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A monthly publication of the National Space Science Data Center/World Data Center for Satellite Information
No. 687
01 February 2011

SPACEWARN Activities

All information in this publication was received between 01 January 2011 and 31 January 2011.

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

International ID
Catalog Number
Spacecraft Name Launch Date (UT)
2011-004A 37359 Progress M-09M 28 January 2011
2011-003A 37351 HTV 2 22 January 2011
2011-002A 37348 USA 224 20 January 2011
2011-001A 37344 Electro-L1 20 January 2011

B. Text of Launch Announcements.

Progress M-09M, a Russian supply satellite, was launched from Baikonur on 28 January 2011 at 01:31 UT by a Soyuz rocket. It docked to the International Space Station's (ISS) Pirs module on 30 January 2011 at 02:39 UT. The satellite carried approximately 2.5 tonnes of cargo, including propellant, oxygen, food, crew parcels, scientific equipment, and additional hardware for the ISS. Among the cargo was ARISSAT 1 (Kedr), a 30 kg minisatellite, designed to transmit 25 greetings messages in 15 different languages, Earth photos, and telemetry data for its scientific equipment and service systems. It will transmit a signal at 145.95 MHz. Kedr will be manually launched by an ISS cosmonaut during an upcoming EVA. It will also be used for student space education programs, and for this year's celebration of the 50th anniversary of Yuri Gagarin's spaceflight. Other payloads on-board are books by Russian space exploration founder Konstantin Tsiolkovsky, and a birthday gift for ISS Commander Scott Kelly. Progress M-09M will remain docked to the ISS until 26 April 2011. It is expected to undock from the ISS during the STS-134 mission, a first for the ISS program.
HTV 2, a Japanese satellite, was launched from Tanegashima on 22 January 2011 at 05:38 UT by an H-2B rocket. It docked with the International Space Station's Harmony module on 27 January 2011 at 11:41 UT. HTV 2, an unmanned supply ship, will deliver internal and external cargo to the International Space Station (ISS) and serve as a means for equipment disposal from the ISS upon the craft's undocking and destruction in the atmosphere. The craft carried pressurized and unpressurized cargo consisting of scientific gear, spare parts and provisions for the ISS crew. The unpressurized cargo included two NASA payloads that will be transferred from the craft's external cargo hold in early February. Japan is calling the spacecraft Kounotori 2 ("white stork").
USA 224 was launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base on 20 January 2011 at 21:10 UT by a Delta IV rocket. USA 224 is a National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) classified satellite. It flew in the "heavy" configuration, the highest capacity Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) variant and the most powerful unmanned rocket currently in service. This was the first Delta IV Heavy launched from Vandenberg and, to date, the heaviest vehicle to lift off from Vandenberg.
Electro-L1, a Russian weather satellite, was launched from Baikonur on 20 January 2011 at 12:29 UT by a Zenit rocket. Electro-L1 is also known as GOMS 2, or Geostationary Operational Meteorological Satellite 2. Electro-L1 will capture real-time images of clouds and storm systems, collecting weather imagery several times per hour with visible and infrared cameras. The satellite's position in geosynchronous orbit will yield views of the entire Earth disk, allowing its weather sensors to observe storm systems across a wide swath of Asia, the Middle East and the Indian Ocean. The satellite will also study space weather phenomena and provide communications for search-and-rescue services. The satellite weighs 1701 kg and will be parked at 76° E longitude. It is expected to function for up to ten years.

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 2F-1 (2010-022A).

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 2010-041C, 2010-041B,and 2010-041A.

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 (2011)

2011-004B(37360)     SL-4 R/B                        31 January   
2010-068B(37257)     CZ-3A R/B                       31 January
2010-055A(37196)     PROGRESS-M 08M                  24 January
1968-014B(3145)      ATLAS AGENA D R/B               18 January
2010-066B(37245)     QBX2                            16 January
2010-066C(37246)     SMDC ONE                        12 January
2010-066F(37249)     QBX1                            06 January
2009-028E(35005)     AEROCUBE 3                      06 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.

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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