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A monthly publication of the National Space Science Data Center/World Data Center for Satellite Information
No. 673
01 December 2009

SPACEWARN Activities

All information in this publication was received between 01 November 2009 and 30 November 2009.

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

International ID
Catalog Number
Spacecraft Name Launch Date (UT)
2009-067A 36106 Intelsat 15 30 November 2009
2009-066A 36104 IGS 5A 28 November 2009
2009-065A 36101 Eutelsat W7 24 November 2009
2009-064A 36097 Intelsat 14 23 November 2009
2009-063A 36095 Cosmos 2455 20 November 2009
2009-062A 36094 STS 129 16 November 2009
2009-061A 36088 SJ-11-01 12 November 2009
2009-060A 36086 Poisk 10 November 2009
2009-059B 36037 PROBA 2 02 November 2009
2009-059A 36036 SMOS 02 November 2009

B. Text of Launch Announcements.

Intelsat 15 (IS 15), a commercial communications satellite, was launched on a Zenit-3SLB rocket with a Block DM-SLB upper stage from Baikonur on 30 November 2009 at 21:00 UT. The satellite is intended for a geosynchronous orbit at 85° E longitude. The satellite will provide data and video services for customers in Russia, the Middle East and in the vicinity of the Indian Ocean. IS 15 carries 22 Ku-band transponders and has an anticipated lifetime of 17 years.
A Japanese military Information Gathering Satellite, IGS 5A was launched on an H-2A rocket from Tanegashima on 28 November 2009 at 01:21 UT.
Eutelsat W7, a commercial communications satellite, was launched on a Proton M rocket with a Breeze M upper stage from Baikonur on 24 November 2009 at 14:19 UT. The satellite is intended for a geosynchronous orbit at 36° E longitude and carries up to 70 Ku-band transponders. W7 will be serving customers in Europe, Russia, Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia with digital broadcast and direct-to-home video.
Intelsat 14, a commercial communications satellite, was launched on an Atlas rocket from Cape Canaveral on 23 November 2009 at 06:55 UT. The satellite is intended for a geosynchronous orbit at 45° W longitude. Intelsat 14 will provide television and data to customers in North and South America, Africa and Europe. The satellite carries 40 C-band and 22 Ku-band transponders.
A Russian military satellite, Cosmos 2455 was launched on a Soyuz U rocket from Plesetsk on 20 November 2009 at 10:44 UT.
STS 129 was an American shuttle craft carrying six astronauts and 12.36 tonnes of supplies for the International Space Station. It launched from Cape Canaveral on 16 November 2009 at 19:28 UT. The craft docked with the International Space Station at 16:51 UT on 18 November 2009. The cargo included mostly spare parts for the ISS, much of which were mounted on the exterior of the ISS on two Express Logistics Carriers (ELC 1 and 2). The mission included three spacewalks and the return of one of the ISS crew members. The STS-129 mission completed with a landing at Cape Canaveral on 27 November 2009 at 14:45 UT.
SJ-11-01, also known as Shijian 11-01, was launched from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center on a Long March 2C rocket on 12 November 2009 at 02:45 UT. The Chinese satellite is intended for space science and engineering experiments.
Poisk, a Russian module for the International Space Station, was launched on a Soyuz U rocket from Baikonur on 10 November 2009 at 14:22 UT. Poisk, also known as the Mini-Research Module 2, docked to the Zvezda space-facing port on 12 November 2009 at 15:41 UT. Poisk brought nearly 800 kg of cargo to the ISS and will serve as another docking port and airlock for the station.
PROBA 2, ESA's Project for On-Board Autonomy technology demonstrator satellite, was launched on a Rokot rocket with a Breeze KM upper stage from Plesetsk on 02 November 2009 at 01:50 UT. The 130 kg satellite carries two Belgian solar physics instruments (SWAP, LYRA) and two Czech plasma physics instruments (TPMU, DSLP) and will demonstrate 17 advanced satellite technologies including star trackers, sun sensors, a camera, magnetometer, and others. SWAP, an Extreme UV telescope, will be used to observe the solar corona. LYRA, is a solar radiometer observing in four ultraviolet bands. TPMU, the Thermal Plasma Measurement Unit, measures the ambient ion and electron temperature, the ion density, composition, and the floating potential of the satellite body. DSLP, the Dual Segmented Langmuir Probe, will study the plasma environment and how it varies with solar events.
SMOS, ESA's Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity satellite, was launched on a Rockot rocket with a Breeze KM upper stage from Plesetsk on 02 November 2009 at 01:50 UT. The primary instrument for the 658 kg satellite is the L-band MIRAS (Microwave Imaging Radiometer using Aperture Synthesis) radiometer composed of a 69 element Y-shaped antenna array. The satellite will monitor sea surface salinity and soil moisture on a global scale. SMOS data will be used to build maps of salinity and moisture levels and contribute to global circulation models.

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-21(M) (2009-043A).

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)

2009-062A(36094)     STS 129                        27 November
2009-043B(35753)     DELTA 2 R/B(1)                 26 November
2009-060B(36087)     SL-4 R/B                       14 November
1984-079D(15156)     SL-6 R/B(2)                    06 November
2009-048A(35817)     HTV-1                          01 November

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.

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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