ETS-7 and Cosmos Mixups

Larry Van Horn (
Tue, 16 Dec 1997 12:14:07 -0500

A new Spacewarn 12901 has been issued with a correction to Spacewarn 12896!

                                  COSPAR/WWAS     USSPACECOM NUMBER  

ETS-7 (CHASER+TARGET)  1997-074B            25064          27 NOVEMBER 1997
UNKNOWN (DEBRIS ?)     1997-074C            25065          27 NOVEMBER 1997

After input from NASDA/Japan. USSPACECOM is now aware that chaser and target
failed to separate. Spacewarn 12896 carried an earlier (erroneous)
USSPACECOM message identifying 1997-074B as chaser (Hikoboshi Kiku-7 Chaser)
and 1997-074C as target (Orihime Kiku-7 Target). However, TRMM remains as
1997-074A and the  H-2 rocket remains 1997-074D. 

In a related story, a new Spacewarn bulletin has been issued for the launch
of Cosmos 2349 on December 15, 1997 (1997-080A/25095). Obviously we have a
numbering problem here and I do have a call into the Dr. King's office to
try a resolve this issue.

My list currently shows the last three Cosmos launches.

Sep 23/1644 97-52A/24953 Cosmos 2346 Plesetsk Navsat
Dec 9/0717 97-79A/25088 Cosmos 2347 (8) Baikonur Recon
Dec 15 	 97-80A/25095 Cosmos 2348 (9) Plesetsk  Recon 369x176 km 67.1 deg	

Based on orbital parameters above for 2348/9 per launch telex, this appears
to be a
Cosmos (Yantar) 4th Generation (Close Look Lifetime 60-70 days - data return
capsules including main capsule at the end of mission) - 6500 kg*.  I find
it interesting that this is only the fourth recon shot of the year and that
we have had two within the last 6 days. We haven't seen this sort of launch
rate for recons in sometime now. In years past this sort of launch rate
would get my attention to look at world events to see what the Russians were
looking at. ;-)

I guess only time will tell what we will ultimately call these last two
Cosmos launches in the end.


Larry Van Horn
Managing Editor
Satellite Times magazine

"Satellite Times Magazine - We cover space from LEO to GEO and beyond."

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