2009 in spaceflight

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2009 in spaceflight
STS-125 FD9 Release.jpg
The Hubble Space Telescope was serviced for the last time during the STS-125 mission
Orbital launches
First 18 January
Last 29 December
Total 78
Successes 73
Failures 4
Partial failures 1
Catalogued 75
National firsts
Spaceflight  New Zealand
Satellite   Switzerland[1]
Orbital launch  Iran[2]
Rockets
Maiden flights Delta IV-M+ (5,4)
H-IIB
Naro-1
Taurus-XL 3110
Retirements Ariane 5GS
Falcon 1
Tsyklon-3
Manned flights
Orbital 9
Total travellers 46

Several significant events in spaceflight occurred in 2009, including Iran conducting its first indigenous orbital launch, the first Swiss satellite being launched and New Zealand launching its first sounding rocket. The H-IIB and Naro-1 rockets conducted maiden flights, whilst the Tsyklon-3, Falcon 1 and Ariane 5GS were retired from service.[3][4] The permanent crew of the International Space Station increased from three to six in May, and in the last few months of the year, Japan's first resupply mission to the outpost, HTV-1, was conducted successfully.

Overview[edit]

An Iridium satellite

The internationally accepted definition of a spaceflight is any flight which crosses the Kármán line, 100 kilometres above sea level. The first spaceflight launch of the year was that of a Delta IV Heavy, carrying the USA-202 ELINT satellite, which launched from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station at 02:47 GMT on 18 January. This was also the first orbital launch of the year.

On 2 February Iran conducted its first successful orbital launch,[2] when a Safir was used to place the Omid satellite into low Earth orbit.

At 16:56 GMT on 10 February, the first major collision between two satellites in orbit occurred, resulting in the destruction of Kosmos 2251 and Iridium 33, launched in 1993 and 1997 respectively. Up until the collision, Iridium 33 was operational, and an active part of the Iridium network of satellites, whilst Kosmos 2251 was an inactive piece of space junk.

On 25 August, the Russo- South Korean Naro-1 rocket made its maiden flight on 25 August, marking South Korea's first involvement in conducting a satellite launch attempt, however the rocket failed to reach orbit after its payload fairing malfunctioned.

HTV-1 arriving at the ISS

The first flight of the SpaceX Falcon 9 carrier rocket was scheduled to occur in November, but was delayed to February 2010 to allow more time for preparations. The SpaceX Dragon, a commercial unmanned logistics spacecraft which was developed as part of NASA's COTS programme, was also scheduled to make its first flight in 2009, however its launch has also slipped to 2010 as a result of knock-on delays. The first H-II Transfer Vehicle, HTV-1, was successfully launched on the maiden flight of the H-IIB carrier rocket on 10 September. The first Swiss satellite, SwissCube-1, was launched on 23 September aboard a PSLV.

On 18 December, the Ariane 5GS made its final flight, delivering the Helios-IIB satellite into a sun-synchronous orbit. The last orbital launch of the year was conducted eleven days later, on 29 December, when a Proton-M with a Briz-M upper stage launched the DirecTV-12 satellite.

Space exploration[edit]

Although no planetary probes were launched in 2009, four astronomical observatories were placed into orbit. The Kepler spacecraft, which was launched by a Delta II on 7 March, entered an Earth-trailing heliocentric orbit from where it will search for exoplanets. On 14 May, and Ariane 5ECA launched the Herschel and Planck spacecraft. Both were placed at the L2 Lagrangian point between the Earth and Sun, from where they will be used for astronomy. Herschel carries an infrared telescope whilst Planck carries an optical one. The fourth observatory to be launched was the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, or WISE, which is a replacement for the Wide Field Infrared Explorer which failed shortly after launch. WISE was launched into a sun-synchronous orbit by a Delta II on 14 December, and will be used for infrared astronomy. Repairs made to the Hubble Space Telescope during STS-125 restored it to full operations after a series of malfunctions in 2008.

Two lunar probes were launched in 2009; the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter and Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite were launched on a single Atlas V rocket on 18 June. LRO entered selenocentric orbit and began a series of experiments, whilst LCROSS remained attached to the Centaur upper stage of the carrier rocket, and flew past the Moon. After orbiting the Earth twice, LCROSS separated from the upper stage and both it and the Centaur impacted the Cabeus crater at the South Pole of the Moon, on 9 October. By observing the Centaur's impact, LCROSS was able to confirm the presence of water on the Moon.[5] Several other Lunar probes ceased operations in 2009; Okina impacted the far side of the Moon on 12 February, Chang'e 1 was deorbited on 1 March, having completed its operations. Kaguya was also deorbited following a successful mission, impacting near Gill crater on 12 June. The Chandrayaan-1 spacecraft failed on 29 August, having operated for less than half of its design life.

The Mars Science Laboratory and Fobos-Grunt missions to Mars had been scheduled for launch at the end of 2009, however both were delayed to 2011 to allow more time for the spacecraft to be developed. Fobos-Grunt, a sample return mission to Mars' natural satellite Phobos, would have carried the first Chinese planetary probe, Yinghuo-1.

Several flybys occurred in 2009, with Cassini continuing to orbit Saturn, passing close to a number of its natural satellites. In February, Dawn passed within 549 kilometres (341 mi) of Mars, during a gravity assist manoeuvre for its journey to the asteroid belt. In September, MESSENGER made its third and final flyby of Mercury before entering orbit in 2011. Whilst the primary objective of the flyby, achieving a gravitational assist, was successful, the spacecraft entered safe mode shortly before its closest approach, which prevented it recording data as it flew away from the planet.[6] In November, the Rosetta spacecraft performed its third and final gravity assist flyby of Earth.

Manned spaceflight[edit]

Launch of Space Shuttle Atlantis on STS-125, the last Hubble servicing flight

Nine manned launches occurred in 2009, the most since 1997. STS-119, using Space Shuttle Discovery, was launched on 15 March. It installed the last set of solar arrays on the International Space Station. Soyuz TMA-14, the 100th manned Soyuz launch, delivered the Expedition 19 crew in March. In May, Space Shuttle Atlantis conducted the final mission to service the Hubble Space Telescope, STS-125. Several days later, Soyuz TMA-15 launched with the ISS Expedition 20 crew, brought the total ISS crew size up to six for the first time. This was also the 100th manned spaceflight of the Soyuz programme, excluding the original Soyuz T-10 mission which failed to reach space. In July, Space Shuttle Endeavour delivered the final component of the Japanese Experiment Module on mission STS-127. STS-128, using Discovery in August, delivered supplies using the Leonardo MPLM. September saw the launch of Soyuz TMA-16, with the ISS Expedition 21 crew. This was the 100th manned Soyuz mission reach orbit. In November, Space Shuttle Atlantis flew mission STS-129, delivering two EXPRESS Logistics Carriers to the ISS. The final manned flight of the year, Soyuz TMA-17, was launched on 20 December with the ISS Expedition 22 crew.

The launch of Ares I-X

Although not a spaceflight in its own right, the Ares I-X test flight was conducted on 28 October, with the rocket lifting off from Launch Complex 39B of the Kennedy Space Center at 15:30 GMT. The flight was successful and reached an altitude of around 46 kilometres (29 mi), within the upper atmosphere. A parachute failure during descent resulted in some damage to the first stage, which was recovered.

Launch failures[edit]

OCO launches on a Taurus

Four orbital launch failures occurred in 2009. On 24 February, a Taurus-XL launched from the Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, United States, with the Orbiting Carbon Observatory. The payload fairing did not separate from the rocket, leaving the upper stage with too much mass to reach orbit. The stage, with spacecraft and fairing still attached, reentered the atmosphere, coming down off the coast of Antarctica. The second failure was a controversial North Korean launch attempt using an Unha rocket to launch the Kwangmyŏngsŏng-2 communications satellite. The launch was conducted on 5 April, and North Korea maintains that it successfully reached orbit, however no objects from the launch were tracked as having orbital velocity, and US radar systems tracking the rocket detected that it failed at around the time of third stage ignition, with debris falling in the Pacific Ocean.

A Soyuz-2.1a suffered a failure during the launch of Meridian 2 on 21 May, due to the premature cutoff of the second core stage of the carrier rocket. The satellite was placed in a lower than planned orbit, which it was initially expected to be able to correct by means of its onboard propulsion system, and the launch was reported to be a partial failure. By the time of the next Meridian launch in 2010 it had been confirmed that the satellite could not correct its own orbit, and that the mission was a failure.[7] On 25 August, the Naro-1 rocket was launched on its maiden flight, however one half of the payload fairing failed to separate, and it did not reach orbit.

On 31 August a Long March 3B placed the Palapa-D satellite into a lower than expected orbit after its third stage gas generator burned through, resulting in an engine failure at the start of the second burn.[8] The satellite was able to raise itself to its correct orbit at the expense of fuel which would have been used for five or six years of operations.[8]

Summary of launches[edit]

In total, seventy eight orbital launches were attempted in 2009, with seventy five catalogued as having reached orbit, and the three outright launch failures, including the North Korean launch, not being catalogued. This is an increase of nine attempts compared to 2008, and eight more launches reached orbit. This continues a four-year trend of increasing annual launch rates. The United States National Space Science Data Center catalogued 123 spacecraft placed into orbit by launches which occurred in 2009.[9]

Launch of a Delta IV-M+(4,2) EELV with GOES 14

Suborbital spaceflight in 2009 saw a number of sounding rocket and missile launches. New Zealand's Ātea-1 sounding rocket was launched on 30 November, marking that country's first suborbital flight. Russia twice attempted launches of its Bulava missile, however both launches failed. The second failure, which occurred on 9 December, resulted in a spiral pattern which was observed in the sky over Norway. The SpaceLoft-XL rocket experienced another launch failure during its third flight, on 2 May. The payload section separated from the rocket whilst it was still burning, and as a result the vehicle did not reach space.[10] It had been carrying samples of cremated human remains for Celestis, and student experiments.

By country[edit]

China conducted six launches in 2009; satellite problems early in the year followed by the fallout of the August partial launch failure resulted in many planned launches slipping into 2010. Europe launched seven Ariane 5 rockets, six in the ECA configuration and one in the GS configuration. It had also intended to launch the first Vega rocket, however this was delayed due to ongoing development issues, which had already left the project several years behind schedule. India conducted two launches of Polar Satellite Launch Vehicles, however the first flight of a new variant of the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle with an Indian-built upper stage slipped into 2010. Japan conducted three launches; two using the H-IIA, plus the first H-IIB. Russia and the former Soviet Union conducted twenty nine launches, not including the international Sea and Land launch programmes, which conducted four, and the single Naro-1 launch conducted in cooperation with South Korea.

The United States made twenty four launch attempts, with the Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicles accounting for eight; the most EELV launches in a single year to date. Eight Delta II launches were also made, including its last mission with a GPS satellite, and its last flight with a payload for the United States armed forces. As the Delta II programme wound down, Space Launch Complex 17A at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, one of the oldest operational launch pads in the world, was deactivated. SpaceX launched a single Falcon 1, which successfully placed an operational satellite into orbit for the first time. This was the final flight of the Falcon 1, which was subsequently retired from service in favour of the Falcon 1e.[4] At the start of the year, a mockup Falcon 9 was erected on its launch pad at Canaveral, however the type's maiden flight slipped into 2010.

Sea Launch only conducted a single launch in 2009; a Zenit-3SL launched Sicral 1B in April. In June, the company was declared bankrupt,[11] and subsequently it lost a number of launch contracts.[12] By the end of the year it was expecting to resume launches in 2010.[12] Its subsidiary, Land Launch, conducted three launches. Iran made its first successful indigenous orbital launch, however planned follow-up launches had not been conducted by the end of the year. North Korea made one launch which it claimed had successfully placed a satellite into orbit, however no such satellite was detected by any country capable of doing so. Israel was not reported to have scheduled or conducted an orbital launch attempt.

List of launches[edit]

Date and time (UTC) Rocket Launch site LSP
Payload Operator Orbit Function Decay (UTC) Outcome
Remarks

January[edit]

18 January
02:47[13]
United StatesDelta IV-H[14] United StatesCape Canaveral SLC-37B United StatesUnited Launch Alliance
United StatesUSA-202[15] (Mentor) NRO Geosynchronous ELINT In orbit Operational
NRO Launch 26
23 January
03:54[17]
JapanH-IIA 202 JapanTanegashima LA-Y1 JapanMitsubishi
JapanIbuki (GOSAT) JAXA Low Earth Climatology In orbit Operational
JapanSDS-1 JAXA Low Earth Technology In orbit Successful[18]
JapanSohla-1 (Maido-1) SOHLA[19] Low Earth Technology In orbit Successful[20]
JapanRaijin (Sprite-Sat)[21] Tohoku Low Earth Sprite research In orbit Spacecraft failure[16]
JapanKagayaki[22] Sorun[23] Low Earth Technology In orbit Spacecraft failure[16]
JapanHitomi (PRISM)[24] Tokyo Low Earth Technology In orbit Operational
JapanKukai (STARS)[25][26] Kagawa Low Earth Technology In orbit Spacecraft failure[16]
JapanKiseki (KKS-1)[27] TMCIT Low Earth Technology In orbit Spacecraft failure[16]
Raijin failed to respond to commands from ground following electromagnetic boom deployment, Kagayaki failed to contact ground, STARS tether deployment failed, Kiseki failed to respond to commands from ground.[16]
26 January
00:15[28]
JapanS-310 NorwayAndøya LA-U3 NorwayAndøya
JapanDelta-2 JAXA/Nagoya[28][29][30] Suborbital Auroral[28] 26 January Successful
29 January
09:49
CanadaBlack Brant IX United StatesPoker Flat United StatesNASA
United StatesACES-I[31] Iowa Suborbital Auroral 09:59 Successful
29 January
09:51
CanadaBlack Brant VB United StatesPoker Flat United StatesNASA
United StatesACES-II[31] Iowa Suborbital Auroral 10:01 Successful
30 January
13:30[3]
UkraineTsyklon-3 RussiaPlesetsk Site 32/2 RussiaRoskosmos
RussiaKoronas-Foton Roskosmos/MEPhI/NIIEM[33] Low Earth[33] Solar In orbit Spacecraft failure
Final flight of Tsyklon-3 rocket,[3] satellite problems during mid-2009, loss of signal in early December due to power system malfunction. Declared a total loss in April 2010.[32]

February[edit]

2 February
18:36[34]
IranSafir IranSemnan IranISA
IranOmid[35] ISA Low Earth Technology 25 April Successful
First successful Iranian orbital launch[2]
6 February
10:22:01[36]
United StatesDelta II 7320-10C United StatesVandenberg SLC-2W United StatesUnited Launch Alliance
United StatesNOAA-19 (NOAA-N') NOAA/NASA Low Earth Weather In orbit Operational
10 February
05:49:46[37]
RussiaSoyuz-U KazakhstanBaikonur Site 31/6 RussiaRoskosmos
RussiaProgress M-66 Roskosmos Low Earth (ISS) Logistics 18 May
15:14:45
Successful
ISS flight 32P
11 February
00:03[38]
RussiaProton-M/Briz-M Enhanced KazakhstanBaikonur Site 200/39 RussiaKhrunichev
RussiaEkspress-AM44[39] RSCC Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Operational
RussiaEkspress-MD1 RSCC Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Operational
12 February
22:09:00[40]
European UnionAriane 5ECA FranceKourou ELA-3 FranceArianespace
FranceHot Bird 10 Eutelsat Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Operational
NetherlandsNSS-9 SES New Skies Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Operational
FranceSpirale-A CNES Geosynchronous Transfer Technology In orbit Operational
FranceSpirale-B CNES Geosynchronous Transfer Technology In orbit Operational
13 February[41] United StatesUGM-133 Trident II D5 United StatesUSS Alabama, Pacific Ocean United StatesUS Navy
US Navy Suborbital Missile test 13 February Successful
18 February
09:52:00[42]
United StatesTerrier-Orion United StatesPoker Flat United StatesNASA
Clemson Suborbital Atmospheric 18 February Successful
18 February
10:29:00[42]
United StatesTerrier-Orion United StatesPoker Flat United StatesNASA
Clemson Suborbital Atmospheric 18 February Successful
18 February
10:59:00[42]
United StatesTerrier-Orion United StatesPoker Flat United StatesNASA
Clemson Suborbital Atmospheric 18 February Successful
18 February
11:47:00[42]
United StatesTerrier-Orion United StatesPoker Flat United StatesNASA
Clemson Suborbital Atmospheric 18 February Successful
24 February
09:55:30[44]
United StatesTaurus-XL 3110 United StatesVandenberg LC-576E United StatesOrbital Sciences
United StatesOCO NASA Intended: Sun-synchronous Climatology 24 February Launch failure
Maiden flight of Taurus-XL 3110, payload fairing failed to separate, failed to reach orbit.[43] Satellite was to have been part of A-train constellation
25 February
10:45[45]
CanadaBlack Brant IX United StatesWhite Sands LC-36 United StatesNASA
United StatesCIBER Caltech Suborbital IR Astronomy[46] 10:55 Successful
26 February
18:29:55[47]
UkraineZenit-3SLB KazakhstanBaikonur Site 45/1 United NationsLand Launch
CanadaTelstar 11N Telesat Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Operational
28 February
04:10
RussiaProton-K/DM-2 KazakhstanBaikonur Site 81/24 RussiaKhrunichev
RussiaRaduga-1 VKS Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Operational
February[34] United StatesUGM-133 Trident II D5 United StatesSubmarine, Pacific Ocean United StatesUS Navy
US Navy Suborbital Missile test February Successful

March[edit]

6 March
10:54[48]
IndiaDhanush IndiaShip, Indian Ocean IndiaDRDO
DRDO Suborbital Target 6 March Successful
Target for successful Prithvi interceptor test, apogee: 120 kilometres (75 mi)[48]
7 March
03:49:57[50]
United StatesDelta II 7925-10L United StatesCape Canaveral SLC-17B United StatesUnited Launch Alliance
United StatesKepler NASA Heliocentric Astronomy In orbit Operational
Exosolar planet research, operating in an Earth-trailing orbit[49]
15 March
23:43:44[51]
United StatesSpace Shuttle Discovery[52] United StatesKennedy LC-39A United StatesUnited Space Alliance
United StatesSTS-119[53] NASA Low Earth (ISS) ISS Assembly[54][55] 28 March
19:13[56]
Successful
United NationsITS S6 Truss NASA Low Earth (ISS) ISS component In orbit Operational
Manned flight with seven astronauts
17 March
14:21[57]
RussiaRokot/Briz-KM RussiaPlesetsk Site 133/3[58] European UnionRussiaEurockot
European UnionGOCE ESA Low Earth Gravity 11 November 2013
00:16
Successful
18 March[59]
00:25[60]
United StatesTRBM United StatesUSS Tripoli, Barking Sands United StatesUS Army
US Army/MDA Suborbital Target 18 March Successful
Intercepted by THAAD launched at 00:30 UTC[59][60]
18 March[59]
00:30[60]
United StatesTHAAD United StatesBarking Sands United StatesUS Army
US Army/MDA Suborbital ABM test 18 March Successful
Intercepted target missile[59]
18 March[59]
00:30[60]
United StatesTHAAD United StatesBarking Sands United StatesUS Army
US Army/MDA Suborbital ABM test 18 March Successful
Backup interceptor, destroyed by range safety after first missile succeeded[61]
20 March
11:04
CanadaBlack Brant XII United StatesPoker Flat United StatesNASA
United StatesCascades-2 Dartmouth Suborbital Auroral 20 March Successful
24 March
08:34:00[62]
United StatesDelta II 7925-9.5 United StatesCape Canaveral SLC-17A United StatesUnited Launch Alliance
United StatesUSA-203 (GPS IIR-20/M7) US Air Force Medium Earth Navigation In orbit Partial spacecraft failure
Operational
25 March
13:25[63]
United StatesHera United StatesFort Wingate LC-96 United StatesUS Army
US Army Suborbital Target 25 March Successful
Target for MIM-104 Patriot PAC-3 test, interceptor failed
26 March
11:49:06
RussiaSoyuz-FG KazakhstanBaikonur Site 1/5 RussiaRoskosmos
RussiaSoyuz TMA-14[14] Roskosmos Low Earth (ISS) ISS Expedition 19 11 October
04:32
Successful
Manned flight with three cosmonauts. First space tourist to make two flights.

April[edit]

3 April
16:24
RussiaProton-M/Briz-M Enhanced KazakhstanBaikonur Site 200/39 RussiaUnited StatesInternational Launch Services
FranceEutelsat W2A Eutelsat Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Operational
4 April
00:31[64]
United StatesAtlas V 421 United StatesCape Canaveral SLC-41 United StatesUnited Launch Alliance
United StatesUSA-204 (WGS-2) US Air Force Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Operational
5 April
02:30:15[66]
North KoreaUnha North KoreaTonghae North KoreaKCST
North KoreaKwangmyŏngsŏng-2 KCST Intended: Low Earth Technology 5 April Launch failure
North Korea claimed the launch was successful,[65] however no objects were tracked in orbit.
7 April IsraelBlue Sparrow IsraelF-15 Eagle, Israel IsraelIsraeli Air Force
Israeli Air Force Suborbital Arrow-2 target 7 April Successful
Arrow-2 target, successfully intercepted
7 April IsraelArrow-2 IsraelNegev IsraelIsrael Aerospace Industries
IAI/Israeli Defense Forces Suborbital ABM Test 7 April Successful
Successful intercept of a Blue Sparrow target over the Mediterranean
10 April
09:10
RussiaRS-12M Topol RussiaPlesetsk RussiaRVSN
RVSN Suborbital Missile test 10 April Successful
14 April
16:16
ChinaLong March 3C ChinaXichang LA-2 ChinaCNSA
ChinaCompass-G2 CNSA Geosynchronous Navigation In orbit Operational
17 April
11:17[67]
United StatesFalconLaunch United StatesWhite Sands United StatesUS Air Force Academy
United StatesFalconLAUNCH VII US Air Force Academy Suborbital Technology 17 April Successful
Apogee: 108 kilometres (67 mi),[67] first student-built rocket to reach space
20 April
01:15
IndiaPSLV-CA IndiaSatish Dhawan SLP IndiaISRO
IndiaRISAT-2 ISRO Low Earth Radar imaging In orbit Operational
IndiaANUSAT Anna Low Earth Technology 18 April 2012 Successful
20 April
08:16
UkraineZenit-3SL NorwayOcean Odyssey United NationsSea Launch
ItalySicral-1B ASI Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Operational
22 April
02:55
ChinaLong March 2C ChinaTaiyuan LC-1 ChinaCNSA
ChinaYaogan-6 CNSA Sun-synchronous Remote sensing In orbit Operational
29 April
16:58
RussiaSoyuz-U RussiaPlesetsk Site 16/2 RussiaVKS
RussiaKosmos 2450 (Kobal't-M) VKS Low Earth Optical imaging 27 July Successful

May[edit]

2 May
14:02[10]
United StatesSpaceLoft XL United StatesSpaceport America United StatesUP Aerospace
United StatesSL-3 NMSGC Suborbital Student research 2 May Launch failure[69]
United StatesDiscovery Celestis Suborbital Space burial
Failed to reach space due to premature payload separation whilst rocket was still burning[10][68][69]
5 May
20:24:25[14][64]
United StatesDelta II 7920-10C United StatesVandenberg SLC-2W United StatesUnited Launch Alliance
United StatesUSA-205 (STSS-ATRR) US Air Force/MDA Low Earth Missile defence
Technology
In orbit Operational
7 May
02:42:00[70]
United StatesTerrier-Orion[70] AustraliaWoomera AustraliaDSTO
AustraliaUnited StatesHiFIRE 0 DSTO/AFRL Suborbital Technology 7 May Successful
7 May
18:37
RussiaSoyuz-U KazakhstanBaikonur Site 1/5 RussiaRoskosmos
RussiaProgress M-02M Roskosmos Low Earth (ISS) Logistics 13 July
16:28:47
Successful
ISS flight 33P
11 May
18:01
United StatesSpace Shuttle Atlantis[52] United StatesKennedy LC-39A United StatesUnited Space Alliance
United StatesSTS-125[71] NASA[72] Low Earth (HST) HST servicing flight[73][74] 24 May
15:39
Successful
Manned flight with seven astronauts, final Space Shuttle mission to the Hubble Space Telescope
14 May[75]
13:12
European UnionAriane 5ECA FranceKourou ELA-3 FranceArianespace
European UnionHerschel[76] ESA Earth/Sun L2 IR astronomy In orbit Operational
European UnionPlanck[77] ESA Earth/Sun L2 Astronomy In orbit Operational
16 May
00:57
RussiaProton-M/Briz-M Enhanced KazakhstanBaikonur Site 200/39 RussiaUnited StatesInternational Launch Services
BermudaProtoStar II ProtoStar Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Operational
19 May
04:36
IndiaAgni II IndiaIntegrated Test Range IndiaIndian Army/DRDO
Indian Army/DRDO Suborbital Missile test +127 seconds Launch failure
Loss of control, landed in sea 203 kilometres (126 mi) downrange[78]
19 May
23:55
United StatesMinotaur I United StatesMARS LP-0B United StatesOrbital Sciences
United StatesTacSat-3 USAF-RL Low Earth Technology 30 April 2012 Successful
United StatesPharmaSat NASA Low Earth Biological 14 August 2012 Successful
United StatesAeroCube 3 Aerospace Corporation Low Earth Technology 6 January 2011 Successful
United StatesHawkSat I[79] HISS Low Earth Technology[79][80] 4 September 2011 Successful
United StatesCP6[79] CalPoly Low Earth Technology 6 October 2011 Successful
All payloads except TacSat-3 and Pharmasat are CubeSats
20 May[60] IranSejjil-2 IranSemnan IranIGRC
IGRC Suborbital Missile test 20 May Successful
Apogee: 800 kilometres (500 mi)
21 May
21:53
RussiaSoyuz-2.1a/Fregat RussiaPlesetsk Site 43/4 RussiaRVSN
RussiaMeridian 2[60] VKS Intended: Molniya
Achieved: Medium Earth
Communication In orbit Launch failure[83]
Core vehicle second stage shut down five seconds early,[81] attempt to compensate using Fregat resulted in propellent depletion during second of three burns[60] Satellite reached a lower orbit than expected, and despite being expected to be recoverable to fully operational status[82] was unable to recover[83]
22 May
10:32[84]
United StatesNike-Orion SwedenEsrange European UnionEuroLaunch
GermanyMAPHEUS DLR Suborbital Technology 22 May Successful
Apogee: 140.8 kilometres (87.5 mi)[84]
26 May United StatesUGM-133 Trident II D5 United KingdomHMS Victorious United KingdomRoyal Navy
Royal Navy Suborbital Missile test 26 July Successful
27 May
10:34:42
RussiaSoyuz-FG KazakhstanBaikonur Site 1/5 RussiaRoskosmos
RussiaSoyuz TMA-15 Roskosmos Low Earth (ISS) ISS Expedition 20 1 December
07:17
Successful
Manned flight with three cosmonauts, established first permanent six-man crew on the ISS
28 May
16:52
United StatesTerrier-Orion United StatesWallops Island United StatesNASA
United StatesSOAREX VII NASA Suborbital 28 May Successful
29 May BrazilOrion BrazilAlcântara BrazilAEB
BrazilMaracati 1 INPE Suborbital Microgravity 29 May Successful

June[edit]

6 June United StatesTerrier-Lynx United StatesSan Nicolas United StatesUS Air Force
US Air Force Suborbital YAL-1 target 6 June Successful
Apogee: 100 kilometres (62 mi)
13 June United StatesTerrier-Lynx United StatesSan Nicolas United StatesUS Air Force
US Air Force Suborbital YAL-1 target 13 June Successful
Apogee: 100 kilometres (62 mi)
18 June[85]
21:32
United StatesAtlas V 401 United StatesCape Canaveral SLC-41 United StatesUnited Launch Alliance
United StatesLRO NASA Selenocentric Lunar orbiter In orbit Operational
United StatesLCROSS NASA High Earth (TLI) Lunar impactor 9 October
11:37
Successful
LCROSS observed the upper stage impacting the Cabeus crater on the Moon at 11:31 on 9 October shortly before its own impact into the same crater. The LCROSS spacecraft confirmed the presence of water at the Lunar South Pole.[5]
21 June
21:50
UkraineZenit-3SLB KazakhstanBaikonur Site 45/1 United NationsLand Launch
MalaysiaMEASAT-3a MEASAT Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Operational
26 June
09:30
United StatesTerrier-Orion United StatesWallops Island LA-2 United StatesNASA
United StatesRockOn! Colorado Suborbital Student research 09:45 Successful
27 June
07:30
CanadaBlack Brant IX United StatesWhite Sands LC-36 United StatesNASA
United StatesDICE Colorado Suborbital UV Astronomy 07:40 Spacecraft failure[86]
27 June
22:51[87]
United StatesDelta IV-M+ (4,2) United StatesCape Canaveral SLC-37B United StatesUnited Launch Alliance
United StatesGOES-O (GOES-14) NOAA/NASA Geostationary Weather In orbit Operational
29 June
10:01
United StatesLGM-30G Minuteman III United StatesVandenberg United StatesUS Air Force
United StatesGT-199GM US Air Force Suborbital Missile test 29 June Successful
30 June
19:10
RussiaProton-M/Briz-M Enhanced KazakhstanBaikonur Site 200/39 RussiaUnited StatesInternational Launch Services
United StatesSirius FM-5 (RadioSat-5) Sirius XM Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Operational

July[edit]

1 July[88]
19:52
European UnionAriane 5ECA FranceKourou ELA-3 FranceArianespace
United StatesTerreStar-1 TerreStar Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Operational
6 July
01:26
RussiaRokot/Briz-KM RussiaPlesetsk Site 133/3 RussiaVKS
RussiaKosmos 2451 (Rodnik) VKS Low Earth Communications In orbit Operational
RussiaKosmos 2452 (Rodnik) VKS Low Earth Communications In orbit Operational
RussiaKosmos 2453 (Rodnik) VKS Low Earth Communications In orbit Operational
13 July
01:20[89]
RussiaR-29RMU Sineva RussiaK-84 Ekaterinburg, North Pole RussiaVMF
VMF Suborbital Missile test 13 July Successful
Carried ten re-entry vehicles, impacted Kura Test Range
13 July
23:50[89]
RussiaR-29RMU Sineva RussiaK-117 Bryansk, North Pole RussiaVMF
VMF Suborbital Missile test 14 July Successful
Carried ten re-entry vehicles, impacted Chizha test site
14 July
03:35[90]
United StatesFalcon 1 Marshall IslandsOmelek United StatesSpaceX
MalaysiaRazakSat-1 (MACSat) ATSB Low Earth Imaging In orbit Operational
Final flight of Falcon 1[4]
15 July[87]
22:03
United StatesSpace Shuttle Endeavour[53] United StatesKennedy LC-39A United StatesUnited Space Alliance
United StatesSTS-127 NASA Low Earth (ISS) ISS Assembly 31 July
14:48
Successful
United NationsJEM-EF JAXA Low Earth (ISS) ISS component In orbit Operational
United StatesAggieSat 2 NASA Low Earth Technology 17 March 2010
18:26[91]
Partial spacecraft failure
Successful
United StatesBEVO-1 NASA Low Earth Technology Partial spacecraft failure
Successful
United StatesCastor[92] NRL Low Earth Atmospheric 18 August 2010
17:48[93]
Successful
United StatesPollux[92] NRL Low Earth Atmospheric 29 March 2010 Successful
Manned flight with seven astronauts, AggieSat 2 and BEVO-1 collectively designated Dragonsat, Castor and Pollux collectively designated ANDE-2, both deployed on 30 July; Dragonsat at 12:34:30 UTC and ANDE-2 at 17:23:02; Dragonsat satellites failed to separate from each other
16 July[94] RussiaRSM-56 Bulava RussiaTK-208 Dmitri Donskoi, White Sea RussiaVMF
VMF Suborbital Missile test 16 July Launch failure
First stage malfunction[94]
21 July
03:57:43
RussiaKosmos-3M RussiaPlesetsk Site 132/1 RussiaRVSN
RussiaKosmos 2454 (Parus) VKS Low Earth Navigation
Communications
In orbit Operational
RussiaSterkh-1 Roskosmos Low Earth Communication
Search and rescue
In orbit Operational
22 July
03:40
United StatesLRALT C-17 Globemaster III, Pacific Ocean United StatesMDA
MDA/IMDO Suborbital ABM target 22 July Successful
Target for Arrow test, interceptor launch scrubbed
24 July
10:56:51
RussiaSoyuz-U KazakhstanBaikonur Site 1/5 RussiaRoskosmos
RussiaProgress M-67 Roskosmos Low Earth (ISS) Logistics 27 September
10:19:11
Successful
Final flight of original Progress-M; ISS flight 34P
29 July
18:46
UkraineDnepr KazakhstanBaikonur Site 109/95 RussiaISC Kosmotras
United Arab EmiratesDubaiSat-1 EIAST Sun-synchronous Imaging In orbit Operational
SpainDeimos-1 Deimos Space Sun-synchronous Imaging In orbit Operational
United KingdomUK-DMC 2 BNSC (2009-2010)
UKSA (2010—)
Sun-synchronous Imaging In orbit Operational
SpainNanosat 1B INTA Low Earth Imaging In orbit Operational
ArgentinaAprizeSat-3 LatinSat Low Earth Communication In orbit Operational
ArgentinaAprizeSat-4 LatinSat Low Earth Communication In orbit Operational
31 July
03:40
United StatesKauai United StatesMDA
MDA Suborbital ABM target 31 July Successful
Target for Stellar Avenger test, intercept successful
31 July
03:42
United StatesRIM-161 Standard Missile 3 United StatesUSS Hopper United StatesMDA
United StatesStellar Avenger MDA Suborbital ABM test 31 July Successful
31 July
04:00[89]
United StatesKauai United StatesMDA
United StatesFTX-06 Event 1 MDA Suborbital ABM target 31 July Successful
Radar target for exercise after Stellar Avenger, not intercepted

August[edit]

11 August
04:50
CanadaBlack Brant IX United StatesSan Nicolas United StatesNASA
United StatesMARTI US Air Force Suborbital ABL target 11 August Successful
11 August
19:47
RussiaProton-M/Briz-M KazakhstanBaikonur Site 200/39 RussiaUnited StatesInternational Launch Services
ChinaAsiaSat 5 AsiaSat Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Operational
17 August
10:35:00
United StatesDelta II 7925-9.5 United StatesCape Canaveral SLC-17A United StatesUnited Launch Alliance
United StatesUSA-206 (GPS IIR-21/M8) US Air Force Medium Earth Navigation In orbit Operational
Final launch from SLC-17A,[62] final GPS IIR launch, final flight of Delta II 7925
17 August
12:52:00
CanadaBlack Brant IX United StatesWallops Island United StatesNASA
United StatesIRVE-II[95] NASA Suborbital Technology 17 August Successful
21 August
22:09
European UnionAriane 5ECA FranceKourou ELA-3 FranceArianespace
JapanJCSAT-12 SKY Perfect JSAT Group Geosynchronous Communications In orbit Operational
AustraliaOptus D3 Optus Geosynchronous Communications In orbit Operational
23 August
16:01[96]
United StatesLGM-30G Minuteman III United StatesVandenberg United StatesUS Air Force
United StatesGT-200GM US Air Force Suborbital Missile test 23 August Successful[96]
Travelled 6,743 kilometres (4,190 mi) downrange[96]
25 August[100]
08:00
RussiaSouth KoreaNaro-1 South KoreaNaro[101] RussiaSouth KoreaKhrunichev/KARI[101]
South KoreaSTSAT-2A KARI[102] Intended: Low Earth Technology 25 August Launch failure[103]
Maiden flight of Naro-1,[97] first South Korean orbital launch attempt (with Russian assistance). First flight of Angara Universal Rocket Module (used as first stage), half of payload fairing failed to separate, failed to reach orbit.[98][99]
29 August
03:59
United StatesSpace Shuttle Discovery United StatesKennedy LC-39A United StatesUnited Space Alliance
United StatesSTS-128[104] NASA Low Earth (ISS) ISS assembly 11 September
00:53
Successful
ItalyUnited StatesLeonardo MPLM ASI/NASA Low Earth (ISS) Logistics Successful
Manned flight with seven astronauts
31 August
09:28[105]
ChinaLong March 3B ChinaXichang ChinaCNSA
IndonesiaPalapa-D Indosat Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Partial launch failure
Operational[106]
Third stage failed during restart[105] due to gas generator burnthrough[8]

September[edit]

3 September[107] United StatesUGM-133 Trident II D5 United StatesUSS West Virginia, Eastern Range United StatesUS Navy
US Navy Suborbital Missile test 3 September Successful
Apogee: 1,000 kilometres (620 mi)
4 September[107] United StatesUGM-133 Trident II D5 United StatesUSS West Virginia, Eastern Range United StatesUS Navy
US Navy Suborbital Missile test 4 September Successful
Apogee: 1,000 kilometres (620 mi)
8 September
21:35
United StatesAtlas V 401 United StatesCape Canaveral SLC-41 United StatesUnited Launch Alliance
United StatesUSA-207 (PAN) Geostationary Communications In orbit Operational
10 September
17:01:46[108]
JapanH-IIB JapanTanegashima LA-Y2 JapanJAXA[109]
JapanHTV-1 JAXA Low Earth (ISS) Logistics 1 November
21:26
Successful
Maiden flight of H-IIB and H-II Transfer Vehicle, first launch from LA-Y2
14 September
17:40[86]
CanadaBlack Brant IX United StatesWhite Sands LC-36 United StatesNASA
United StatesHERSCHEL NRL Suborbital Solar 14 September Successful
17 September
15:55
RussiaSoyuz-2.1b/Fregat KazakhstanBaikonur Site 31/6 RussiaRoskosmos
RussiaMeteor M-1 Roskosmos Sun-synchronous Weather In orbit Operational
RussiaUniversitetsky-Tatyana-2[110] MSU Sun-synchronous Technology In orbit Operational
RussiaSterkh-2 Roskosmos Sun-synchronous Communication
Search and rescue
In orbit Operational
RussiaUGATUSAT UGATU Sun-synchronous Imaging[111] In orbit Operational
RussiaBLITS Roskosmos Sun-synchronous Radar calibration In orbit Operational
South AfricaSumbandila Stellenbosch Low Earth Technology In orbit Operational
RussiaIRIS Low Earth Technology[112] In orbit Operational
IRIS intentionally remained attached to upper stage
17 September
19:19:19
RussiaProton-M/Briz-M Enhanced KazakhstanBaikonur Site 200/39 RussiaUnited StatesInternational Launch Services
CanadaNimiq 5 Telesat Canada Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Operational[113]
19 September
23:32
CanadaBlack Brant XII United StatesWallops Island LP-1 United StatesNASA
United StatesCARE[114] NRL Suborbital Aeronomy 19 September Successful
23 September
06:21 [115]
IndiaPSLV-CA IndiaSatish Dhawan FLP IndiaISRO
IndiaOceansat-2 ISRO Sun-synchronous Oceanography In orbit Operational
GermanyBeeSat TU Berlin Sun-synchronous Technology In orbit Operational
GermanyUWE-2 Würzburg Sun-synchronous Technology In orbit Operational
TurkeyITU-pSat1 ITU Sun-synchronous Technology In orbit Operational
SwitzerlandSwissCube-1 EPFL Sun-synchronous Atmospheric In orbit Operational
GermanyRubin 9.1 OHB-System Low Earth Technology In orbit Successful
GermanyRubin 9.2 OHB-System Low Earth Technology In orbit Successful
First Swiss satellite, Rubin payloads intentionally remained attached to upper stage
25 September
12:20 [116]
United StatesDelta II 7920-10C United StatesCape Canaveral SLC-17B United StatesUnited Launch Alliance
United StatesUSA-208 (STSS-Demo 1) US Air Force Low Earth Technology
Missile defence
In orbit Operational
United StatesUSA-209 (STSS-Demo 2) US Air Force Low Earth Technology
Missile defence
In orbit Operational
27 September[107] IranShahab 1 IranIran IranIGRC
IGRC Suborbital Missile test 27 September Successful
Part of Great Prophet IV exercise, apogee: 100 kilometres (62 mi)
27 September[107] IranShahab 2 IranIran IranIGRC
IGRC Suborbital Missile test 27 September Successful
Part of Great Prophet IV exercise, apogee: 100 kilometres (62 mi)
28 September[107] IranShahab 3 IranIran IranIGRC
IGRC Suborbital Missile test 28 September Successful
Part of Great Prophet IV exercise, apogee: 500 kilometres (310 mi)
28 September[107] IranSejjil-1 IranIran IranIGRC
IGRC Suborbital Missile test 28 September Successful
Part of Great Prophet IV exercise, apogee: 800 kilometres (500 mi)
30 September
07:14
RussiaSoyuz-FG KazakhstanBaikonur Site 1/5 RussiaRoskosmos
RussiaSoyuz TMA-16 Roskosmos Low Earth (ISS) ISS Expedition 21 18 March 2010 Successful
Manned flight with three cosmonauts

October[edit]

1 October
21:59[117]
European UnionAriane 5ECA FranceKourou ELA-3 FranceArianespace
SpainAmazonas-2 Hispasat Geosynchronous Communications In orbit Operational
GermanyCOMSATBw-1 Bundeswehr Geosynchronous Communications In orbit Operational
6 October[118] RussiaR-29R Volna RussiaK-433 Svyatoy Georgiy Pobedonosets, Sea of Okhotsk RussiaVMF
VMF Suborbital Missile test 6 October Successful
Carried four re-entry vehicles
7 October[118] RussiaR-29R Volna RussiaK-44 Ryazan, Sea of Okhotsk RussiaVMF
VMF Suborbital Missile test 7 October Successful
Carried four re-entry vehicles
8 October
18:51[119]
United StatesDelta II 7920 United StatesVandenberg SLC-2W United StatesUnited Launch Alliance
United StatesWorldView-2 DigitalGlobe Low Earth Imaging In orbit Operational
12 October IndiaPrithvi 2 IndiaOdisha IndiaIndian Air Force
Indian Air Force Suborbital Target 12 October Successful
15 October
01:14
RussiaSoyuz-U KazakhstanBaikonur Site 1/5 RussiaRoskosmos
RussiaProgress M-03M Roskosmos Low Earth (ISS) Logistics 27 April 2010
18:50:56
Successful
ISS flight 35P
16 October[118] United StatesARAV-B (Terrier-Oriole) United StatesKauai United StatesMDA
United StatesFTX-06 Event 2 MDA Suborbital ABM target 16 October Successful
Radar target, not intercepted
16 October[118] United StatesARAV-B (Terrier-Oriole) United StatesKauai United StatesMDA
United StatesFTX-06 Event 3 MDA Suborbital ABM target 16 October Successful
Radar target, not intercepted
18 October
16:12
United StatesAtlas V 401 United StatesVandenberg SLC-3E United StatesUnited Launch Alliance
United StatesUSA-210 (DMSP-5D3 F18) US Air Force/NOAA Low Earth Weather In orbit Operational
28 October
04:00[118]
United StatesKauai United StatesMDA
JMSDF/MDA Suborbital ABM target 28 October Successful
Apogee: 150 kilometres (93 mi), intercepted by SM-3
28 October
04:04[118]
United StatesRIM-161 Standard Missile 3 JapanJDS Myōkō, Pacific Ocean JapanJMSDF
JMSDF Suborbital ABM test 28 October Successful
Apogee: 150 kilometres (93 mi), intercepted target
29 October
20:00
European UnionAriane 5ECA FranceKourou ELA-3 FranceArianespace
NorwayThor-6 Telenor Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Operational
NetherlandsNSS-12 SES New Skies Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Operational

November[edit]

1 November[118] RussiaR-29RMU Sineva RussiaK-117 Bryansk, Barents Sea RussiaVMF
VMF Suborbital Missile test 1 November Successful
Carried four re-entry vehicles
2 November
01:50
RussiaRokot/Briz-KM RussiaPlesetsk Site 133/3 European UnionRussiaEurockot[120]
European UnionSMOS[121] ESA Sun-synchronous Earth science In orbit Operational
European UnionProba-2 ESA Sun-synchronous Earth science In orbit Operational
5 November[118] United StatesARAV-C (Talos-Castor) United StatesKauai United StatesMDA
United StatesFTX-06 Event 4 MDA Suborbital ABM target 5 November Successful
Radar target, not intercepted
10 November[64]
14:22
RussiaSoyuz-U KazakhstanBaikonur Site 1/5 RussiaRoskosmos
RussiaProgress M-MIM2 Roskosmos Low Earth (ISS) Orbital tug 8 December
05:27[122]
Successful
United NationsPoisk (MRM-2) Roskosmos Low Earth (ISS) ISS component In orbit Operational
ISS flight 5R
12 November
02:45[123]
ChinaLong March 2C ChinaJiuquan LA-4 ChinaCASC
ChinaShijian XI-01 CASC Low Earth Technology In orbit Operational
14 November
02:30[124]
CanadaBlack Brant IX United StatesWhite Sands LC-36 United StatesNASA
United StatesCyXESS Colorado Suborbital X-ray astronomy[125] 14 November Successful
16 November[87]
19:28
United StatesSpace Shuttle Atlantis[53] United StatesKennedy LC-39A United StatesUnited Space Alliance
United StatesSTS-129 NASA Low Earth (ISS) ISS assembly 27 November
14:44[126]
Successful
United NationsExPRESS-1 NASA Low Earth (ISS) ISS logistics In orbit Operational
United NationsExPRESS-2 NASA Low Earth (ISS) ISS logistics In orbit Operational
Manned flight, launching with six astronauts, and landing with seven
20 November
10:44
RussiaSoyuz-U RussiaPlesetsk Site 16/2 RussiaRVSN
RussiaKosmos 2455 (Lotos-S) VKS Low Earth ELINT In orbit Operational
22 November
11:15[128]
BrazilVSB-30 SwedenEsrange European UnionEuroLaunch
European UnionTEXUS-46 ESA Suborbital Microgravity 22 November Successful
Apogee: 252 kilometres (157 mi)[127]
23 November
06:55[129]
United StatesAtlas V 431 United StatesCape Canaveral SLC-41 United StatesUnited Launch Alliance
United NationsIntelsat 14 Intelsat Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Operational
23 November
14:20[130]
IndiaAgni II IndiaIntegrated Test Range IndiaIndian Army/DRDO
Indian Army/DRDO Suborbital Missile test 23 November Launch failure
Loss of control after second stage separation[130]
24 November
14:19[131]
RussiaProton-M/Briz-M Enhanced[132] KazakhstanBaikonur Site 200/39 RussiaUnited StatesInternational Launch Services
FranceEutelsat W7 Eutelsat Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Operational
28 November[133]
01:21
JapanH-IIA 202 JapanTanegashima LA-Y1 JapanMitsubishi
JapanIGS Optical 3[127] Low Earth Reconnaissance In orbit Operational
29 November
09:00[128]
BrazilVSB-30 SwedenEsrange European UnionEuroLaunch
European UnionTEXUS-47 ESA Suborbital Microgravity 29 November Successful
Apogee: 264 kilometres (164 mi)[127]
30 November
01:38[127]
New ZealandĀtea-1 New ZealandGreat Mercury Island New ZealandRocket Lab
New ZealandManu Karere Rocket Lab Suborbital Test flight 30 November Successful
Apogee: 120 kilometres (75 mi),[127] maiden flight of Ātea-1, first spaceflight to be conducted by New Zealand
30 November
21:00
UkraineZenit-3SLB[134] KazakhstanBaikonur Site 45/1 United NationsLand Launch
United NationsIntelsat 15 Intelsat Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Operational[135]

December[edit]

6 December
01:47[136]
United StatesDelta IV-M+ (5,4) United StatesCape Canaveral SLC-37B United StatesUnited Launch Alliance
United StatesUSA-211 (WGS-3) US Air Force Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Successful
Maiden flight of Delta IV-M+ (5,4), final Block I WGS satellite
9 December
06:45[127]
RussiaRSM-56 Bulava RussiaTK-208 Dmitri Donskoi, White Sea RussiaVMF
VMF Suborbital Missile test 9 December Launch failure
Loss of control during third stage burn,[127] caused spiral patterns in the sky above Norway
9 December
08:42[137]
ChinaLong March 2D ChinaJiuquan LA-4/SLS-2 ChinaCNSA
ChinaYaogan-7 CNSA Sun-synchronous Remote sensing In orbit Operational
10 December
11:35[127]
RussiaRS-12M Topol RussiaKapustin Yar RussiaRVSN
RVSN Suborbital Missile test 10 December Successful
11 December United StatesLRALT C-17 Globemaster III, Pacific Ocean United StatesMDA
MDA/IMDO Suborbital ABM target 11 December Launch failure
Target for THAAD
13 December IndiaDhanush IndiaINS Subhadra IndiaIndian Navy
Indian Navy Suborbital Target 13 December Successful
14 December
10:38[138]
RussiaProton-M/DM-2 Enhanced KazakhstanBaikonur Site 81/24 RussiaKhrunichev
RussiaKosmos 2456 (Glonass-M 730) VKS Medium Earth Navigation In orbit Operational
RussiaKosmos 2457 (Glonass-M 733) VKS Medium Earth Navigation In orbit Operational
RussiaKosmos 2458 (Glonass-M 734) VKS Medium Earth Navigation In orbit Operational
14 December
14:09[139]
United StatesDelta II 7320 United StatesVandenberg SLC-2W United StatesUnited Launch Alliance
United StatesWISE NASA Sun-synchronous IR Astronomy In orbit Operational
15 December
02:31
ChinaLong March 4C ChinaTaiyuan LC-2 ChinaCNSA
ChinaYaogan-8 CNSA Sun-synchronous Remote sensing In orbit Operational[140]
ChinaXi Wang 1 CNSA Sun-synchronous Amateur radio In orbit Operational[140]
16 December[127] IranSejjil-2 IranIran IranIGRC
IGRC Suborbital Missile test 16 December Successful
Apogee: 800 kilometres (500 mi)
17 December
03:25
United StatesTerrier-Orion United StatesWallops Island United StatesNASA
United StatesHAROH[141] ERAU Suborbital Aeronomy 17 December Successful
18 December
16:26
European UnionAriane 5GS FranceKourou ELA-3 FranceArianespace
FranceHelios IIB DGA Low Earth Reconnaissance In orbit Operational
Final flight of Ariane 5GS
19 December[142] United StatesUGM-133 Trident II D5 United StatesUSS Alaska United StatesUS Navy
US Navy Suborbital Test flight 19 December Successful
Demonstration and Shakedown Operation
20 December
21:52
RussiaSoyuz-FG KazakhstanBaikonur Site 1/5 RussiaRoskosmos
RussiaSoyuz TMA-17 Roskosmos Low Earth (ISS) ISS Expedition 22 2 June 2010
03:25
Successful
Manned flight with three cosmonauts
24 December[143] RussiaR-36M2 Voyevoda RussiaDombarovsky RussiaRVSN
RVSN Suborbital Missile test 24 December Successful
29 December
00:22
RussiaProton-M/Briz-M Enhanced KazakhstanBaikonur Site 200/39 RussiaUnited StatesInternational Launch Services
United StatesDirecTV-12 DirecTV Planned: Geosynchronous Communication In orbit Operational

Deep space rendezvous[edit]

Date Spacecraft Event Remarks
7 February Cassini 50th flyby of Titan Closest approach: 960 kilometres (600 mi)
12 February[144] Okina Lunar impact Farside of the Moon
17 February Dawn Flyby of Mars Gravity assist, closest approach 549 kilometres (341 mi) at 00:28 GMT
1 March[145] Chang'e 1 Lunar impact Deorbited at 07:36 and impacted at 08:13[145]
27 March Cassini 51st flyby of Titan Closest approach: 960 kilometres (600 mi)
4 April Cassini 52nd flyby of Titan Closest approach: 4,150 kilometres (2,580 mi)
20 April Cassini 53rd flyby of Titan Closest approach: 3,600 kilometres (2,200 mi)
5 May Cassini 54th flyby of Titan Closest approach: 3,244 kilometres (2,016 mi)
21 May Cassini 55th flyby of Titan Closest approach: 965 kilometres (600 mi)
6 June Cassini 56th flyby of Titan Closest approach: 965 kilometres (600 mi)
10 June[146] Kaguya Lunar Impact at 18:25 UTC, around Gill crater.
22 June Cassini 57th flyby of Titan Closest approach: 955 kilometres (593 mi)
23 June LRO Selenocentric orbit insertion Orbital insersion burn lasted from 09:47 to 10:26 UTC
23 June LCROSS/Centaur Lunar flyby Gravity assist to align for impact in October, closest approach: 3,200 kilometres (2,000 mi) at 10:30:33 UTC
8 July Cassini 58th flyby of Titan Closest approach: 965 kilometres (600 mi)
24 July Cassini 59th flyby of Titan Closest approach: 955 kilometres (593 mi)
9 August Cassini 60th flyby of Titan Closest approach: 970 kilometres (600 mi)
25 August Cassini 61st flyby of Titan Closest approach: 970 kilometres (600 mi)
17 September Artemis P1 Lunar flyby Closest approach: 43,875 kilometres (27,263 mi) at 00:49 UTC[147]
30 September MESSENGER 3rd flyby of Mercury Gravity assist, closest approach: 229 kilometres (142 mi)[148]
9 October AV-020 Centaur Lunar impact 2,000-kilogram (4,400 lb) upper stage of the Atlas V rocket used to launch LRO and LCROSS. Impacted Cabeus crater[5] at Lunar South Pole.[149] Impact occurred at 11:31 UTC, and was observed by LCROSS.
LCROSS (S-S/C) Lunar impact 700-kilogram (1,500 lb) shepherding spacecraft. Detached from Centaur at 01:50 UTC, and impacted same crater at 11:37.
12 October Cassini 62nd flyby of Titan Closest approach: 1,300 kilometres (810 mi)
2 November Cassini 7th flyby of Enceladus Closest approach: 103 kilometres (64 mi)
13 November Rosetta 3rd flyby of Earth Gravity assist
21 November Cassini 8th flyby of Enceladus Closest approach: 1,607 kilometres (999 mi)
8 December Artemis P1 Lunar flyby Closest approach: 16,101 kilometres (10,005 mi) at 01:25 UTC[147]
12 December Cassini 63rd flyby of Titan Closest approach: 4,850 kilometres (3,010 mi)
28 December Cassini 64th flyby of Titan Closest approach: 955 kilometres (593 mi)
Distant, non-targeted flybys of Dione, Mimas, Rhea, Tethys and Titan by Cassini occurred throughout the year.

EVAs[edit]

Start Date/Time Duration End Time Spacecraft Crew Remarks
10 March
16:22
4 hours
49 minutes
21:11 Expedition 18
ISS Pirs
RussiaYuri Lonchakov
United StatesMichael Fincke
Installed the EXPOSE-R experiment, removed tape straps from a docking target on the Pirs docking compartment, inspected and photographed the exterior of the Russian portion of the station.[150][151]
19 March
17:16
6 hours
7 minutes
23:23 STS-119
ISS Quest
United StatesSteven Swanson
United StatesRichard R. Arnold
Installed the S6 truss to the S5 truss, connected S5/S6 umbilicals, released launch restraints, removed keel pins, stored and removed thermal covers, and deployed the S6 photovoltaic radiator.[152]
21 March
16:51
6 hours
30 minutes
23:21 STS-119
ISS Quest
United StatesSteven Swanson
United StatesJoseph M. Acaba
Advanced preparation of worksite for STS-127, installation of an unpressurised cargo carrier attachment system on the P3 truss, installation of a Global Positioning System antenna to the Kibo laboratory, and infrared imagery of panels of the radiators on the P1 and S1 trusses.[153][154] Cargo carrier installation unsuccessful
23 March
15:37
6 hours
27 minutes
22:04 STS-119
ISS Quest
United StatesJoseph M. Acaba
United StatesRichard R. Arnold
Relocation of a crew equipment cart, complete the deployment of a cargo carrier, lubricated the station robotic arm's latching end effector B snare bearings, and finish swapping electrical relays to the station's gyroscopes.[155] Cargo carrier deployment unsuccessful
14 May
12:52
7 hours
20 minutes
20:12 STS-125
Atlantis
United StatesJohn M. Grunsfeld
United StatesAndrew J. Feustel
HST servicing: Replaced the WFPC-2 with WFC-3, replaced the Science Instrument Command and Data Handling Unit, lubricated three shroud doors, installed SCM.[156][157][158]
15 May
12:49
7 hours
56 minutes
20:46 STS-125
Atlantis
United StatesMichael J. Massimino
United StatesMichael T. Good
HST servicing: Replaced rate sensing gyroscopes, removed one of two batteries.[159][160]
16 May
13:35
6 hours
36 minutes
20:11 STS-125
Atlantis
United StatesJohn M. Grunsfeld
United StatesAndrew J. Feustel
HST servicing: Replaced COSTAR with COS. Repaired ACS, performed get-ahead tasks from EVA-5.[161]
17 May
13:45
8 hours
2 minutes
21:47 STS-125
Atlantis
United StatesMichael J. Massimino
United StatesMichael T. Good
HST servicing: Repaired Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph.[162]
18 May
13:20
7 hours
2 minutes
20:22 STS-125
Atlantis
United StatesJohn M. Grunsfeld
United StatesAndrew J. Feustel
HST servicing: Final HST servicing EVA, final EVA from Space Shuttle. Replaced second battery, installed FGS-3, replaced some insulation and a low-gain antenna cover.[163][164][165]
5 June
07:52
4 hours
54 minutes
12:46 Expedition 20
ISS Pirs
RussiaGennady Padalka
United StatesMichael R. Barratt
Prepared the Zvezda service module transfer compartment for the arrival of the Poisk module, installed docking antenna for the module, photographed antenna for evaluation on the ground, and photographed the Strela-2 crane. First use of the Orlan-MK spacesuit.[166][167][168]
10 June
06:55
12 minutes 07:07 Expedition 20
ISS Zvezda
RussiaGennady Padalka
United StatesMichael R. Barratt
Internal spacewalk in the depressurised Zvezda transfer compartment, replaced one of the Zvezda hatches with a docking cone, in preparation for the docking of Poisk, later this year.[169]
18 July
16:19
5 hours
32 minutes
21:51 STS-127
ISS Quest
United StatesDavid Wolf
United StatesTimothy L. Kopra
JEF installed and P3 nadir UCCAS deployed. S3 zenith outboard PAS deploy postponed due to time constraints.
20 July
15:27
6 hours
53 minutes
22:20 STS-127
ISS Quest
United StatesDavid Wolf
United StatesThomas Marshburn
Transferred Orbital Replacement Units (ORUs) from the Shuttle Integrated Cargo Carrier (ICC) to the External Stowage Platform-3 (ESP-3). Transferred materials included a spare high-gain antenna, cooling-system pump module and spare parts for the Mobile Servicing System. JEF Visual Equipment (JEF-VE) installation on the forward section was postponed due to time constraints.
22 July
14:32
5 hours
59 minutes
20:31 STS-127
ISS Quest
United StatesDavid Wolf
United StatesChristopher Cassidy
JPM preparation work, ICS-EF MLI, and P6 battery replacement (2 of 6 units). EVA was cut short due to high levels of CO2 in Cassidy's suit.
24 July
13:54
7 hours
12 minutes
21:06 STS-127
ISS Quest
United StatesChristopher Cassidy
United StatesThomas Marshburn
P6 battery replacement (final 4 of 6).
27 July
11:33
4 hours
54 minutes
16:27 STS-127
ISS Quest
United StatesChristopher Cassidy
United StatesThomas Marshburn
SPDM thermal cover adjustment, Z1 patch panel reconfiguration, JEM visual equipment (JEM-VE) installation (forward and aft), and JEM-LTA reconfigurations. S3 Nadir PAS (outboard) deployment postponed to later mission.
1 September
21:49
6 hours
35 minutes
2 September
04:24
STS-128
ISS Quest
United StatesJohn D. Olivas
United StatesNicole P. Stott
Prepared for the replacement of an empty ammonia tank on the station's port truss by releasing its bolts. Retrieved the MISSE-6 and EuTEF experiments mounted outside Columbus, and stowed them in the Shuttle's payload bay for their return to Earth. Nicole Stott becomes the tenth woman to conduct a spacewalk.
3 September
22:13
6 hours
39 minutes
4 September
04:51
STS-128
ISS Quest
United StatesJohn D. Olivas
SwedenChrister Fuglesang
Removed the new ammonia tank from the shuttle's payload bay and replaced it with the used tank from the station. The new tank, weighing about 1,800 pounds (820 kg), was the most mass ever moved by spacewalking astronauts. With this spacewalk, Christer Fuglesang became the first person, who is not from either an American or Russian space program, to have participated in four or more spacewalks.
5 September
20:39
7 hours
1 minute
6 September
03:40
STS-128
ISS Quest
United StatesJohn D. Olivas
SwedenChrister Fuglesang
Prepared for the arrival of Tranquility by attaching cables between the starboard truss and Unity, the area where Tranquility will be installed. The spacewalkers also replaced a communications sensor device, installed two new GPS antennas, deployed the PAS on the S3 truss, and replaced a circuit breaker.
19 November
14:24
6 hours
37 minutes
21:01 STS-129
ISS Quest
United StatesMichael Foreman
United StatesRobert Satcher
Installed a spare antenna on the station's truss and a bracket for ammonia lines on Unity. Lubricated the grapple mechanism on the Payload Orbital Replacement Unit Attachment Device on the Mobile Base System and lubricated the snares of the hand of the station's Japanese robotic arm. Deployed the S3 outboard Payload Attach System.
21 November
14:31
6 hours
8 minutes
20:39 STS-129
ISS Quest
United StatesMichael Foreman
United StatesRandolph Bresnik
Installed the GATOR (Grappling Adaptor to On-Orbit Railing) bracket to Columbus and an additional ham radio antenna. Installed on the truss an antenna for wireless helmet camera video. Relocated the Floating Potential Measurement Unit that records electrical potential around the station as it orbits the Earth. Deployed two brackets to attach cargo on the truss.
23 November
13:24
5 hours
42 minutes
19:06 STS-129
ISS Quest
United StatesRobert Satcher
United StatesRandolph Bresnik
Installed a new High Pressure Gas Tank (HPGT) on the Quest airlock. Installed MISSE-7A and 7B on ELC-2. Strapped two micrometeoroid and orbital debris (MMOD) shields to External Stowage Platform #2. Relocated foot restraint, released a bolt on Ammonia Tank Assembly, installed insulated covers on cameras on mobile servicing system and Canadarm 2's end effector. Worked heater cables on docking adapter.

Orbital launch summary[edit]

By country[edit]

China: 6 Europe: 7 India: 2 International: 4 Iran: 1 Japan: 3 North Korea: 1 South Korea: 1 Russia: 29 USA: 24Circle frame.svg
Country Launches Successes Failures Partial
failures
Remarks
 China 6 5 0 1
 Europe 7 7 0 0
 India 2 2 0 0
United Nations International 4 4 0 0 Sea Launch / Land Launch
 Iran 1 1 0 0 First successful orbital launch[2]
 Japan 3 3 0 0
 North Korea 1 0 1 0
 South Korea 1 0 1 0 With Russian assistance
 Russia /
 CIS
29 28 1 0
 United States 24 23 1 0
World 78 73 4 1

By rocket[edit]

By family[edit]

Family Country Launches Successes Failures Partial failures Remarks
Angara  Russia 1 0 1 0 Maiden flight
Ariane  Europe 7 7 0 0
Atlas  United States 5 5 0 0
Delta  United States 11 11 0 0
Falcon  United States 1 1 0 0
H-II  Japan 3 3 0 0
Long March  People's Republic of China 6 5 0 1
Minotaur  United States 1 1 0 0
Pegasus  United States 1 0 1 0
PSLV  India 2 2 0 0
R-7  Russia 13 12 1 0
R-14  Russia 1 1 0 0
R-36  Ukraine 2 2 0 0
Safir  Iran 1 1 0 0 First successful launch[2]
Space Shuttle  United States 5 5 0 0
Unha  North Korea 1 0 1 0
Universal Rocket  Russia 13 13 0 0
Zenit  Ukraine /  Russia 4 4 0 0

By type[edit]

Rocket Country Family Launches Successes Failures Partial failures Remarks
Ariane 5  Europe Ariane 7 7 0 0
Atlas V  United States Atlas 5 5 0 0
Delta II  United States Delta 8 8 0 0
Delta IV  United States Delta 3 3 0 0
Dnepr  Ukraine R-36 1 1 0 0
Falcon 1  United States Falcon 1 1 0 0 Retired[4]
H-IIA  Japan H-II 2 2 0 0
H-IIB  Japan H-II 1 1 0 0 Maiden flight
Kosmos  Russia R-12/R-14 1 1 0 0
Long March 2  People's Republic of China Long March 3 3 0 0
Long March 3  People's Republic of China Long March 2 1 0 1
Long March 4  People's Republic of China Long March 1 1 0 0
Minotaur I  United States Minotaur 1 1 0 0
Naro  Russia
 South Korea
Angara 1 0 1 0 Maiden flight
Proton  Russia Universal Rocket 10 10 0 0
PSLV  India PSLV 2 2 0 0
Safir  Iran Safir 1 1 0 0
Soyuz  Russia R-7 11 11 0 0
Soyuz-2  Russia R-7 2 1 1 0
Space Shuttle  United States Space Shuttle 5 5 0 0
Taurus  United States Pegasus 1 0 1 0
Tsyklon  Ukraine R-36 1 1 0 0 Retired[3]
Unha  North Korea Unha 1 0 1 0
UR-100  Russia Universal Rocket 3 3 0 0
Zenit  Ukraine /  Russia Zenit 4 4 0 0

By configuration[edit]

By launch site[edit]

Site Country Launches Successes Failures Partial failures Remarks
Baikonur  Kazakhstan 24 24 0 0
Cape Canaveral  United States 11 11 0 0
Jiuquan  People's Republic of China 2 2 0 0
Kennedy  United States 5 5 0 0
Kwajalein Atoll  Marshall Islands 1 1 0 0
Kourou  France 7 7 0 0
MARS  United States 1 1 0 0
Ocean Odyssey United Nations International 1 1 0 0
Naro  South Korea 1 0 1 0 First launch
Plesetsk  Russia 8 7 1 0
Satish Dhawan  India 2 2 0 0
Semnan  Iran 1 1 0 0
Taiyuan  People's Republic of China 2 2 0 0
Tanegashima  Japan 3 3 0 0
Tonghae  North Korea 1 0 1 0
Vandenberg  United States 6 5 1 0
Xichang  People's Republic of China 2 1 0 1

By orbit[edit]

Orbital regime Launches Achieved Not Achieved Accidentally
achieved
Remarks
Failed to orbit 0 N/A 0 N/A 0 N/A 3
Low Earth 43 40 3 0 14 to ISS, 1 to HST
Medium Earth 3 3 0 2
Geosynchronous/transfer 24 23 1 0
High Earth 3 2 1 0 Including highly elliptical and Molniya orbits and trans-lunar trajectories.
Heliocentric 1 1 0 0

See also[edit]

References[edit]

Generic references:

Footnotes[edit]

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