Encyclopedia Astronautica
Materials


Category of spacecraft.

More... - Chronology...


Associated Spacecraft
  • DS-U4-T Ukrainian materials science satellite. Cancelled 1963. Light satellite with recoverable capsule for low gravity materials and technology studies. Cancelled in 1965 and never flown. More...
  • Foton Russian materials science satellite. 15 launches, 1985.04.16 (Cosmos 1645 / Foton 1) to 2007.09.14 (Foton M-2). Adaptation of recoverable Vostok spacecraft for zero-gravity materials processing tests. 400 W available to operate experiments. More...
  • Teknologia Russian materials science satellite. Study 1990. In 1990 KB Salyut proposed an unmanned derivative of the TKS to conduct zero-gravity materials production experiments. More...
  • Eureca European materials science satellite. One launch, 1992.07.31. Microgravity experiments; deployed from one shuttle mission, left in earth orbit for extended periods, and retrieved and returned to earth on a later shuttle flight. More...
  • Bioteknologiya Russian materials science satellite. Study 1992. In 1991 the Salyut Design Bureau proposed a satellite based on a derivative of the class of spacecraft which serve as the heavy add-on modules for the Mir space station, e.g., Kvant 2 and Kristal. More...
  • Skif-DM Russian materials science satellite. Cancelled 1992. In 1990 KB Salyut proposed using the back-up of the Polyus 'star wars' test bed as a huge zero-gravity materials production facility. More...
  • Space Biotechnological Complex Russian materials science satellite. Study 1992. In 1991 the Salyut Design Bureau proposed a Space Biotechnological Complex, for production of pharmaceutical products in zero gravity. More...
  • TMP Russian materials science satellite. Study 1992. The enormous 88 metric ton Engineering Production Module (TMP) was proposed by the Salyut Design Bureau in the early 1990's. More...
  • Tekos Russian materials science satellite. In 1991 Lavochkin NPO proposed this recoverable earth orbital spacecraft design, derived from their Venera planetary spacecraft, for materials and microgravity research missions. More...
  • Express 1 Japanese materials science satellite. One launch, 1995.01.15, EXPRESS RV. At first thought not to have reached orbit. Later reentry vehicle was discovered in Ghana having reentered and deployed its parachute on Jan 15. More...
  • SFU Japanese materials science satellite. One launch, 1995.03.18. Carried materials, astronomy, biological experiments; released and later retrieved by space shuttle. More...
  • WSF American materials science satellite. 2 launches, 1995.09.07 (WSF 2) and 1996.11.19 (WSF). Wake Shield Facility; released and later retrieved by the Shuttle in a single mission; semiconductor materials research. More...
  • Nika-T Russian materials science satellite. Study 1998. By the late 1990's the Foton Design Bureau anticipated testing a much more capable microgravity spacecraft as a follow-on to the successful Foton program. More...
  • USERS Japanese materials science satellite. One launch, 2002.09.10. USERS (Unmanned Space Experiment Recovery System) was a Japanese microgravity experimental satellite. More...

Materials Chronology


1981 July 10 - . 05:14 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC1. Launch Pad: LC1 or LC31. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Vostok 8A92M.
  • Iskra - . Payload: RK-01. Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Class: Materials. Type: Materials science satellite. Spacecraft: Iskra. Decay Date: 1990-04-16 . USAF Sat Cat: 12586 . COSPAR: 1981-065D. Apogee: 645 km (400 mi). Perigee: 618 km (384 mi). Inclination: 97.7000 deg. Period: 97.34 min. Summary: Conduct of scientific experiments to study diffusion and heat processes in weightlessness..

1985 April 16 - . 17:15 GMT - . Launch Site: Plesetsk. Launch Complex: Plesetsk LC41/1. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz 11A511U.
  • Cosmos 1645 / Foton 1 - . Payload: Foton s/n 1L. Mass: 6,200 kg (13,600 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Class: Materials. Type: Materials science satellite. Spacecraft: Foton. Duration: 12.16 days. Decay Date: 1985-04-29 . USAF Sat Cat: 15645 . COSPAR: 1985-029A. Apogee: 388 km (241 mi). Perigee: 214 km (132 mi). Inclination: 62.8000 deg. Period: 90.50 min. Summary: Materials processing tests..

1986 May 21 - . 16:30 GMT - . Launch Site: Plesetsk. Launch Complex: Plesetsk LC41/1. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz 11A511U.
  • Cosmos 1744 / Foton 2 - . Payload: Foton s/n 2L. Mass: 6,200 kg (13,600 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Class: Materials. Type: Materials science satellite. Spacecraft: Foton. Duration: 13.19 days. Decay Date: 1986-06-04 . USAF Sat Cat: 16724 . COSPAR: 1986-036A. Apogee: 371 km (230 mi). Perigee: 217 km (134 mi). Inclination: 62.8000 deg. Period: 90.40 min. Summary: 216 orbits. Materials processing experiments. Continuation of research on materials science in space..

1987 April 24 - . 16:59 GMT - . Launch Site: Plesetsk. Launch Complex: Plesetsk LC41/1. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz 11A511U.
  • Cosmos 1841 / Foton 3 - . Payload: Foton s/n 3L. Mass: 6,300 kg (13,800 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Class: Materials. Type: Materials science satellite. Spacecraft: Foton. Duration: 13.17 days. Decay Date: 1987-05-08 . USAF Sat Cat: 17907 . COSPAR: 1987-037A. Apogee: 380 km (230 mi). Perigee: 217 km (134 mi). Inclination: 62.9000 deg. Period: 90.50 min. Summary: Materials processing tests. Conduct of experiments on the production of semi-conducting materials and super-pure biological preparations in micro-gravity. .

1988 April 14 - . 17:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Plesetsk. Launch Complex: Plesetsk LC41/1. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz 11A511U.
  • Foton 4 - . Payload: Foton s/n 4L. Mass: 6,200 kg (13,600 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Class: Materials. Type: Materials science satellite. Spacecraft: Foton. Duration: 13.62 days. Decay Date: 1988-04-28 . USAF Sat Cat: 19043 . COSPAR: 1988-031A. Apogee: 372 km (231 mi). Perigee: 215 km (133 mi). Inclination: 62.8000 deg. Period: 90.40 min. Summary: 218 orbits. Materials processing experiments; extremely pure and semiconductor materials. Research in material science in space (production of semiconductor materials with improved properties and very pure biologically active substances).

1989 April 26 - . 17:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Plesetsk. Launch Complex: Plesetsk LC41/1. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz 11A511U.
  • Foton 5 - . Payload: Foton s/n 5L. Mass: 6,200 kg (13,600 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Class: Materials. Type: Materials science satellite. Spacecraft: Foton. Duration: 14.35 days. Decay Date: 1989-05-11 . USAF Sat Cat: 19941 . COSPAR: 1989-032A. Apogee: 377 km (234 mi). Perigee: 220 km (130 mi). Inclination: 62.8000 deg. Period: 90.50 min. Summary: 234 orbits. Materials processing. Space materials research (production of enhanced performance semiconductors and especially pure biologically active substances in microgravity conditions). Jointly with France..

1990 April 11 - . 17:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Plesetsk. Launch Complex: Plesetsk LC43/3. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz 11A511U2.
  • Foton 6 - . Payload: Foton s/n 6L. Mass: 6,200 kg (13,600 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Class: Materials. Type: Materials science satellite. Spacecraft: Foton. Duration: 15.17 days. Decay Date: 1990-04-27 . USAF Sat Cat: 20566 . COSPAR: 1990-032A. Apogee: 374 km (232 mi). Perigee: 216 km (134 mi). Inclination: 62.8000 deg. Period: 90.40 min. 250 orbits. In addition to Russian materials science experiments, Foton 6 carried out the French Gezon experiment using the Russian Zona-4M electric furnace (Foton spacecraft have also flown the Zona 1, Zona 4, Splav 2, and Konstanta 2 electric furnaces as well as the Kashtan electrophoresis unit). Foton 6, which also carried the European Biopan life sciences experiments, was successfully recovered on the 15th day.

1991 October 4 - . 18:10 GMT - . Launch Site: Plesetsk. Launch Complex: Plesetsk LC43/4. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz 11A511U.
  • Foton 7 - . Payload: Foton s/n 7L. Mass: 6,200 kg (13,600 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Class: Materials. Type: Materials science satellite. Spacecraft: Foton. Duration: 15.54 days. Decay Date: 1991-10-20 . USAF Sat Cat: 21737 . COSPAR: 1991-070A. Apogee: 394 km (244 mi). Perigee: 214 km (132 mi). Inclination: 62.8000 deg. Period: 90.60 min. Summary: Materials research; carried German, French experiments. Continuation of space materials research conducted jointly with Germany and France. .

1992 July 31 - . 13:56 GMT - . Launch Site: Cape Canaveral. Launch Complex: Cape Canaveral LC39B. LV Family: Shuttle. Launch Vehicle: Shuttle. LV Configuration: Space Shuttle STS-46.
  • Eureca-1 - . Payload: Atlantis F12 / Eureca 1 / TSS 1. Mass: 4,491 kg (9,900 lb). Nation: Europe. Agency: ESA. Class: Materials. Type: Materials science satellite. Spacecraft: Eureca. Decay Date: 1993-07-01 . USAF Sat Cat: 22065 . COSPAR: 1992-049B. Apogee: 509 km (316 mi). Perigee: 484 km (300 mi). Inclination: 28.5000 deg. Period: 94.60 min. Microgravity experiments; deployed from STS-46 8/2/92; retrieved by STS-57; European Retrievable Carrier. EURECA is a European scientific and technology mission, launched by the US Space Transportation System. The spacecraft is scheduled to be retrieved likewise by the US/STS in late spring/early summer 1993. Designator ESA/92/01. Frequency plan: 2053.4583/22 30 MHz, 28 GHz/ 18 GHz (data-relay via Olympus).

1992 October 8 - . 19:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Plesetsk. Launch Complex: Plesetsk LC43/4. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz 11A511U.
  • Foton 8 - . Payload: Foton s/n 8L. Mass: 6,200 kg (13,600 lb). Nation: Russia. Agency: MOM. Class: Materials. Type: Materials science satellite. Spacecraft: Foton. Duration: 15.60 days. Decay Date: 1992-10-24 . USAF Sat Cat: 22173 . COSPAR: 1992-065A. Apogee: 359 km (223 mi). Perigee: 218 km (135 mi). Inclination: 62.8000 deg. Period: 90.30 min. Summary: 250 orbits. Microgravity research. Space materials research (conducted jointly with Germany)..

1994 June 14 - . 16:05 GMT - . Launch Site: Plesetsk. Launch Complex: Plesetsk LC43/3. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz 11A511U.
  • Foton 9 - . Payload: Foton s/n 9. Mass: 6,200 kg (13,600 lb). Nation: Russia. Agency: MOM. Class: Materials. Type: Materials science satellite. Spacecraft: Foton. Duration: 17.56 days. Decay Date: 1994-07-02 . USAF Sat Cat: 23122 . COSPAR: 1994-033A. Apogee: 358 km (222 mi). Perigee: 220 km (130 mi). Inclination: 62.8000 deg. Period: 90.30 min. Summary: Microgravity experiments. Landed July 2..

1995 January 15 - . 13:45 GMT - . Launch Site: Kagoshima. Launch Complex: Kagoshima M. Launch Pad: M1. LV Family: Mu. Launch Vehicle: Mu-3S-II. LV Configuration: Mu-3S-II M-3S2-8. FAILURE: Failure of second stage attitude control system.. Failed Stage: 2.
  • Express 1 - . Nation: Japan. Agency: ISAS. Class: Materials. Type: Materials science satellite. Spacecraft: Express 1. Decay Date: 1995-01-15 . COSPAR: F950115A. At first thought not to have reached orbit. Later the re-entry vehicle was discovered in Ghana having reentered and deployed its parachute on January 15. At T+103 sec, during the second stage burn, the vehicle veered off course. The payload service module entered a 110 x 250 km x 33 degree orbit, instead of the intended 270 x 380 km and re-entered on its second orbit. The re-entry capsule was found later in Ghana. A failure of the second stage attitude control system was blamed, although it was considered likely that the payload was too heavy for the vehicle, being twice the mass of earlier MU-3S payloads.

1995 February 16 - . 17:39 GMT - . Launch Site: Plesetsk. Launch Complex: Plesetsk LC43/4. Launch Pad: LC43/4?. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz 11A511U.
  • Foton 10 - . Payload: Foton s/n 10. Mass: 6,300 kg (13,800 lb). Nation: Russia. Agency: MOM. Class: Materials. Type: Materials science satellite. Spacecraft: Foton. Duration: 14.62 days. Decay Date: 1995-03-03 . USAF Sat Cat: 23497 . COSPAR: 1995-006A. Apogee: 355 km (220 mi). Perigee: 218 km (135 mi). Inclination: 62.8000 deg. Period: 90.30 min. Summary: 234 orbits. Carried Russian, French, German micro-gravity experiments. Landed in Russia Mar 3.

1995 March 18 - . 08:01 GMT - . Launch Site: Tanegashima. Launch Complex: Tanegashima Y. LV Family: H-2. Launch Vehicle: H-II. LV Configuration: H-II H-II-3F.
  • SFU - . Mass: 4,000 kg (8,800 lb). Nation: Japan. Agency: NASDA. Class: Materials. Type: Materials science satellite. Spacecraft: SFU. Decay Date: 1996-01-20 . USAF Sat Cat: 23521 . COSPAR: 1995-011A. Apogee: 483 km (300 mi). Perigee: 471 km (292 mi). Inclination: 28.5000 deg. Period: 94.10 min. Summary: Space Flyer Unit; carried materials, astronomy, biological experiments; retrieved by STS-72 1/20/96..

1995 September 7 - . 15:09 GMT - . Launch Site: Cape Canaveral. Launch Complex: Cape Canaveral LC39A. LV Family: Shuttle. Launch Vehicle: Shuttle. LV Configuration: Space Shuttle STS-69.
  • WSF 2 - . Payload: Wake Shield Facility. Mass: 1,935 kg (4,265 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: SII. Class: Materials. Type: Materials science satellite. Spacecraft: WSF. Decay Date: 1995-09-18 . USAF Sat Cat: 23669 . COSPAR: 1995-048C. Apogee: 405 km (251 mi). Perigee: 397 km (246 mi). Inclination: 28.5000 deg. Period: 92.60 min. Summary: Wake Shield Facility; released by STS-69 9/11/95; retrieved 9/14/95; semiconductor materials research. Retrieved by Endeavour Sep 14 .

1996 November 19 - . 19:55 GMT - . Launch Site: Cape Canaveral. Launch Complex: Cape Canaveral LC39B. LV Family: Shuttle. Launch Vehicle: Shuttle. LV Configuration: Space Shuttle STS-80.
  • WSF - . Payload: Wake Shield Facility. Nation: USA. Agency: SII. Class: Materials. Type: Materials science satellite. Spacecraft: WSF. Decay Date: 1996-12-07 . USAF Sat Cat: 24662 . COSPAR: 1996-065C. Apogee: 359 km (223 mi). Perigee: 347 km (215 mi). Inclination: 28.5000 deg. Period: 91.60 min. Summary: Retrieved Nov 26.

1997 October 9 - . 17:59 GMT - . Launch Site: Plesetsk. Launch Complex: Plesetsk LC43/3. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz 11A511U.
  • Foton 11 - . Payload: Foton s/n 11. Nation: Russia. Agency: RAKA. Manufacturer: Kayser-Threde. Class: Materials. Type: Materials science satellite. Spacecraft: Foton. Duration: 13.63 days. Decay Date: 1997-10-23 . USAF Sat Cat: 25006 . COSPAR: 1997-060A. Apogee: 363 km (225 mi). Perigee: 218 km (135 mi). Inclination: 62.8000 deg. Period: 90.30 min. Summary: Microgravity experiments. Landed in Kazakhstan Oct 23..

1999 September 9 - . 18:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Plesetsk. Launch Complex: Plesetsk LC43/4. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz 11A511U.
  • Foton 12 - . Payload: Foton s/n 12. Nation: Russia. Agency: RAKA. Manufacturer: Kozlov. Class: Materials. Type: Materials science satellite. Spacecraft: Foton. Duration: 14.64 days. Decay Date: 1999-09-24 . USAF Sat Cat: 25902 . COSPAR: 1999-048A. Apogee: 365 km (226 mi). Perigee: 215 km (133 mi). Inclination: 62.8000 deg. Period: 90.30 min. Summary: Foton 12 carried European microgravity experiments. The spacecraft's descent module landed on Russian territory at 52.47 deg N 53.83 deg E on September 24, 1999..

2002 September 10 - . 08:20 GMT - . Launch Site: Tanegashima. Launch Complex: Tanegashima Y. LV Family: H-2. Launch Vehicle: H-IIA 2024. LV Configuration: H-IIA 2024 H-IIA-3F.
  • USERS - . Mass: 1,726 kg (3,805 lb). Nation: Japan. Agency: NASDA. Manufacturer: Mitsubishi. Class: Materials. Type: Materials science satellite. Spacecraft: USERS. Decay Date: 2007-06-15 . USAF Sat Cat: 27515 . COSPAR: 2002-042A. Apogee: 508 km (315 mi). Perigee: 497 km (308 mi). Inclination: 30.4000 deg. Period: 94.70 min. Launch delayed from August 2002. First operational flight of H-2A booster. USERS (Unmanned Space Experiment Recovery System) was a Japanese microgravity experimental satellite. After 8.5 months in orbit, a reentry vehicle was to be returned to earth with the materials manufacturered in space.

2002 October 15 - . 18:20 GMT - . Launch Site: Plesetsk. Launch Complex: Plesetsk LC43/3. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz 11A511U. LV Configuration: Soyuz 11A511U PVB 066. FAILURE: Contamination in hydrogen peroxide line of fuel pump system led to explosion of Strap-on D 29 seconds after launch. The rocket crashed near the pad, debris from the explosion killing one soldier.. Failed Stage: 0.
  • Foton-M - . Payload: Foton M-1 / Foton 13. Mass: 6,425 kg (14,164 lb). Nation: Russia. Agency: RAKA; ESA. Manufacturer: Kozlov. Class: Materials. Type: Materials science satellite. Spacecraft: Foton. COSPAR: F021015. Launch delayed from October 9. Foton-M No. 1 (Foton-13) was an improved version of the Foton materials processing satellite. The 6425 kg satellite carried a variety of microgravity experiments including those of the European Space Agency. The satellite was destroyed in the accident.

2005 May 31 - . 12:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC1. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz 11A511U. LV Configuration: Soyuz-U Zh15000-091.
  • Foton M-2 - . Payload: Foton 14. Mass: 6,535 kg (14,407 lb). Nation: Russia. Agency: RAKA. Manufacturer: Kozlov. Class: Materials. Type: Materials science satellite. Spacecraft: Foton. Decay Date: 2005-06-16 . USAF Sat Cat: 28686 . COSPAR: 2005-020A. Apogee: 304 km (188 mi). Perigee: 262 km (162 mi). Inclination: 63.0000 deg. Period: 89.93 min. Microgravity mission with the experiments being returned to earth after 16 days in a spherical Vostok capsule of the type that first carried Yuri Gagarin into space in 1961. The capsule landed in Kazakhstan at 07:36 GMT on 16 June. For this mission a 385 kg European payload of 39 experiments in fluid physics, biology, material science, meteoritics, radiation dosimetry and exobiology was carried. A further 215 kg of Russian instruments were also flown. Many were experiments were being reflown following loss of Foton-M1 on 15 October 2002. The planned Fotino miniature re-entry capsule experiment was not flown.

    Applied research included heat transfer experiments with the European FluidPac facility, chemical diffusion experiments in the SCCO (Soret Coefficients in Crude Oil), and material science investigations in the Agat and Polizon furnaces. These experiments were expected to contribute to new heat-exchanger designs, more efficient oil exploration processes, and better semiconductor alloys. The Biopan facility carried life science experiments, including a student seed germination test.


2007 September 14 - . 11:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC1. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz 11A511U. LV Configuration: Soyuz-U 098.
  • Foton M-3 - . Mass: 6,500 kg (14,300 lb). Nation: Russia. Agency: RAKA. Manufacturer: Kozlov. Class: Materials. Type: Materials science satellite. Spacecraft: Foton. Decay Date: 2007-09-26 . USAF Sat Cat: 32058 . COSPAR: 2007-040A. Apogee: 280 km (170 mi). Perigee: 258 km (160 mi). Inclination: 62.9000 deg. Period: 89.90 min. Recoverable spacecraft derived from the Vostok. Carried Russian and European microgravy, life sciences and technology experiments. After deploying the YES-2 tether on 25 September, Foton M-3 was deorbited at 07:23 GMT on 26 September and successfully landed at 07:58 GMT in Kazakhstan.

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