RE: Briz 3rd stage

From: Chris Peat (
Date: Wed Mar 20 2002 - 02:35:51 EST

  • Next message: Phillip Clark: "RE: Briz 3rd stage"

    Hi All,
    > On Tue, 19 Mar 2002, Paul J Henney wrote:
    > > I am a little confused about the sataus of the BRIZ 3 stage from Sundays
    > > ROCKOT launch..the website says that the stage was to carry out
    > a deorbit
    > > burn about 100 mins into the flight.
    > > Did this happen or is the stage still in orbit?
    As part of the GRACE team here at GSOC, I think I can answer this one. The
    Briz upper stage did indeed perform a de-orbit burn a few minutes after
    separation of the GRACE-1 and 2 spacecraft which happened about 90 minutes
    after launch. However, not enough fuel was left to bring down the perigee
    far enough to cause an immediate re-entry, but rather it was brought down to
    around 150 km and the rest of the job will be left to the atmosphere over
    the next few days.
    Both spacecraft are performing well apart from a minor problem with the
    gyros, and they should make an interesting sight flying in formation with
    about 200 km along track separation. Unfortunately, they are only currently
    visible from extreme latitudes. They are based on the same bus as the CHAMP
    satellite and so should have a similar intrinsic magnitude.
    Chris Peat
    Heavens-Above GmbH
    Web site:
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