Quote: Originally Posted by china
The Alouette Satellite: A great Canadian achievement.
1962-09-29 at 06:05:00 UTC
ON-ORBIT DRY MASS:
Astronomy; Solar Physics; Space Physics
Alouette 1 was a small ionospheric observatory instrumented with an ionospheric sounder, a VLF receiver, an energetic particle detector, and a cosmic noise experiment. Extended from the satellite shell were two dipole antennas (45.7- and 22.8-m long, respectively) which were shared by three of the experiments on the spacecraft. The satellite was spin-stabilized at about 1.4 rpm after antenna extension. After about 500 days, the spin slowed more than had been expected, to about 0.6 rpm when satellite spin-stabilization failed. It is believed that the satellite gradually progressed toward a gravity gradient stabilization with the longer antenna pointing earthward. Attitude information was deduced only from a single magnetometer and temperature measurements on the upper and lower heat shields. (Attitude determination could have been in error by as much as 10 deg.) There was no tape recorder, so data were available only from the vicinity of telemetry stations. Telemetry stations were located to provide primary data coverage near the 80 deg W meridian and in areas near Hawaii, Singapore, Australia, Europe, and Central Africa. Initially, data were recorded for about 6 h per day. In September 1972, spacecraft operations were terminated.
Alouette, Canada's first satellite
Great ,have to admit that I did not know that .What does it do ?
Science & Tech
29 9, 1962Tags:
Canada's first satellite was called Alouette. When Canada launched Alouette on September 29, 1962, Canada became the third country in the world to have a satellite in orbit, after the Soviet Union and the United States.
Alouette was an atmospheric studies satellite. Canadian scientists had been studying the ionosphere, an electrically charged layer of the atmosphere, from the Earth for many years. At this time, before communications satellites, radio signals could be transmitted over long distances by bouncing them off the ionosphere. But communicating this way is unreliable because the signals are often disrupted when the aurora borealis (also called northern lights) occur. To learn more about this phenomenon, scientists needed to probe the ionosphere from above as well as below. This was the purpose of Alouette.
Originally, Alouette was going to be an instrument package that would ride on an American satellite. At the suggestion of Dr. John Chapman from the Defence Research Telecommunications Establishment, however, Alouette became a full-blown Canadian satellite.
Alouette performed much better than everyone expected. Its intended lifespan was one year, but Alouette sent down information about the ionosphere for ten full years. Alouette produced over one million images of the top side of the ionosphere. The satellite was so successful that it even won an award. On January 22, 1987, the Engineering Centennial Board Inc. recognized Alouette as one of the ten most outstanding achievements of Canadian engineering over the last one hundred years.
Alouette might look simple by modern standards, but it brought Canada respect and attention from the international space community. It also set the stage for many other Canadian achievements in space. Even today, satellites are the central project of the Canadian space industry.