Status Report

Jonathan’s Space Report No. 464 2001 Oct 16

By SpaceRef Editor
October 17, 2001
Filed under , ,


Shuttle and Station

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Astronauts Dezhurov and Tyurin made a spacewalk from the Pirs module on
Station on Oct 8. The airlock was depressurized for the first time by
around 1420 UTC and the hatch was opened at 1423 UTC. The crew installed
the Strela crane on the outside of Pirs and jettisoned some thermal
covers. After five minutes wrestling with the mechanism, the hatch was
closed at 1921 UTC and repressurization began at 1926 UTC. Orlan-M
spacesuits were used for the spacewalk; the ‘official’ time was counted
from hatch open to hatch closed (Russian rules), inconsistent with the
durations used for spacewalks from Quest, which are counted from battery
power to repress (NASA rules).

The same two astronauts made another spacewalk on Oct 15, with
Culbertson again staying inside the station. At 0903 UTC the airlock was
depressurized to about 20 mbar; the hatch began opening to full vaccuum
at 0916 UTC with official hatch opening at 0917 UTC. Tyurin exited the
airlock at 0925 UTC, with Dezhurov emerging a few minutes later. The
astronauts attached the Kromka contamination experiment and two Japanese
exposure experiments to the hull of the Zvezda module. The Russian flag
on Zvezda was retrieved for an exposure study and replaced with a
commercial logo. Dezhurov and Tyurin re-entered the airlock at 1445 UTC
and after more hatch closing troubles, the hatch was latched at 1509 UTC
and the airlock repressurization began around 1510 UTC.

Recent Launches

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Galileo completed the Io 32 flyby on Oct 16. It passed 343000 km from
Jupiter’s cloud tops at 2252 UTC on Oct 15, and only 181 km from Io’s
south polar region at 0223 UTC on Oct 16 It will retreat to 11 million
km from Jupiter by Nov 23 before coming back in for an equatorial pass
of Io on Jan 17.

Lockheed Martin Astronautics’ Titan 4B-34 was launched from SLC4E at
Vandenberg on Oct 5 at 2121 UTC. The vehicle had a 20-m fairing with no
upper stage. The SRMU solids and the Titan core first stage fell in the
Pacific as planned, with the Titan core second stage reaching orbit at
2130 UTC and deploying a National Reconnaissance Office payload into a
sun-synchronous orbit.

Analysts speculate that the payload is probably an Improved CRYSTAL
imaging satellite. If so, it will probably be in a 150 x 1050 km x 97.9
deg orbit.

The Russian Kosmos-2377 Kobal’t-class imaging satellite landed
on Oct 10 after a 4-month mission.

The OAM stage from the recent Athena launch seems to have made
further depletion burns and on Oct 3 was in a 155 x 376 km orbit;
it reentered on Oct 6.

A Krunichev Proton-K was launched from Baykonur on Oct 6. The Energiya
Blok-DM2 upper stage put a Globus military communications satellite
in geostationary orbit. The Globus satellites, built by NPO-PM,
are given the public name Raduga-1 when in orbit. The DM2 entered
orbit at 1654 UTC, made its first burn around 1755 UTC to transfer
orbit, and is believed to have made a second burn at about 2318 UTC
to circularize orbit at geostationary altitude.

A Lockheed Martin Astronautics Atlas IIAS, flight AC-162, was
launched from Cape Canaeral on Oct 11. The Centaur entered a 176 x 907 km
x 28.2 deg parking orbit at 0242 UTC and then made a second burn
to deploy its payload in a 274 x 37538 km x 26.5 deg geostationary
transfer orbit at 0301 UTC. The payload is rumoured to be
a data relay satellite used to return data from imaging satellites
like the one launched on Oct 5. It is also possible, but less likely,
that the satellite is a signals intelligence payload. The satellite
is owned and operated by the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO).

USA 160, launched on Sep 8, has not been joined by any more cataloged
payloads, although it is possible that 2001-40C, officially registered
as a debris object, is actually a payload. Although it was expected
that three payloads would be deployed from the launch, the new ocean
surveillance design may use fewer independent satellites. In the
past, four objects were officially assigned USA numbers from each
of the ocean surveillance launches.

Table of Recent Launches

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Date UT       Name            Launch Vehicle  Site            Mission    INTL.
DES.
Sep 7 1939 Picosat 7/8 – Sindri, LEO Technology 00-42C
Sep 8 1525 USA 160 ) Atlas IIAS Vandenberg SLC3E Sigint 40A
NRO satellite ) 40C
Sep 14 2335 Pirs ) Soyuz-U Baykonur LC1 Station module
Progress M-SO1 ) Cargo 41A
Sep 21 1849 Orbview-4 ) Taurus 2110 Vandenberg 576E Imaging F01
QuikTOMS ) Environment F01
SBD ) Technology F01
Celestis-4 ) Burial F01
Sep 25 2321 Atlantic Bird 2 Ariane 44P Kourou ELA2 Ku telecom 42A
Sep 30 0240 Starshine 3 ) Athena-1 Kodiak Science 43A
Picosat ) Technology 43B
PCSat ) UHF/VHF comm 43C
Sapphire ) Technology 43D
Oct 5 2120 USA 161 Titan 4B Vandenberg SLC4E Imaging 44A
Oct 6 1645 Raduga-1 Proton-K/DM2? Baykonur C telecom 45A
Oct 11 0232 USA 162 Atlas IIAS Canaveral SLC36B Data relay? 46A

Current Shuttle Processing Status

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Orbiters               Location   Mission    Launch Due

OV-102 Columbia OPF Bay 3 STS-109 2002 Feb HST SM-3B
OV-103 Discovery OPF Bay 2 Maintenance
OV-104 Atlantis VAB STS-110 2002 Mar ISS 8A
OV-105 Endeavour OPF Bay 1 STS-108 2001 Nov 29 ISS UF-1

.————————————————————————-.
| Jonathan McDowell | phone : (617) 495-7176 |
| Harvard-Smithsonian Center for | |
| Astrophysics | |
| 60 Garden St, MS6 | |
| Cambridge MA 02138 | inter : [email protected] |
| USA | [email protected] |
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SpaceRef staff editor.