NASA Spacewarn Bulletin No. 633 01 August 2006

Status Report From: Goddard Space Flight Center
Posted: Tuesday, October 10, 2006


A monthly publication of the National Space Science Data Center/World Data Center for Satellite Information

No. 633 01 August 2006

SPACEWARN Activities

All information in this publication was received between 01 July 2006 and 31 July 2006.

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

    INT.ID    CAT. #      NAME                   DATE (UT)
   2006-031A    29268    Kompsat 2              28 July 2006
   2006-030A    29260    Cosmos 2422            21 July 2006
   2006-029A    29252    Genesis 1              12 July 2006
   2006-028A    29251    STS 121                04 July 2006

B. Text of Launch Announcements.

Kompsat 2, also known as Arirang 2 EO, is a South Korean (KARI) remote sensing craft that was launched by a Rokot rocket (a modified ICBM, SS-19) from Plesetsk at 07:05 UT on 28 July 2006. The 800 kg craft carries imaging systems to yield high-resolution, multispectral images of Earth's surface. The initial orbital parameters were period 98.6 min, apogee 680.9 km, perigee 656.3 km, and inclination 98.1°.
Cosmos 2422 is a Russian military satellite that was launched by a Molniya-M rocket from Plesetsk at 04:20 UT on 21 July 2006. Initial orbital parameters were period 703.9 min, apogee 39,134 km, perigee 534 km, and inclination 62.8°.
Genesis 1 is an American entrepreneur's inflatable satellite that was launched by a Dnepr rocket (a converted ICBM, known as SS-18 Satan) at 12:53 UT on 12 July 2006 from the southern Ural mountain. The 1,300 kg craft was successfully inflated about two hours after launch to its normal cylindrical size of 2.4 m x 4.5 m. It is made of a tough sheet fabricated from a composite Kevlar that is often used in bullet-proof vests. The goal of the entrepreneur is to launch a few more of them, string them together and promote "space tourism". The initial orbital parameters were period 95.8 min, apogee 561 km, perigee 556 km, and inclination 64.5°.
STS 121 is an American shuttle craft that was launched from Cape Canaveral at 18:38 UT on 04 July 2006, carrying seven astronauts to the International Space Station, ISS. It was the first flight after the fleet was grounded a year ago to make safety-related modifications to the external, cryogenic fuel tank. This time the take-off was nominal with no significant thermal shield degradation. It carried 12 tonnes of food, fuel, and equipment to the ISS. It docked with the ISS at 14:52 UT on 06 July 2006. During the 12-day mission, the astronauts tested new equipment and procedures aimed at increasing shuttle safety. They deployed the ISS robotic arm, with its attached camera, to examine the exterior of the shuttle for damage; none of significance was noticed. Two of the astronauts did a 6.5-hour spacewalk to test the capability of the 30-meter robotic arm to repair any damage to the shuttle's exterior. The crew also carried out 21 biological and technical experiments on-board. STS 121 landed back in Cape Canaveral on 17 July, at 13:14 UT, leaving behind at the ISS the ESA astronaut to spend several months at the station. The initial parameters were period 91.4 min, apogee 351 km, perigee 332 km, and inclination 51.6°.

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.

NNSS denotes U.S. Navy Navigational Satellite System. Updates or corrections to the list are possible only with information from the user community.

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

Global Positioning System satellites useful for navigational purposes and geodetic studies.

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.

The latest addition to the fleet is Navstar 57, 2005-038A.

Russian Global Navigational (Positioning) Spacecraft, GLONASS constellation.

SPACEWARN requests updates/additions from readers to this list.

All GLONASS spacecraft are in the general COSMOS series. The COSMOS numbers 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 Russia.

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 last 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.

According to CSIC the latest addition to the fleet are GLONASS 712, GLONASS 796, and GLONASS 797. Their International IDs are 2005-050A, 2005-050B, and 2005-050C.

Visually bright objects.

See Users must register. Conditions apply.

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

Designations         Common Name                  Decay Date (2006)

2006-025B (29246)    R/B Soyuz-U                       27 July
2006-026B (29248)    R/B Tsiklon 2                     25 July
2006-017A (29111)    COSMOS 2420                       19 July
2006-028A (29251)    STS 121                           17 July
2003-060E (28198)    R/B (Aux.Mot.) Proton-K           10 July
2006-016C 29109)     R/B Delta 2                       06 July
2006-021B (29229)    R/B Soyuz-U                       28 June

60-day Decay Predictions.

See Users must register for access. Conditions apply

Miscellaneous Items.

This section contains information or data that are entered on occasion and may not be repeated in each issue of the SPACEWARN Bulletin.

An Indian GSLV rocket, carrying a 2.1 tonne INSAT 4C satellite for a geostationary orbit, crashed within a minute after take off from Sriharikota in southeastern coast at 12:38 UT on 10 July 2006.

A Russian Dnepr rocket carrying one Russian and 17 foreign mini-/micro-/pico-satellites crashed within a minute after take-off from Baikonur in Kazakhstan at 19:43 UT on 26 July 2006.

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 of interest for Earth-centered spacecraft can be generated via 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:

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