Re: Upcoming Titan 4 launch

Bjoern Gimle (bjorn@tt-tech.se)
Mon, 29 Sep 1997 10:29:50 +0100

Lutz Schindler wrote:

From: lschindler@lschindler.s-link.de (Lutz Schindler)
Subject: Re: Upcoming Titan 4 launch

>## Nachricht vom 26.09.97 weitergeleitet
>## Ursprung : bjorn@tt-tech.se
>## Ersteller: lschindler@lschindler.s-link.de
>
>Hello Bjoern, have you created any search elements for this classified
launch ?
>

Vladimir Agapov and Ted Molczan noted in July letters:

>Announced launch azimuth = 153 degrees gives 68 deg.inclination
>Launch window:  16 JUL 97 0529Z TO 16 JUL 97 0859Z
...
>Possible orbit plane 49.4 degrees east of Lacrosse 2

Launch window on Sep.30: 0500-0900 UTC ?

Lacrosse 2 passes 46.6 degrees east of Vandenberg SE-bound at 06:27 UT.
This would put a launch around 06:15 UT on Sept.30 49.6 degrees WEST of
Lacrosse 2, which may also be a reasonable position.

KH satellites usually pass southbound near noon, so a sun-synchronous
orbit is not likely, and would be around azimuth 170.

A Molniya-type orbit of 63.6 degrees could be achieved with a slight
dog-leg, but this is announced as "using no upper stage", which those
objects do ?

For each 14.4 minutes late (or early) add (subtract) 0.01 days of
epoch, and 3.610 degrees of RAAN (4 hrs/0.01 days increments = 17
variants per inclination/period)

Lacrosse 3 06:15 970930 search orbit             669 x 662
1 97147U 97099  A 97265.81300000  .00000200  00000-0  34292-4 0    02
2 97147  67.9920 198.8000 0005000 273.2218  86.7781 14.68645666    08

Shadow exit for this orbit near 55 S (southbound) around 01:45 local
time,
entry 57 N (southbound) around 18:50 local time.
Though this is excellent for me, an early launch would increase
visibility
over Europe, northern US, and even South Africa and southern Australia,
which otherwise would occur a few days later.

A very late launch will delay these opportunities two weeks, but
improves the southbound leg for Africa and Australia.
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