Status Report

Jonathan’s Space Report No. 569 2006 Aug 11

By SpaceRef Editor
August 11, 2006
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Shuttle and Station

The ISS Expedition 13 crew on board the station now consists of Pavel Vingradov, Jeffrey Williams, and ESA’s Thomas Reiter.

On Aug 3 Williams and Reiter made a spacewalk from the Quest module to install a Floating Potential Measurement Unit on the S1 truss to measure spacecraft charging, and to perform other maintenance tasks on S1. Willaims wore US EMU spacesuit 3008 and Reiter wore suit 3015 (thanks to Andrey Krasil’nikov for this information). The airlock was depressurized at 1350 UTC, with the hatch open at 1354 UTC. It took some time to get the hatch fully open, and the astronauts put their suits on battery power at 1404 UTC, leaving the airlock by 1425 UTC. All tasks completed, they went back inside and closed the hatch at around 1950 UTC, with airlock repressurization beginning at 1958 UTC.


Russia has launched a new missile early warning satellite in the Oko series. The Molniya-M rocket put Kosmos-2422 in a highly elliptical orbit. The Oko satellites are built by the Lavochkin company. Kosmos-2422 was in an initial 533 x 39135 km x 62.9 deg orbit; on Jul 31 it maneuvered to a 539 x 39570 km orbit.


Kosmotras launched a Dnepr rocket from Baykonur on Jul 26, carrying a large number of small satellites. The rocket was destroyed when the first stage engine failed.

The 750 kg BelKA satellite was the first owned by Belarus; it was built in Russia by Energiya using the Viktoria (Yamal) bus and carried a 2.5m resolution pan camera and a 10m resolution multispectral camera for Earth observation.

The 12 kg Unisat-4 is a technology satellite from the Universita di Roma “La Sapienza”. It carried cameras, a GPS nav experiment and an aerodynamic reentry device experiment.

The 92 kg Baumanets is a student satellite from the MGTU (Moskovskiy Gosudarstvenniy Tekhnicheskiy Universitet) im. N.E. Baumann, the Bauman Moscow State Technical University. It carried an Earth imager and an amateur radio link.

PICPOT (Piccolo Cubo del Politecnico di Torino) is a small 2 kg, 0.15m cube satellite from the Politecnico di Torino. It carried an Earth imager.

The vehicle carried five P-POD picosatellite deployers each with three cubesats of 1 kg mass, 0.1m size. (ION is the exception, consisting of a double cubesat 2 kg, 0.1 x 0.2m).

P-POD 1 carried Arizona SACRED and the University of Illinois ION.
P-POD 2 carried Arizona RINCON, Cornell ICECube-1, and Kansas KUTESat Pathfinder.
P-POD 3 carried Nihon University/Japan SEEDS, Norway nCube and S. Korea HAUSAT-1.
P-POD 4 carried Montana MEROPE, Cal Poly CP2, and AerospaceCorp. AeroCube-1.
P-POD 5 carried CalPoly CP1, Hawaii Voyager and Cornell ICECube-2.


South Korea’s Kompsat-2 (also called Arirang-2) was placed in a 679 x 701 km x 98.1 deg polar orbit on Jul 28 by a Krunichev Rokot vehicle launched from Plesetsk. It carries a 1-meter-resolution Earth imager. After its fuel depletion burn, the Briz upper stage ended up in a 504 x 699 km x 98.2 deg orbit.

Hot Bird 8

The Briz-M upper stage returned to flight on Aug 4. The Krunichev/ILS Proton-M/Briz-M put Eutelsat’s Hot Bird 8 in geostationary transfer orbit. The 4875 kg Astrium-built Eurostar 3000 satellite carries a Ku-band communications payload for the French-based Eutelsat SA company.

The Proton-M put its payload section in a -932 x 163 km x 51.5 deg sub-orbit at 9 min after launch. While the Proton-M third stage fell back toward the Pacific, the Briz-M first burn raised this to a 173 x 173 km x 51.5 deg parking orbit at 2206 UTC. The second burn finished at 2313 UTC in a 258 x 5000 km x 50.3 deg orbit, and following a 2 hour coast and a third burn the Briz-M DTB prop tank seperated at 0129 UTC on Aug 5 into a 316 x 16438 km x 49.5 deg orbit, immediately followed by a fourth Briz-M burn to a 414 x 35834 km x 49.1 deg standard Proton-style geostationary transfer orbit. A fifth burn at 0640 UTC raised the perigee and lowered the inclination, with Briz-M and Hot Bird separating at 0659 UTC into a 3857 x 38504 km x 13.0 deg orbit. Hot Bird will use its Aerojet-Redmond R-4D bipropellant engine to raise its orbit to geostationary. (Trajectory data is mostly from

Ariane 5

On Aug 11 Arianespace launched Ariane 5ECA vehicle L531 on flight V172 from the Kourou launch base. The two EAP solid boosters separated 2 min after launch; the EPC core stage separated at 9 min into a -1163 x 167 km x 6.2 deg sub-orbit. The ESC-A cryogenic upper stage then burned from T+9min to T+24min, reaching geostationary transfer orbit. Two satellites were placed in orbit: in the upper position was JCSAT-10, a Lockheed Martin A2100AX Ku/C-band television broadcasting satellite for the Japanese JSAT Corp. Its mass is 1858 kg dry, 4048 kg fuelled. Below the Sylda 5A adapter was Syracuse 3B, an Alcatel Alenia Space model Spacebus 4000B3 satellite with a mass of 1658 kg dry, 3750 kg fuelled, which will provide SHF and EHF military communications links for the French military. Syracuse 3B is operated by the Delegation Generale pour l’Armement.

Table of Recent Launches

 Date UT       Name            Launch Vehicle  Site            Mission    INTL. DES. Jul  4 1838   Discovery (STS-121) Shuttle       Kennedy LC39B    Spaceship   28A Leonardo (MPLM-1)                                  Module      28 Jul 10 1208   Insat 4C          GSLV            Sriharikota SLP  Comms       F02 Jul 12 1453   Genesis 1         Dnepr           Dombarovskiy     Tech        29A Jul 21 0420   Kosmos-2422       Molniya-M       Plesetsk LC16/2  Early warn  30A Jul 26 1943   BelKA         )   Dnepr           Baykonur                     F03 Baumanets     ) Unisat-4      ) PICPOT        ) ICECube-1     ) ION           ) RINCON        ) AeroCube-1    ) CalPoly CP1   ) SEEDS         ) nCube-1       ) HAUSAT-1      ) MEROPE        ) CalPoly CP2   ) KUTESat       ) SACRED        ) Voyager       ) ICECube 3     ) Jul 28 0705   Kompsat-2         Rokot           Plesetsk         Imaging     31A Aug  4 2148   Hot Bird 8        Proton-M/Briz-M Baykonur LC200/39 Comms      32A Aug 11 2215   JCSAT-10   )      Ariane 5ECA     Kourou ELA3      Comms       33A Syracuse 3B)                                       Comms       33B

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