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A monthly publication of the National Space Science Data Center/World Data Center for Satellite Information
No. 663
01 Feb. 2009

SPACEWARN Activities

All information in this publication was received between 01 January 2009 and 31 January 2009.

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

International ID
Catalog Number
Spacecraft Name Launch Date (UT)
2009-003A 33504 KORONAS-Foton 30 January 2009
2009-002H 33499 KKS 1 23 January 2009
2009-002G 33498 Stars 23 January 2009
2009-002F 33497 SDS 1 23 January 2009
2009-002E 33496 SOHLA 1 23 January 2009
2009-002D 33495 Kagayaki 23 January 2009
2009-002C 33494 Sprite-Sat 23 January 2009
2009-002B 33493 Prism 23 January 2009
2009-002A 33492 GOSat (Ibuki) 23 January 2009
2009-001A 33490 USA 202 (NROL 26) 18 January 2009

B. Text of Launch Announcements.

KORONAS-Foton or CORONAS-Photon, a Russian satellite for solar physics, solar-terrestrial connection physics and astrophysics, was launched at 13:30 UT on 30 January 2009 from Plesetsk. Koronas-Foton has a mass of 1920 kg, an expected lifetime of three years and has two solar panels providing approximately 2 kW power. Koronas-Foton is part of the International Living with a Star (ILWS) program. The primary purpose of the mission is the study of solar electromagnetic radiation, especially from solar flares, in the Extreme Ultraviolet (EUV) up to high-energy gamma-ray radiation. It will also be capable of making parallel observations of Earth's upper atmosphere in EUV and soft X-rays as well as monitoring other astrophysical X-ray and gamma-ray sources. A high-energy particle detector on board will also be capable of monitoring the near-Earth plasma environment. The satellite will operate from a circular orbit of 500 km altitude with an inclination of 82.5°.
The satellite carries several instruments: NATALYA-2M, a high-energy spectrometer; RT-2, a low-energy gamma-ray telescope; PENGUIN-M, a hard X-ray polarimeter-spectrometer; KONUS-RF, an X-ray and gamma-ray spectrometer; BRM, a fast X-ray monitor; PHOKA, a multi-channel ultraviolet monitor; TESIS, a solar telescope/imaging spectrometer; ELECTRON-M-PESCA, a charged particle analyzer; and STEP-F, a high-energy particle detector. It is also equipped with a magnetometer, a data acquisition and registration system and a control and communications block. The Moscow Engineering Physics Institute (MEPhI) is the prime institution responsible for the mission payload. The Scientific-Research Electromechanic Institute (NIIEM) is responsible for the spacecraft design and manufacture. Teams from Russia, India, Ukraine, Spain and Poland contributed to the development of the science payloads.
Seven microsatellites were deployed as piggyback payloads to the Ibuki spacecraft. All of these spacecraft will follow a similar roughly 660 km sun-synchronous orbit. Six of the small satellites were developed by universities and private-sector companies; the seventh is a technology demonstrator for JAXA.
Prism, developed by the University of Tokyo, will make Earth observations using an expandable refracting telescope. It will also serve as a technology demonstration and verification of the ultra-small satellite bus and will provide various amateur radio services.
SDS 1, the Small Demonstration Satellite 1, is a technology demonstrator mission developed by JAXA. The satellite is approximately 70 x 70 x 60 cm in size and is 100 kg. Solar cells will provide approximately 100 W of power. The spacecraft features a multi-mode integrated transponder. During its mission it will carry out on-orbit verification of a space wire demonstration module, a cutting-edge microprocessor, and a thin-film solar cell.
Kagayaki, developed by the Tokyo-based information system company Sorun Corporation, will observe aurorae from space. The goal of the mission is to connect the dreams of children with incurable diseases to space. The mass of the satellite is 28kg and its size is 31cm x 31cm x 35cm. Among the design features are an autonomous on-board control system and an inflatable deployable boom. The mission goals are to measure orbital debris and observe auroral electric currents.
SOHLA 1, the Space Oriented Higashi-Osaka Leading Association exploratory satellite, was developed by a team of small and midsize companies in Higashi-Osaka, Osaka Prefecture. Students at Osaka Prefecture University, Osaka University and Ryukoku University provided technological support. The satellite is designed to observe lightning.
Sprite-Sat, developed by Tohoku University, is a cube of approximately 50 cm and 50 kg mass and will observe sprites and gamma-rays generated during Earth thunderstorms.
Stars, also known as Kukai after a famous priest and calligrapher, is a pair of tethered satellites built by Kagawa University. The two units are tethered to each other with strands of synthetic fiber, and a camera built into the smaller unit is designed to photograph the other unit in space. The satellite will explore the possibility of using the technique to examine the outer walls of space stations.
KKS 1, developed by Tokyo Metropolitan College of Industrial Technology, is a cube of approximately 15 cm and 3 kg mass. The goal of this educational satellite is to demonstrate a micro propulsion system and three-axis attitude control functions.
GOSat (Greenhouse Gases Observing Satellite), also known as Ibuki, was launched by an H-IIA rocket Launch Vehicle No. 15 (H-IIA F15) from Japan's Tanegashima Space Center at 03:54 UT on 23 January 2009. Ibuki, which means "breath" in Japanese, is designed to observe the concentration and distribution of greenhouse gases (carbon dioxide, methane, etc.) across most of the Earth's surface. The spacecraft has a mass of approximately 1750 kg, the solar arrays will provide at least 3.8 kW of power and the spacecraft is designed for a five year life span. It will be placed into a 666 km sun-synchronous orbit of inclination 98&def;. In this orbit Ibuki will be able to re-image the same location after three days. The observation instrument on-board the satellite is called the Thermal And Near-infrared Sensor for carbon Observation (TANSO). TANSO is composed of two sensors: a Fourier Transform Spectrometer (FTS) and a Cloud Aerosol Imager (CAI). JAXA is the agency responsible for development, launch and operations. The National Institute for Environmental Studies and the Ministry of the Environment will carry out advanced processing and utilization of the data.
USA 202, also known as NROL 26, is an American military (NRO) satellite. It was launched by a Delta IV Heavy rocket from Cape Canaveral's Space Launch Complex 37B at 02:47 UT on 18 January 2009.

C. Spacecraft Particularly Suited for International Participation

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 GPS 2R-18 (2007-062A).

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.

According to IAC the latest additions to the fleet are 2008-067A, 2008-067B, and 2008-067C.

Visually bright objects.

See Users must register. Conditions apply.

Actual decays/landings of payload spacecraft and rocket bodies (R/B) only. No further information is available.

Designations         Common Name                  Decay Date (2009)

1982-045D (13215)    SL-6 R/B(2)                      18 January

60-day Decay Predictions.

See Users must register for access. Conditions apply

Miscellaneous Items.

This section contains information or data that are entered on occasion and may not be repeated in each issue of the SPACEWARN Bulletin.

The Glonass satellites launched in December 2008 and described in SPACEWARN Bulletin No. 662 have now been uniquely identified with COSPAR/WWAS International and Catalog IDs.

2008-067A (33466) = Cosmos 2447 (Glonass 727)
2008-067C (33468) = Cosmos 2448 (Glonass 728)
2008-067B (33467) = Cosmos 2449 (Glonass 729)

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:

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