Status Report

EO-1/SAC-C Spacecraft Successfully Launched

By SpaceRef Editor
November 21, 2000
Filed under ,

David Steitz

Headquarters, Washington, D.C.

(Phone: 202/358-1753)

Lynn Chandler

Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md.

(Phone: 301/614-5562)

Nancy Neal

Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md.

(Phone: 301/286-0039)

RELEASE: 00-133

Two new Earth orbiting missions, EO-1 and SAC-C, made their entrance into space this morning at 10:24 a.m. PST (1:24 p.m. EST) from the SLC 2 Western Test Range at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.

“We’re off to a good start,” said Dr. Bryant Cramer, New Millennium Program Manager at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. “This successful launch means that we are now able to test and validate key technologies that can enable new or more cost-effective approaches to conducting science missions in the 21st century.”

EO-1 was deployed first by a Delta 7320 into a 438 mile (705 kilometer) orbit approximately 60 minutes after launch. Thirty minutes later, SAC-C separated from the Delta rocket into a similar orbit. EO-1 will be operational for one year and SAC-C has a mission life-span of four years.

“The launch of SAC-C marks another step in Argentina’s emergence as a space-faring nation with a truly sophisticated Earth observing satellite,” said NASA SAC-C Program Scientist Dr. John LaBrecque. “SAC-C spans the breadth of space-borne applications from important observations of land and coastal zone environments to the testing of new technologies such as the development of space-borne techniques for disaster monitoring, a novel GPS remote sensing capability, and the study of the Earth’s deep interior. Argentina has even included an experiment to aid the recovery of the endangered Southern Right Whale. NASA, as one of the six international partners of the SAC-C mission, extends its congratulations to CONAE, the Argentine Space Agency. We look forward to a long and very successful mission.”

EO-1’s primary focus is to develop and test a set of advanced technology land imaging instruments. However, many other key instruments and technologies that will have wide ranging applications for future satellite development are also part of the mission.

Future NASA spacecraft are expected to be smaller, lighter and less expensive than current versions, and the EO-1 mission will provide the on-orbit demonstration and validation of several subsystem technologies to enable this transition.

The SAC-C mission is a collaboration between the United States, Argentina, Brazil, Denmark, France and Italy. The Commission on Space Activities (CONAE) is responsible for development of the spacecraft and several instruments. The Brazilian Space Agency provided the testing facilities for SAC-C. The Italian Space Agency has partnered with CONAE to supply both solar panels and two GPS receivers. The Danish Space Research Institute provided the Magnetic Mapping Payload which carries a NASA Supplied Helium Magnetometer, and the French Space Agency is contributing an experiment to test the response of electronic circuitry to space radiation.

The launch vehicle and some science instruments aboard SAC-C are provided by NASA. NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md., is responsible for overall project management, on behalf of NASA’s Earth Sciences Enterprise, Washington, DC. The Earth Science Enterprise is a long-term research program dedicated to understanding how human-induced and natural changes affect our global environment.

To learn more about EO-1 on the Internet, visit:

To learn more about SAC-C on the Internet, visit:

SpaceRef staff editor.