|01 October 2001|
All information in this publication was received between 1 September 2001 and 30 September 2001.
COSPAR/WWAS USSPACECOM SPACECRAFT LAUNCH INT.ID CAT. # NAME DATE (2001) -------------------------------------------------------- 2001-043D (26932) Sapphire 30 September 2001-043C (26931) PCSat 30 September 2001-043B (26930) Picosat 9 30 September 2001-043A (26929) Starshine 3 30 September 2001-042A (26927) Atlantic Bird 2 25 september 2001-041A (26908) Progress DC-1 14 September 2001-040A (26905) USA 160 08 September
|2001-043D||Sapphire (a US DoD-funded microsatellite) was built by the Stanford University students and faculty, and carries a voice synthesizer to convert text messages into human voice. (For launch details, see Starshine 3 below). The initial orbital parameters were period 101 min, altitude 794 km, and inclination 67 deg.|
|2001-043C||PCSat (Prototype Communications SATellite) is to act as a relay for amateur radio transmissions. It was built by the midshipmen at the US Naval Academy. It will augment the existing worldwide Amateur Radio Automatic Position Reporting System (APRS). (For launch details, see Starshine 3 below.) The initial orbital parameters of the circular orbit were period 101 min, altitude 794 km, and inclination 67 deg.|
|2001-043B||Picosat 9 is a British-built (US DoD-funded) satellite to test electronic components/systems in space conditions. It carries four test payloads: Polymer Battery Experiment (PBEX), Ionospheric Occultation Experiment (IOX), Coherent Electromagnetic Radio Tomagraphy (CERTO) and an ultra-quiet platform (OPPEX). (For launch details, see Starshine 3 below.) The initial orbital parameters of the circular orbit were period 101 min, altitude 794 km, and inclination 67 deg.|
|2001-043A||Starshine 3 is an American microsatellite that was launched,along with Picosat 9, PCSat, and Sapphire, by an Athena 1 rocket from the Kodiak Launch Complex (KLC) on Alaska's Kodiak Island (located 400 km south of Anchorage) at 02:40 UT on 30 September 2001. (Foul weather and auroral conditions had delayed the launch many times.) The 80 kg NASA satellite is basically a passive light-reflecting sphere of one meter diameter, consisting of 1,500 student-built mirrors (polished by kindergarten and grade school students from many countries) and 31 laser "retroreflectors". A few solar cells provide enough power to send a beacon at 145.825 MHz every minute. Ham operators around the world are expected to obtain signal strengths from which the decay (due to magnetic torque) of its spin rate can be determined. This is the first orbital launch from the KLC. Initial orbital parameters of the circular orbit were period 94 min, altitude 472 km, and inclination 67 deg.|
|2001-042A||Atlantic Bird 2 is a European geosynchronous communications spacecraft belong to the Eutelsat fleet that was launched by an Ariane 44P rocket from Kourou at 23:21 UT on 25 September 2001. The 3.1 tonne spacecraft is the twenty-second member of the current fleet. It will provide high-speed television, video streaming, radio and internet services between North and South America, and Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East, through its 26 Ku-band transponders.|
|2001-041A||Progress DC-1 is a Russian automatic cargo carrier that was launched by a Soyuz-U rocket from Baikonur at 23:44 UT on 14 September 2001. The ITAR-TASS names the spacecraft as Progress M-SO1. It is actually a habitable, docking module (and not just a carrier) named Pirs (meaning pier), and contained an astronaut chair, a space suit, a small crane, and some equipment for the Zvezda module of the ISS. This docking module will enable for the first time entry/exit of astronauts with Russian or American space suits. The module docked automatically with the ISS at 01:08 UT on 17 September 2001. Its propulsion engine was jettisoned on 26 September to burn away. The initial orbital parameters were period 92.3 min, apogee 393.6, perigee 388.2, and inclination 51.6 deg.|
|2001-040A||USA 160 is an American military reconnaissance satellite that was launched by an Atlas 2AS/Centaur rocket from Vandenberg AFB at 15:25 UT on 8 September 2001. There has been no official listing of the payload, though "amateur space sleuths" are reported to have concluded that it belongs to the NOSS constellation, each member being actually a close cluster of triangular triplet. (This and other claims were reported in http://www.spaceflightnow.com/, dated 13 September 2001.)|
Note: The full list appeared in SPX 545. The list will not be repeated in future issues until significantly revised again.
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] WWW: http://igscb.jpl.nasa.gov/ E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
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 http://www.utexas.edu/depts/grg/gcraft/notes/gps/gps.html#DODSystem It provides many links to GPS related databases.
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: http://www.rssi.ru/SFCSIC/english.html maintained by the Coordinational Scientific Information Center (CSIC),Russian Space Forces.
A comprehensive list of visually bright objects with their two-line orbital elements is available from USSPACECOM, via a NASA URL, http://oig1.gsfc.nasa.gov/files/visible.tle. The list, however, does not include visual magnitudes, but are expected to be brighter than magnitude 5.
Designations Common Name Decay Date (2001) 2001-041A (26908) R/B, the engine attached to PROGRESS DC-1 27 Sep 2000-019F (26711) R/B (Aux) Proton-K 20 Sep 1978-004A (10561) COSMOS 975 19 Sep 2001-041B (26909) R/B Soyuz-U 16 Sep 1975-076B (08128) R/B that launched COSMOS 756 06 Sep 1995-037J (23630) R/B (Aux) Proton-K 01 Sep
SPACEWARN Bulletin occasionally comes across launch failures of significant spacecraft. A Taurus rocket carrying NASA-GSFC's QuickTOMS spacecraft for monitoring total ocean content, and a commercial high resolution imaging spacecraft named OrbView 4 was launched from Vandenberg AFB at 18:49 UT on 21 September 2001. The injection at an altitude of 426 km with inadequate speed engendered the payload to crash over the Indian Ocean. (Also crashed were 48 minicapsules carrying the ashes of 48 persons, priced at $5,300 a piece.)
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:
Questions/comments about the content of these pages should be directed to:
The World Warning Agency for Satellites, email@example.com
National Space Science Data Center, Mail Code 633
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD 20771