Author Topic: KH-11 KENNEN  (Read 59046 times)

Offline Blackstar

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #220 on: 03/03/2017 10:13 PM »
Was the Intelsat VI derived from Leasat? I have not seen any indication it was. But I have a detailed article on Intelsat VI from a comsat journal and I should consult that.

Online kevin-rf

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #221 on: 03/04/2017 01:13 AM »
Surprised no one has suggested Mars relay yet.
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Offline Blackstar

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #222 on: 03/04/2017 01:50 AM »
Surprised no one has suggested Mars relay yet.

Do the mass.

Online kevin-rf

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #223 on: 03/04/2017 02:40 AM »
Surprised no one has suggested Mars relay yet.

Do the mass.

Without breaking out the slide rule,
   An Atlas 541 sent the Curiosity Rover plus MSL (3893kg) to Mars. 
   Leasat (According to Gunther) was 3400kg at launch, 1388kg after GSO insertion.
   The DV to go from Mars Transfer to Mars orbit is less than the DV to go from GTO to GSO.

So assuming this spacecraft is very similar to Leasat and Leasat needed a DV of 1800 m/s to go from GTO to GSO.
Then assuming the propulsion system is suitable for a trip to Mars and Mars insertion, the only real issue is paying for the Atlas v541.

It's not free, someone has to pay for the rocket, mods to the spacecraft to do the relay mission, and solar panels need to generate enough power at Mars orbit to power the spacecraft and mission (This may be the real show stopper).
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Online kevin-rf

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #224 on: 03/04/2017 03:00 AM »
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Offline 4353

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #225 on: 03/04/2017 02:22 PM »
That might not be the only reason, a higher apogee in the northern hemisphere should give them a wider field of view at the cost of resolution, while USA 186's perigee (without doing math, and looking at heavens above) appears to be near the equator, Venezuela?, South China Sea?. That said, USA 245's perigee seems to be over Antarctica (wide field of view?), leaving USA 224 with a perigee that is pretty much above Europe, Russia, and China.

The perigee position of the KH-11 is actually not fixed but varies with time.

Typical orbit boosts occur at the moment perigee is on the equator.

Offline gosnold

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #226 on: 03/04/2017 02:25 PM »
That might not be the only reason, a higher apogee in the northern hemisphere should give them a wider field of view at the cost of resolution, while USA 186's perigee (without doing math, and looking at heavens above) appears to be near the equator, Venezuela?, South China Sea?. That said, USA 245's perigee seems to be over Antarctica (wide field of view?), leaving USA 224 with a perigee that is pretty much above Europe, Russia, and China.

The perigee position of the KH-11 is actually not fixed but varies with time.

Typical orbit boosts occur at the moment perigee is on the equator.

Could you give more info on that? 

Offline Blackstar

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #227 on: 03/09/2017 11:20 PM »
My February 1999 Spaceflight article about the QUASAR SDS relay satellite. I have no idea why the scan came out so pink, because the pages are not pink. I also don't know if there is a way to color correct an entire pdf document. Anyway, this article is where I connected the dots between QUASAR and the Intelsat VI series of satellites.

Note: I'll produce a better scan of this and post it here. Just need to try a different scanner.


UPDATE: I took down this version. Get the better version that I just posted.
« Last Edit: 03/10/2017 02:59 PM by Blackstar »

Offline Blackstar

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #228 on: 03/10/2017 09:20 PM »
I have been battling my scanner. For some reason when I scanned this in vertical orientation set for A4 paper size it chopped off the page numbers and issue information. So I have re-scanned it in horizontal A4 setting and that fits. You'll have to rotate it yourself.

Update: you ever have one of those days when nothing seems to go right? I deleted the file and re-scanned the article again, horizontally, because I thought it was cutting off the page numbers. Turns out I was wrong and it was NOT doing that. Anyway, here it is. This is the right version. I promise.
« Last Edit: 03/10/2017 09:49 PM by Blackstar »

Offline Blackstar

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #229 on: 03/30/2017 07:49 PM »
"KENNEN" is from Middle English, "to perceive."

Prior name was ZAMAN.

Offline gosnold

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #230 on: 03/30/2017 08:52 PM »
"KENNEN" is from Middle English, "to perceive."

Prior name was ZAMAN.

Nice find, now that's settled for sure.

Offline SWGlassPit

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #231 on: 03/30/2017 09:08 PM »
Closely related to the German word of the same spelling, which means "to know familiarly" (distinct from wissen, which means "to know, as a fact")

Offline Blackstar

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #232 on: 04/08/2017 03:07 AM »

Offline Targeteer

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #233 on: 04/08/2017 06:42 AM »
The intriguing question is why did NRO release that memo?  ;)
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Offline Blackstar

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #234 on: 04/08/2017 12:56 PM »
The intriguing question is why did NRO release that memo?  ;)

It was in response to a FOIA request.

There is a LOT of stuff declassified about the effort to develop the KH-11. I have quite a few documents, and there is stuff in the other program histories. (The relevant Perry program history was declassified years ago after I filed a FOIA request.) However, it is programmatic stuff, meaning meetings between officials, arguments about this approach vs. that approach, etc. The technology of the rejected approaches is described quite a bit, but there is limited declassified information on the final approach, the contractor selection and stuff like that. But you could write a decent article about what led up to the actual development of the spacecraft. I just haven't had the time or energy to bring all that together. Heck, I'm drowning in other stuff that I have not written about. But you could already describe a lot of the overall outline of the program right now.

And who knows? Maybe you'll see something significant happen soon...

Offline Star One

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #235 on: 04/08/2017 05:15 PM »
The intriguing question is why did NRO release that memo?  ;)

It was in response to a FOIA request.

There is a LOT of stuff declassified about the effort to develop the KH-11. I have quite a few documents, and there is stuff in the other program histories. (The relevant Perry program history was declassified years ago after I filed a FOIA request.) However, it is programmatic stuff, meaning meetings between officials, arguments about this approach vs. that approach, etc. The technology of the rejected approaches is described quite a bit, but there is limited declassified information on the final approach, the contractor selection and stuff like that. But you could write a decent article about what led up to the actual development of the spacecraft. I just haven't had the time or energy to bring all that together. Heck, I'm drowning in other stuff that I have not written about. But you could already describe a lot of the overall outline of the program right now.

And who knows? Maybe you'll see something significant happen soon...

The KH-11 seems to be getting comparatively high profile for a still classified program, after all it featured heavily in the best selling Into The Black for example.

As has been said before photo reconnaissance from space is a pretty common on garden thing now that even joe public maybe aware of.

Offline Blackstar

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #236 on: 04/08/2017 05:45 PM »
The KH-11 seems to be getting comparatively high profile for a still classified program, after all it featured heavily in the best selling Into The Black for example.

As has been said before photo reconnaissance from space is a pretty common on garden thing now that even joe public maybe aware of.

The 11 was started in 1971. It's now 46 years old. Of course, we don't know the exact technical details, but Richelson reported years ago that the first two birds used a different sensor technology than the later ones. So it is not inconceivable that they could declassify the first block of satellites and not reveal anything else. Of course, it all depends upon what arguments win the day. I think that there is a certain amount of ilogic in some of the declassification decisions. For instance, the actual resolution of the KH-8, 9 and 10 are still classified. But with a relatively simple equation anybody can figure out the diffraction-limited resolution of those optics in orbit. American technology is so good that these systems generally achieved very close to diffraction-limited resolution. (My guess is that for all of those systems you can take the diffraction-limited resolution and then step it down by 5% and you would have the actual resolution.) The physics don't lie, and it's not really a secret.

But we'll see what happens. I hope they get back to the low altitude SIGINT declassification that was in the works last year.

Offline Star One

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #237 on: 04/08/2017 06:16 PM »
The KH-11 seems to be getting comparatively high profile for a still classified program, after all it featured heavily in the best selling Into The Black for example.

As has been said before photo reconnaissance from space is a pretty common on garden thing now that even joe public maybe aware of.

The 11 was started in 1971. It's now 46 years old. Of course, we don't know the exact technical details, but Richelson reported years ago that the first two birds used a different sensor technology than the later ones. So it is not inconceivable that they could declassify the first block of satellites and not reveal anything else. Of course, it all depends upon what arguments win the day. I think that there is a certain amount of ilogic in some of the declassification decisions. For instance, the actual resolution of the KH-8, 9 and 10 are still classified. But with a relatively simple equation anybody can figure out the diffraction-limited resolution of those optics in orbit. American technology is so good that these systems generally achieved very close to diffraction-limited resolution. (My guess is that for all of those systems you can take the diffraction-limited resolution and then step it down by 5% and you would have the actual resolution.) The physics don't lie, and it's not really a secret.

But we'll see what happens. I hope they get back to the low altitude SIGINT declassification that was in the works last year.

Still hoping to see some declassification of the first generation of NOSS satellites. I believe the program directly before them has been declassified as I am sure if memory serves it was mentioned in David Baker's recent Haynes Manual.

Offline Blackstar

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #238 on: 04/08/2017 06:29 PM »
Still hoping to see some declassification of the first generation of NOSS satellites. I believe the program directly before them has been declassified as I am sure if memory serves it was mentioned in David Baker's recent Haynes Manual.

You mean White Cloud/PARCAE. There is a possibility that you could see that happen, but I would not hold your breath. I do have some documents leading up to the development of that system, notably a study of ocean surveillance using signals intelligence satellites. But I think a lot of that is still sensitive.

Offline WallE

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #239 on: 04/09/2017 02:43 PM »
It would be nice to see anything of Canyon/Rhyolite. Youtube has two Canyon launch vids--one's the failed December 4, 1971 launch and the other is the program finale on May 23, 1977. Fantastic video of the latter--the camera tracks the Atlas all the way out to booster jettison.

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