SPACEWARN Bulletin Number 527
A publication of NASA's National Space Science Data Center/World Data Center-A for Rockets
and Satellites as the WWAS for ISES/COSPAR
01 October 1997
All information in this publication was received between
25 August 1997 and 30 September 1997.
A. List of New International Designations and Launch Dates.
USSPACECOM Catalog numbers are in parentheses.
1997-057A (24971) IRS 1D 29 Sep 1997-051E (24948) IRIDIUM 31 14 Sep
1997-056E (24969) IRIDIUM 34 27 Sep 1997-051D (24947) IRIDIUM 30 14 Sep
1997-056D (24968) IRIDIUM 35 27 Sep 1997-051C (24946) IRIDIUM 29 14 Sep
1997-056C (24967) IRIDIUM 36 27 Sep 1997-051B (24945) IRIDIUM 28 14 Sep
1997-056B (24966) IRIDIUM 37 27 Sep 1997-051A (24944) IRIDIUM 27 14 Sep
1997-056A (24965) IRIDIUM 19 27 Sep 1997-050A (24936) GE 3 04 Sep
1997-055A (24964) STS 86 26 Sep 1997-049B (24932) METEOSAT 7 02 Sep
1997-054A (24960) Molniya 1-90 24 Sep 1997-049A (24931) HOT BIRD 3 02 Sep
1997-053A (24957) INTELSAT 803 23 Sep 1997-048B (24926) Dummy S2 01 Sep
1997-052B (24954) FAISAT 2V 23 Sep 1997-048A (24925) Dummy S1 01 Sep
1997-052A (24953) Cosmos 2346 23 Sep 1997-047A (24920) FORTE 29 Aug
1997-051G (24950) IRIDIUM 33 14 Sep 1997-046A (24916) PANAMSAT 5 28 Aug
1997-051F (24949) IRIDIUM 32 14 Sep 1997-045A (24912) ACE 25 Aug
B. Text of Launch Announcements.
IRS 1D is an Indian remote sensing Sun-synchronous orbiter that
was launched by a PSLV-1C (Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle) rocket
from Shriharikota (in southeast India) at 04:47 UT. (The 44.4
meter, four-stage, 468 tonne PSLV-1C complex is now an operational
vehicle, after earlier test launches.) It is the fourth of the IRS
series. The 1,200 kg orbiter carries three main instruments: a
panchromatic camera (PAN), a linear imaging self-scanner (LISS-3),
and a wide field sensor (WIFS). PAN has reflective optics and the
other have two refractive optics. The color imagery will have a
resolution of 23.5 meters and the black and white, 5 meters. An
on-board tape recorder stores data over unreachable intervals.
Sensed data on Indian and foreign terrains will be sold through an
American company (after the usual clearance by Indian military).
Orbit maneuvers may be planned to raise the perigee. Initial orbital
parameters were period 95.9 min, apogee 803 km, perigee 288 km, and
inclination 98.6 deg.
1997-056E, 1997-056D, 1997-056C, 1997-056B, 1997-056A
IRIDIUM 34, 35, 36, 37, and 19 are five American satellites
that joined the IRIDIUM fleet; they were launched by a Delta-2
rocket from Vandenberg AFB. They enable voice communications
between mobile telephones beyond the reach of cellular zones.
Initial orbital parameters of all five were similar: period
95.7 km, apogee 559 km, perigee 542 km, and inclination 86.7 deg.
STS 86 is an American Shuttle spacecraft that was launched from
Cape Canaveral at 02:30 UT. The main mission was to haul equipment
and supplies to the troubled Mir space station: 700 kg of water,
500 kg of American science equipment, and 2,000 kg of Russian supplies
and hardware. It was also to haul back to Earth 700 kg of American
research output and 500 kg of trashed Russian equipments. On board
was an American astronaut required to spend several months in Mir
to strengthen his endurance. The current American astronaut on Mir
will be returned to Earth. It docked with Mir on the 27 September
at 19:58 UT. Initial orbital element were period 92.2 min, apogee
392 km, perigee 370 km, and inclination 51.6 deg.
Molniya 1-90 is a Russian communications spacecraft that was
launched from Plesetsk by a Molniya-M rocket at 21:31 UT. It will
provide voice and video communications to the far-north Russia.
Initial orbital parameters were period 718 min, apogee 39,915 km,
perigee 451 km, and inclination 62.9 deg.
INTELSAT 803 is a geosynchronous communications spacecraft of
that consortium that was launched by an Ariane 4 rocket from
Kourou. The 3,455 kg satellite carries six Ku-band transponders to
provide voice and video communications after parking at 175-E
FAISAT 2V is an American (civilian or military) communications
spacecraft that was launched by a Kosmos-3M rocket from Plesetsk
at 16:44 UT (along with Cosmos 2346). Its main mission is to look
for and warn of natural disasters on land and sea and aid rescue
efforts. Initial orbital parameters were period 104.4 min, apogee
1,012 km, perigee 956 km, and inclination 82.9 deg.
Cosmos 2346 is a Russian military spacecraft that was launched by
a Kosmos-3M rocket from Plesetsk at 16:44 UT. Initial orbital
parameters were period 104.4 min, apogee 1,015 km, perigee 953
km, and inclination 82.9 deg.
1997-051G, 1997-056F, 1997-056E, 1997-056D, 1997-056C, 1997-056B, 1997-056A
IRIDIUM 33, 32, 31, 30, 29, 28, and 27 are American communications
spacecraft that were launched by a Proton-K rocket from Baykonur.
They joined the current fleet of IRIDIUMs to provide voice
communications between mobile telephones. Initial orbital parameters
of all seven were similar: period 94.9 min, apogee 541 km, perigee 522
km, and inclination 86.6 deg.
GE 3 is an American geosynchronous communication spacecraft that
was launched from Cape Canaveral by an Atlas 2AS rocket. It
carries 24 C-band transponders to provide voice and video
communications to North America after parking at 127-W longitude.
METEOSAT 7 is a European geosynchronous weather satellite that was
launched by an Arianne 4 rocket from Kourou. The 3,455 kg spacecraft
will provide cloud cover and other weather-related data over western
HOT BIRD 3 is a European geosynchronous direct-TV spacecraft that
was launched to provide voice and video communications to Europe
after parking at 13-E longitude. It was launched by an Ariane 4
rocket from Kourou and carries 18 Ku-band transponders.
Dummy S2 is one of two dummies simulating IRIDIUM spacecraft. They were
launched by a (newly developed) Long March 2-3 rocket from the new
Taiyuan launch center. The goal was to offer the Long March 2-3 as
potential carrier for future launches of IRIDIUMs. Initial orbital
parameters were period 97.2 min, apogee 634 km, perigee 623 km, and
inclination 86.3 deg.
Dummy S1 is one of two dummies simulating IRIDIUM spacecraft. They
were launched by a (newly developed) Long March 2-3 rocket from the
new Taiyuan launch center. The goal was to offer the Long March 2-3
as a potential carrier for future launches of IRIDIUMs. Initial
orbital parameters were period 93 min, apogee 622 km, perigee 231
km, and inclination 86.2 deg.
FORTE (Fast On-orbit Recording of Transcient Events) is an American
military spacecraft that was launched by a Pegasus XL rocket from
an airplane flying out of Vandenberg AFB. Its primary mission is to
keep track of violations of nuclear test ban treaties by the
signatories and others. Initial orbital parameters were period
101.2 min, apogee 833 km, perigee 799 km, and inclination 70.0 deg.
PANAMSAT 5 is an American geosynchronous communications spacecraft
that was launched by a Proton-K rocket from Baykonur at 00:33 UT.
It will provide direct-TV to South American and Caribbean countries
through its 24 C-band transponders after parking at 58-W longitude.
ACE (Advanced Composition Explorer) is an American space physics
spacecraft that was launched by a Delta 2 rocket from Cape
Canaveral at 14:39 UT. After a few low earth orbits the 596 kg,
464 W spacecraft will be maneuvered many times to reach the first
Lagrangian point (L-1) located at about 1.5 million km in the
sunward direction. It carries nine instruments to monitor the
magnetic field, solar wind electrons and ions, and the more
energetic cosmic ray ions; more details are available at
Initial orbital parameters were period 1,398 hr, apogee 1,256,768
km, perigee 179 km and inclination 28.7 deg.
C. Spacecraft Particularly Suited for International Participation
- Spacecraft with essentially continuous radio beacons on frequencies
less than 150 MHz, or higher frequencies if especially suited for ionospheric
or geodetic studies.
The last full list appeared as a part of SPX 520.
The list will reappear only after major updates to the list are available.
- Global Positioning System satellites useful for navigational
purposes and geodetic studies. ("NNN" denotes no national name. SPACEWARN
would appreciate suggestions to update this list. An asterisk [*] denotes
changes in this issue.)
High precision (<20 cm) GPS constellation tracking data obtained from
the network of about 80 dedicated global stations that are of interest to
geodetic study may be obtained through the following services provided
by the International Association of Geodesy (IGS)
FTP: igscb.jpl.nasa.gov [directory /igscb]
The standard format of the GPS situation appeared in SPX-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 member of the GPS fleet is NAVSTAR 43 (1997-035A), launched on 23 July 1997.
- Russian Global Navigational (Positioning) Spacecraft, GLONASS
constellation. (SPACEWARN requests updates/additions from readers to this list.
Entries marked "*" are updates or additions to the list.)
All GLONASS spacecraft are in the general COSMOS series. The COSMOS numbers
(nnnn) 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
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 appeared in SPX-515. It
will not be repeated in view of the excellent updated source at:
maintained by the Coordinational
Scientific Information Center (CSIC),Russian Space Forces.
- Actual decays/landings of payload spacecraft and rocket bodies (R/B)
only. Additional information is not available.
Designations Common Name 1997
1997-024A (24805) COSMOS 2343 18 Sep
1997-051H (24951) R/B PROTON-K 14 Sep
1989-100A (20389) COSMOS 2053 02 Sep
1995-052A (23676) COSMOS 2321 21 Aug
- Miscellaneous Items. (This section contains information/data that
are entered on occasion and may not be repeated in each issue of the
NSSDC/WDC-A-R&S is an archival center for science data from many spacecraft.
Some data are on line for electronic access. Please contact the NSSDC Request Coordination
Code 633, NASA/GSFC, Greenbelt, Maryland 20771, U.S.A., for specific
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 FTP'ed from NSSDC's ANON_DIR:[000000.ACTIVE] and its
several subdirectories. (See About the SPACEWARN Bulletin
for access method; a file in the ACTIVE directory named AAREADME.DOC, outlines the contents.)
It can also be accessed via the WWW at:
This URL also enables executing several codes related to the orbits
of many geocentric science payload spacecraft. The codes related to
the heliospheric spacecraft trjectories can be executed through:
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
Questions/comments about the content of these pages should be directed to:
The World Warning Agency for Satellites, firstname.lastname@example.org
National Space Science Data Center, Mail Code 633
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD 20771
Dr. Edwin V. Bell, II, email@example.com, +1-301-286-1187
NSSDC, Mail Code 633, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD 20771
NASA Official: J. H. King, firstname.lastname@example.org
V1.0: 03 October 1997
Last updated: 05 March 2003, EVB II