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DMSP 5D-3/F15



DMSP F15 (USA 147) was launched by a Titan rocket from Vandenberg AFB on December 12, 1999 into a 101 minute, sun-synchronous near-polar orbit at an altitude of 840km and with the Local Time nodes of 21:10 and 9:10. The Defense Meteorological Satellite Program (DMSP) is a Department of Defense (DoD) program run by the Air Force Space and Missle Systems Center (SMC). The program designs, builds, launches, and maintains satellites monitoring the meteorological, oceanographic, and solar-terrestrial physics environments. Each DMSP satellite has a above the surface of the earth. The visible and infrared sensors (OLS) collect images across a 3000 km swath, providing global coverage twice per day. The combination of day/night and dawn/dusk satellites allows monitoring of global information such as clouds every 6 hours. The microwave imager (MI) and sounders (T1, T2) cover one half the width of the visible and infrared swath. These instruments cover polar regions at least twice and the equatorial region once per day. The space environment sensors (J4, M, IES) record along-track plasma densities, velocities, composition and drifts. The data from the DMSP satellites are received and used at operational centers continuously. The data are sent to the National Geophysical Data Center's Solar Terrestrial Physics Division (NGDC/STP) by the Air Force Weather Agency (AFWA) for creation of an archive.

Alternate Names

  • USA 147
  • 25991
  • DMSP-F15
  • DMSP5D-3-F15

Facts in Brief

Launch Date: 1999-12-12
Launch Vehicle: Titan
Launch Site: Vandenberg AFB, United States

Funding Agency

  • Unknown (United States)


  • Surveillance and Other Military
  • Space Physics
  • Earth Science

Additional Information

Questions and comments about this spacecraft can be directed to: Dr. Dieter K. Bilitza



NameRoleOriginal AffiliationE-mail

Other Sources of DMSP Data/Information

SSIES ion data (U. Texas - Dallas)
DMSP data (National Geophysical Data Center)
DMSP F15 summary (NASA MSFC)

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