Kounotori 4

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Kounotori 4
ISS-36 HTV-4 berthing 2.jpg
HTV-4 being grappled by the SSRMS on 9 August 2013
Mission type ISS resupply
Operator JAXA
COSPAR ID 2013-040A
SATCAT no. 39221
Mission duration 35 days
Spacecraft properties
Spacecraft type HTV
Start of mission
Launch date 3 August 2013, 19:48:46 (2013-08-03UTC19:48:46Z) UTC
Rocket H-IIB
Launch site Tanegashima Y2
Contractor Mitsubishi
End of mission
Disposal Deorbited
Decay date 7 September 2013, 06:37 (2013-09-07UTC06:38Z) UTC
Orbital parameters
Reference system Geocentric
Regime Low Earth
Perigee 281 kilometres (175 mi)
Apogee 302 kilometres (188 mi)
Inclination 51.6 degrees
Period 90.34 minutes
Epoch 5 August 2013[1]
Berthing at ISS
Berthing port Harmony nadir
RMS capture 9 August 2013, 11:22 UTC
Berthing date 9 August 2013, 15:28 UTC
Unberthing date 4 September 2013, 12:07 UTC
RMS release 4 September 2013, 16:20 UTC
Time berthed 25 days, 20 hours, 29 minutes
Cargo
Mass 5,400 kilograms (11,900 lb)
Pressurised 3,900 kilograms (8,600 lb)
Unpressurised 1,500 kilograms (3,300 lb)

Kounotori 4, also known as HTV-4, was the fourth flight of the H-II Transfer Vehicle, an unmanned cargo spacecraft launched in August 2013 to resupply the International Space Station. It launched from Tanegashima Space Center aboard H-IIB rocket on August 3, 2013 and connected to ISS by August 9, 2013; it carried 5.4 tons of cargo.[2] Kounotori 4 undocked on September 4, 2013 and was destroyed by reentry on 7 September 2013.[3][4]

Specifications[edit]

Major changes of Kounotori 4 from previous HTV are:

  • Although the previous Kounotori 3 used RCS thrusters by IHI Aerospace, Kounotori 4 uses the RCS manufactured by Aerojet, similar to HTV-1 and 2. This will be the last Kounotori to use Aerojet parts, and future Kounotori are to use IHI's.
  • One of the solar panels was replaced with a sensor module to measure the surface electrical potential when berthing to ISS.[5]
  • Continued improvement of ground operation to allow more late access cargo.
  • First time for Kounotori to reenter atmosphere with unpressurized waste cargo (a NASA engineering experiment module STP-H3).
  • The orbital trajectory after departure from ISS is adjusted so that the reentry is to coincide with ISS passing over, to allow the reentry to be observed from ISS.

Cargo[edit]

Kounotori 4 carries about 5.4 tonnes of cargo, consisting of 3.9 t in pressurized compartment and 1.5 t in unpressurized compartment.

Pressurized cargo include: CANA (Cabin network system for Kibo), Stirling-Cycle Refrigerator (FROST), ISS Cryogenic Experiment Storage Box (ICE Box), i-Ball reentry data recorder, four CubeSats (PicoDragon, ArduSat-1, ArduSat-X, TechEdSat-3), and Kirobo (robot companion for Koichi Wakata).

Unpressurized cargo are: MBSU (Main Bus Switching Units) and UTA (Utility Transfer Assembly) which are ISS system spare parts, and a NASA experiment module STP-H4 (Space Test Program - Houston 4).

Operation[edit]

Launch and rendezvous with ISS[edit]

Kounotori 4 was successfully launched atop a H-IIB carrier rocket flying from pad 2 of the Yoshinobu Launch Complex at Tanegashima at 19:48:46 UTC on 3 August 2013.

The H-IIB rocket carrying Kounotori 4 lifts off from the Tanegashima space center early on 4 August 2013 local time.

After 5.5 days of orbital manoeuvres, it arrived to Approach Initiation Point (5 km behind ISS) at 05:31, 9 August 2013 UTC,[6] and started the final approach sequence at 08:05.[7] The ISS's robotic arm SSRMS grappled Kounotori 4 at 11:22, and fastened to ISS's CBM on 16:32. All berthing operations were completed at 18:38.[8]

Operation while berthed to ISS[edit]

The ISS crew opened the hatch and entered to Pressurized Logistics Carrier at 11:11, August 10, 2013[9]

Departure from ISS and reentry to earth atmosphere[edit]

Kounotori 4 undocked from the ISS at 16:20, 4 September 2013 UTC, Karen Nyberg then used the stations Canadarm 2 to manoeuvre HTV-4 away from the station.[3]

Trajectory after the release was controlled so that the reentry coincides with ISS passing over to observe it. Japanese flight controllers have deorbited HTV-4 on 06:11, 7 September 2013 UTC, and it reentered to atmosphere around 06:37, 7 September 2013 UTC.[4]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ McDowell, Jonathan. "Satellite Catalog". Jonathan's Space Page. Retrieved 9 November 2013. 
  2. ^ NASA - Japanese Cargo Craft Captured, Berthed to Station (2013)
  3. ^ a b NASA (September 4, 2013). "Station Releases a White Stork and Awaits a Swan". Retrieved September 4, 2013. 
  4. ^ a b JAXA (7 September 2013). "Successful re-entry of H-II Transfer Vehicle "KOUNOTORI4" (HTV4)". Retrieved 1 December 2013. 
  5. ^ "Features of HTV4". Retrieved 29 July 2013. 
  6. ^ "KOUNOTORI4 Reaches 5km behind the ISS". JAXA. August 9, 2013. Retrieved August 15, 2013. 
  7. ^ "KOUNOTORI4 Resumes Approach to the ISS". JAXA. Retrieved August 15, 2013. 
  8. ^ "ISS Crew Completed KOUNOTORI4 Berthing Operation". JAXA. August 10, 2013. Retrieved August 15, 2013. 
  9. ^ JAXA (August 12, 2013). "ISS Crew Entered KOUNOTORI4 Pressurized Logistics Carrier (PLC). Transfer of the Exposed Pallet (EP) was Completed.". Retrieved August 15, 2013. 

References[edit]

External links[edit]