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Launches and Orbital Operations


Tyneside, UK
2020 Feb 17
Monday, Day 48

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Zarya.info:



Go For Launch!

This page looks forward three months. It is more comprehensive and detailed than the simple launch lists that can be found on the webas it covers on-orbit events as well as re-entries and landings.

Once something reaches space, the menu on the left takes you to detailed lists of satellites and orbits, as well as information on those that failed to make it.

To see further into the future, go to zarya.info's Still In the Clean Room... page.

If there's something you might have missed, there is the Cleared the Tower! page that looks back over the last four weeks or so.

Dates and times are in UTC and are derived from a mix of open sources and private contacts within the industry. Notes are prepared through a combination of research, information released by satellite owners, operators and manufacturers, space agencies and launch service providers.

You can bookmark a short cut to here as https://www.zarya.info/321.


Nothing from this web page may be reproduced without express permission from the site owner who can be contacted via the mail icon on this page - see Copyright Notice at the foot of the page.


Starlink v1.0 Launch 4
Falcon 9 Block 5, CCAFS
2020 Feb 17, 15:05 UTC
(Approximate time)
Cluster of 60 broadband communications satellites for SpaceX. Aimed at 450 km orbit, 53° inclination. https://directory.eoportal.org/web/eoportal/satellite-missions/s/starlink The upper stage of the Falcon 9 will be caused to re-enter after about 1.5 circuits of the Earth and about two hours after lift-off. Any surviving fragments from its destructive re-entry will impact the southern Indian Ocean. Postponed from Jan due to weather.


SS Robert H Lawrence (Cygnus NG-13) Docking
ISS, on orbit
2020 Feb 18, 09:05 UTC
Capture by ISS RMS. Docking with ISS will occur about two hours later. NASA TV coverage from 07:30 UTC: https://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/nasatv/index.html#public http://www.ustream.tv/nasahdtv


JCSAT 17 & GEO-Kompsat 2B Launch
Ariane 5ECA (VA-252), CSG, French Guiana
2020 Feb 18, 22:18 UTC
Two comsats for geosynchronous transfer orbit. Time is the opening of a 62 min launch window. Launch kit: https://www.arianespace.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/02/VA252-launchkit-EN.pdf JCSat17 Comsat serving east Asia, owned jointly by Sky Perfect of Japan. Expected location 110° east. https://www.jsat.net/en/contour/satellite-fleet.html GEO-Kompsat 2B South Korean meteorological satellite for ocean and environmental monitoring around the Korean peninsula. Expected location 128°.2 east. https://www.kari.re.kr/eng/sub03_02_02.do


XJS Launch (possibly four satellites)
CZ 2D, Xichang SC, China?
2020 Feb 19, 21:08 UTC
(Approximate time)
New Technology Test Satellite(s), aimed initially at LEO around 28° inclination.


Meridian-M launch
Soyuz-2 1A + Fregat-M, Plesetsk SC, Russia
No earlier than
2020 Feb 20, 08:22 UTC
Launch time is +/-5 minutes and is an estimate based on relationship between orbit planes of satellites currently in space. Second Generation Military/government communications satellite - combines the military and civilian tasks of the former Molniya-1 and Molniya-3 satellites, together with the clandestine communications function of the former LEO Parus satellites. Launch is to an orbit plane close to Meridian 6 (38995/2012-063A) so will probably replace it operationally. Reserve date Feb 21, about 4 min earlier. Upper stage of the Soyuz launch vehicle is expected to re-enter above the southern Indian Ocean about 50 min after launch. The Fregat stage will take the satellite to HEO. Launch postponed shortly before planned lift-off on Jan 24 because of a fault in launcher stage 3 electrical wiring.


China launch
CZ 11, Xichang SC, China
No earlier than
2020 Feb 25
Payload details awaited.


SS Alan Bean (Cygnus NG-12) Re-entry
Indian Ocean
Approximate date
2020 Feb 28
Follows retro-fire.


Angara Test Launch
Angara-A5 + URM-1 upper stage, Plesetsk
No earlier than
2020 Mar 1
Second test mission of new heavy lift rocket. Payload details awaited. Date is very uncertain.


GLONASS-K Launch
Soyuz-2 1B + Fregat, Plesetsk SC
No earlier than
2020 Mar 1
Navigation satellite fill a gap in the constellation as a replacement for a failed satellite. Will receive number in the Cosmos series once in orbit.


LauncherOne Test Flight
Boeing 747 + LauncherOne, Mojave Air and Space Port, USA
No earlier than
2020 Mar 1
First orbital launch of Virgin Orbit's LauncherOne rocket. Will be released from Virgin's Boeing 747 'Cosmic Girl' above the Pacific Ocean off the Los Angeles region of California. Date is fluid. Payload is currently unknown. Date will probably slip.


Xingyun-2 01 and Xingyun-2 02 Launch
KZ-1A, Jiuquan SC, China
No earlier than
2020 Mar 1
Pair of internet comsats for polar orbit.


SAOCOM 1B (SAtélite Argentino de Observación COn Microondas) Launch
Falcon 9, CCAFS, USA
No earlier than
2020 Mar 1
Argentinean radar-imaging earth observation satellite. 2019 Nov - SpaceX changed launch site from Vandenberg to Cape Canaveral. Background: https://www.itu.int/en/ITU-R/space/workshops/2019-SatSymp/Presentations/206%20%20Passive%20Bands%20-%20SAOCOM%20-CONAE%20--Invap%20Argentina.pdf


Military/Government Payload
Minotaur 4 (NROL-129), Wallops FC, USA
2020 Mar 1
Payload details awaited.


GISat (GEO Imaging Satellite) 1
GSLV Mk2, Satish Dhawan SC, india
No earlier than
2020 Mar 2
Indian imaging satellite for geosynchronous orbit for monitoring ground events, particularly in connection with natural disasters.


SpaceX Dragon CRS-20
Falcon 9, Kennedy SC
Approximate date
2020 Mar 2, 06:45 UTC
Supplies to ISS, plus cargo return.


Starlink v1.0 Launch 5
Falcon 9 Block 5, CCAFS
No earlier than
2020 Mar 3
Cluster of 60 broadband communications satellites for SpaceX. Aimed at 450 km orbit, 53° inclination. https://directory.eoportal.org/web/eoportal/satellite-missions/s/starlink The upper stage of the Falcon 9 will be caused to re-enter after about 1.5 circuits of the Earth and about two hours after lift-off. Any surviving fragments from its destructive re-entry will impact the southern Indian Ocean.


Falcon Eye 2 Launch
Soyuz-ST A + Fregat-M (VS-24), CSG, French Guiana
2020 Mar 6, 01:53 UTC
United Arab Emirates' high resolution Earth observation satellite. Launch transferred to Soyuz at the customer's request following the loss of Falcon Eye 1 in the Vega launch failure 2019 Jul 11. Orbit will be sun-synchronous with LTDN 10:00. Precise launch time aimed for 01:53:03 UTC. Launch will carry additional payloads. Sun-synchronous with LTDN 10:30. Satellites in sun-synchronous orbit: https://www.zarya.info/Diaries/Launches/GeoSS/ss-Age.php


RISat 1A Launch
PSLV C-49, Satish Dharwan SC, Sriharikota, India
No earlier than
2020 Mar 8
Tentative date. Multi satellite launch aimed at 555 km orbit at 37° inclination. Manifest to be confirmed. RISat 1B Principal satellite on the launch. Indian satellite equipped with an Earth imaging radar as a follow-on to RISat 1 (38248/2012-017A). Kleos Three satellites in Kleos Space "Kleos Scouting Mission", a technology demonstrator for the company's proposed maritime surveillance service. Originally due to be carried by Rocket Labs Electron but moved because of scheduling problems. Lemur Four 3U Cubesats for earth observation and weather monitoring.


AEHF 6 Launch
Atlas V 551, CCAFS, USA
2020 Mar 13, 19:45 UTC
Advanced Extremely High Frequency military communications satellite. Time is the opening of a two hour launch window. Notes https://www.airforce-technology.com/projects/advanced-extremely-high-frequency-aehf/ Satellites in geosynchronous orbit: https://www.zarya.info/Diaries/Launches/GeoSS/geo-age.php


RISat 2BR2 and other passengers Launch
PSLV C-48 (QL version), Satish Dhawan SC, Sriharikota, India
No earlier than
2020 Mar 15
Multiple satellite launch to 555 km orbit at 37° inclination. RISat (Radar imaging Satellite) 2B Principal satellite on the launch. Indian remote sensing satellite equipped with an imaging radar.


GLONASS-M Launch
Soyuz-2 1B + Fregat-M, Plesetsk SC
Approximate date
2020 Mar 15
Navigation satellite fill a gap in the constellation as a replacement for a failed satellite. Will receive number in the Cosmos series once in orbit. Third stage of the Soyuz launch vehicle will be caused to re-enter above the southern Pacific Ocean, in an area south of Australasia, about 55 min after lift-off.


Bars-М 3 Launch
Soyuz-2 1A, Plesetsk SC
No earlier than
2020 Mar 16
Military imaging and cartography satellite. Will receive a number in the Cosmos series once it reaches orbit.


OneWeb Launch 3
Soyuz-2 1B + Fregat, Baikonur SC, Russia
No earlier than
2020 Mar 18
Cluster of 30-35 satellites for the OneWeb constellation of broadband distribution satellites. The precise quantity will be advised nearer the date. https://oneweb.world/technology Aimed at 1200km orbit at 88° inclination.


Kepler Launch
Soyuz-2, Plesetsk, Russia
No earlier than
2020 Apr 1
Pair of LEO comsats for Kepler Communications/Innovative Space Logistics. As of 2010 October, date given as 2nd or third quarter 2020.


OTV-6 Launch
Atlas V 501 (AFSPC-7), Cape Canaveral AFS, USA
No earlier than
2020 Apr 1
Sixth mission for X-37B space plane, probably using flight vehicle #1. Payload is classified.


Galaxy 30 and MEV-2 Launch
Ariane 5ECA, CSLG, French Guiana
No earlier than
2020 Apr 1
Comsat for Intelsat to be located at 125° west. https://www.northropgrumman.com/Capabilities/CommunicationsSatellites/Documents/Galaxy30.pdf Second Northrop Grumman Mission Extension vehicle. Detailed mission awaited. https://www.northropgrumman.com/Capabilities/SpaceLogistics/Documents/MEV_Factsheet.pdf Satellites in geosynchronous orbit: https://www.zarya.info/Diaries/Launches/GeoSS/geo-age.php


Soyuz MS-15 Return to Earth
ISS ==> Kazakhstan
Approximate date
2020 Apr 1
Carrying Oleg Skripotchka, Jessica Meir and Drew Morgan. NASA TV coverage: https://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/nasatv/index.html#public http://www.ustream.tv/nasahdtv


STP-27RM Launch
Electron, Wallops Island, USA
2020 Apr 1
Air Force Research Laboratory satellite.


Express 80 & Express 103 Launch
Proton-M + Briz-M, Baikonur
No earlier than
2020 Apr 3
Pair of Russian satellites for GEO. Express 80 - Domestic comsat owned by RSCC (the Russian Satellite Communications Company), aimed at 80° east longitude. Express 103 - Domestic comsat owned by RSCC (the Russian Satellite Communications Company), aimed at 96°.5 east longitude.


Soyuz MS-16 Launch
Soyuz-2 1A, Baikonur SC
Approximate date
2020 Apr 9
Carrying Nikolai Tikhonov & Andrei Babkin (Roscosmos) and Chris Cassidy (NASA) to ISS. Third seat was originally allocated to Akihiko Hoshide (JAXA) but NASA planning pushed him off the flight. First piloted Soyuz to use Soyuz-2 1A launch vehicle. NASA TV coverage: https://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/nasatv/index.html#public http://www.ustream.tv/nasahdtv


Cosmonautics Day - Anniversary
2020 Apr 12
Anniversary of the first Human spaceflight - Yuri Gagarin in Vostok. Established 1962 April 9 by Decree of the Praesidium of the Supreme Soviet of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. TASS: http://www.zarya.info/Diaries/Vostok/VostokTASS.php Vostok Chronology: http://www.zarya.info/Diaries/Vostok/Vostok.php


Piloted spacecraft test launch
CZ 5B, Wenchang SC, China
No earlier than
2020 Apr 14
Test mission of new generation piloted spacecraft. No cew will be carried. First mission for CZ 5B launch vehicle.


Progress MS-14 Launch
Soyuz-2 1A, Baikonur SC
No earlier than
2020 Apr 25


Kounotori 9 (HTV 9) Launch
H-IIB, Tanegashima SC
No earlier than
2020 May 1
Supplies to ISS.


Aditya L1
PSLV-XL, Satish Dhawan SC, India
No earlier than
2020 May 1
Indian solar studies mission. To be placed in halo orbit around the Earth-Sun L1 Lagrange Point.


Virgin LauncherOne
Boeing 747 + LauncherOne, Mojave Air and Space Port, USA
No earlier than
2020 May 1, 09:00 UTC
Will be released from Virgin's Boeing 747 'Cosmic Girl' above the Pacific Ocean off the Los Angeles region of California. Carrying NASA's ELaNa 20 batch of ten Cubesats: PolarCube - University of Colorado at Boulder, Boulder, Colorado MiTEE - University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan CACTUS-1 - Capitol Technology University, Laurel, Maryland Q-PACE - University of Central Florida, Orlando, Florida TechEdSat-7 - NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, California RadFXSat-2 - Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tennessee EXOCUBE California Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo, California CAPE-3 - University of Louisiana at Lafayette, Lafayette, Louisiana PICS - Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah INCA - New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, New Mexico


Crew Dragon mission 2
Falcon 9, Kennedy SC
Approximate date
2020 May 7
First SpaceX mission to carry a crew. Planned to carry NASA passengers to ISS. To be flown by SpaceX astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken. Duration not yet set. Actual date will move earlier or later - dependent on external. factors such as ISS planning.



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