IKONOS 1/Athena II Launch From Vandenberg April 27 at 18:21 UTC

Mon, 26 Apr 1999 23:43:34 EDT

I'm forwarding this as received from Curt Swinehart who distributes launch 
info to various e-mail lists.  Note there is a webcast.  Launch time 11:21 AM 
PDT = 18:21 UTC.

The Florida Today sites are where I keep up-to-date:

-- Jake Rees
   Burbank, California
IKONOS 1 Scheduled to Launch April 27, 1999
High Resolution Satellite to Offer Imagery to the Private and Public Sectors 

   Denver, Colo., April 21, 1999-The launch of the worlds first
   commercial high-resolution Earth imaging satellite is scheduled for
   April 27, 1999 from Vandenberg Air Force Base, California. The planned
   launch time is 11:21 am PDT (2:21 pm EDT). The IKONOS 1 satellite will
   reach its proper orbit about 90 minutes after launch. In order to
   achieve the proper orbit, the launch window can only be open for 30
   minutes on any given launch day. Once in orbit, IKONOS 1 will undergo
   system calibration and testing for approximately 60-90 days before
   imagery will be available for sale to customers.

   IKONOS 1 will be lifted into a near-polar orbit by a 93 foot high
   Lockheed Martin Astronautics Athena II four-stage booster. This is the
   same type of rocket that successfully launched NASAs Lunar Prospector.

   The U.S. government granted Space Imaging a license to operate a
   commercial one-meter resolution imaging system in April 1994. Under a
   contract to Space Imaging, Lockheed Martin was the prime contractor
   for the development of the IKONOS system, which includes a ground
   processing system developed by Raytheon Company.

   IKONOS 1, weighing less than 1600 pounds, is the worlds highest
   resolution commercial imaging satellite. Designed to take images of
   the Earth from 400 miles up in space and moving at a speed of four
   miles per second, the satellite will collect imagery that can
   distinguish objects on the Earth's surface as small as one meter
   square, or about three feet, in size. 

   The name IKONOS is derived from the ancient Greek word for image. It
   is pronounced eye-KOH-nos. The Athena launch vehicle is named for the
   Greek Goddess of Wisdom, Thrift and Industry.

   Live Launch Video Feed
   A live switched video feed taken from Air Force range cameras will be
   uplinked to a transmission satellite beginning at about 10:20 am
   (PDT). (Bars, tone and display slate will be fed beginning at 10:00
   a.m. PDT). The voice of launch control will also be uplinked
   simultaneously. The feed will continue until 1:00 p.m. The satellite
   transponder and other information:

   The launch will be broadcast on Telstar 4 / Transponder 1
   Frequency: 3720 MHz vertical
   Broadcast Band C
   Duration of broadcast: 3 hours
   Signal is in the clear
   Satellite orbital position: 89 degrees
   Transmission will begin at 10 a.m. (PDT) with test signals
   Launch coverage will begin at 10:20 a.m. and conclude no later than
   1:00 p.m. (PDT)
   The launch window is from 11:21 a.m. to 11:51 a.m. (PDT)

   Live on the Web
   The launch video and commentary will be streamed live over the
   Internet beginning at about 10:20 a.m. (PDT) (the same time the
   satellite feed begins). The live Web broadcast can be accessed by
   visiting the Space Imaging Web site (www.spaceimaging.com) and
   clicking on the View the Launch button, or by going directly to the
   ConnectLive Communications Network Web site
   (www.ConnectLive.com/events/spaceimaging). Following the live Web
   broadcast, the launch video will be archived online for 90 days.