Encyclopedia Astronautica
Aussat


Australian communications.

More... - Chronology...


Associated Countries
Associated Spacecraft
  • HS 376 American communications satellite. 56 launches, 1980.11.15 (SBS 1) to 2003.09.27 (E-Bird). Mass 654 kg at beginning-of-life in geosynchronous orbit. Spin stabilized at 50 rpm by 4 hydrazine thrusters with 136 kg propellant. More...
  • HS 601 American communications satellite bus. First launch 1990.01.09. 3-axis unified ARC 22 N and one Marquardt 490 N bipropellant thrusters, Sun and Barnes Earth sensors and two 61 Nms 2-axis gimbaled momentum bias wheels. More...

Associated Launch Vehicles
  • Shuttle American winged orbital launch vehicle. The manned reusable space system which was designed to slash the cost of space transport and replace all expendable launch vehicles. It did neither, but did keep NASA in the manned space flight business for 30 years. Redesign of the shuttle with reliability in mind after the Challenger disaster reduced maximum payload to low earth orbit from 27,850 kg to 24,400 kg. More...
  • Ariane 3 French orbital launch vehicle. Four stage vehicle consisting of 2 x PAP solid rocket boosters + Ariane 2 core. More...
  • CZ-2E Chinese orbital launch vehicle. The CZ-2E added four liquid rocket booster strap-ons to the basic CZ-2 core to achieve a low earth orbit payload capability approaching the Russian Proton, US Titan, or European Ariane rockets. The Long March 2E had a maximum payload capability of 9,500 kg to low earth orbit. More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • Optus Australian agency. Optus Communications, Australia. More...
  • Hughes American manufacturer of rockets, spacecraft, and rocket engines. Hughes Aircraft Co. , USA More...

Associated Launch Sites
  • Cape Canaveral America's largest launch center, used for all manned launches. Today only six of the 40 launch complexes built here remain in use. Located at or near Cape Canaveral are the Kennedy Space Center on Merritt Island, used by NASA for Saturn V and Space Shuttle launches; Patrick AFB on Cape Canaveral itself, operated the US Department of Defense and handling most other launches; the commercial Spaceport Florida; the air-launched launch vehicle and missile Drop Zone off Mayport, Florida, located at 29.00 N 79.00 W, and an offshore submarine-launched ballistic missile launch area. All of these take advantage of the extensive down-range tracking facilities that once extended from the Cape, through the Caribbean, South Atlantic, and to South Africa and the Indian Ocean. More...
  • Kourou After the agreement with newly independent Algeria for France to evacuate their launch sites in that country, a location near Biscarosse was selected for French missile testing. However since only launches westwards across the Bay of Biscay could be made from this site, it was unsuitable for France's Diamant orbital launch vehicle. After reviewing 14 potential sites, a location in the South American French colony of Guiana was selected. This would allow over-water launches to a tremendous range of possible orbital inclinations -- from -100.5 deg to 1.5 deg. Being near the equator, it would provide the maximum assist from the earth's rotation for launches into equatorial orbits. The decision was formalized in April 1964 and in July 1966 ELDO chose the site for future launches of the Europa II launch vehicle. More...
  • Xichang China's launch site for geosynchronous orbit launches. Xichang Satellite Launch Centre is situated in Xichang, Sichuan Province, south-western China. The launch pad is at 102.0 degrees East and 28.2 degrees North. The head office of the launch centre is located in Xichang City, about 65 kilometers away. Xichang Airport is 50 km away. A dedicated railway and highway lead directly to the launch site. More...

Aussat Chronology


1985 August 27 - . 10:58 GMT - . Launch Site: Cape Canaveral. Launch Complex: Cape Canaveral LC39A. LV Family: Shuttle. Launch Vehicle: Shuttle. LV Configuration: Space Shuttle 51-I.
  • Aussat A1 - . Payload: Aussat A1 [PAM-D]. Mass: 1,260 kg (2,770 lb). Nation: Australia. Agency: Aussat. Program: Aussat. Class: Communications. Type: Military communications satellite. Spacecraft: HS 376. Completed Operations Date: 1993-08-24 . USAF Sat Cat: 15993 . COSPAR: 1985-076B. Apogee: 35,934 km (22,328 mi). Perigee: 35,922 km (22,320 mi). Inclination: 7.0000 deg. Period: 1,443.30 min. Released by STS 51I 8/27/85. Aussat A1 was decommissioned in early 1993 at the ned of its nominal life. It is currently in a non-synchronous graveyard orbit.. It spent its active life at 160 deg. E. Positioned in geosynchronous orbit at 160 deg E in 1985-1993 As of 5 September 2001 located at 174.28 deg W drifting at 1.831 deg W per day. As of 2007 Feb 27 located at 120.19E drifting at 1.838W degrees per day.

1985 November 27 - . 00:29 GMT - . Launch Site: Cape Canaveral. Launch Complex: Cape Canaveral LC39A. LV Family: Shuttle. Launch Vehicle: Shuttle. LV Configuration: Space Shuttle 61-B.
  • Aussat A2 - . Payload: Aussat A2 [PAM-D]. Mass: 1,259 kg (2,775 lb). Nation: Australia. Agency: Aussat. Program: Aussat. Class: Communications. Type: Military communications satellite. Spacecraft: HS 376. USAF Sat Cat: 16275 . COSPAR: 1985-109C. Apogee: 35,886 km (22,298 mi). Perigee: 35,866 km (22,286 mi). Inclination: 6.7000 deg. Period: 1,440.70 min. Released by STS 61B 11/28/85; 156 deg E. Positioned in geosynchronous orbit at 156 deg E in 1985-1993; 164 deg E in 1993-1999 As of 1 September 2001 located at 24.67 deg W drifting at 1.153 deg W per day. As of 2007 Feb 27 located at 133.30E drifting at 1.163W degrees per day.

1987 September 16 - . 00:45 GMT - . Launch Site: Kourou. Launch Complex: Kourou ELA1. LV Family: Ariane. Launch Vehicle: Ariane 3. LV Configuration: Ariane 3 V19.
  • Aussat A3 - . Payload: Aussat K3. Mass: 1,195 kg (2,634 lb). Nation: Australia. Agency: Aussat. Program: Aussat. Class: Communications. Type: Military communications satellite. Spacecraft: HS 376. USAF Sat Cat: 18350 . COSPAR: 1987-078A. Apogee: 35,794 km (22,241 mi). Perigee: 35,781 km (22,233 mi). Inclination: 0.0000 deg. Period: 1,436.20 min. Australian domestic communications; 164 deg E. Communication satellite. Launching states: Australia and France. Longitude 164 deg E +/- 0.5. (orbit given is geocentric 42164 km, which corresponds to altitude 35787 km). The satellite mass was 655 kg at beginning of life for an Ariane mission only on-station after the apogee motor had fired and station acquisition fuel was expended. Positioned in geosynchronous orbit at 164 deg E in 1987-1993; 156 deg E in 1993-1995; 152 deg E in 1995-1999 As of 4 September 2001 located at 163.96 deg E drifting at 0.005 deg W per day. As of 2007 Mar 10 located at 31.52E drifting at 0.011E degrees per day.

1992 August 13 - . 23:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Xichang. Launch Complex: Xichang LC2. LV Family: CZ. Launch Vehicle: CZ-2E. LV Configuration: Chang Zheng 2E CZ2E-2 (28).
  • Optus B1 - . Payload: Aussat B1. Mass: 2,760 kg (6,080 lb). Nation: Australia. Agency: Optus. Program: Aussat. Class: Communications. Type: Military communications satellite. Spacecraft: HS 601. USAF Sat Cat: 22087 . COSPAR: 1992-054A. Apogee: 35,800 km (22,200 mi). Perigee: 35,774 km (22,228 mi). Inclination: 0.0000 deg. Period: 1,436.10 min. Stationed at 160 deg E. Commercial communications. Longitude 160 +/- 0.05 deg E. Launched fromn China. Positioned in geosynchronous orbit at 160 deg E in 1992-1999 As of 1 September 2001 located at 159.98 deg E drifting at 0.009 deg W per day. As of 2007 Mar 11 located at 163.63E drifting at 0.044E degrees per day.

1992 December 21 - . 11:21 GMT - . Launch Site: Xichang. Launch Complex: Xichang LC2. LV Family: CZ. Launch Vehicle: CZ-2E. LV Configuration: Chang Zheng 2E CZ2E-3 (30). FAILURE: Shortcomings in the guidance system lead to the vehicle not anticipating the true effects of horizontal wind-shear once the mountains surrounding the launch site were cleared. This caused the nose fairing to collapse 45 seconds after launch.. Failed Stage: G.
  • Aussat B2 / Optus B2 - . Payload: Optus B2 / Star 63F. Mass: 2,760 kg (6,080 lb). Nation: Australia. Agency: Hughes. Program: Aussat. Class: Communications. Type: Military communications satellite. Spacecraft: HS 601. Decay Date: 1995-06-29 . USAF Sat Cat: 22278 . COSPAR: 1992-090A. Apogee: 816 km (507 mi). Perigee: 206 km (128 mi). Inclination: 28.1000 deg. Period: 94.90 min. Summary: Despite collapse of the nose fairing and near-desctruction of the payload, the launch vehicle continued on to place the wreckage of Optus-B2, and the Star-63F Kick-Motor into low earth orbit..

1994 August 27 - . 23:10 GMT - . Launch Site: Xichang. Launch Complex: Xichang LC2. LV Family: CZ. Launch Vehicle: CZ-2E. LV Configuration: Chang Zheng 2E CZ2E-4 (35).
  • Optus B3 - . Mass: 2,760 kg (6,080 lb). Nation: Australia. Agency: Optus. Program: Aussat. Class: Communications. Type: Military communications satellite. Spacecraft: HS 601. USAF Sat Cat: 23227 . COSPAR: 1994-055A. Apogee: 35,855 km (22,279 mi). Perigee: 35,718 km (22,194 mi). Inclination: 0.0000 deg. Period: 1,436.10 min. Telephone; TV; mobile communications; air traffic control. Stationed at 156 deg deg E. Positioned in geosynchronous orbit at 152 deg E in 1994-1995; 156 deg E in 1995-1999 As of 5 September 2001 located at 156.00 deg E drifting at 0.007 deg W per day. As of 2007 Mar 9 located at 151.97E drifting at 0.007W degrees per day.

2003 June 11 - . Launch Site: Kourou. Launch Complex: Kourou ELA3. LV Family: Ariane 5. Launch Vehicle: Ariane 5G. LV Configuration: Ariane 5G V161 (515).
  • Optus and Defence 1 - . Mass: 4,725 kg (10,416 lb). Nation: Australia. Agency: Arianespace. Program: Aussat. Class: Communications. Type: Military communications satellite. Spacecraft: FS-1300. USAF Sat Cat: 27830 . COSPAR: 2003-028A. Apogee: 35,803 km (22,246 mi). Perigee: 35,770 km (22,220 mi). Inclination: 0.1000 deg. Period: 1,436.10 min. Satellite jointly owned by Singtel Optus Pty and the Australian Dept. of Defense. Previous satellites in the series were purely civilian and didn't carry the dedicated defence communications equipment. Prime contractor for the satellie was Mitsubishi, using a Loral FS-1300 bus with UHF, X-band and Ka-band communications transponders. As of 2007 Mar 11 located at 109.87E drifting at 0.009W degrees per day.

2006 October 13 - . 20:56 GMT - . Launch Site: Kourou. Launch Complex: Kourou ELA3. LV Family: Ariane 5. Launch Vehicle: Ariane 5ECA. LV Configuration: Ariane 5ECA V173 (533).
  • Optus D1 - . Payload: Star-2. Nation: Australia. Agency: Optus. Manufacturer: OSC. Program: Aussat. Class: Communications. Type: Military communications satellite. Spacecraft: Star bus. USAF Sat Cat: 29495 . COSPAR: 2006-043B. Apogee: 35,797 km (22,243 mi). Perigee: 35,775 km (22,229 mi). Inclination: 0.0400 deg. Period: 1,436.09 min. Summary: Direct television broadcast to the Australian market. As of 2007 Mar 7 located at 159.99E drifting at 0.005W degrees per day..

2007 October 5 - . 22:02 GMT - . Launch Site: Kourou. Launch Complex: Kourou ELA3. LV Family: Ariane 5. Launch Vehicle: Ariane 5GS. LV Configuration: Ariane 5GS V178 (526).
  • Optus D-2 - . Mass: 2,400 kg (5,200 lb). Nation: Australia. Agency: Optus. Manufacturer: OSC. Program: Aussat. Class: Communications. Type: Military communications satellite. Spacecraft: Star bus. USAF Sat Cat: 32252 . COSPAR: 2007-044A. Apogee: 35,889 km (22,300 mi). Perigee: 35,862 km (22,283 mi). Inclination: 0.0000 deg. Period: 1,440.70 min. Ku-band satellite designed to deliver television, internet, communications, and data services to Australia and New Zealand. After deployment of the two satellites, the EPS third stage made a brief burn at 23:28 GMT to make the first in-flight test the Aestus engine's restart capability. This was to be used in 2008 in the first launch of the ATV ISS resupply spacecraft.

2009 August 21 - . 22:09 GMT - . Launch Site: Kourou. Launch Complex: Kourou ELA3. LV Family: Ariane 5. Launch Vehicle: Ariane 5ECA.
  • Optus D3 - . Payload: Star-2.4. Nation: France. Agency: Arianespace. Program: Aussat. Class: Communications. Type: Communications satellite. Spacecraft: Star bus. USAF Sat Cat: 35756 . COSPAR: 2009-044B. Apogee: 35,800 km (22,200 mi). Perigee: 35,773 km (22,228 mi). Inclination: 0.0000 deg. Period: 1,436.10 min.

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