Discoverer 1

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Discoverer 1
Mission type Technology
Operator US Air Force
Harvard designation 1959 Beta 1
SATCAT № 13
Mission duration Failed to orbit
Spacecraft properties
Spacecraft type Corona Test Vehicle
Bus Agena-A
Start of mission
Launch date 28 February 1959, 21:49:16 (1959-02-28UTC21:49:16Z) UTC
Rocket Thor DM-18 Agena-A 163
Launch site Vandenberg LC-75-3-4
Orbital parameters
Reference system Geocentric
Regime Low Earth
Epoch Planned

Discoverer 1 was the first of a series of satellites which were part of the Corona reconnaissance satellite program. It was launched on a Thor-Agena rocket on February 28, 1959 at 1:49 PST from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. It was a prototype of the KH-1 satellite, but did not contain either a camera or a film capsule.[1] It was the first satellite launched toward the South Pole in an attempt to achieve polar orbit, but was unsuccessful. A CIA report, later declassified, concluded that "Today, most people believe the DISCOVERER I landed somewhere near the South Pole."[2]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Clayton K. S. Chun, Thunder Over the Horizon: From V-2 Rockets to Ballistic Missiles (Greenwood Publishing Group, 2006), pp74-75
  2. ^ David L. Hancock, Corona: America's First Satellite Program, By CIA Cold War Records, (Morgan James Publishing, LLC, 2005), p16

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