News of

August 1998

August 31
North Korea conducts first test flight of its Nodong 3 (aka Taepo Dong 1) medium range ballistic missile. The 2,000-km-range missile lands off Russian coasts in the Sea of Japan.
August 31
Lockheed Martin Astronautics is awarded a US$712-million increase on three contracts previously signed with U.S. Air Force's Space & Missile Systems Center for production, launch operations and research support of Titan 2 and Titan 4 vehicles.
August 31
Lockheed Martin Astronautics orders 18 RD-180 engines from NPO Energomash to power its Atlas 3 launchers. Over 1,000 engines could eventually be procured, bringing the contract's total value to US$2 billion.
August 30
Lockheed Martin Astronautics awards a US$4.2-million contract to Elbit Ltd for the procurement of 480 electronic units for Atlas launchers.
 

 For additional information regarding launch vehicles, payloads and space industry, refer to
 THE INTERNATIONAL SPACE INDUSTRY REPORT
 A biweekly newsletter jointly published by
 Launchspace Publications and Takyon International.

August 28
The investigation on the Boeing Delta 3 launch failure on August 27 is now focusing on the guidance system. Problems in pitch and yaw control 50 seconds into flight have been reported. Within 10 seconds, this caused depletion of the hydraulic fluid for nozzle steering on strap-on boosters and eventual loss of attitude control which led to the vehicle disintegration 72 seconds after lift-off.
August 28
GASL Inc. delivers to NASA's Langley Research Center a ground-test model of a scramjet intended to power the X-43 "Hyper-X" hypersonic propulsion technologies demonstrator. First flight model delivery is due for February 1999 with first test flight in early 2000.
August 28
The Russian government will grant US$38 million to International Launch Services (ILS) and US$68 million to GKNPTs Khrunichev to support an increase of the Proton launch vehicle production rate.
August 27
Boeing's first Delta 3 explodes 70 seconds into flight destroying Panamsat's Galaxy 10 satellite. Apparent loss of control was detected between 55 and 65 seconds into flight, shortly before strap-on booster burnout. Range safety officer ordered destruction at 75 seconds. Reported total cost of the mission was US$225 million.
(August Launch Log).
August 26
Kistler Aerospace will proceed with plans to set up a K-1 launch site in Nevada following commercial space law amendment which allows licensing of reentry vehicles by the U.S. Fedearal Aviation Administration .
 

 For up-to-date information regarding launch vehicles, payloads and space industry, refer to
 ISIR NEWSLINE
 An on-line news service provided by
 Launchspace Publications and Takyon International.

August 23
Boeing decides to postpone the launch of its first Delta 3 vehicle for at least two days as the hurricane Bonnie is closing on Florida.
August 19
Eurockot Launch Services GmbH is selected by German Aerospace Center DLR for the launch of the two U.S./German GRACE satellites atop a single Rokot booster from Plesetsk, Russia, in mid 2001.
August 19
GenCorp Aerojet is awarded a US$16.4-million contract by NASA's Johnson Space Center to provide a deorbit propulsion stage for the X-38 demonstration vehicle.
August 18
Preparatory work begins at the Guiana Space Center for resumption of the Ariane 503 launch campaign on September 7 for a launch targeted on October 13.
(Latest Schedule)
August 15
The Bank of China has issued a loan worth Rmb1.5 billion (US$181 million) to China Great Wall Industry Corp. to support commercial launch activities using CZ vehicles.
 

 For additional information regarding launch vehicles, payloads and space industry, refer to
 THE INTERNATIONAL SPACE INDUSTRY REPORT
 A biweekly newsletter jointly published by
 Launchspace Publications and Takyon International.

August 13
SpaceDev has acquired intellectual property on AmRoC development work in hybrid rocket propulsion. Future applications might include a small launch vehicle.
August 12
The last Lockheed Martin Astronautics Titan 4A launcher explodes some 42 seconds into flight. The US$344-million vehicle was carrying a US$800-million signal intelligence satellite for the U.S. National Reconnaissance Office.
(August Launch Log).
August 11
Boeing Phantom Works and the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory (former Phillips Lab), successfully conducts first drop test of the X-40A Space Maneuver Vehicle demonstrator from a UH-60 helicopter over Holloman AFB, N.M.
August 11
The Indian government approves development of the Agni 2 intermediate range ballistic missile.
August 10
Boeing, leader of the Sea Launch consortium, confirms that work on the Sea Launch program has been suspended on July 27 whilst U.S. State Department establishes technology transfers guidelines.
 

 For up-to-date information regarding launch vehicles, payloads and space industry, refer to
 ISIR NEWSLINE
 An on-line news service provided by
 Launchspace Publications and Takyon International.

August 6
NASA proposes to spend US$20 million to modify the Reaction Control System of its Space Shuttle Orbiter Vehicles to allow reboost operations during the assembly phase of the International Space Station.
August 6
GenCorp Aerojet will design a dual-combustion ramjet engine to power a Boeing Phantom Works' missile to velocities of up to Mach 6 on behalf of U.S. Defense Advanced Research Program Agency's Affordable Rapid Response Missile Demonstrator (ARRMD) program.
August 6
Standex International Corp.'s Spincraft Division was awarded a US$147-million contract by Boeing Expendable Launch Systems to provide 5-m propellant tank domes for Delta 4's Common Booster Core stages.
August 5
NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center has completed the assembly of the Fastrac low-cost engine on behalf of the Advanced Space Transportation Program's Low Cost Technologies project.
August 4
Starsem, the French-Russian venture marketing Soyuz launches, announces it has signed a contract with the European Space Agency to loft two pairs of Cluster 2 satellites on Soyuz U/Fregat vehicles in June and July 2000.
 

 For additional information regarding launch vehicles, payloads and space industry, refer to
 THE INTERNATIONAL SPACE INDUSTRY REPORT
 A biweekly newsletter jointly published by
 Launchspace Publications and Takyon International.

 

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