USA-207

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USA-207
PAN satellite patch.jpg
PAN mission patch
Mission typeSIGINT
COSPAR ID2009-047A
SATCAT no.35815
Spacecraft properties
BusA2100
ManufacturerLockheed Martin[1]
Start of mission
Launch date8 September 2009, 21:35:00 (2009-09-08UTC21:35Z) UTC[2]
RocketAtlas V 401
Launch siteCape Canaveral SLC-41
ContractorULA
Orbital parameters
Reference systemGeocentric
RegimeGeostationary
Perigee altitude35,778 kilometers (22,231 mi)[3]
Apogee altitude35,807 kilometers (22,249 mi)[3]
Inclination0.09 degrees[3]
Period1436.12 minutes[3]
Epoch10 January 2015, 14:22:18 UTC[3]
 

USA-207,[4] international COSPAR code 2009-047A,[5] also known as PAN, officially meaning Palladium At Night,[6] or P360[7] is a classified American SIGINT satellite,[8] which was launched in September 2009. The US government has not confirmed which of its intelligence agencies operate the satellite.[9] The spacecraft was constructed by Lockheed Martin, and is based on the A2100 satellite bus,[6] using commercial off-the-shelf components.[7] The contract to build PAN was awarded in October 2006, with the satellite initially scheduled to launch 30 months later, in March 2009.[10]

PAN was launched by United Launch Alliance using an Atlas V 401 carrier rocket, with the serial number AV-018. The launch, from Space Launch Complex 41 at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, occurred at 21:35 GMT on 8 September 2009, at the start of a 129-minute launch window.[11] PAN successfully separated from the rocket just under two hours after liftoff.[12]

PAN has shown an unusual history of frequent relocations, moving between at least 9 different orbital slots since launch. With each move, it was placed close to another commercial communications satellite.[8] As of late 2013 it is located at 47.7 deg E., over East Africa.

Gallery[edit]

The geostationary satellite PAN (2009-047A), along with two other (commercial) geostationary satellites photographed on 4 July 2011 (photo: Marco Langbroek, Leiden, the Netherlands)


References[edit]

  1. ^ Ray, Justin (9 July 2009). "Atlas rocket team continues active year of launches". Spaceflight Now. Retrieved 31 August 2009.
  2. ^ McDowell, Jonathan. "Launch Log". Jonathan's Space Page. Retrieved 21 January 2014.
  3. ^ a b c d e Peat, Chris (10 January 2015). "USA 207 - Orbit". Heavens-Above. Retrieved 25 January 2015.
  4. ^ McDowell, Jonathan (10 September 2009). "Issue 615". Jonathan's Space Report. Jonathan's Space Page. Retrieved 11 September 2009.
  5. ^ "Spacewarn Bulletin Issue 671". NASA NSSDC. 30 September 2009. Retrieved 6 July 2011.
  6. ^ a b Day, Dwayne (24 August 2009). "PAN's labyrinth". The Space Review. Retrieved 31 August 2009.
  7. ^ a b "New Horizons" (PDF). Lockheed Martin. December 2007. p. 7 (5 of PDF). Retrieved 6 September 2009.[permanent dead link]
  8. ^ a b Langbroek, Marco (31 October 2016). "A NEMESIS in the sky. PAN, Mentor 4 and close encounters of the SIGINT kind". The Space Review. Retrieved 27 November 2016.
  9. ^ Covault, Craig (26 May 2009). "Secret PAN satellite leads Cape milspace launch surge". Spaceflight Now. Retrieved 31 August 2009.
  10. ^ "Highlights" (PDF). Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company. Spring 2007. pp. 28 (29 of PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 26 June 2011. Retrieved 6 September 2009.
  11. ^ Clark, Stephen. "Worldwide Launch Schedule". Spaceflight Now. Retrieved 31 August 2009.
  12. ^ Malik, Tariq (30 August 2009). "Atlas 5 Rocket to Secret Satellite [sic]". Space.com. Archived from the original on 31 August 2009. Retrieved 31 August 2009.