2008

This Month in NASA History

This year, as NASA celebrates its 50th anniversary, we’ll be highlighting technology innovations and important moments in NASA history, leading to our special 50th Anniversary Issue in October.

This Month in NASA History: On August 7, 1959, NASA launched the Explorer 6 satellite, which returned the first crude TV images of Earth from space. Explorer 6 was a small, spheroidal satellite designed to study trapped radiation of various energies, galactic cosmic rays, geomagnetism, radio propagation in the upper atmosphere, and the flux of micrometeorites. It also tested a scanning device designed for photographing the earth’s cloud cover. One of the satellite’s VHF transmitters failed on September 11, 1959, and the last contact with the payload was made on October 6, 1959. A total of 827 hours of analog and 23 hours of digital data was obtained.

Learn more about these events at //www.nasa.gov/50th.