Celestis launch

Launch of The Ad Astra Flight,
Feb. 10, 1998, Vandenberg Air Force Base, California


The successful launch of The Ad Astra Flight -- the second satellite of the Celestis Earthview Service -- occurred Tuesday February 10, 1998 at 5:21 a.m. Pacific Standard Time. Over two dozen participants were on board this launch. Read their stories...

Family members and other partners received an invitation to the launch. They also attended a tour of the launch site and viewed the Taurus vehicle on the pad. A memorial service was conducted for family members in nearby Lompoc, California.

The launch occurred from Vandenberg Air Force Base, California aboard a Taurus rocket provided by Orbital Sciences Corporation. The Celestis spacecraft was attached to the final stage of the Taurus. The vehicle's primary payloads were Geosat Follow On (GFO) -- a Navy satellite -- and two Orbcomm communication satellites.

The rocket placed the Celestis 03 spacecraft into a near polar orbit with the following initial parameters:

Apogee: 874 km (546.25 miles)
Perigee: 782.4 km (488.75 miles)
Orbital period: 101.4 minutes
14.2 revolutions per day
Inclination: 108 degrees
Estimated Orbital Lifetime: 240 years

The spacecraft (desginated as "CELESTIS 03/TAURUS R/B") is still on orbit and can be tracked here.

Click map to track current position of The ad astra Flight

Satellite Track



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