A monthly publication of the National Space Science Data Center/World Data Center for Satellite Information
No. 605                                                                                                                               01 Apr. 2004

SPACEWARN Activities

All information in this publication was received between 1 March 2004 and 31 March 2004.

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

USSPACECOM Catalog numbers are in parentheses.

    INT.ID    CAT. #      NAME                   DATE (UT)
   2004-010A   (28194)   Cosmos 2406                 27 March 2004
   2004-009A   (28190)   Navstar 54 (USA 177)        20 March 2004
   2004-008A   (28187)   Eutelsat W3A                15 March 2004
   2004-007A   (28184)   MBSat                       13 March 2004
   2004-006A   (28169)   Rosetta                     02 March 2004

B. Text of Launch Announcements.

2004-010A Cosmos 2406 is a Russian geostationary military spacecraft that was launched by a Proton-K rocket from Baikonur on 27 March 2004.
2004-009A Navstar 54, also known as USA 177 and as GPS 2R-11 is an American navigational satellite in the GPS fleet. It was launched by a Delta 2 rocket from Cape Canaveral at 17:39 UT on 20 March 2004. It will take Slot 3 in Plane C, replacing the aging GPS 2A-19. The fleet consists of 24 operational satellites (plus a few spares) located in six (inertial) planes with four slots in each. The initial orbital parameters were period 718 min, apogee 20,277 km, perigee 20090 km, and inclination 55.1°.
2004-008A Eutelsat W3A is a geostationary communications satellite belonging to that European consortium, and was launched by a Proton-M rocket (with a Breeze M upper stage) from Baikonur at 23:06 UT on 15 March 2004. The 4.4 tonne satellite carries a total of 58 Ku-band transponders and a few steerable transmission beams to provide direct-to-home voice, data, and video channels to Europe, Middle East and Africa. It will replace the W3 satellite at 7° E longitude.
2004-007A MBSat (Mobile Broadcasting SATellite) is a Japanese-South Korean geostationary communications satellite that was launched by an Atlas 3 rocket from Cape Canaveral at 05:40 UT on 13 March 2004. The 4.1 tonne satellite will provide video, CD-quality radio, and data to cellular phones and other portable devices in Japan and South Korea, after parking over 144° E longitude.
2004-006A Rosetta is a European (ESA) cometary probe that was launched by an Ariane 5 rocket from Kourou at 07:17 UT on 02 March 2004. The three tonne spacecraft will orbit around a comet named 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko after releasing a lander named Philae sometime in 2014. On the way to reaching the comet, it will undergo one Mars swingby (in February 2007) and three Earth Swingbys (March 2005, November 2007, and November 2009) to boost its speed and undertake a 675 million km cruise. The mission will have ground support/commands from RMOC at ESOC, the DSN stations in Madrid, Spain, and Goldstone, USA, and the New Norcia station near Perth, Australia. The science operations center, RSOC will handle the science data acquisition and dissemination.

Rosetta is a cubical box (2.8 m x 2.1 m x 2.0 m) with two solar panels of size 14 m x 2.3 m. Besides the lander, it carries 11 instruments to sense the comet. Gerhard Schwehm of ESA's ESTEC, Netherlands is the Project Scientist for the mission. Details of the mission is available thru, The 11 instruments are outlined below.

ALICE is a UV spectrometer that will monitor the sublimation rates of water vapor and carbon monoxide/dioxide. S. A. Stern, SwRI, Boulder, Co, USA is the Principal Investigator.

CONSERT (COmet Nucleus Sounding Experiment by Radiowave Transmission) will transmit radiowaves that will penetrate the cometary nucleus (and received by the CONSERT on the lander) to probe the inhomogeneity of the nucleus as an assemblage of component "cometesimals". W. Kofman, LPG, Grenoble, France is the Principal Investigator.

COSIMA (COmetary Secondary Ion Mass Analyzer) will analyze the composition of key atomic elements and organic molecules in the cometary dust (in the tail). J. Kissel, MPAe, Katlenburg-Lindau, Germany is the Principal Investigator.

GIADA (Grain Impact Analyzer and Dust Accumulator) will measure the number, mass, momentum and velocity distribution of the dust grains. L. Colangeli, Oss Astronomico di Capodimonte, Naples, Italy is the Principal Investigator.

MIDAS (Micro-Imaging Dust Analysis System) will provide the population, size, volume and shape of the grains. W. Riedler, IWF, Graz, Austria is the Principal Investigator.

MIRO (Microwave Instrument for Rosetta Orbiter) is a radiometer that will monitor the surface temperature of the comet (and a few asteroids during its cruise phase). It will also monitor the abundance of water vapor and carbon monoxide, to determine how the sublimation varies according to the distance from the Sun. S. Gulkis, NASA-JPL, Pasadena, CA, USA is the Principal Investigator.

OSIRS (Optical, Spectroscopic, and Infrared Remote-imaging System) is a joint wide-angle and narrow-angle panchromatic camera to photograph the cometary nucleus. H. U. Keller, MPAe, Katlenburg-Lindau, Germany, is the Principal Investigator.

ROSINA (Rosetta Orbiter Spectrometer for Ion and Neutral Analysis) carries two sensors to determine the composition of the comet's atmosphere and ionosphere, and the velocities of ions. H. Balsiger, University of Bern, Switzerland is the Principal Investigator.

RPC (Rosetta Plasma Consortium) carries five sensors to measure the physical properties of the cometary nucleus, examine the structure of the inner coma, monitor cometary activity, and study the comet's interaction with the solar wind. Among the co-investigators is R. Lundin, Swedish Institute of Physics, Kiruna, Sweden.

RSI (Radio Science Investigation) will infer the ionization in the cometary environment by analyzing Rosetta's telemetry waves that passed through the environment on the way to Earth. The Principal Investigator is M. Patzold, University of Cologne, Germany.

VIRTIS (Visible and InfraRed Thermal Imaging Spectrometer) will map the nature of the solids, and the temperature of the nucleus' surface. It will also identify the gases in the coma and help identify a suitable landing site. The Principal Investigator is A. Coradini, IFSI, Rome, Italy.

Philae is the lander of mass 100 kg, and is covered by solar panels. It will unfold its three legs upon release from the orbiter, which will help to damp out the impact and enable the lander to stand upright. Upon landing, it will fire a harpoon to anchor it to the soil. The data from the instruments will be sent to the ground stations via the orbiter. It has three Project Managers: Stephen Ulamac, DLR, Köln Proz-Wahn, Germany; Denis Moura, CNES, Toulouse, France; and R. Mugnuolo, Italian Space Agency, Matera, Italy. The WDC SI will assign an International/COSPAR ID, 2004-006C after it lands on the comet. The following are the instruments on Philae.

APXS (Alpha Particle X-ray Spectrometer) will help infer the atomic composition of the cometary surface minerals. The Principal Investigator is Rudolf Rieder, Max Planck Institut für Chemie, Mainz, Germany.

CIVA is a set of six identical micro-cameras that will take panoramic pictures of the cometary surface. Jean-Pierre Bibring of the Institut d'Astrophysique Spatiale, University of Paris, France is the Principal Investigator.

CONSERT (COmet Nucleus Sounding Experiment by Radiowave Transmission) in the lander will receive the transmissions from the CONSERT instrument on the orbiter. Wlodek Kofman of the Laboratoire de Planetologie, Grenoble, France is the Principal Investigator.

COSAC (COmetary Sampling And Composition experiment) is a gas analyzer that will identify the organic molecules emanating from the comet. Helmut Rosenbauer of the Max-Planck Institut für Aeronomie, Lindau, Germany is the Principal Investigator.

MODULUS PTOLEMY is a gas analyzer that will provide isotopic ratios of light elements. Ian Wright, Open University, Milton Keynes, UK is the Principal Investigator.

MUPUS consists of sensors to ascertain the density, and thermal and mechanical properties of the surface. Tilman Spohn, Universität Münster, Germany is the Principal Investigator.

ROLIS (ROsetta Lander Imaging System) is a CCD camera to obtain high- resolution pictures during landing, and panoramic images of areas sampled by other instruments. Stefano Mottola, DLR, Berlin, Germany is the Principal Investigator.

ROMAP (ROsetta lander Magnetometer And PLasma monitor) consists of a magnetometer and a plasma probe to monitor the cometary environment and the impacting solar wind. Hans-Ulrich Auster, Technische Universität, Braunschweig, Germany is the Principal Investigator.

SD2 (Sampling and Distribution device) will drill 20 cm into the cometary surface, collect samples either for microscopic inspection or for sending it to different ovens. Ercol Finzi, Politechnico, Milan, Italy is the Principal Investigator.

SESAME (Surface Electrical, Seismic and Acoustic Monitoring Experiment) will emit and receive sound waves that have traversed the surface. Dietrich Mohlmann, DLR, Cologne, Germany is a Principal Investigator.

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.

    High precision (<20 cm) GPS constellation tracking data obtained from the network of about 400 dedicated global stations that are of interest to geodetic study may be obtained through the following services provided by the International GNSS Service (IGS). The IGS is a service of the International Association of Geodesy (IAG).

         FTP:  [directory /igscb]

    The standard format of the GPS situation appeared in SPACEWARN Bulletin No. 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 addition to the fleet is Navstar 53, 2003-058A.

  3. Russian Global Navigational (Positioning) Spacecraft, GLONASS constellation. (SPACEWARN requests updates/additions from readers to this list.)

    All GLONASS spacecraft are in the general Cosmos series. The Cosmos numbers 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 last appeared in SPACEWARN Bulletin No. 545. It will not be repeated in view of the excellent updated source at: maintained by the Information-Analytical Center (IAC), Russian Space Agency.

  4. Visually bright objects.

    See Users must register. Conditions apply.

  5. Actual decays/landings of payload spacecraft and rocket bodies (R/B) only. No further information is available.
    Designations         Common Name                  Decay Date (2004)
    2004-010C (28196)  R/B(1) Proton-K                   29 March
    2001-057A (27053)  COSMOS 2383                       20 March
    1970-037A (04393)  METEOR 1-4                        16 March
    1985-061D (15916)  R/B(2) that launched MOLNIYA 3-25 08 March
    1996-005F (23813)  R/B (Aux.Mot.) Proton             07 March
  6. 60-day Decay Predictions.

    See Users must register for access. Conditions apply

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

  8. 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 690.1, 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 of interest for Earth-centered spacecraft can be generated via 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:

SPACEWARN Bulletin index About the SPACEWARN Bulletin About Spacecraft Categories NSSDC home page

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

Dr. Edwin V. Bell, II
NASA Official: Dr. Ed Grayzeck
V1.0, 01 April 2004
Last updated: 30 April 2004, EVB II