Author Topic: LIVE: Atlas V 401 - NROL-38 - June 20, 2012  (Read 54224 times)

Online Galactic Penguin SST

Update thread for Atlas V with NROL-38:

Non morieris bello: “You are not going to war”. So not something related to direct surveillance? (SDS?)

Edit by input~2: the second patch below was issued for NROL-4 /USA-136
 
« Last Edit: 06/20/2012 10:30 AM by Chris Bergin »
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Offline Targeteer

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Re: Atlas V 401 - NROL-38 - June 20, 2012
« Reply #1 on: 04/06/2012 04:25 AM »
Speculation on why three headed creatures on both patches and the colored stars, 8 white and 3 blue?  11 total launched with 3 active?

Nunquam Ante Numquam Iterum, "Never Before, Never Again"--not a clue.
Best quote heard during an inspection, "I was unaware that I was the only one who was aware."

Offline Ben the Space Brit

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Re: Atlas V 401 - NROL-38 - June 20, 2012
« Reply #2 on: 04/06/2012 12:39 PM »
Picked up these badges for this launch from another website.

Non morieris bello: “You are not going to war”. So not something related to direct surveillance? (SDS?)  ::)

Well, it's launching from CCAFS so that suggests that L38 is going to GEO.  Maybe either a communications relay or a COMINT platform?
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Offline Skyrocket

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Re: Atlas V 401 - NROL-38 - June 20, 2012
« Reply #3 on: 04/06/2012 03:05 PM »
It is likely a SDS-3 data relay satellite. Both GEO or Molniya orbits are possible.

http://space.skyrocket.de/doc_sdat/sds-3.htm

Offline kevin-rf

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Re: Atlas V 401 - NROL-38 - June 20, 2012
« Reply #4 on: 04/06/2012 03:33 PM »
It is likely a SDS-3 data relay satellite. Both GEO or Molniya orbits are possible.

http://space.skyrocket.de/doc_sdat/sds-3.htm

If going to a Molniya orbit, where will the end of mission blowdown most likely occur? Visible for us on the east coast?
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Offline Rocket Guy

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Re: Atlas V 401 - NROL-38 - June 20, 2012
« Reply #5 on: 04/06/2012 03:36 PM »


Well, it's launching from CCAFS so that suggests that L38 is going to GEO.  Maybe either a communications relay or a COMINT platform?

They have launched plenty of Molniya and other high-incl orbits from the Cape, including SDS and Lacrosse.

Offline William Graham

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Re: Atlas V 401 - NROL-38 - June 20, 2012
« Reply #6 on: 04/06/2012 07:08 PM »
Probably SDS, but I wouldn't entirely rule Improved Trumpet out. Past launches have used the 411, but for all we know it could be just above the capacity of a 401 (it can't be more than halfway between the maximum 401 and 411 payloads, because DIVM+(4,2) can also launch it). Without the additional instruments carried by the last two it might fit on a 401. I'm not sure how much mass SBIRS-HEO adds, but TWINS is less than 20kg.


The second patch isn't from this launch. It was the mission patch for NROL-4/USA-136, launched by Titan IV(401)A A-17 in November 1997. That was the third and final launch of a first-generation Trumpet.


That said, the similarities between the two are striking. If this is a second-generation Trumpet, it would also be the third of its kind, so that patch would be appropriate. But patches can be misleading.

Offline input~2

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Re: Atlas V 401 - NROL-38 - June 20, 2012
« Reply #7 on: 04/07/2012 07:06 PM »
Non morieris bello: “You are not going to war”.

The correct translation is "you will not die by war"
(Google translate can be misleading ;) )                      

Offline Jim

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Re: Atlas V 401 - NROL-38 - June 20, 2012
« Reply #8 on: 04/07/2012 11:06 PM »
The booster arrived by Delta Mariner this week

Offline Rahkashi

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Re: Atlas V 401 - NROL-38 - June 20, 2012
« Reply #9 on: 04/07/2012 11:47 PM »

Nunquam Ante Numquam Iterum, "Never Before, Never Again"--not a clue.

It could be a one time satellite, not one in a series.

Offline jcm

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Re: Atlas V 401 - NROL-38 - June 20, 2012
« Reply #10 on: 04/08/2012 12:30 AM »

Nunquam Ante Numquam Iterum, "Never Before, Never Again"--not a clue.

It could be a one time satellite, not one in a series.

Or the only time this type of sat is launched from the East coast, or on an Atlas... 
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Offline input~2

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Re: Atlas V 401 - NROL-38 - June 20, 2012
« Reply #11 on: 04/08/2012 06:53 AM »
As William said above, the second patch with the "Nunquam Ante Numquam Iterum" inscription does not apply to NROL-38 but was issued for a past launch: NROL-4/USA-136 launched on Nov 8, 1997 by Titan-4A from CCAFS.
(alternative source: http://www.thespacereview.com/article/1197/1)
« Last Edit: 04/08/2012 07:05 AM by input~2 »

Online douglas100

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Re: Atlas V 401 - NROL-38 - June 20, 2012
« Reply #12 on: 04/08/2012 07:41 AM »

They have launched plenty of Molniya and other high-incl orbits from the Cape, including SDS and Lacrosse.

Lacrosse in a Molniya orbit??
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Re: Atlas V 401 - NROL-38 - June 20, 2012
« Reply #13 on: 04/08/2012 08:22 AM »

They have launched plenty of Molniya and other high-incl orbits from the Cape, including SDS and Lacrosse.

Lacrosse in a Molniya orbit??

Nope, however Lacrosse operates from a low Earth orbit with inclination at 57 degrees.
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Offline Blackstar

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Re: Atlas V 401 - NROL-38 - June 20, 2012
« Reply #14 on: 04/14/2012 02:11 AM »
It is likely a SDS-3 data relay satellite. Both GEO or Molniya orbits are possible.

http://space.skyrocket.de/doc_sdat/sds-3.htm

http://www.thespacereview.com/article/1197/1

Anybody see the pattern?
« Last Edit: 04/14/2012 11:41 AM by Blackstar »

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Re: Atlas V 401 - NROL-38 - June 20, 2012
« Reply #15 on: 04/14/2012 02:59 PM »
They released mission patch, yeah that pattern must stop ;-)
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Offline baldusi

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Re: Atlas V 401 - NROL-38 - June 20, 2012
« Reply #16 on: 04/14/2012 07:59 PM »
Wyvern, snakes and Gryphons?

Offline Ben the Space Brit

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Re: Atlas V 401 - NROL-38 - June 20, 2012
« Reply #17 on: 04/14/2012 08:13 PM »
Wyvern, snakes and Gryphons?

Yeah, I noticed that - very aggressive styling for a recon-sat.  I wonder what that thing is?
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Offline William Graham

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Re: Atlas V 401 - NROL-38 - June 20, 2012
« Reply #18 on: 05/22/2012 12:14 PM »
Interestingly, the ULA mission poster shows a white Centaur (which allows an extended coast phase). The only previous NRO launch to use the white Centaur was NROL-30 (also a 401), which carried two NOSS satellites. So assuming that the poster is correct, then this could be NOSS. There could be another reason for using the white Centaur, or they might even be using it as misinformation, but either way, it is probably worth mentioning.
« Last Edit: 05/22/2012 12:16 PM by William Graham »

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Re: Atlas V 401 - NROL-38 - June 20, 2012
« Reply #19 on: 05/24/2012 11:28 PM »
From e-bay: Anubis




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