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Re: Why The Drift?

So now that we all know the Shuttle will perform "reboost" maneuvers
while docked to the ISS, one might wonder WHEN these might occur during
a mission.

A good source of info for this is http://spaceflight.nasa.gov/shuttle/

In particular the NASA TV Schedule, and the Orbital Elements in the
Realtime Data section.( http://spaceflight.nasa.gov/realdata/index.html )

The NTV schedule is frequently updated during missions and usually lists
the time for reboost maneuvers.

The state vectors given in Orbital Elements are PREDICTED positions.

If you update your keps with the next element set given for AFTER a
reboost (or any other maneuver) you should be pretty close.

During Shuttle missions the NASA Orbital Information Group page
( http://oig1.gsfc.nasa.gov ) provides state vectors for the shuttle that
are updated about once an hour.  

Also provided are tle's that are updated once or twice a day.

You will need DOS programs VEC2VIF and VEC2TLE to use the state vectors. 
They are available from Ken Ernandes' Orbitessera Web Site
( http://www.mindspring.com/~n2wwd/html/body_state_vectors.html )

The mission status reports are also a good place to look for info.
( http://spaceflight.nasa.gov/spacenews/reports/index.html )

During the STS-98 mission, the ISS orbit was raised 16 statute miles
in 4 reboost mauevers.

I hope this helps you keep tabs on future missions.


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