I said: ...From what I can determine this is the very first high inclination Atlas-Centaur mission (e.g. > 30 degrees). Launch azmiuth was 45 degrees.... Bill Bard replied: >The only possible launches at a higher inclination or a more northerly >launch azimuth that I can think of off hand might be a lunar (surveyor) >or planetary (Mariner 8/9) launch. They might not have gone into earth >orbit and they probably weren't much higher than 40 deg inclination, but >that's just a guess. and firstname.lastname@example.org (Jonathan McDowell) said: >High inc Centaur flights to date include HEAO 3 at 43 deg, >That's the record before now; Mariner and Pioneer were in the >28 to 34 deg range in their parking orbit phases. So this >flight is a new record. > Jonathan McDowell Hmm, I don't suppose anybody believes that that was a typo and I intended to say 50 degress ... I was aware of the various LEO and planetary Atlas-Centaurs and tried to phrase my comment to take those in to account. But there have been 63.4 degree _Centaurs_ before -- using the Titan IV launch vehicle instead of an Atlas. Of course all of those launched satellites which may or may not exist, so we really shouldn't talk about them. ;-) In any case new Centaur inclination records will be set next year when the upgrades are completed at SLC-3E at Vandenberg. The single-stage Atlas pad there is being upgraded to support Centaurs for heavy LEO polar payloads such as NASA's Mission to Planet Earth (or whatever it's been renamed). What's interesting is it will mark the first use of a Centaur and liquid hydrogen at Vandenberg. There were previous programs which were supposed to use hydrogen at Vandenberg (SLC-6 for Shuttle, SLC-7 for Titan IV-Centaur) but were cancelled before their first flights. Philip Chien, KC4YER Earth News world (in)famous writer, science fiction fan, ham radio operator, all-around nice guy, etc.