AWST: NRO Spacecraft In Wrong Orbit

From: Ted Molczan (
Date: Fri Jun 15 2007 - 19:42:20 EDT

  • Next message: Ted Molczan: "NROL-30 non-obs due to cloud"

    This is likely to complicate our search.
    Jun 15, 2007
    Craig Covault/Aviation Week & Space Technology
    "Two top secret National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) ocean surveillance
    spacecraft were fired into the wrong orbit June 15 when the 200-foot-tall Atlas
    V rocket they were riding on stopped firing too early in space following launch
    from Cape Canaveral, Fla.
    The top secret satellites separated safely from the malfunctioning booster,
    however, and have enough rocket propellant to continue their mission, an
    official said on background."
    "The Centaur completed the first firing normally to place the spacecraft in a
    correct initial orbit. The vehicle then coasted about halfway around the world
    where the Centaur RL10 engine was fired a second time about an hour after
    This time, however, the Centaur did not fire for as long as it was scheduled to.
    The exact parameters involved are still secret.
    The spacecraft may have to use their onboard propellant to maneuver into a
    higher orbit, which could affect their mission life. Whether that is the case is
    still being determined by NRO."
    End excerpts
    Ted Molczan
    Subscribe/Unsubscribe info, Frequently Asked Questions, SeeSat-L archive:

    This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Fri Jun 15 2007 - 19:45:16 EDT