Press Release

Telstar 18 spacecraft injection by the Sea Launch floating complex

By SpaceRef Editor
July 1, 2004
Filed under , , ,

From the floating Odyssey Launch Platform of the Sea Launch
Rocket Space Complex based in the Pacific Ocean in a 154?W
equator area near the Christmas Island, at 7:59 Moscow Time
(3:59 Mean Greenwich Time) the Zenit-3SL Integrated Launch
Vehicle (ILV) has been launched the third time this year.
The task of the launch is to inject the Telstar 18 telecommunications
spacecraft (SC) into an equator geotransfer orbit.

SC weighing about 4.8 t is installed with 16 Ku-band transponders
and 38 C-band transponders and intended, residing at the
operational slot on a 138? E geostationary orbit, to render
telecommunications services to Asian-Pacific area subscribers
residing in South-Eastern Asia, Australia, New Zealand,
on Pacific islands, as well as on the Hawaiian Islands,
including direct-to-home television broadcasting and Internet

SC injection into the geotransfer orbit with a parking orbit
to which it together with a space Block DM-SL Upper Stage
(US) was delivered via a two-stage Zenit-2S Launch Vehicle
was implemented after the flight design with two burns of
the Block main engine.

SC after implementing these burns has been injected into
a geotransfer orbit with a lower than designed apogee altitude.

According to Loral Space & Communications Company information
(ref. Loral Space & Communications web-site), SC onboard
systems are functioning normally, the operations on solar
array deployments are complete and its propellant reserves
are enough to provide transfer to the final orbital position
and a specified active life of no less than 13 years.

Korolev RSC Energia in the Sea Launch project – prime enterprise
for the Rocket Segment of the Rocket Space Complex, provides
together with cooperation of Russian and Ukrainian Enterprises
integration, outfitting and operation of this segment, as
well as manufacturing and operation of DM-SL US as the third
stage of the Zenit-3SL ILV.

Control of launch processing and launch was exercised from
the Flight Control Center on the Sea Launch Commander Assembly-Command
Ship (ACS). The pre-launch processing stared 6 h prior to
the launch was performed in the automatic mode. The entire
personnel providing processing and launch, as well as Odyssey
PL crew were evacuated 3 h prior to the launch via a helicopter
onto ACS placed at a safe distance from the platform.

Processing and launch operations on the launch site were
performed under leadership of Sea Launch Company Mission
Director B. Rujevcan and Manager of Rocket Segment Operations,
RSC Energia Deputy General Designer V.G. Aliev.

The analysis of the US+SC flight was made by RSC Energia
specialists being members of a specially formed Main Operational
Control Team working at the Mission Control Center (MCC-M),
Korolev, Moscow Region, and continuously communicating with
the Flight Control Center on ACS. Flight Director is pilot-cosmonaut
V.A. Soloviev.

At the present time, the post-flight processing and analysis
of telemetry information, including that received from the
US onboard equipment, are going on.

In the MCC-M flight control room during processing and launch
were present President, General Designer Academician Yu.P.
Semenov, his deputies, other managers and specialists of
the Corporation and subcontractors.

This launch was the 14th one implemented under the Sea Launch
program. The first one took place on March 28, 1999, the
next one is planned for August 2004.

SpaceRef staff editor.