Re: Iridium spares

From: Stuart Eves (
Date: Tue Feb 12 2002 - 17:00:33 EST

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    I don't know if it's planned in this case, but the spares can be left in
    an intermediate orbit which regresses in Right Ascension at a different
    rate to the operational constellation.  If an outage occurs, there's a
    delay until the two planes coincide, but a spare can then be boosted
    from the intermediate orbit into the operational plane in which the
    failure occurred.
    In message <003301c1b40a$5227d7a0$5205a8c0@billm>, Bill Mitchell
    <> writes
    >"The satellites launched Monday will join seven others that serve as
    >orbiting spares, ready to replace any of the primary 66 as the craft age and
    >fail in the future. By having the replacement satellites already in space,
    >the spares are prepared to enter the constellation and fill any holes as
    >they open up, keeping the Iridium system rejuvenated and functioning. "
    >Couldn't the five new sats only replace ones in the same plane?
    >They make it sound like they can maneuver to any slot in any plane.
    >Is this possible?
    >Bill Mitchell
    >42 4' 18" N  80 8' 33" W  733' ASL
    >Unsubscribe from SeeSat-L by sending a message with 'unsubscribe'
    >in the SUBJECT to
    Stuart Eves

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