Encyclopedia Astronautica
Point Arguello WADZ


Air-launched rocket drop zone known to have been used for 28 launches from 1990 to 2007, reaching up to 4539 kilometers altitude.

Longitude: -123.0000 deg.
Latitude: 36.0000 deg.

More... - Chronology...


Associated Countries
Associated Spacecraft
  • GLOMR American military store-dump communications satellite. 2 launches, 1985.10.30 (GLOMR; GLOMAR) and 1990.04.05 (USA 55). More...
  • Pegsat American earth magnetosphere satellite. One launch, 1990.04.05. Chemical release experiment. More...
  • REX American earth ionosphere satellite. 2 launches, 1991.06.29 (REX) and 1996.03.09 (REX-II). The REX satellites were designed to study scintillation effects of the Earth's atmosphere on RF transmissions. More...
  • Microsat American military communications satellite. 7 launches, 1991.07.17 (Microsat 1) to (Microsat 7). Satellites used in a DARPA test of an LEO quick-reaction network for global communications. More...
  • Orbcomm American communications technology satellite. 31 launches, 1991.07.17 (Orbcomm-X) to 2008.06.19 (Orbcomm FM36). Orbcomm was a commercial venture to provide global messaging services using a constellation of 26 low-Earth orbiting satellites. More...
  • MSTI American military strategic defense satellite. 3 launches, 1992.11.21 (MSTI) to 1996.05.17 (MSTI-3). BMDO technology demonstration; Miniature Seeker Technology Demonstration. More...
  • ALEXIS American x-ray astronomy satellite. One launch, 1993.04.25. ALEXIS was a small spacecraft built for the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). Its mission was to provide high resolution maps of low-energy astronomical x-ray sources. More...
  • Eagle American military strategic defense satellite. 3 launches, 1994.05.19 (STEP 2 (SIDEX)) to 1997.10.22 (STEP-4). More...
  • APEX American technology satellite. One launch, 1994.08.03, P90-6 APEX. More...
  • Microstar American communications technology satellite. 22 launches, 1995.04.03 (Orbcomm F1) to 2008.10.19 (Formosat 3F). Small satellite bus, specially designed for multiple launch by Pegasus or Taurus family launch vehicles. More...
  • STEP American technology satellite. 2 launches, 1995.06.22 (STEP 3) and 2000.06.07 (TSX 5). More...
  • TOMS-EP American earth atmosphere satellite. One launch, 1996.07.02. More...
  • FAST American earth magnetosphere satellite. One launch, 1996.08.21. FAST was designed to observe and measure rapidly varying electric and magnetic fields and the flow of electrons and ions above the aurora. More...
  • Orbview-2 American civilian surveillance satellite. One launch, 1997.08.01. The SeaStar satellite carries the SeaWiFS instrument which was designed to monitor the color of the world's oceans. More...
  • FORTE American earth magnetosphere satellite. One launch, 1997.08.29. FORTE - 'Fast On-orbit Recording of Transient Events' - was a US Los Alamos National Laboratory satellite designed to study natural and artificial radio emissions from the ionosphere. More...
  • Teledesic American communications satellite. One launch, 1998.02.26. The Teledesic system was announced in 2004, and was to have provided global communication links via a constellation of 288 LEO spacecraft. More...
  • SNOE American technology satellite. One launch, 1998.02.26. More...
  • TRACE American solar satellite. One launch, 1998.04.02. TRACE, carried a 30-cm extreme ultraviolet imaging telescope for studies of the sun. Lockheed was the lead contractor while the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory made the telescope mirrors. More...
  • SWAS American infrared astronomy satellite. One launch, 1998.12.06. SWAS, the Submillimeter Wave Astronomy Satellite, had a 0.6m telescope with a 490 to 550 GHz submillimeter receiver and an acousto-optical spectrometer. More...
  • WIRE American infrared astronomy satellite. One launch, 1999.03.05. WIRE was designed to survey the celestial sky in the infrared bands and build on the results of the IRAS mission. More...
  • TERRIERS American earth ionosphere satellite. One launch, 1999.05.18. More...
  • Orbview American civilian surveillance satellite. 2 launches, 2001.09.21 (Orbview-4) and 2003.06.26 (Orbview 3). More...
  • SCISAT Canadian earth atmosphere satellite. One launch, 2003.08.13. More...
  • DART American rendezvous technology satellite. One launch, 2005.04.15. Autonomous Rendezvous Technology mission, planned to guide itself to within a few meters of a US satellite. More...
  • ST5 American technology satellite. 3 launched, 2006.03.22 (ST5-A) to (ST5-C). More...
  • RS-300 American technology satellite bus, first launched 2007.03.09. Ball Aerospace's RS-300 was a small, low-cost spacecraft aimed at cost-capped principle investigator led missions for Earth or space science. More...

See also
  • Pegasus Privately-funded, air-launched winged light satellite launcher. More...

Associated Launch Vehicles
  • Pegasus American air-launched orbital launch vehicle. Privately-funded, air-launched winged light satellite launcher. More...
  • Pegasus/HAPS American air-launched orbital launch vehicle. Five stage version consisting of 1 x NB-52 + 1 x Orion 50S + 1 x Orion 50 + 1 x Orion 38 + 1 x HAPS More...
  • Pegasus XL American air-launched orbital launch vehicle. Uprated version of Pegasus air-launched winged light satellite launcher. 4 stage vehicle consisting of 1 x L-1011 + 1 x Pegasus XL stage 1 + 1 x Orion 50XL + 1 x Orion 38. More...
  • Pegasus H American air-launched orbital launch vehicle. Four stage vehicle consisting of 1 x L-1011 + 1 x Orion 50S + 1 x Orion 50 + 1 x Orion 38 More...
  • Pegasus XL/HAPS American air-launched orbital launch vehicle. Five stage version consisting of 1 x L-1011 + 1 x Pegasus XL stage 1 + 1 x Orion 50XL + 1 x Orion 38 + 1 x HAPS More...
  • Hyper X American test vehicle. Two stage vehicle consisting of 1 x NB-52 + 1 x Orion 50S More...

Associated Programs
  • Orbcomm Orbcomm was a commercial venture to provide global messaging services using a constellation of 26 low-Earth orbiting satellites. More...
  • Small Explorer A series of relatively low-cost satellites launched by NASA for solar and astronomical studies. More...
  • STEDI The small STEDI (Student Explorer Demonstration Initiative) program was also known as the University Explorer (UNEX) series. First launch was the HETE astronomy satellite built by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. This was followed by SNOE, the Student Nitric Oxide Explorer, built by the University of Colorado. More...
  • STEP Space Test Experiment Program; series of USAF technology test satellites. More...

Associated Launch Sites
  • Point Arguello The US Navy had established a Naval Air Facility at Point Mugu for cruise missile test in November 1945. After the Air Force had acquired the northern part of Camp Cooke from the Army for use as Vandenberg AFB, the surplus southern portion of the former camp, encompassing over 19,800 acres, was transferred to the U.S. Navy in May 1958. The Navy subsequently established a Pacific Missile Range with headquarters at Point Mugu and instrumentation sites along the California coast and at various islands in the Pacific. More...

Point Arguello WADZ Chronology


1990 April 5 - . 19:10 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: NB-52 008. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus. LV Configuration: Pegasus 001/F1.
  • Pegsat - . Payload: Pegsat / Orion 38. Mass: 178 kg (392 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: NASA Greenbelt. Class: Earth. Type: Magnetosphere satellite. Spacecraft: Pegsat. Decay Date: 1998-11-14 . USAF Sat Cat: 20546 . COSPAR: 1990-028A. Apogee: 507 km (315 mi). Perigee: 401 km (249 mi). Inclination: 94.1000 deg. Period: 93.70 min. Summary: Chemical release experiment. Spacecraft engaged in research and exploration of the upper atmosphere or outer space (US Cat B). .
  • USA 55 - . Payload: GLOMR 2 / TERCEL / SECS. Mass: 25 kg (55 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: DARPA. Class: Communications. Type: Military communications satellite. Spacecraft: GLOMR. USAF Sat Cat: 20547 . COSPAR: 1990-028B. Apogee: 642 km (398 mi). Perigee: 477 km (296 mi). Inclination: 94.1000 deg. Period: 95.90 min. Summary: Store and forward..

1991 July 17 - . 17:33 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: NB-52 008. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus/HAPS. LV Configuration: Pegasus/HAPS 002/F2. Failed Stage: G.
  • Microsat 1 - . Payload: Microsat 1 / ... / Microsat 7. Mass: 22 kg (48 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: DARPA. Class: Technology. Type: Communications technology satellite. Spacecraft: Microsat. Decay Date: 1992-01-23 . USAF Sat Cat: 21580 . COSPAR: 1991-051A. Apogee: 454 km (282 mi). Perigee: 356 km (221 mi). Inclination: 82.0000 deg. Period: 92.70 min. Summary: Test of LEO network for global communications..
  • Microsat 2 - . Mass: 22 kg (48 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: DARPA. Class: Technology. Type: Communications technology satellite. Spacecraft: Microsat. Decay Date: 1992-01-23 . USAF Sat Cat: 21581 . COSPAR: 1991-051B. Apogee: 454 km (282 mi). Perigee: 355 km (220 mi). Inclination: 82.0000 deg. Period: 92.70 min. Summary: Test of LEO network for global communications..
  • Microsat 3 - . Mass: 22 kg (48 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: DARPA. Class: Technology. Type: Communications technology satellite. Spacecraft: Microsat. Decay Date: 1992-01-24 . USAF Sat Cat: 21582 . COSPAR: 1991-051C. Apogee: 454 km (282 mi). Perigee: 355 km (220 mi). Inclination: 82.0000 deg. Period: 92.70 min. Summary: Test of LEO network for global communications..
  • Microsat 4 - . Mass: 22 kg (48 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: DARPA. Class: Technology. Type: Communications technology satellite. Spacecraft: Microsat. Decay Date: 1992-01-23 . USAF Sat Cat: 21583 . COSPAR: 1991-051D. Apogee: 454 km (282 mi). Perigee: 355 km (220 mi). Inclination: 82.0000 deg. Period: 92.70 min. Summary: Test of LEO network for global communications..
  • Microsat 5 - . Mass: 22 kg (48 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: DARPA. Class: Technology. Type: Communications technology satellite. Spacecraft: Microsat. Decay Date: 1992-01-24 . USAF Sat Cat: 21584 . COSPAR: 1991-051E. Apogee: 455 km (282 mi). Perigee: 355 km (220 mi). Inclination: 82.0000 deg. Period: 92.70 min. Summary: Test of LEO network for global communications..
  • Microsat 6 - . Mass: 22 kg (48 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: DARPA. Class: Technology. Type: Communications technology satellite. Spacecraft: Microsat. Decay Date: 1992-01-25 . USAF Sat Cat: 21585 . COSPAR: 1991-051F. Apogee: 454 km (282 mi). Perigee: 355 km (220 mi). Inclination: 82.0000 deg. Period: 92.70 min. Summary: Test of LEO network for global communications..
  • Microsat 7 - . Mass: 22 kg (48 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: DARPA. Class: Technology. Type: Communications technology satellite. Spacecraft: Microsat. Decay Date: 1992-01-23 . USAF Sat Cat: 21586 . COSPAR: 1991-051G. Apogee: 452 km (280 mi). Perigee: 358 km (222 mi). Inclination: 82.0000 deg. Period: 92.70 min. Summary: Test of LEO network for global communications..

1993 April 25 - . 13:56 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: NB-52 008. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus. LV Configuration: Pegasus 004/F4.
  • Alexis - . Payload: Alexis (P 89-1B). Mass: 115 kg (253 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: USAF STP. Class: Astronomy. Type: X-ray astronomy satellite. Spacecraft: Alexis. USAF Sat Cat: 22638 . COSPAR: 1993-026A. Apogee: 746 km (463 mi). Perigee: 741 km (460 mi). Inclination: 69.8000 deg. Period: 99.70 min. Summary: Test of X-ray imaging sensors; solar array deployment malfunction. Spacecraft engaged in research and exploration of the upper atmosphere or outer space (US Cat B)..
  • Orbcomm OXP-2 - . Payload: VSUM. Nation: USA. Agency: Orbcomm. Program: Orbcomm. Class: Communications. Type: Civilian communications satellite. Spacecraft: Orbcomm. USAF Sat Cat: 22639 . COSPAR: 1993-026B. Apogee: 843 km (524 mi). Perigee: 752 km (468 mi). Inclination: 69.9160 deg. Period: 100.74 min.

1994 May 19 - . 17:03 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: NB-52 008. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus/HAPS. LV Configuration: Pegasus/HAPS 005/F5.
  • STEP 2 (SIDEX) - . Payload: STEP M2 / P 91-A. Mass: 180 kg (390 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: USAF STP. Program: STEP. Class: Military. Type: Strategic defense satellite. Spacecraft: Eagle. USAF Sat Cat: 23105 . COSPAR: 1994-029A. Apogee: 813 km (505 mi). Perigee: 597 km (370 mi). Inclination: 82.0000 deg. Period: 98.90 min. Summary: Did not achieve planned orbit, though still useful. Space craft engaged in investigation of spaceflight techniques and technology (US Cat A). .

1994 June 27 - . 21:15 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: L-1011. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus XL. LV Configuration: Pegasus XL F6. FAILURE: Destroyed on launch . Failed Stage: 1.
  • STEP 1 - . Payload: STEP M1 / P90-1. Nation: USA. Agency: OSC. Program: STEP. Class: Military. Type: Strategic defense satellite. Spacecraft: Eagle. COSPAR: F940627A. Apogee: 38 km (23 mi). Summary: Destroyed on launch .

1994 August 3 - . 14:38 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: NB-52 008. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus. LV Configuration: Pegasus F7.
  • P90-6 APEX - . Payload: APEX/Orion 38. Mass: 260 kg (570 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: USAF STP. Class: Technology. Type: Navigation technology satellite. Spacecraft: APEX. USAF Sat Cat: 23191 . COSPAR: 1994-046A. Apogee: 2,534 km (1,574 mi). Perigee: 360 km (220 mi). Inclination: 69.9800 deg. Period: 114.82 min. Summary: Advanced Photovoltaic and Electronic Experiments; studied radiation and plasma effects on solar power systems..

1995 April 3 - . 13:48 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: L-1011. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus H. LV Configuration: Pegasus H F8.
  • Orbcomm F1 - . Payload: Orbcomm s/n FM1. Mass: 40 kg (88 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: Orbcomm. Program: Orbcomm. Class: Communications. Type: Civilian communications satellite. Spacecraft: Microstar. USAF Sat Cat: 23545 . COSPAR: 1995-017A. Apogee: 747 km (464 mi). Perigee: 728 km (452 mi). Inclination: 69.9800 deg. Period: 99.56 min. Summary: Commercial communications testbed. Plane F. Ascending node 199.1 degrees..
  • Orbcomm F2 - . Payload: Orbcomm s/n FM2. Mass: 40 kg (88 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: Orbcomm. Program: Orbcomm. Class: Communications. Type: Civilian communications satellite. Spacecraft: Microstar. USAF Sat Cat: 23546 . COSPAR: 1995-017B. Apogee: 747 km (464 mi). Perigee: 728 km (452 mi). Inclination: 69.9800 deg. Period: 99.56 min. Summary: Commercial communications testbed. Plane F. Ascending node 198.5 degrees..
  • Orbview-1 - . Payload: Microlab 1. Mass: 74 kg (163 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: Orbimage. Program: Orbview. Class: Earth. Type: Atmosphere satellite. Spacecraft: Microstar. USAF Sat Cat: 23547 . COSPAR: 1995-017C. Apogee: 747 km (464 mi). Perigee: 733 km (455 mi). Inclination: 70.0000 deg. Period: 99.60 min. Summary: Lightning mapper; GPS radio occultation..

1995 June 22 - . 19:58 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: L-1011. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus XL. LV Configuration: Pegasus XL F9. FAILURE: Second stage failure; destroyed by range safety.. Failed Stage: 2.
  • STEP 3 - . Payload: STEP M3. Mass: 267 kg (588 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: USAF. Program: STEP. Class: Technology. Type: Navigation technology satellite. Spacecraft: STEP. Decay Date: 1995-06-22 . COSPAR: F950622A. Apogee: 144 km (89 mi). Summary: Space Test Experiment Platform..

1996 March 9 - . 01:53 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: L-1011. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus XL. LV Configuration: Pegasus XL F10.
  • REX-II - . Nation: USA. Agency: USAF STP. Class: Earth. Type: Ionosphere satellite. Spacecraft: REX. USAF Sat Cat: 23814 . COSPAR: 1996-014A. Apogee: 835 km (518 mi). Perigee: 799 km (496 mi). Inclination: 90.0000 deg. Period: 101.20 min. Summary: LEO .

1996 May 17 - . 02:44 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: L-1011. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus H. LV Configuration: Pegasus H F11.
  • MSTI-3 - . Payload: MSTI 3. Nation: USA. Agency: BMDO. Class: Military. Type: Strategic defense satellite. Spacecraft: MSTI. Decay Date: 1997-12-11 . USAF Sat Cat: 23868 . COSPAR: 1996-031A. Apogee: 432 km (268 mi). Perigee: 420 km (260 mi). Inclination: 97.1000 deg. Period: 90.70 min. Summary: LEO. Sensor technology tests .

1996 July 2 - . 07:48 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: L-1011. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus XL. LV Configuration: Pegasus XL F12.
  • TOMS-EP - . Mass: 248 kg (546 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: NASA Greenbelt. Class: Earth. Type: Atmosphere satellite. Spacecraft: TOMS-EP. USAF Sat Cat: 23940 . COSPAR: 1996-037A. Apogee: 746 km (463 mi). Perigee: 705 km (438 mi). Inclination: 98.3000 deg. Period: 99.30 min. Summary: LEO. Total Ozone Mapping Spectrometer-Earth Probe; atmospheric ozone mapping..

1996 August 21 - . 09:47 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: L-1011. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus XL. LV Configuration: Pegasus XL F13.
  • FAST - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA Greenbelt. Program: Small Explorer. Class: Earth. Type: Magnetosphere satellite. Spacecraft: FAST. USAF Sat Cat: 24285 . COSPAR: 1996-049A. Apogee: 4,163 km (2,586 mi). Perigee: 353 km (219 mi). Inclination: 83.0000 deg. Period: 132.70 min. Summary: Second Small Explorer mission..

1997 August 1 - . 20:20 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: L-1011. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus XL. LV Configuration: Pegasus XL F16.
  • Orbview-2 - . Payload: Seastar. Nation: USA. Agency: Orbimage. Manufacturer: Germantown. Program: Orbview. Class: Surveillance. Type: Civilian surveillance satellite. Spacecraft: Orbview-2. USAF Sat Cat: 24883 . COSPAR: 1997-037A. Apogee: 708 km (439 mi). Perigee: 707 km (439 mi). Inclination: 98.2000 deg. Period: 98.90 min.

1997 August 29 - . 15:02 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: L-1011. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus XL. LV Configuration: Pegasus XL 019/F17.
  • FORTE - . Nation: USA. Agency: USAF STP. Manufacturer: Los Alamos. Class: Technology. Type: Navigation technology satellite. Spacecraft: FORTE. USAF Sat Cat: 24920 . COSPAR: 1997-047A. Apogee: 833 km (517 mi). Perigee: 799 km (496 mi). Inclination: 70.0000 deg. Period: 101.20 min. FORTE - 'Fast On-orbit Recording of Transient Events' - was a US Los Alamos National Laboratory satellite designed to study natural and artificial radio emissions from the ionosphere. This data was needed to develop technology for monitoring nuclear test ban treaties.

1998 February 26 - . 07:07 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: L-1011. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus XL. LV Configuration: Pegasus XL F20.
  • SNOE - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA Greenbelt. Manufacturer: Colorado. Program: STEDI. Class: Earth. Type: Seismology satellite. Spacecraft: SNOE. Decay Date: 2003-12-13 . USAF Sat Cat: 25233 . COSPAR: 1998-012A. Apogee: 581 km (361 mi). Perigee: 529 km (328 mi). Inclination: 97.7000 deg. Period: 95.80 min. Summary: SNOE, the Student Nitric Oxide Explorer. Small satellite built by the University of Colorado to measure the Nitric Oxide density as a function of altitude. First satellite in the STEDI (Student Explorer Demonstration Initiative) program..
  • Teledesic 1 - . Payload: BATSAT. Nation: USA. Agency: Teledesic. Manufacturer: Germantown. Class: Communications. Type: Civilian communications satellite. Spacecraft: Teledesic. Decay Date: 2000-10-09 . USAF Sat Cat: 25234 . COSPAR: 1998-012B. Apogee: 577 km (358 mi). Perigee: 532 km (330 mi). Inclination: 97.7000 deg. Period: 95.70 min. Summary: Communications Technology Demonstrator..

1998 April 2 - . 02:42 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: L-1011. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus XL. LV Configuration: Pegasus XL F21.
  • TRACE - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA Greenbelt. Program: Small Explorer. Class: Astronomy. Type: Solar astronomy satellite. Spacecraft: TRACE. USAF Sat Cat: 25280 . COSPAR: 1998-020A. Apogee: 652 km (405 mi). Perigee: 602 km (374 mi). Inclination: 97.8000 deg. Period: 97.10 min. NASA's third Small Explorer, the Transition Region and Coronal Explorer (TRACE), was successfully launched by an Orbital Pegasus XL. The L-1011 carrier aircraft took off from Vandenberg and dropped the Pegasus over the Pacific Ocean. TRACE, a project led by Lockheed's solar physics group, carried a 30-cm extreme ultraviolet imaging telescope which will study the Sun. The telescope mirrors were made by the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory. TRACE had an 8.5 arcmin field of view and 1 arcsecond resolution.

1998 December 6 - . 00:57 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: L-1011. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus XL. LV Configuration: Pegasus XL F25.
  • SWAS - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA Greenbelt. Program: Small Explorer. Class: Astronomy. Type: X-ray astronomy satellite. Spacecraft: SWAS. USAF Sat Cat: 25560 . COSPAR: 1998-071A. Apogee: 611 km (379 mi). Perigee: 599 km (372 mi). Inclination: 69.9000 deg. Period: 96.80 min. On December 3 the Orbital Sciences L-1011 Stargazer took off from Vandenberg AFB Runway 30/12 carrying a Pegasus XL launch vehicle with the SWAS satellite aboard. It reached the drop box at 36.0N 123.0W over the Pacific, but due to a software-related problem the range ordered the launch scrubbed and the L-1011 returned to base. After a further delay due to weather, the L-1011 took off at 23:58 GMT on December 5 and SWAS reached orbit and separated from the third stage at 01:09 GMT. SWAS, the Sub-millimetre Wave Astronomy Satellite, had a 0.6m telescope with a 490 to 550 GHz sub-millimetre receiver and an acousto-optical spectrometer. SWAS was used to study the cooling of molecular cloud cores, the sites of star formation in our galaxy, by measuring lines from molecular oxygen and water.

1999 March 5 - . 02:56 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: L-1011. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus XL. LV Configuration: Pegasus XL F26/M-22.
  • WIRE - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA Greenbelt. Class: Astronomy. Type: X-ray astronomy satellite. Spacecraft: WIRE. Decay Date: 2011-05-10 . USAF Sat Cat: 25646 . COSPAR: 1999-011A. Apogee: 582 km (361 mi). Perigee: 537 km (333 mi). Inclination: 97.5000 deg. NASA's long-delayed WIRE (Wide Field Infrared Explorer) astronomy satellite was the fifth Small Explorer (SMEX) mission managed by NASA-Goddard. The L-1011 Stargazer launch aircraft took off from Vandenberg's runway 30/12 at 01:55 GMT on March 2 for the first launch attempt. The planned 02:56 GMT launch was cancelled at T-46 seconds due to a problem with the tail fin release mechanism of the Pegasus XL launch vehicle. The second attempt was successful, with the Pegaus XL being dropped at 36 degrees N x 123 degrees W over the Pacific Ocean at 02:56 GMT. However the WIRE ran into serious trouble shortly after orbit injection. The cover of the solid hydrogen telescope ejected prematurely, and the cryogenic coolant evaporated and vented, spinning the satellite out of control. WIRE was going to make an infrared photometry survey, generating a large catalog of galaxies and quasars.

1999 May 18 - . 05:09 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: L-1011. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus XL/HAPS. LV Configuration: Pegasus XL/HAPS F27.
  • TERRIERS - . Nation: USA. Agency: NASA Greenbelt. Manufacturer: AeroAstro. Class: Technology. Type: Military technology satellite. Spacecraft: TERRIERS. USAF Sat Cat: 25735 . COSPAR: 1999-026A. Apogee: 493 km (306 mi). Perigee: 484 km (300 mi). Inclination: 97.1000 deg. Period: 94.40 min. TERRIERS was part of NASA's Student Explorer Demonstration Initiative (STEDI), which was a precursor program to the UNEX (University Explorer) series. STEDI was managed by USRA (the Universities Space Research Association) for NASA, while UNEX was to be more directly managed by NASA-GSFC. TERRIERS was to be operated by the space physics group at Boston University for ionosphere studies, and carried TESS, a set of extreme ultraviolet (EUV) spectrographs to get electron density and thermosphere emission profiles. The GISSMO instrument measured the solar EUV flux. The spacecraft was built by AeroAstro and based on HETE. TERRIERS was placed in the correct orbit, but it failed to orient its solar panel to the Sun and ran out of battery power by May 20. Controllers were optimistic that when its orbit processes to a better sun angle the satellite could be revived. Additional Details: here....
  • MUBLCOM - . Nation: USA. Agency: USA. Manufacturer: Germantown. Class: Communications. Type: Military communications satellite. Spacecraft: Microstar. USAF Sat Cat: 25736 . COSPAR: 1999-026B. Apogee: 745 km (462 mi). Perigee: 738 km (458 mi). Inclination: 97.7000 deg. Period: 99.70 min. After deploying the TERRIERS satellite, the conical Payload Adapter Fitting (1998-26E) was jettisoned at 05:21 GMT, leaving the disk-shaped MUBLCOM satellite attached to the Pegasus XL PRIMEX HAPS-Lite stage. The second HAPS burn at 05:22 GMT raised apogee to 775 km, followed by a third, apogee burn at 06:10 GMT which circularised the orbit. MUBLCOM was deployed to a 769 km x 776 km x 97.7 degree orbit. The final HAPS burn then placed the depleted HAPS stage in a lower 388 km x 722 km x 97.1 degree disposal orbit. MUBLCOM (Multiple beam Beyond Line-of-sight Communications) was an experimental satellite funded by DARPA and managed by the US Army's Communications-Electronics Command (CECOM) at Ft Monmouth, New Jersey. It was built by Orbital Sciences using the Microstar (Orbcomm type) bus and carries a payload testing hand-held radio satellite communications for the armed forces.

    Six years later MUBLCOM was the target for the DART Autonomous Rendezvous Technology mission. On April 16, 2005, DART closed within 100 m of MUBLCOM satellite, then evidently began a series of out-of-control maneuvers resulting in an in-space collission and MUBLCOM being bumped into a 3 to 5 km higher orbit. DART was deorbited while MUBLCOM, still functioned, continued on in space.


2000 June 7 - . 13:19 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: L-1011. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus XL. LV Configuration: Pegasus XL F29.
  • TSX 5 - . Payload: P95-2. Mass: 247 kg (544 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: USAF STP. Manufacturer: McLean. Class: Surveillance. Type: Military surveillance satellite. Spacecraft: STEP. USAF Sat Cat: 26374 . COSPAR: 2000-030A. Apogee: 1,695 km (1,053 mi). Perigee: 412 km (256 mi). Inclination: 68.9379 deg. Period: 106.19 min. Military Technology satellite. Launch delayed from May 20 and June 6. Fifth STEP (Space Test Experiments Program) satellite. The satellite's main section was the STRV-2 experiment module, sponsored by the Ballistic Missile Defense Organization and the UK Ministry of Defense. This was to take infrared images of UK military aircraft at perigee, and then downlink data via laser. STRV-2 also carried vibration isolation and debris impact sensors. A secondary payload was the S97-1 CEASE (Compact Environmental Anomaly Sensor). This was an AFRL prototype sensor package to provide warning of spacecraft charging and radiation events.

2001 June 2 - . 20:43 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: NB-52 008. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Hyper X. LV Configuration: Hyper X 1. FAILURE: Failure. Failed Stage: 1.
  • X-43A test - . Nation: USA. Agency: OSC. Apogee: 7.00 km (4.30 mi). Hypersonic scramjet vehicle test. The X-43A/Pegasus booster combination was air-launched at 7600 m altitude. However the booster disintegrated at Max-Q. The redesign of the launch profile and modifications to the booster would take NASA almost three years.

2003 June 26 - . 18:55 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus XL. LV Configuration: Pegasus XL F34.
  • Orbview 3 - . Mass: 304 kg (670 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: McLean. Program: Orbview. Class: Earth. Type: Earth resources satellite. Spacecraft: Orbview. Decay Date: 2011-03-13 . USAF Sat Cat: 27838 . COSPAR: 2003-030A. Apogee: 455 km (282 mi). Perigee: 452 km (280 mi). Inclination: 97.3000 deg. Period: 93.70 min. One-meter-resolution commercial imaging satellite. Orbview-3 used an Orbital Leostar bus and had a launch mass of 304 kg (including ca. 50 kg of hydrazine for orbit raising and the 66 kg science instrument). Launch had been delayed from September 2002, April 30, May 9 and 23

2003 August 13 - . 02:09 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus XL. LV Configuration: Pegasus XL F35.
  • Scisat 1 - . Mass: 260 kg (570 lb). Nation: Canada. Agency: CSA. Class: Earth. Type: Ionosphere satellite. Spacecraft: SCISAT. USAF Sat Cat: 27858 . COSPAR: 2003-036A. Apogee: 654 km (406 mi). Perigee: 642 km (398 mi). Inclination: 73.9000 deg. Period: 97.70 min. Canadian Space Agency spacecraft which carried the ACE-FTS spectrometer to study the chemistry of the upper troposphere and stratosphere and the MAESTRO instrument to study ozone and aerosol levels in the atmosphere. Originally to have launched June 25, 2002. Delayed five more times.

2004 March 27 - . 21:59 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: NB-52 008. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Hyper X. LV Configuration: Hyper X 2.
  • X-43A-2 (Hyper X) - . Nation: USA. Agency: OSC. Apogee: 29 km (18 mi). The second X-43 launch incorporated modifications to the first flight vehicle, including an upgraded control system, redesigned autopilot, off-loaded rocket motor, and improved analytical models. The second flight was launched at 12,200 m instead of the 7600 m altitude of the failed first launch to reduce transonic aerodynamic loads and improve structural and control system margins. An offloaded Orion 50S solid rocket motor reduced maximum dynamic pressure during the flight.

2004 November 16 - . 22:35 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. Launch Platform: NB-52 008. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Hyper X. LV Configuration: Hyper X 3.
  • X-43A test - . Nation: USA. Agency: OSC. Apogee: 33 km (20 mi). Delayed from September, November 9 and 15. Final test of NASA's X-43A-3 Hyper X hypersonic scramjet demonstrated air-frame integrated scramjet performance at speeds approaching Mach 10. Changes to the launch vehicle compared to Flight 2 included high-temperature thermal protection system tiles on the wing and fin leading edge, elimination of all ballast, a full propellant load on the ATK Orion 50S booster, lightweight aluminum structures, and updated control laws and aerodynamics.

2005 April 15 - . 17:26 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus XL/HAPS. LV Configuration: Pegasus XL/HAPS F36.
  • DART - . Mass: 360 kg (790 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: NASA. Manufacturer: OSC. Class: Technology. Type: Rendezvous technology satellite. Spacecraft: DART. USAF Sat Cat: 28642 . COSPAR: 2005-014A. Apogee: 747 km (464 mi). Perigee: 395 km (245 mi). Inclination: 96.6000 deg. Period: 96.10 min. Delayed from April 15; October 18, 19, 26, 28; Nov. 4, 9 and 11; 2004, and March 2, 2005. Autonomous Rendezvous Technology mission, planned to guide itself to within a few metres of a US satellite. On April 16, DART closed within 100 m of the MUBLCOM satellite, then evidently began a series of out-of-control maneuvers resulting in an in-space collission and MUBLCOM being bumped into a 3 to 5 km higher orbit. Remarkably both satellites continued to function. DART then detected that it was running unexpectedly low on nitrogen cold gas used for orientation. Its autonomous software aborted further rendezvous operations and the DART was deorbited shortly thereafter.

2006 March 22 - . 14:03 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus XL. LV Configuration: Pegasus XL F37.
  • ST5-A - . Mass: 22 kg (48 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: NASA Greenbelt. Class: Technology. Type: Navigation technology satellite. Spacecraft: ST5. USAF Sat Cat: 28980 . COSPAR: 2006-008A. Apogee: 4,539 km (2,820 mi). Perigee: 302 km (187 mi). Inclination: 105.6000 deg. Period: 136.90 min. Space Technology 5 was one of NASA's New Millenium Program projects. It consisted of three small spacecraft, each a half meter in each dimension, with a small extensible magnetometer boom. Study of the magnetosphere was however secondary to the Nanosat Constellation Trailblazer technology mission. This was to demonstrate fully functional nanosatellites, which included a cold gas microthruster and miniaturized telemetry/command and power systems. The Pegasus rocket was dropped from the L-1011 carrier aircraft over the Pacific at 123 deg W x 36 deg N.
  • ST5-B - . Mass: 22 kg (48 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: NASA Greenbelt. Class: Technology. Type: Navigation technology satellite. Spacecraft: ST5. USAF Sat Cat: 28981 . COSPAR: 2006-008B. Apogee: 4,540 km (2,820 mi). Perigee: 301 km (187 mi). Inclination: 105.6000 deg. Period: 136.90 min.
  • ST5-C - . Mass: 22 kg (48 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: NASA Greenbelt. Class: Technology. Type: Navigation technology satellite. Spacecraft: ST5. USAF Sat Cat: 28982 . COSPAR: 2006-008C. Apogee: 4,539 km (2,820 mi). Perigee: 303 km (188 mi). Inclination: 105.6000 deg. Period: 136.90 min.

2007 April 25 - . 20:26 GMT - . Launch Site: Point Arguello WADZ. Launch Pad: 36.0 N x 123.0 W. LV Family: Pegasus. Launch Vehicle: Pegasus XL. LV Configuration: Pegasus XL F38.
  • AIM - . Mass: 150 kg (330 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: NASA; Hampton. Manufacturer: OSC; Ball. Spacecraft: RS-300. USAF Sat Cat: 31304 . COSPAR: 2007-015A. Apogee: 602 km (374 mi). Perigee: 584 km (362 mi). Inclination: 97.8000 deg. Period: 96.50 min. Summary: NASA Small Explorer mission, for Aeronomy of Ice in the Mesosphere. AIM carried three scientific instruments to study polar mesospheric clouds: a solar occultation camera, an ultraviolet imager, and a cosmic dust experiment..

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