PROTON-M CARRIER ROCKET PUTS ASTRA-2G SATELLITE IN INTERIM ORBIT - The Proton-M carrier rocket which took off from the Baikonur space launch facility in Kazakhstan early on Sunday has put the Astra-2G satellite in the interim orbit, the press service of the Federal Space Agency (Roskosmos) told TASS."The satellite is to enter the calculated orbit at 09:49 Moscow time on December 28," Roskosmos said.
The Astra-2G communications satellite manufactured by the Airbus Defense and Space Company on order from the SES satellite communication operator (Luxembourg) is expected to transmit signals to the European countries, Western Africa and the Near and Middle East. More
(Source: ITAR-TASS - Dec 28)
CHINESE MILITARY SPY SATELLITE DEPLOYED IN ORBIT - China launched a Long March 4B rocket Saturday to deploy a military reconnaissance satellite into orbit 300 miles above Earth.
The Yaogan 26 satellite lifted off at 0322 GMT Saturday (11:22 p.m. EST Friday) from the Taiyuan space center in northern China's Shanxi province, according to the state-run Xinhua news agency. Liftoff was at 11:22 a.m. Beijing time.
Chinese state media did not announce the launch in advance, keeping with customary practice for rocket launches with Chinese military satellites. More
(Source: SpaceFlight Now - Dec 28)
FY-2C SATELLITE SUCCESSFULLY DEORBITED - It is reported that from December 10 to 13, FY-2C satellite has been successfully deorbited.
FY-2C was the first operation application satellite of FY-2 satellites and the first geostationary meteorological satellite achieved continuous and stable operation in-orbit. It was launched in October 19, 2004 and stopped operation in November 25, 2009. After that, the satellite had been in backup status.
The deorbited work was officially started at 10:00 a.m. of December 10 and finished on December 13. After deorbiting, all instruments of the satellite were closed. The whole process and the results met our mitigation specifications of space debris and IADC tasks. More
(Source: Xinhua - Dec 27)
RUSSIAN RESURS-P SATELLITE OF REMOTE SENSING PUT IN ORBIT - Russia's satellite of remote sensing of the Earth Resurs-P number 2 has separated from the Soyuz-2.1b carrier rocket and reached the designated orbit, a spokesman for the Russian Space Agency told TASS on Friday.
"The satellite separated from the carrier rocket at a scheduled time," the spokesman said,.
The Soyuz-2.1b was launched from the Baikonur space centre in Kazakhstan at 21:55 Moscow time.
The satellite is designed for detailed, broadband and hyperspectral opto-electronic surveillance of the Earth surface. These data will be used by Russia's ministry of natural resources, hydrometeorological service, emergencies ministry, ministry of agriculture, federal agency for fisheries and others. The satellite also has Nuklon equipment to explore outer space and register radiation. More
(Source: ITAR-TASS - Dec 27)
RUSSIAN SOYUZ 2-1B SUCCESSFULLY LAUNCHES LOTOS-S - Russia's Soyuz-2-1b rocket conducted its penultimate flight of the year on Thursday morning, successfully carrying the second Lotos-S reconnaissance satellite into orbit in a morning launch from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome. Liftoff was on schedule at 06:01 local time (03:01 UTC).
Lotos-S No.802, which will likely be known as Kosmos 2503 now it has reached orbit, is part of Russia's Liana programme, which is intended to modernise the country's electronic signals intelligence (ELINT) capabilities.
Once operational Liana will consist of two series of satellites; Lotos will be used to intercept radio communications while Pion-NKS satellites will perform naval reconnaissance duties. More
(Source: NASASpaceFlight.com - Dec 25)
INTERNATIONAL SPACE STATION SPOTTED IN THE SKY OVER BRITAIN ON CHRISTMAS EVE -
Residents of southern England will be forgiven for thinking that Santa was making his annual rounds early this year, when the International Space Station appeared as a sparkling dot in sky on Christmas Eve.
Southerners enjoyed the best view of the man-made satellite, which looks like a small ball of light moving across the sky when viewed from earth.
It crossed the sky at about 5.20pm and was visible for about three minutes.
In London, people were advised to look at 35 degrees from the horizon and look to the west, and people further north at a slightly lower angle. More
(Source: The Independent - Dec 25)
RUSSIA CARRIES OUT TEST LAUNCH OF HEAVY-CLASS ANGARA A5 ROCKET - Russia Tuesday carried out the first test launch of a new heavy-class Angara A5 rocket, the defence ministry said.
The rocket was launched at Plesetsk cosmodrome in Arkhangelsk region, Xinhua reported.
Twelve minutes after the lift-off, the orbiting payload model separated in the third stage.
The Briz-M upper stage would carry the model to the target orbit for payload weight and dimension tests, the ministry said.
President Vladimir Putin watched the rocket launch via video.
"This is indeed a great and very important event for our aerospace industry and for Russia in general," Putin said. More
(Source: NDTV - Dec 23)
ASTRA 2G READY FOR DECEMBER 28 PROTON LAUNCH - SES S.A. is pleased to announce that the ASTRA 2G satellite is ready for its scheduled launch on board an ILS Proton booster from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on December 28 at 03:37:49 Baikonur Time (December 27 at 22:37:49 CET and 16:37:49 EST).
Designed and manufactured by Airbus Defence and Space, ASTRA 2G is based on the highly reliable Eurostar E3000 platform. It will have a launch mass of 6 tons, a wingspan of 40m once its solar arrays are deployed in orbit, and a spacecraft power of 13kW until the end of its 15-year design life. More
(Source: SpaceRef - Dec 23)
FOUR GALILEO SATELLITES BEING READIED FOR LAUNCH - Engineers at the European Space Agency opened an early Christmas present - a new satellite for the Galileo navigation program.
The satellite, manufactured in Germany, will now be tested in at the ESTEC technical center in the Netherlands, according to the ESA website.
A launch schedule for this satellite, Flight Model 06, or FM06, and three others already in waiting has not yet been determined.
Once ESTEC certifies the satellites, they are ready to be flown to Kourou, French Guiana, where the ESA has a launch site.
(Source: Prague Post - Dec 23)
RADIO HAM HELPS ESA WITH TRACKING WIDGET - Thanks to radio amateur Chip Sufitchi N2YO the European Space Agency's new satellite tracking widgets are live.
The tracking widgets are fed with the latest orbital tracks for ESA missions, or missions with significant ESA participation. The default track shows the ISS.
(Source: AMSAT-UK - Dec 20)