Wednesday, August 7, 2013

This Day in History: Aug 7, 1959: U.S. satellite photographs earth

 File:Explorer 6 paddles up.jpg

From the Atlantic Missile Range in Cape Canaveral, Florida, the U.S. unmanned spacecraft Explorer 6 is launched into an orbit around the earth. The spacecraft, commonly known as the "Paddlewheel" satellite, featured a photocell scanner that transmitted a crude picture of the earth's surface and cloud cover from a distance of 17,000 miles. The photo, received in Hawaii, took nearly 40 minutes to transmit.

File:Thor-Able III Explorer 6.jpg

Released by NASA in September, the first photograph ever taken of the earth by a U.S. satellite depicted a crescent shape of part of the planet in sunlight. It was Mexico, captured by Explorer 6 as it raced westward over the earth at speeds in excess of 20,000 miles an hour.

File:First satellite photo - Explorer VI.jpg

Taken from: [07.08.2013]

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