Encyclopedia Astronautica
Ferret


American military naval signals reconnaisance satellite. 19 launches, 1962.02.21 (Ferret 1) to 1971.07.16 (OPS 8373).

Still classified, Agena-launched Program 102 Ferret signals intelligence satellites provided the US with its first space-borne ELINT coverage in the 1960's. The Ferrets catalogued Soviet air defense radars, eavesdropped on voice communications, and taped missile and satellite telemetry. Also designated 698BK and Program 770.

AKA: Program 102; 698BK; Program 770.
Gross mass: 1,500 kg (3,300 lb).
First Launch: 1962.02.21.
Last Launch: 1971.07.16.
Number: 19 .

More... - Chronology...


Associated Countries
See also
  • Delta The Delta launch vehicle was America's longest-lived, most reliable, and lowest-cost space launch vehicle. Development began in 1955 and it continued in service in the 21st Century despite numerous candidate replacements. More...

Associated Launch Vehicles
  • Delta American orbital launch vehicle. The Delta launch vehicle was America's longest-lived, most reliable, and lowest-cost space launch vehicle. Delta began as Thor, a crash December 1955 program to produce an intermediate range ballistic missile using existing components, which flew thirteen months after go-ahead. Fifteen months after that, a space launch version flew, using an existing upper stage. The addition of solid rocket boosters allowed the Thor core and Able/Delta upper stages to be stretched. Costs were kept down by using first and second-stage rocket engines surplus to the Apollo program in the 1970's. Continuous introduction of new 'existing' technology over the years resulted in an incredible evolution - the payload into a geosynchronous transfer orbit increasing from 68 kg in 1962 to 3810 kg by 2002. Delta survived innumerable attempts to kill the program and replace it with 'more rationale' alternatives. By 2008 nearly 1,000 boosters had flown over a fifty-year career, and cancellation was again announced. More...
  • Thor Agena B American orbital launch vehicle. Two stage vehicle consisting of 1 x Thor DM-21 + 1 x Agena B More...
  • Thor Agena D American orbital launch vehicle. Two stage vehicle consisting of 1 x Thor DM-21 + 1 x Agena D More...
  • Thorad Agena D SLV-2H Thor Agena upgraded with Long Tank Thor stage. Variant with straight tank from Delta was Thorad (Long Tank Augmented Thrust Thor Delta) More...
  • Thorad Agena D SLV-2H Thor Agena upgraded with Long Tank Thor stage. Variant with straight tank from Delta was Thorad (Long Tank Augmented Thrust Thor Delta) More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • USAF American agency overseeing development of rockets and spacecraft. United States Air Force, USA. More...

Associated Programs
  • ELINT Various US electronic intelligence satellites, most of them from the Naval Research Laboratory, were orbited in the 1960's and still remain classified. More...

Bibliography
  • McDowell, Jonathan, Jonathan's Space Home Page (launch records), Harvard University, 1997-present. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • JPL Mission and Spacecraft Library, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, 1997. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • McDowell, Jonathan, Launch Log, October 1998. Web Address when accessed: here.

Associated Launch Sites
  • Vandenberg Vandenberg Air Force Base is located on the Central Coast of California about 240 km northwest of Los Angeles. It is used for launches of unmanned government and commercial satellites into polar orbit and intercontinental ballistic missile test launches toward the Kwajalein Atoll. More...
  • Vandenberg SLC1E Delta launch complex. Originally a Thor 75 SMS launch pad. Upgraded to a space launch complex in 1967. More...
  • Vandenberg SLC1W Delta launch complex. Originally a Thor 75 SMS launch pad. Upgraded to a space launch complex in 1966. More...
  • Vandenberg SLC2E Delta launch complex. Originally a Thor 75 SMS launch pad. Upgraded to a space launch complex in 1966. More...
  • Vandenberg SLC2W Delta launch complex. Originally a Thor 75 SMS launch pad. Upgraded to a space launch complex in 1966. More...

Ferret Chronology


1962 February 21 - . 18:44 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC1E. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Thor Agena B. LV Configuration: Thor Agena B 332 / Agena B 2301. FAILURE: Partial failure. Agena failed to restart to circularize orbit.. Failed Stage: 2.
  • Ferret 1 - . Payload: Ferret 1 / Agena B 2301. Mass: 1,500 kg (3,300 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: USAF. Class: Military. Type: Military naval signals reconnaisance satellite. Spacecraft: Ferret. Decay Date: 1962-03-04 . USAF Sat Cat: 242 . COSPAR: 1962-Delta-1. Apogee: 219 km (136 mi). Perigee: 169 km (105 mi). Inclination: 81.9000 deg. Period: 88.30 min.

1962 June 18 - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC1E. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Thor Agena B. LV Configuration: Thor Agena B 343 / Agena B 2312.
  • Ferret 2 - . Payload: Ferret 2 / Agena B 2312. Mass: 1,500 kg (3,300 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: USAF. Class: Military. Type: Military naval signals reconnaisance satellite. Spacecraft: Ferret. Decay Date: 1963-10-30 . USAF Sat Cat: 308 . COSPAR: 1962-Omega-2. Apogee: 377 km (234 mi). Perigee: 347 km (215 mi). Inclination: 82.1000 deg. Period: 91.80 min.
  • FTV 2312 - . Payload: Ferret 2. Nation: USA. Agency: USAF. Program: ELINT. Spacecraft: Ferret. Decay Date: 1963-10-30 . USAF Sat Cat: 308 . COSPAR: 1962-Omega-1. Apogee: 170 km (100 mi). Perigee: 161 km (100 mi). Inclination: 82.2000 deg. Period: 87.80 min.

1963 January 16 - . 21:59 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC1E. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Thor Agena B. LV Configuration: Thor Agena B 363 / Agena B 2313.
  • OPS 0180 - . Payload: Ferret 3 / Agena B 2313. Mass: 1,500 kg (3,300 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: NRO; USAF. Class: Military. Type: Military naval signals reconnaisance satellite. Spacecraft: Ferret. Decay Date: 1969-01-09 . USAF Sat Cat: 527 . COSPAR: 1963-003A. Apogee: 522 km (324 mi). Perigee: 461 km (286 mi). Inclination: 81.9000 deg. Period: 94.40 min.

1963 June 29 - . 22:30 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC1E. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Thor Agena B SLV-2A/B. LV Configuration: Thor SLV-2A Agena B 380 / Agena B 2314.
  • OPS 1440 - . Payload: Ferret 4 / Agena B 2314. Mass: 1,500 kg (3,300 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: USAF; CIA. Class: Military. Type: Military naval signals reconnaisance satellite. Spacecraft: Ferret. Decay Date: 1969-10-26 . USAF Sat Cat: 613 . COSPAR: 1963-027A. Apogee: 530 km (320 mi). Perigee: 487 km (302 mi). Inclination: 82.3000 deg. Period: 94.80 min.

1964 January 11 - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC1E. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Thor Agena D SLV-2. LV Configuration: Thor SLV-2A Agena D 390 / Agena D 2354.
  • Agena D 2354 - . Mass: 700 kg (1,540 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: USAF. Program: ELINT. Spacecraft: Ferret. USAF Sat Cat: 727 . COSPAR: 1964-001A. Apogee: 937 km (582 mi). Perigee: 906 km (562 mi). Inclination: 69.9000 deg. Period: 103.50 min. Summary: Space craft engaged in investigation of spaceflight techniques and technology (US Cat A). .

1964 February 28 - . 03:20 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC1E. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Thor Agena D SLV-2A/D. LV Configuration: Thor SLV-2A Agena D 402 / Agena D 2316.
  • OPS 3722 - . Payload: Ferret 5 / Agena D 2316. Mass: 1,500 kg (3,300 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: NRO; USAF. Class: Military. Type: Military naval signals reconnaisance satellite. Spacecraft: Ferret. Decay Date: 1969-02-19 . USAF Sat Cat: 759 . COSPAR: 1964-011A. Apogee: 516 km (320 mi). Perigee: 491 km (305 mi). Inclination: 82.1000 deg. Period: 94.70 min.

1964 July 2 - . 23:59 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC1E. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Thor Agena D SLV-2A/D. LV Configuration: Thor SLV-2A Agena D 409 / Agena D 2315.
  • OPS 3395 - . Payload: Ferret 6 / Agena D 2315. Mass: 1,500 kg (3,300 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: NRO; USAF. Class: Military. Type: Military naval signals reconnaisance satellite. Spacecraft: Ferret. Decay Date: 1969-08-07 . USAF Sat Cat: 824 . COSPAR: 1964-035A. Apogee: 520 km (320 mi). Perigee: 502 km (311 mi). Inclination: 82.1000 deg. Period: 94.90 min.

1964 November 4 - . 02:12 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC1E. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Thor Agena D SLV-2A/D. LV Configuration: Thor SLV-2A Agena D 430 / Agena D SS-01A 2317.
  • OPS 3062 - . Payload: Ferret 7 / Agena D 2317. Mass: 1,500 kg (3,300 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: NRO; USAF. Class: Military. Type: Military naval signals reconnaisance satellite. Spacecraft: Ferret. Decay Date: 1969-11-05 . USAF Sat Cat: 922 . COSPAR: 1964-072A. Apogee: 526 km (326 mi). Perigee: 512 km (318 mi). Inclination: 82.0000 deg. Period: 95.00 min.

1964 December 21 - . 19:08 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC2E. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Thor Agena D SLV-2A/D. LV Configuration: Thor SLV-2A Agena D 425 / Agena D SS-01A 2355.
  • OPS 3762/Agena D 2355 - . Nation: USA. Agency: NRO; USAF. Program: ELINT. Spacecraft: Ferret. Decay Date: 1965-01-11 . USAF Sat Cat: 964 . COSPAR: 1964-087A. Apogee: 264 km (164 mi). Perigee: 238 km (147 mi). Inclination: 70.1000 deg. Period: 89.50 min. Summary: Unknown mission. Space craft engaged in investigation of spaceflight techniques and technology (US Cat A)..

1965 July 17 - . 05:55 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC2W. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Thor Agena D SLV-2A/D. LV Configuration: Thor SLV-2A Agena D 422 / Agena D SS-01B 2702.
  • OPS 8411 - . Payload: Ferret 8 / Agena D 2702. Mass: 1,500 kg (3,300 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: NRO; USAF. Class: Military. Type: Military naval signals reconnaisance satellite. Spacecraft: Ferret. Decay Date: 1968-12-18 . USAF Sat Cat: 1447 . COSPAR: 1965-055A. Apogee: 512 km (318 mi). Perigee: 471 km (292 mi). Inclination: 70.2000 deg. Period: 94.50 min.

1966 February 9 - . 19:45 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC2W. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Thor Agena D SLV-2A/D. LV Configuration: Thor SLV-2A Agena D 428 / Agena D SS-01B 2703.
  • OPS 1439 - . Payload: Ferret 9 / Agena D 2703. Mass: 1,500 kg (3,300 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: NRO; USAF. Class: Military. Type: Military naval signals reconnaisance satellite. Spacecraft: Ferret. Decay Date: 1969-09-26 . USAF Sat Cat: 1997 . COSPAR: 1966-009A. Apogee: 511 km (317 mi). Perigee: 507 km (315 mi). Inclination: 82.0000 deg. Period: 94.70 min.

1966 December 29 - . 12:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC2W. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Thor Agena D SLV-2A/D. LV Configuration: Thor SLV-2A Agena D 459 / Agena D SS-01B 2731.
  • OPS 1584 - . Payload: Ferret 10 / Agena D 2731. Mass: 1,500 kg (3,300 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: NRO; USAF. Class: Military. Type: Military naval signals reconnaisance satellite. Spacecraft: Ferret. Decay Date: 1969-04-05 . USAF Sat Cat: 2634 . COSPAR: 1966-118A. Apogee: 495 km (307 mi). Perigee: 487 km (302 mi). Inclination: 75.0000 deg. Period: 94.40 min.

1967 July 25 - . 03:48 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC2W. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Thor Agena D SLV-2A/D. LV Configuration: Thor SLV-2A Agena D 496 / Agena D SS-01B 2732.
  • OPS 1879 - . Payload: Ferret 11 / Agena D 2732. Mass: 1,500 kg (3,300 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: NRO; USAF. Class: Military. Type: Military naval signals reconnaisance satellite. Spacecraft: Ferret. Decay Date: 1969-06-05 . USAF Sat Cat: 2890 . COSPAR: 1967-071A. Apogee: 608 km (377 mi). Perigee: 390 km (240 mi). Inclination: 75.1000 deg. Period: 94.50 min.

1968 January 17 - . 10:12 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC2W. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Thor Agena D SLV-2A/D. LV Configuration: Thor SLV-2A Agena D 498 / Agena D 2733.
  • OPS 1965 - . Payload: Ferret 12 / Agena D 2733. Mass: 1,500 kg (3,300 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: NRO; USAF. Class: Military. Type: Military naval signals reconnaisance satellite. Spacecraft: Ferret. Decay Date: 1970-07-07 . USAF Sat Cat: 3097 . COSPAR: 1968-004A. Apogee: 536 km (333 mi). Perigee: 462 km (287 mi). Inclination: 75.1000 deg. Period: 94.60 min.

1968 October 5 - . 11:16 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC1W. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Thorad Agena D SLV-2G. LV Configuration: Thorad SLV-2G Agena D 521 / Agena D 2734.
  • OPS 0964 - . Payload: Ferret 13 / Agena D 2734. Mass: 1,500 kg (3,300 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: NRO; USAF. Class: Military. Type: Military naval signals reconnaisance satellite. Spacecraft: Ferret. Decay Date: 1971-03-26 . USAF Sat Cat: 3472 . COSPAR: 1968-086A. Apogee: 511 km (317 mi). Perigee: 483 km (300 mi). Inclination: 75.0000 deg. Period: 94.60 min.

1969 July 31 - . 10:19 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC1W. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Thorad Agena D SLV-2G. LV Configuration: Thorad SLV-2G Agena D 523 / Agena D 2735.
  • OPS 8285 - . Payload: Ferret 14 / Agena D 2735. Mass: 1,500 kg (3,300 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: NRO; USAF. Class: Military. Type: Military naval signals reconnaisance satellite. Spacecraft: Ferret. Decay Date: 1973-01-04 . USAF Sat Cat: 4054 . COSPAR: 1969-065A. Apogee: 536 km (333 mi). Perigee: 465 km (288 mi). Inclination: 75.0000 deg. Period: 94.60 min.

1970 August 26 - . 10:01 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC1W. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Thorad Agena D SLV-2G. LV Configuration: Thorad SLV-2G Agena D 535 / Agena D 2736.
  • OPS 8329 - . Payload: Ferret 15. Mass: 1,500 kg (3,300 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: NRO; USAF. Class: Military. Type: Military naval signals reconnaisance satellite. Spacecraft: Ferret. Decay Date: 1975-03-26 . USAF Sat Cat: 4503 . COSPAR: 1970-066A. Apogee: 499 km (310 mi). Perigee: 496 km (308 mi). Inclination: 75.0000 deg. Period: 94.50 min.

1971 July 16 - . 10:50 GMT - . Launch Site: Vandenberg. Launch Complex: Vandenberg SLC1W. LV Family: Delta. Launch Vehicle: Thorad Agena D SLV-2H. LV Configuration: Thorad SLV-2H Agena D 550 / Agena D 2737.
  • OPS 8373 - . Payload: Ferret 16 / Agena D 2737?. Mass: 1,500 kg (3,300 lb). Nation: USA. Agency: NRO; USAF. Class: Military. Type: Military naval signals reconnaisance satellite. Spacecraft: Ferret. Decay Date: 1978-08-31 . USAF Sat Cat: 5329 . COSPAR: 1971-060A. Apogee: 460 km (280 mi). Perigee: 450 km (270 mi). Inclination: 74.9000 deg. Period: 93.60 min.

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