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[jamsat-news:608] * SpaceNews 11-Aug-97 *

* SpaceNews 11-Aug-97 *

BID: $SPC0811


			  MONDAY AUGUST 11, 1997

SpaceNews originates at KD2BD in Wall Township, New Jersey, USA.  It
is published every week and is made available for non-commercial use.

The following messages were downloaded by Claudio Ariotti, IK1SLD, in Italy
from Mike Foale, KB5UAC onboard the Mir space station:

 Stat   : PR
 Posted : 08/02/97 22:57
 To     : ALL
 From   : R0MIR
 @ BBS  :
 BID    :
 Subject: Mir status

 TNC lost pwr again. We are getting ready for Anatoli and Pasha to dock with
 us on 7th August.  Vassily and Sasha leave on their Soyuz on 14th August.
 Mike remains during the first of 2 eva's to do repairs after the collision.
 on shuttle, sts-86, in the middle of October.  Greenhouse space plants, 2
 of them, are showing cotyledons, and the earth seeds are doing even better.
 Mike. kb5uac.


 Stat   : PR
 Posted : 08/08/97 12:04
 To     : ALL
 From   : R0MIR
 @ BBS  :
 BID    :
 Subject: Mir Status

 Mir 24 with the crew of Rodnik successfully docked, and we are enjoying 
 the company of Anatoli Solovev and Pavel Vinogradov.  Anatoli and Pasha 
 are settling in and we have already moved my seat and spacesuit over to 
 their Soyuz have a big bag of baggage in the seat where my suit lay, in
 their Soyuz.  We are conducting handover activites now, and then will
 prepare for EVA in the node on the 20th, and outside on Spektr, to do
 initial repairs, on the 3r be with Anatoli for the node eva, and I will
 be with Anatoli, for the Spektr EVA.  Lots to do Here, so forgive us if
 we cannot reply to you and all your very welcome good wishes.  I try to
 monitor each day, and pass on your mecrew members.  I think Pasha and 
 Anatoli will be active on the radio, once they are settled in. 

The following Keplerian data for Mir was provided by Ron Parise, WA4SIR,
at the Goddard Space Flight Center:

1 16609U 86017A   97221.29728613 0.00003652  00000-0  51235-4 0  5120
2 16609  51.6534 179.0470 0004810   5.5587 354.5438 15.59640980655318

Satellite: Mir   
Catalog number: 16609
Epoch time:      97221.29728613        (09 AUG 97   07:08:05.52 UTC)
Element set:     NORAD-512
Inclination:       51.6534 deg
RA of node:       179.0470 deg              Mir Space Station
Eccentricity:    0.0004810                  Orbital Elements
Arg of perigee:     5.5587 deg
Mean anomaly:     354.5438 deg
Mean motion:   15.59640980 rev/day      Semi-major Axis: 6766.8275 Km
Decay rate:       0.37E-04 rev/day*2    Apogee  Alt:        391.69 Km
Epoch rev:           65531              Perigee Alt:        385.18 Km

The Houston AMSAT Net is reaching another milestone in its history.  In
the next few weeks, Internet users will be able to hear the Houston AMSAT
Net live on the World Wide Web using Real Audio.  Scott at North American
Internet, who had been digitizing the Houston net from commercial satellite,
will no longer be able to do it.  Last week Bruce Paige, KK5DO, digitized
the net to Real Audio, and found it worked just fine.

Scott will have a live stream available for the Houston people at the
beginning of September.  What this means to you, is that you can now hear
the Houston AMSAT Net live as it is happening anywhere in the world via Real
Audio.  You can participate in the Net by calling in, checking in, or asking
a question which will be answered live, or you can check in via email or
use the IRC where a group from the net chat while the net is in progress.
Houston AMSAT Net audio via the Real Audio can be fed into repeater
systems allowing repeater users to hear net audio on their transceivers.

The other important feature of the use of the digitized Real Audio feed
is that if a particularly interesting event should develop during the week
when the net is not in progress, the Real Audio feed can be updated by
appending to the end of the net.  What Bruce plans on doing is making a
note on his web page (http://www.phoenix.net/~paigecom) that particular
minutes (51:01.3 to 53:03.4, for example) were added on August 9 to the
digitized audio file.

The Houston group also plans to carry their net over the 50 minutes
allocated on the satellite feed (Tuesday, 8PM CDT on SBS 6, T13B, 6.2 MHz
at 74 degrees).  This means if there is an especially heavy news week,
they can continue the net locally and continue the feed over the Internet.

The satellite transponder time used to relay the Houston AMSAT Net is
generously donated by the W0KIE Network, and space for the Real Audio
feed is donated by North American Internet.

[Info via Bruce Paige, KK5DO]

NASA's Mars Pathfinder spacecraft has successfully concluded its primary
science mission and fulfilled all of its objectives by returning a wealth
of new information about the planet Mars.  The robotic lander, which continues
to explore an ancient outflow channel in Mars' northern hemisphere, completed
its milestone 30-day mission on 03-Aug-97, and has captured far more data on
the atmosphere, weather and geology of Mars than scientists expected.  In all,
Pathfinder returned 1.2 gigabits of data and 9,669 images of the Martian

The rover's performance easily surpassed its designers' minimum expectations.
Engineers designed the roving vehicle's electronics, battery power and hazard
avoidance features to see it through at least a week of safe roving, not
knowing beforehand what conditions it might encounter on Mars.  After 30
days, the rover is still healthy and has clocked 52 meters (171 feet)
distance, circumnavigated the lander and taken 384 spectacular views of
rocks and the lander.

Atmospheric-surface interactions, measured by a meteorology package onboard
the lander, are confirming some conditions observed by the Viking landers 21
years ago, while raising questions about other aspects of the planet's global
system of transporting volatiles such as water vapor, clouds and dust, said
Science Team Leader Dr. Timothy Schofield.  The meteorology mast on the
lander has observed a rapid drop-off in temperatures just a few feet above
the surface, and one detailed 24-hour measurement set revealed temperature
fluctuations of 30-40 degrees Fahrenheit in a matter of minutes.

Pathfinder landed within 20 kilometers (13 miles) of the targeted landing
site on 04-Jul-97.  The landing site coordinates in Ares Vallis were later
identified as 19.33 degrees north latitude, 33.55 degrees west longitude.

Pathfinder's performance in the Martian atmosphere will be of great value
to Mars Global Surveyor, which will aerobrake through the Martian atmosphere
to circularize its orbit when it reaches Mars on 11-Sep-97.  The Pathfinder
navigation team, led by Peter Kallemyn of JPL, estimated horizontal wind
velocities in the upper atmosphere, which accelerated the spacecraft's
descent velocity by about 13 meters per second (20 to 25 miles per hour).

After being suspended from a 20-meter (65-foot) bridle and firing its
retro rockets, a 5.8-meter (19-foot) diameter cluster of airbags softened
Pathfinder's landing, marking the first time this airbag technique has been
used.  The spacecraft hit the ground at a speed of about 18 meters per second
(40 miles per hour) and bounced about 16 times across the landscape before
coming to a halt.  The airbag seems to have performed perfectly and sustained
little or no damage.  To top it off, the spacecraft even landed on its base
petal, consequently allowing its thumb-sized antenna to communicate the
successful landing to a jubilant team on Earth only three minutes after
touch down.

Science data from the surface of Mars will continue to be collected and
transmitted to Earth, then analyzed by scientists, as Pathfinder enters
its extended mission.  The lander was placed in a two-day hibernation
period to recharge its battery after the conclusion of the primary mission,
and the flight team will begin to power the lander battery off each Martian
night now to conserve energy.  The rover's batteries remain in good condition,
but are not rechargeable.

[Info via the Mars Pathfinder Web Page]

Thanks to all those who sent messages of appreciation to SpaceNews, especially:

	Claudio Ariotti, IK1SLD		Rick Walter, WB3CSY

Comments and input for SpaceNews should be directed to the editor (John,
KD2BD) via any of the paths listed below:
WWW       : http://www.njin.net/~magliaco/
INTERNET  : kd2bd@amsat.org, magliaco@email.njin.net

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