tiles; this focussed enhancement of these ions is necessary since the collecting wafers may contain nontrivial amounts of earthly contamination of these elements. This focussing is enabled by a parabolic mirror, with the positive voltages confined to numerous tiny segments on its surface. The paraboloid will focus very little of the solar light/heat. A total of 10-20 micrograms of ions will be collected by both collectors during the 30 months of exposure. The ion spectrometer will monitor all species with energy greater than about 1 keV, and the electron spectrometer the smaller energy range electrons. (The solar wind speed is about 400 km/s and the protons in it are at about 1.0 keV with the heavier ions and the electrons having energies proportional to their masses.) The spectrometer data will be telemetered in the S-band, and the re-entering sample canister will parachute over Utah state in early September 2004, where it will be grabbed by a helicopter. More information is available in, though the links are mainly education/outreach/public-relations interest pages. The Project Scientist and Principal Investigator for Genesis is Donald Burnett, California Institute of Technology, and the Lead Investigator for the concentrated-ion collector and the two spectrometers is Roger Wiens of the Los Alamos National Laboratory. The returned samples will be stored at Johnson Space Center for analysis and distribution. The Project Manager for the mission is Chester Sasaki of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
2001-033A USA 159 is an American geosynchronous military reconnaissance satellite in the DSP (Defense Support Program) fleet that was launched by a Titan 4B rocket from Cape Canaveral at 07:28 UT on 6 August 2001. The 2,386 kg, 1.485 kW, 10 m long and 6.7 m diameter spacecraft carries an array of 6,000 heat-sensing detectors to monitor and locate missile launches. It will also enable monitoring of surface nuclear explosions and forest fires. The USA 159 is the 21st member of the DSP fleet, with many of its members still operational. Its alternative name may be DSP 21.

C. Spacecraft Particularly Suited for International Participation

  1. Spacecraft with essentially continuous radio beacons on frequencies less than 150 MHz, or higher frequencies if especially suited for ionospheric or geodetic studies. (NNSS denotes U.S. Navy Navigational Satellite System. Updates or corrections to the list are possible only with information from the user community.)

    Note: The full list appeared in SPX 545. The list will not be repeated in future issues until significantly revised again.

  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.

  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-545. It will not be repeated in view of the excellent updated source at: maintained by the Coordinational Scientific Information Center (CSIC),Russian Space Forces.

  4. Visually bright objects.

    A comprehensive list of visually bright objects with their two-line orbital elements is available from USSPACECOM, via a NASA URL, The list, however, does not include visual magnitudes, but are expected to be brighter than magnitude 5.

  5. Actual decays/landings of payload spacecraft and rocket bodies (R/B) only. No further information is available.
    Designations         Common Name                  Decay Date (2001)
    1995-037J (23630)  R/B (Aux) Proton-K                      01 Sep
    2000-039C (26406)  BIRD-RUBIN                              30 Aug
    2001-037B (26893)  R/B Proton-K                            27 Aug
    2001-001C (26687)  SZ-2 Module                             24 Aug
    2001-036B (26891)  R/B Soyuz-U                             23 Aug
    1985-071D (15955)  R/B that launched COSMOS 1675           23 Aug
    2001-035A (26888)  STS 105            Landed on            22 Aug
    2001-021A (26773)  PROGRESS M-16                           22 Aug
    2000-039A (26404)  MITA-O (NINA)                           15 Aug
    2001-030B (26868)  R/B Molniya-M                           12 Aug
    1979-011A (11266)  COSMOS 1076                             10 Aug
    1995-009G (23517)  R/B (Aux) that launched 3 GLONASS s/c   06 Aug
    1994-038E (23172)  R/B (Aux) Proton                        05 Aug

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

  7. Related NSSDC resources.

    NSSDC/WDC for Satellite Information is an archival center for science data from many spacecraft. Many space physics datasets are on-line for electronic access through:

    For off-line data, please contact the Request Office, NSSDC, 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 obtained from:

    Other files interest for Earth-centered spacecraft can be generated through the URL,

    Programs related to the heliospheric spacecraft trajectories can be executed through the URL,

    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:
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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, 04 September 2001
Last updated: 06 September 2001, EVB II