Status Report

SPACEWARN Bulletin Number 574 (DRAFT)

By SpaceRef Editor
September 5, 2001
Filed under ,

A publication of NASA’s National Space Science Data Center/World Data Center for Satellite Information as the WWAS for ISES/COSPAR

SPACEWARN Activities

All information in this publication was received between
1 August 2001 and 31 August 2001.

A. List of New International Designations and Launch Dates (UTC).

USSPACECOM Catalog numbers are in parentheses.

    INT.ID    CAT. #      NAME                 DATE (2001)
   2001-039A    (26900)  Intelsat 902            30 August
   2001-038A    (26898)  LRE                     29 August
   2001-037A    (26892)  Cosmos 2379             24 August
   2001-036A    (26890)  Progress M-45           21 August
   2001-035A    (26888)  STS 105                 10 August
   2001-034A    (26884)  Genesis                 08 August
   2001-033A    (26880)  USA 159                 06 August

B. Text of Launch Announcements.

2001-039A Intelsat 902
is a geosynchronous communications spacecraft that
was launched by an Ariane 4 rocket from Kourou at 06:46 UT on 30
August 2001. It will provide telecommunications and television
broadcast to Europe, sub-Saharan Africa, Central Asia, the Far East
and Australia through its 44 C- and 12 Ku-band transponders.
Parking longitude is unknown.
2001-038A LRE
(Laser Reflecting Equipment) is a Japanese test spacecraft that
was launched from the Tsukuba Space Center on Tanegashima Island
by an H-2A rocket at 07:29 UT on 29 August 2001. The main goal was to
launch the H-2A successfully after its earlier version, H-2, had
failed sequentially. The H-2A is a modified version with (unlike
the H-2) many components procured on the international market. The
87 kg LRE is a passive mirror ball of diameter 51 cm and carries 24
glass sheets and 126 prisms on its surface, and was ejected from
the H-2A just to ascertain the rocket’s potential capability for
precisely launching four-tonne payloads with the help of light
echoes from the LRE. Though the eventual goal of H-2A is to launch
geosynchronous spacecraft with capabilities comparable to some of
the rockets in other countries, but at a lower cost, the LRE will
remain merely in a “transfer orbit”. The initial orbital parameters
were, approximately, period 642 min, apogee 36,200 km, perigee 250
km, and inclination 28.5 deg.
2001-037A Cosmos 2379
is a Russian geosynchronous military reconnaissance
spacecraft that was launched by a Proton-K rocket with a DM-2 final
stage from Baikonur at 20:39 UT on 24 August 2001. It is to provide
early warning of missiles launched from the United States with the
help of a heat-sensing array of detectors. [According to the Moscow
Kommersant newspaper, these early warning geosynchronous satellites
belong to the US-KMO group, also known as Prognoz fleet, while the
highly elliptical complement belongs to the US-KS group, also known
as Oko fleet, both supplemented by about eight ground-based radars.]
Parking longitude is unknown.
2001-036A Progress M-45
is a Russian automatic cargo ship that was launched
by a Soyuz-U rocket from Baikonur at 09:32 UT on 21 August 2001.
It docked automatically with the ISS on 23 August and delivered 2.5
tonnes of fuel, water, oxygen, equipment and spare parts. Initial
orbital parameters were period 88.6 min, apogee 245 km, perigee 193
km, and inclination 51.7 deg.
2001-035A STS 105
is an American shuttle spacecraft that was launched from
Cape Canaveral at 21:10 UT on 10 August 2001 to dock with the ISS.
It carried a crew of 10, including three to-be-stationed long
endurance astronauts (one American and two Russian), five tonnes of
supplies, hardware, and a bedroom suite to accommodate a third
astronaut in the Destiny module. The crew installed in the station
two new science experiment racks that were carried in the Leonardo
container which was first lifted out of the shuttle and bolted to
the Unity module. Leonardo then carried back all the trash from the
ISS back to the shuttle. They installed also the MISSE (Materials
International Space Station Experiment) container outside the ISS
to test the effect of radiation on materials, and some low cost
science experiments such as microgravity cell growth studies inside
the station. The shuttle landed back in Cape Canaveral at 18:23 UT
on 22 August 2001, ferrying back three astronauts (one Russian and
two American) who had spent over five months in the station. The
initial orbital parameters of the shuttle were period 92.3 min,
apogee 402 km, perigee 373 km, and inclination 51.6 deg.
2001-034A Genesis
is an American solar research spacecraft that was launched
by a Delta 2 rocket from Cape Canaveral at 16:13 UT on 8 August
2001. The mission is among NASA’s Discovery Program and Genesis
seeks to discover the origin/genesis of solar system. The spacecraft
was directly injected into the Langrangian-1 (L-1) region (located
at about 1.5 million km in the sunward direction) where it will
arrive in November 2001 and collect solar wind samples from
October 2001 to April 2004. The 633 kg, 2.3 m diameter, and 7.9 m
length spacecraft carries four instruments in a returnable capsule
of 1.5 m diameter and 1.3 m length: a wide angle ion collector, a
concentrated-ion collector, an ion spectrometer and an electron
spectrometer. The wide angle collector is a circular mosaic of
one meter diameter consisting of many hexagonal tiles made of
diamond, gold, ultra-pure silicon, sapphire, aluminum or germanium.
All kinds of ions will be implanted in the wide angle collector
whereas the carbon, nitrogen and oxygen ions (presumably, ions
lighter than these also) will be focussed on to the concentrated-ion
collector made up of hexagonal shaped diamond or silicon carbide
tiles; this focussed enhancement of these ions is necessary since
the collecting wafers may contain nontrivial amounts of earthly
contamination of these elements. This focussing is enabled by a
parabolic mirror, with the positive voltages confined to numerous
tiny segments on its surface. The paraboloid will focus very
little of the solar light/heat. A total of 10-20 micrograms of ions
will be collected by both collectors during the 30 months of
exposure. The ion spectrometer will monitor all species with energy
greater than about 1 keV, and the electron spectrometer the smaller
energy range electrons. (The solar wind speed is about 400 km/s and
the protons in it are at about 1.0 keV with the heavier ions and the
electrons having energies proportional to their masses.) The
spectrometer data will be telemetered in the S-band, and the re-entering
sample canister will parachute over Utah state in early
September 2004, where it will be grabbed by a helicopter. More
information is available in,
though the links are mainly education/outreach/public-relations
interest pages. The Project Scientist and Principal Investigator
for Genesis is Donald Burnett, California Institute of Technology,
and the Lead Investigator for the concentrated-ion collector and
the two spectrometers is Roger Wiens of the Los Alamos National
Laboratory. The returned samples will be stored at Johnson Space
Center for analysis and distribution. The Project Manager for the
mission is Chester Sasaki of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
2001-033A USA 159
is an American geosynchronous military reconnaissance
satellite in the DSP (Defense Support Program) fleet that was
launched by a Titan 4B rocket from Cape Canaveral at 07:28 UT on 6
August 2001. The 2,386 kg, 1.485 kW, 10 m long and 6.7 m diameter
spacecraft carries an array of 6,000 heat-sensing detectors to
monitor and locate missile launches. It will also enable monitoring of
surface nuclear explosions and forest fires. The USA 159 is the
21st member of the DSP fleet, with many of its members still
operational. Its alternative name may be DSP 21.

C. Spacecraft Particularly Suited for International Participation

  1. Spacecraft with essentially continuous radio beacons on frequencies
    less than 150 MHz, or higher frequencies if especially suited for ionospheric
    or geodetic studies. (NNSS denotes U.S. Navy Navigational
    Satellite System. Updates or corrections to the list are possible only with
    information from the user community.)

    The full list appeared in SPX 545.
    The list will not be repeated in future issues until significantly revised again.

  2. 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:  [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.

  3. 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-545. It
    will not be repeated in view of the excellent updated source at:
    maintained by the Coordinational
    Scientific Information Center (CSIC),Russian Space Forces.

  4. Visually bright objects.

    A comprehensive list of visually bright
    objects with their two-line orbital elements is available from USSPACECOM, via a
    NASA URL, The list, however,
    does not include visual magnitudes, but are expected to be brighter than
    magnitude 5.

  5. Actual decays/landings of payload spacecraft and rocket bodies (R/B)
    only. No further information is available.

    Designations         Common Name                  Decay Date (2001)
    1995-037J (23630)  R/B (Aux) Proton-K                      01 Sep
    2000-039C (26406)  BIRD-RUBIN                              30 Aug
    2001-037B (26893)  R/B Proton-K                            27 Aug
    2001-001C (26687)  SZ-2 Module                             24 Aug
    2001-036B (26891)  R/B Soyuz-U                             23 Aug
    1985-071D (15955)  R/B that launched COSMOS 1675           23 Aug
    2001-035A (26888)  STS 105            Landed on            22 Aug
    2001-021A (26773)  PROGRESS M-16                           22 Aug
    2000-039A (26404)  MITA-O (NINA)                           15 Aug
    2001-030B (26868)  R/B Molniya-M                           12 Aug
    1979-011A (11266)  COSMOS 1076                             10 Aug
    1995-009G (23517)  R/B (Aux) that launched 3 GLONASS s/c   06 Aug
    1994-038E (23172)  R/B (Aux) Proton                        05 Aug

  6. Miscellaneous Items. (This section contains information/data that
    are entered on occasion and may not be repeated in each issue of the
    SPACEWARN Bulletin.)

  7. Related NSSDC resources.

    NSSDC/WDC for Satellite Information is an archival center for science
    data from many spacecraft. Many space physics datasets are on-line for
    electronic access through:

    For off-line data, please contact the Request Office, NSSDC, Code 633,
    NASA GSFC, Greenbelt, Maryland 20771, U.S.A., for specific information
    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 obtained from:

    Other files interest for Earth-centered spacecraft can be generated through the URL,

    Programs related to the heliospheric spacecraft trajectories can be executed
    through the URL,

    Magnetospheric, Planetary, and Astronomical science data from many spacecraft
    may be accessed through links from the URL:

SpaceRef staff editor.