wardialer From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 1193 posts, RR: 0 Posted (3 years 1 month 2 days 11 hours ago) and read 7473 times:
There is supposed to be a scheduled mid June landing of the OTV-2 in Vandenberg AFB.
I just want to know how would the civilian type ATC controller can communicate with the unnanned space orbiter to separate its landing pattern from normal commercial aviation traffic?? Would the High Altitude ARTCC controller would handle its glide pattern into the VBG area or all comm frequencies are ONLY handled by its own Vandenberg ATC?
And does anyone know if the landing pattern to VBG would be landing from the ocean or landing from the east? What would be the OTV-2's nornal landing pattern? Does anyone have a map? O looked on Spaceflightnow and I coulnt located it.
I would expect it to be a lot like how civilian ATC communicates with UAV being flown in California, Arizona and Texas almost daily.
The unmanned aircraft has to have a two-way radio for communication with the remote pilot. Using that link to communicate from the craft to the local ATC via normal VHF would be easy technically. So would using a landline link that works at the ATC center just like another aircraft radio - only better reception.
However, one thing about returning spacecraft - the necessary airspace is cleared. The civilian ATC only monitors what NASA / USAF is doing with the craft - and watches for any GA or other civilian aircraft violating the TFR area. There will be chase planes in the air - probably supersonic T-38s - so ATC could communicate with them once the spacecraft enters normal airspace.
wardialer From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 1193 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (3 years 1 month 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 7421 times:
I do not not think the mission is CLASSIFIED as it comes on the N2YO Tracking system like here. Designation is USA-226. http://www.n2yo.com/?s=37375
Think about it, If it would be CLASSIFIED, then the tracking system would not be able to track it in the first place.
And I wonder what the control avionics control room looks like. Probable the standard Heads UP Display with a few modern modifications. Is it similar to a UAV drone control room to remotely glide this thing in?
jgarrido From Guam, joined Mar 2007, 340 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (3 years 1 month 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 6815 times:
I don't know but just looking at pictures of the x-37 it looks like it returns to earth as a glider much like the space shuttle. That's one big difference between it and other UAVs. I don't know the details of how the space shuttle reentry was handled but there isn't a lot of reason for it to be contact with ATC. There would be a very limited profile that reentry vehicle would fly and would be able to fly. ATC isn't going to give them a vector for traffic or have them level off or a little bit. I would imagine there's sterile airspace along that profile plus a wide margine for error and ATC keeps all aircraft under their control clear of it.
BigJKU From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 883 posts, RR: 11
Reply 8, posted (3 years 1 month 13 hours ago) and read 6645 times:
Quoting sweair (Reply 7): What might be the mission? As the orbit is filled with spy satellites it should not be something like that IMO. Maybe they are mapping the competition up there?
If someone made me guess the X-37 exist to be a rapidly reconfigurable payload bus for various types of military sats with the focus being on securing space based assets in an environment where others have anti-sat capability. If you think about the time lines here the X-37 was moved from NASA as a research project to the DOD roughly in time with China's move to demonstrate an ASAT capability.
2004- X-37 to DOD through DARPA
2005- First public test shot of a Chinese ASAT missile
2006- USAF officially moves to develop X-37B
2007- First full up ASAT test by China
If you look at some of the requirements the DOD has put on the X-37 it becomes a bit more clear in my eyes. The thing has to have a high delta-v to allow it to move around in orbit and also make it a much more difficult target. It is supposed to be able to refuel satellites itself which will allow them to keep moving and be much more difficult targets without diminishing their overall life through fuel depletion.
I think the X-37 is all about securing space assets as best as possible from ASAT's. Though it probably has other functions its reason for being is that it can help keep crucial satellites alive during a conflict as well as fill some of those functions itself with a configurable payload.
sweair From Sweden, joined Nov 2011, 1836 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (3 years 1 month 12 hours ago) and read 6609 times:
Quoting BigJKU (Reply 8): If you look at some of the requirements the DOD has put on the X-37 it becomes a bit more clear in my eyes. The thing has to have a high delta-v to allow it to move around in orbit and also make it a much more difficult target. It is supposed to be able to refuel satellites itself which will allow them to keep moving and be much more difficult targets without diminishing their overall life through fuel depletion.
Would it be possible to bring some kind of weapon with it? To take out your opponents satellites? Small battle rams?
SLCPilot From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 616 posts, RR: 2
Reply 10, posted (3 years 1 month 12 hours ago) and read 6601 times:
I don't know much about orbital mechanics, or even space war-fare beyond a layman's understanding.
It seems to me what the X-37B may or may not be doing in orbit is unremarkable in that it's mission could have been done by any space platform. It's "special" capability is that it can return to earth, something most other platforms cannot do. Whether it can change it's orbit, refuel or monitor other platforms is not related to it's abilty to return to earth.
Is there a payload that is so valuable that it merits a whole return system? Maybe so. Could it be a "bus" for multiple micro sats? Who knows?
PS, For what it's worth, I witnessed the launch of the X-37B from about 10 miles to the east of the pad at 10,500'. It was pretty cool!
I don't like to be fueled by anger, I don't like to be fooled by lust...
It states that this is a CLASSIFIED mission. Every morning, the same the time, the path passes through these high profile countries which I listed above. But what I find odd and VERY VERY strange, that if the Mission is CLASSIFIED, then why would they let the general public track this thing?
So in theory, that makes me to believe that it is NOT a spying experiment. If the mission were to be a spying mission, then the online satelllite tracking system would not be even displaying the OTV-2 orbital data in the first place.
SSTeve From United States of America, joined Dec 2011, 901 posts, RR: 1
Reply 13, posted (3 years 1 month 10 hours ago) and read 6541 times:
Quoting wardialer (Reply 12): So in theory, that makes me to believe that it is NOT a spying experiment. If the mission were to be a spying mission, then the online satelllite tracking system would not be even displaying the OTV-2 orbital data in the first place.
MD11Engineer From Germany, joined Oct 2003, 14533 posts, RR: 62
Reply 15, posted (3 years 1 month 8 hours ago) and read 6467 times:
Quoting wardialer (Reply 12): It states that this is a CLASSIFIED mission. Every morning, the same the time, the path passes through these high profile countries which I listed above. But what I find odd and VERY VERY strange, that if the Mission is CLASSIFIED, then why would they let the general public track this thing?
How do you want to prevent hobbyists from tracking the satellite? All you´ll need is clear sky, an accurate clock and a good telescope with equipment to measure the azimute and vertical angles. If you got a number of measurements (with the corresponding times included), you can calculate the orbit. Most orbits of satellites are known and even published in a UN database to prevent satellites from interfering with each other.