The First Explorer

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#91638 by @ 13.08.2006 00:00 - nach oben -
The First Explorer


Explanation:

Inaugurating the era of space exploration for the US,
the
First Explorer
,
a thirty pound satellite, was launched
into Earth orbit on February 1, 1958 by the
Army Ballistic Missle Agency.

Explorer I
carried instruments to measure temperatures,
micrometeorite impacts, and an experiment designed by
James A.
Van Allen
to measure
the density of electrons and ions in space.

The measurements made by Van Allen's experiment led to an unexpected and
startling
discovery
-- an earth-encircling belt of high energy electrons
and ions trapped in the
magnetosphere
now known as the
Van
Allen Radiation Belt
.

Explorer I ceased transmitting on February 28 of that year but
remained in orbit until March of 1970.

Pioneering astrophysicist
James Van Allen died on August 9th
at the age of 91.




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