ISS-65 mission


ISS crew:

Commander -
Akihiko Hoshide

Flight engineers:
leg Novitskiy
Petr Dubrov
Mark Vande Hei
Robert Shane Kimbrough
Megan McArthur
Tomas Pesquet



October 6, 2011.
Intelsat 18 spacecraft was delivered into target orbit

The rocket and space system Zenith-3SLB consisting of a launch vehicle (LV) Zenit-2SB with the upper stage Block DM-SLB has put the 3.2-ton telecommunications spacecraft Intelsat 18 into its target geotransfer orbit.

The launch under the Land Launch program occurred at 01:00:02 Moscow Time.

The first burn of the main engine on the upper stage occurred ~2 seconds after the separation of the upper composite consisting of the upper stage + SC from the LV second stage (8 minutes 35 seconds into the flight). The engine, having run for ~4 minutes, brought the upper composite to the reference low-Earth orbit.

The second and third burns of the upper stage main engine took the SC from the reference orbit to the target orbit with parameters close to design values (5523,1 km perigee altitude, 35782,6 km apogee altitude, 19.5 degree inclination).

The second burn occurred ~1 hour 21 minutes after the launch, the engine ran for ~5.4 minutes. The third burn occurred ~6 hour 22 minutes after the launch, the engine ran for ~1.5 minutes.

The SC separated from the upper stage while being in the geotransfer orbit, at ~7 hours 34 minutes 29 seconds Moscow Time.

The mission control for the upper stage with the SC was provided by the Technical Management (The Technical Manager is the President and Designer General of the S.P.Korolev RSC Energia V.A.Lopota). The mission analysis was conducted by RSC Energia specialists within the Lead Operations Control Team working at the Mission Control Center for upper stages and unmanned spacecraft (RSC Energia at Korolev). The Flight Director was the RSC Energia First Deputy General Designer V.A.Soloviev.

The mission plan, which called for three burns of the upper stage main engine in automatic mode, has been fully completed. The spacecraft control has been handed over to the Customer.

The functioning of the upper stage systems was continuously monitored via telemetry data coming into the Mission Control Center using outside assets for data reception and transmission.


For reference:

  1. This launch was the fifth launch for the Land Launch project, which is a land-based version of the Sea Launch project and is based at Baikonur launch site.
  2. Upper stage Block DM-SLB is a modification of the DM-type upper stages belonging to the D and DM family of upper stages developed at S.P.Korolev RSC Energia, and is based on modification DM-SL operated under the Sea Launch program, and has state-of-the-art on-board systems (control system, radio system, thermal control system, etc.)
  3. Upper stages of Block DM type developed and manufactured by RSC Energia were designed for transporting spacecraft from low-Earth orbits to high-energy orbits, including GEO, as well as for spacecraft injection into trajectories that would take them to the Moon and planets of our solar system. Present-day modifications of the upper stage are operated together with LVs Proton and Zenit.
  4. Intelsat 18 spacecraft is intended for providing telecommunication services in the western Pasific coast of the United States, North America, Eastern Asia, Australia, New Zeland, New Caledonia and islands in the Pacific. The spacecraft GEO slot is located at 180 deg. West.



October 5, 2021
The launch of LV Soyuz-2.1a with SC Soyuz MS-19 is planned
July 21, 2021
LV Proton-M with MLM Nauka is launched



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