Monday, March 17, 2008

50 Years of Vanguard-1

Today Vanguard-1 have completed 50 years in Earth orbit. Vanguard-1 was launched in March 17,1958. At present it is the oldest artificial satellite orbiting the earth. It is not functional now. It is the 4th artificial satellite launched.
Vanguard-1 was designed as a part of Project Vanguard to test the launch capabilities of 3-stage launch vehicle and the effects of the environment on a satellite and its systems in Earth orbit. Vanguard-1 had employed solar cells to power radio transmitters for the first time.
Vanguard-1 had helped cartographers in redrawing more accurate maps of islands in the Pacific Ocean. It also revealed that the earth is slightly pear-shaped rather than round.

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