Jonathan's Space Report No. 268 1995 Dec 17 Cambridge, MA -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Shuttle ------- The next Shuttle mission is STS-72, scheduled for January 11. The EDFT-3 spacewalk payload on Endeavour will allow the astronauts to test prototype Space Station hardware, including a special `umbilical' carrier which supports electrical cables and fluid pipes, and the new portable work platform which Space Station astronauts will use in their spacewalk assembly tasks. The EDFT-3 payload consists of: (major acronym ahead warning!) Bay 1 Port: PIT Utility Box, for Space Station Pre-Integrated Truss electronics; the two boxes will be connected up during the spacewalk to simulate truss on-orbit assembly. Bay 2 Port: PIT Utility Box and PRUM (Portable Rigid Umbilical Mount), for slotting the RU across the payload bay, and CCA (Cable Caddy Assembly). Bay 2 Port carries a GAS Beam adapter plate (I still don't know the adapter plate types used for the other EDFT-3 equipment.) Bay 3 Port: Rigid Umbilical (RU) Bay 4 Port: Rigid Umbilical (RU). The Space Station RU, in bays 3 and 4 Port, has two segments connected by a hinge. It will be unpacked and installed diagonally across the bay from bays 3P to 4S, and the astronauts will test its connector systems. Bay 1 Stbd: ASEM Node Carrier, stowage for slidewire cable etc. Bay 2 Stbd: PWP (Portable Work Platform), consisting of the TERA (Temporary Equipment Restraining Aid), which attaches equipment to the robot arm using a Flight Releasable Grapple Fixture; the APFR (Articulating Portable Foot Restraint), which goes on the end of the robot arm and provides the astronaut with a place to stand; and PFRWS (Portable Foot Restraint Workstation Stanchions) which attach to the APFR and provide handholds and tool holders for an astronaut working in the APFR. Bay 2 also carries the CLAS Sensor 2 Task Plate which measures loads exerted by the crew. Bay 3 Stbd: CLAS Sensor 3 Task Plate, which is part of the Crew Loads Assembly System for measuring the force needed to do certain tasks. Bay 4 Stbd: SURF Starboard Umbilical Receiver Fixture, for slotting the RU across the payload bay. (Thanks to Kevin at KSC for some of this info.) Mir --- The EO-20 cosmonauts Gidzenko and Avdeev depressurized the Mir transfer compartment for a 37 minute EVA to transfer the docking cone from the -Z axis (Kristall) to the +Z port where Priroda will dock. Hatch open was at 1915 UTC on Dec 8. (Info from Chris van den Berg). As predicted in JSR 262, Mir's orbit was raised on Dec 9 using the Progress M-29 cargo ferry's engine. The mean altitude was raised by only 5 km, from 92.41 min, 390 x 395 km x 51.6 deg to 92.46 min, 390 x 399 km x 51.6 deg. Launch of the Progress M-30 cargo ferry is expected on December 18 at 1431 UTC. Recent Launches -------------- Lockheed Martin launched AC-120, an Atlas IIA Centaur vehicle, on Dec 15. AC-120 carried the Hughes Galaxy IIIR satellite into geostationary transfer orbit. Galaxy IIIR is an HS-601 class satellite. It will provide C band (24 transponders) video distribution in the US, and Ku-band (24 transponders) direct broadcast TV to Latin America. Galaxy 3R's initial orbit was 200 x 34348 km x 26.94 deg with a period of 603.4 minutes. The USA 116 recon satellite was inserted into a 156 x 976 km x 98.7 deg orbit, according to ITAR-TASS quoting sources in the Russian Ministry of Defense. It has since raised its perigee to around 250 km, according to Russian sources. This is an excellent match to the 250 x 1000 km orbit of the earlier Improved CRYSTAL, USA 86. The Galileo probe descended 160 km below the Jovian cloud tops on Dec 7, surviving for 57 minutes after the beginning of entry. Flyby of the Orbiter past Io was at 892 km, not 1000 km, according to the Dec 8 Galileo status report. The line of sight from Jupiter to Earth passes too close to the Sun at the moment for reliable data transmission, and the remainder of the probe data will be relayed starting next month. The VKS (Russian Space Forces) launched a Proton-K vehicle with a Blok-DM2 upper stage from Baykonur on Dec 14. The rocket inserted three Uragan navigation satellites, nos. 776, 778 and 782, into 19000 km circular orbits at an inclination of 64.8 degrees. The Uragan spacecraft, which form part of the GLONASS (Global'naya Navigatsionnaya Sputnikovaya Sistema) navigation system, were given the cover names Kosmos-2323, Kosmos-2324 and Kosmos-2325. They are in GLONASS plane 2. (Source: VKS CSIC). Erratum: the Gals and Luch-1 launches carried the Blok-DM2 upper stage, not the DM2M. Table of Recent Launches ------------------------ Date UT Name Launch Vehicle Site Mission INTL. DES. Nov 4 1422 Radarsat ) Delta 7920 Vandenberg SLC2 Rem sensing 59A SURFSAT ) 59B Nov 6 0515 Milstar DFS 2 Titan 4 Centaur Canaveral LC40 Comsat 60A Nov 12 1230 Atlantis ) Shuttle Kennedy LC39A Spaceship 61A Docking Module ) Nov 17 0120 ISO Ariane 44P Kourou ELA2 Astronomy 62A Nov 17 1425 Gals-2 Proton-K/DM2 Baykonur LC200L Comsat 63A Nov 28 1130 Asiasat 2 Chang Zheng 2E Xichang Comsat 64A Dec 2 0808 SOHO Atlas IIAS Canaveral LC36B Astronomy 65A Dec 5 2118 USA 116 Titan 4 Vandenberg SLC4E Recon 66A Dec 6 2323 Telecom 2C ) Ariane 44L Kourou ELA2 Comsat 67A Insat 2C ) Comsat 67B Dec 14 0610 Kosmos-2323 ) Navsat 68A Kosmos-2324 ) Proton-K/DM2 Baykonur Navsat 68B Kosmos-2325 ) Navsat 68C Dec 15 0023 Galaxy IIIR Atlas IIA Canaveral LC36A Comsat 69A Reentries --------- Nov 5 Columbia Landed at KSC Nov 18 Molniya-1 (80-92A) Reentered Nov 20 Atlantis Landed at KSC Dec 7 Galileo Probe Entered Jovian atmosphere Dec 11 Kosmos-398 Reentered over Pacific Current Shuttle Processing Status ____________________________________________ Orbiters Location Mission Launch Due OV-102 Columbia OPF Bay 2 STS-75 Feb 22 OV-103 Discovery Palmdale OMDP OV-104 Atlantis OPF Bay 1 STS-76 Mar 21 OV-105 Endeavour LC39B STS-72 Jan 11 ML/SRB/ET/OV stacks ML1/RSRM-52/ET-75/OV-105 LC39B STS-72 ML2/ ML3/RSRM-53 VAB Bay 1 STS-75 .-------------------------------------------------------------------------. | Jonathan McDowell | phone : (617) 495-7176 | | Harvard-Smithsonian Center for | | | Astrophysics | | | 60 Garden St, MS6 | | | Cambridge MA 02138 | inter : | | USA | | | | | JSR: | |* | '-------------------------------------------------------------------------'