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RELEASE NO: Press Kit 63-1322

A.M.'s Sunday

June 16, 1963

SEVENTH TIROS SATELLITE TO BE LAUNCHED The seventh launching in the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's TIROS meteorological satellite series is
scheduled for no earlier than June 18, 1963, at Cape Canaveral,

Florida. The launching is tired to permit the satellite to obtain
earth cloud cover pictures over hurricane and typhoon breeiing

areas during the forthcoming 1963 tropical storm season. The new satellite also will carry two infra-red experiments to measure earth-sun heat-balance radiation relationships as well as an electron temperature and density probe, the first such device to be used on a TIROS spacecraft.


-2TIROS is an abbreviation for Television Infra-Red Observation Satellite. If successfully placed in orbit, the seventh TIROS will set new U.S. achievement records in space: seven consecu-

tive TIROS satellites in orbit in seven tries, and 18 straight successful satellite launchings for the reliable three-stage Delta booster vehicle. TIROS will circle the earth in a 400-

mile orbit about once every hour and 38 minutes. Like two previous satellites of the series--TIROS V and VI --the launch path of the new TIROS extends in a northeasterly direction from Cape Canaveral, parallel to the east coast of the U.S., out over the North Atlantic into an orbit with an angle of inclination of 58 degrees to the Equator. Although

NASA technicians will concentrate the satellite's camera coverage on tropical storm areas, the angle of inclination will permit cloud cover picture coverage over an area ranging almost from the Arctic to the Antarctic. While in its first ten days of operation, TIROS cameras will be oriented to photograph portions of the Northern Hemisphere. It will ther± pass into the Southern Hemisphere for about five weeks before returning north again at the time when Atlantic Ocean tropical storm activity is normally at its greatest intensity. The flight plan of the satellite is such that it should

be over storm breeding areas in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans -more-

-3during the critical late summer and early fall periods when most tropical storms are spawned. Physically, the new TIROS will resemble its six predecessor "weather eyes in space." This time, as part of the continuing TIROS research and development program conducted by NASA, the satellite will use the wide-angle Elgeet lens in both cameras as did TIROS III. This 104-degree lens, with its wide area of coverage--about 750 miles on a side when pointed straight down from a 400-mile orbit--is especially well suited for the tropical 9torm-hunter mission. The second wide angle lens replaces the medium angle (76 degrees) lens used in TIROS IV, V and VI. Since its inception the TIROS meteorological satellite program has been uniquely successful. As the world's first weather satellite, TIROS has not only proved the feasibility of the weather satellite concept from a technical standpoint, but in its three years' existence it has opened new doors in the science of weather forecastinzg and meteorological research. The TIROS.System The TIROS satellite is a cylindrical, 297-pound, 18-sided polygon resembling a bass drum or an oversized hat box. It is 22 inches high and 42 inches in diameter. Its sides and top

are covered with more than 9,000 solar cells which, when exposed to the sun's rays, produce electrical power to recharge the -more-

-4satellite's 63 nickel-cadmium batteries. Protruding from

its top is an 18-inch receiving antenna through which groundbased commands are received. At the bottom, four 22--inch

transmitting whip antennas are spaced at 90-degree intervals. Through these antennas the satellite's transmitters relay TV pictures, infra-red data and telemetry information relating to spacecraft temperature, pressure, battery charge levels, spin rate and so forth. TV Cameras: Two independent television camera systems, capable of separate or simultaneous operation, make up the heart of the TIROS satellite. These cameras are aligned parallel to the

satellite's spin axis and extend several inches below the baseplate. Each camera system consists of a Vidicon tube and a

focal plare shutter which permits pictures to be stored on the tube face plate for a brief period. An electron beam converts

a "stored" picture into a TV-type electronic signal which is then radioed to a ground station or processed onto a unique magnetic tape recorder for read-out when the satellite is within a 1,500-mile radius of a ground station. Up to 64 pictures--32 on each tape---can be recorded and stored by TIROS during each orbit. Rea(d-out, which takes about

three minutes, is accomplished at a gror:nd station by radio comnmend. This process automatically erases the tapes which are

then rewound and ready for use when the satellite begins another orbit around the world, -more-

-5Operation of the cameras, by direct read-out or magnetic tape storage techniques, is based on radio commands relayed from a ground station. These commands set timers in the satel-

lite which activate the camera system when the satellite passes over an area from whichcloud cover pictures are desired.

At the ground stations, which are located at the NASA Wallops Station, Wallops Island, Va., and at San Nicholas Island, Pacific Missile Range, Calif., TV pictures received from the satellite are flashed on special kinescopes and photographed by 35 mm cameras. Meteorologists at both stations analyze the photo-

graphic data almost immediately. Control Devices: The basic TIROS control devices are similar to those employed in the earlier spacecraft. They include a horizon

scanner, a north indicator, a magnetic attitude control system as well as mechanisms to control the spin rate and maintain inflight stability. The horizon scanner uses an infra-red sensor mounted on the rim of the satellite to determine when its field of view crosses the earth's horizon. This data is telemetered to a ground station

by the tracking beacon and helps technicians determine the satellite's position in space relative to the earth.


-6The north indicator consists of nine sun sensors spaced equally around the sides. These sensors permit measuring the The infor-

position of the spacecraft with respect to the sun.

mation is telemetered to ground stations where computers determine sun-angles in order that technicians can orient north in each picture received. The magnetic attitude control system consists of a simple wire coil around the outside lower portion of the satellite. This coil generates a controllable magnetic field around the satellite which interacts with that of the earth. Thus, it provides

a means for gradually tilting the satellite by ground commaasd to obtain the most advantageous angle for picture taking. This system is also used, when necessary, to tilt the spacecraft so

that the solar cells face into the sun in order to recharge the batteries. To slow TIROS from its initial orbital spin rate of 126 RPM down to its optlimum operating rate of about 12 RPM, a timer,

at about ten minutes after separation from the Delta rocket, releases two weights attached to cables wound around the satellite. As the weights unwind they exert a force which "de-spins" the satellite. When they are completely unwound they drop off



In order to remain stable in orbit TIROS must maintain a spin rate of at least eight RPM. When this minimum is

approached, a pair of small solid fuel rockets on the rim of the baseplate are ignited by radio command from the ground. These rockets increase the spin rate by about three RPM. There.

are five pairs of these tiny rockets, each of which can'be fired once.

To prevent wobbling in space, the satellite has an internal arrangement of sliding weights or "precession dampers" mounted on curved tracks. tions. Infrared and Electron Temperature Probe Experiments: The infrared experiments carried by TIROS are designed to make measurements of reflected solar and terrestrial radiation over selected spectrum ranges. are: The two infrared experiments These weights cancel unwanted satellite mo-

(1) a five-channel medium resolution scanning radiometer

system developed by the Goddard Space Flight Center, and (2) an omnidirectional infrared experiment, first flown on TIROS III, developed by the University of Wisconsin. The primary purpose of these experiments is to learn how much solar energy is absorbed and reflected and how much infrared radiation is emitted by the earth and its atmosphere as well as to continue development of techniques for infrared
nighttime cloud cover maps which supplement the daytime TV picture data now obtained on a routine basis.


-8The Goddard-developed medium resolution infrared experiment is designed to measure reflected solar radiation from earth and its atmosphere in five separate channels or spectral bands. These are: (1) 14-15 microns, for radiation emitted

by carbon dioxide in the atmosphere; (2) 8-12 microns, for radiation emitted from the near surface of the earth or from the tops of clouds; (3) 0.2-6, for the entire solar radiation reflected by the earth and its atmosphere; (4) 8-30 microns, for thermal radiation emitted by the earth and its atmosphere; (5) .55-.75

microns, for reflected solar radiation which corresponds to radiation seen by the TV cameras. Measurements such as these, in addition to the production of infrared cloud cover maps, are valuable in helping to determine the balance of energy the earth and its atmosphere receive and reflect from the sun. This energy balance provides the Measurements

power for the world's meteorological processes.

of energy distribution on a global basis helps to provide some of the answers in this important new area of meteorological

Medium resolution infrared data are recorded


during each orbit on a separate magnetic tape recorder with a capacity to store up to 100 minutes of information. Upon com-

mand from a ground station, the recorded data are radioed to a receiver in time-compressed form. This information is processed

and evaluated at the Goddard Space Flight Center. -more-

-9The omnidirectional--or non-scanning--infrared experiment supplied by the University of Wisconsin is also designed to study the heat balance of the earth. It consists of two wide-

angle low-resolution infrared detection devices, each consisting of a black and white bolometer--metallic resistance thermometers--mounted 180 degrees apart on telescoping supports projecting from the sides of the spacecraft. Both bolometers

have a high degree of absorptivity to earth infrared radiation, but only the black bolometer can absorb solar radiation. Knowing

the readings given by both devices permits computation of reflected solar and emitted infrared radiation emanating from the earth. Data from this experiment is transmitted by the same telemetry system used by the medium resolution experiment. The electron temperature and density probe, flown for the first time on TIROS spacecraft, will be similar to the probe employed in the Explorer XVII Atmospheric Structures Satellite, launched earlier this year by NASA. This 13-inch probe is mounted on the spacecraft baseplate. A voltage difference is applied between the probe and the spacecraft. The amount of current flowing to the probe is an indication of the kinetic energy and number of electrons, thus an indication of their temperature and density can be determined by analysis after the data have been telemetered to the ground.


evaluation is accomplished at the Goddard Space Flight Center. -more-


THE TIROS RECORD TIROS I: TIROS I was launched at the Cape Canaveral April 1, 1960, by a Thor-Able rocket (Delta launch vehicles have been used to launch all remaining TIROS spacecraft). During its 78 days of

operation (until June 17, 1960), TIROS I transmitted almost 23,000 cloud cover photographs of which more than 19,000 were useable for weather analysis purposes. As the pioneer space-

craft in the meteorological satellite program, TIROS I opened a new era in weather observation by providing data covering vast areas of the earth. TIROS II: TIROS II was orbited November 23, 1960, and provided more than 23,000 useable pictures of cloud cover out of 36,000 transmitted. Its operational lifetime far exceeded initial estimates

and useable pictures from the spacecraft's TV cameras were received through July 12, 1961. Pictures of ice pack conditions

in the Gulf of St. Lawrence were the first to show the utility of weather satellites in locating the boundaries of ice and open seas. TIROS III: TIROS III, launched July 12, 1961, added still further milestones to the TIROS record, particularly in the detection of tropical storms. All six of the hurricanes of the 1961 -more-

season were observed by TIROS III.

Hurricane Esther was

detected by the satellite's camera eye two days before it was observed by conventional methods. TIROS III provided informa-

tion which resulted in 70 storm advisories being issued to all parts of the world. TIROS IV: Laumched on Feebruary 8, 1962, TIROS IV proved to be of great value as a vehicle for ice study and ice reconnaissance. Project TIREC, supported jointly by the Weather Bureau, the U.S. Navy and the Royal Canadian Air Force, was a ten-day project devoted to study of ice photographs from aircraft and the satellite. An analysis of the data indicated that satellite conventional During

photography was a better mears of ice study than means.

TIROS IV cameras operated until June 19, 1962.

this period more than 32,000 pictures were transmitted. TIROS V: The fifth TIROS was launched June 19, 1962, in conjunction with the beginning of the 1962 tropical storm season. Although

its medium-angle camera malfunctioned on July 6th, TIROS V established a record for the longest period of continuous operation and transmission. It finally closed its weather eye in

space on May 16th, this year, after having sent more than 57,000 pictures of which more than 80 percent were useable for meteorological purposes.

-12TIROS VI: Launched September 18, 1962, TIROS VI continues to function although the Vidicon of its medium-angle camera failed on last December lst, As of June 5th, the sixth TIROS has sent

more than 48,348 useable earth cloud cover pictures out of 54,368 taken, an 88 percent useability ratio. Plans are under-

way to use TIROS VI to obtai.i pictures of the moon's shadow during the solar eclipse of July 20. The satellite is also

expected to be of value in forecasting cloud cover over portions of the path of the eclipse to aid astronomers and other observers.


-13THE TIROS TEAM The National Aeronautics and Space Administration is responsible for the TIROS project. Development of hardware

and operation phases of the project are directed by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md. Goddard is also

responsible for preparing the command programming information which is relayed to the satellite by the ground stations. The programming information is based on data from the Goddard Tracking and Data System Division and recommendations made by the National Weather Satellite Center. Meteorological analysis and interpretation of the TIROS TV pictures is accomplished by the "', S. Weather Bureau's National Weather Satellite Center, in cooperation with the U. S. Nava Photographic Interpretation Center, the Air Force

Cambridge Research Laboratorles, the Air Force and Navy Weather Services, and a number of university research groups. On April 29, this year, members of the Goddard TIROS team received the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's Group Achievement Award for 'outstanding competence demonstrated in developing and successfully operating the first meteorological satellite system. Design and construction of the TIROS spacecraft was accomplished by the Radio Corporation of America's AstroElectronics Division, Princeton, N. J., under the technical direction of the Goddard Space Flight Center. RCA is also

responsible for operation of the special equipment used at the TIROS ground stations.



-14Prime contractor for the Delta booster rocket is the Douglas Aircraft Co., Santa Monica, Calif., which also is responsible for pre-launch and launch operations. Logistic

support is provided by the Air Force Missile Test Center which operates the Atlantic Missile Range. Key officials responsible for the TIROS project include: NASA Headquarters Morton J. Stoller, Director, Office of Applicatior.8 Dr. Morris Tepper, Director of Meteorological Systems. T. B. Norris, Delta Program Manager. Goddard Space Flight Center William G. Stroud, Chief, Aeronomy and Meteorology Division. Herbert I. Butler, Associate Chief for Projects, Aeronomy and Meteorology Division. Robert M. Rados, TIROS Project Manager. William R. Schindler, Delta Project Manager. Robert M. Gray, Chief, Field Projects Branch, Cape Canaveral, Fla. U. S. Weather Bureau Dr. S. Fred Singer, Director, National Weather Satellite Center. David S. Johnson, Deputy D.rector, National Weather Satellite Center Radio Corporation of America Abraham Schnapf, TIROS Program Manager, Astro-Electronics Division Douglas Aircraft Co., Inc. J. Klein, Chief Project Engineer G. F. Hansen, Head of AMR Field Station -more-

-15University of Wisconsin Dr. Verner E. Suomi, Omnidirectional Infra-Red Experiment.

THE DELTA LAUNCH VEHICLE The 90-foot, 57-ton, three-stage Delta booster rocket, developed by NASA, will be used to launch the TIROS. Considered

the nation's most reliable space booster, Delta will be reaching for its 18th consecutive successful satellite launch. be the rocket's 19th flight. The Delta first stage is the Douglas Aircraft Company's DM-21 Thor, a 57-foot, liquid-fuel rocket developed for the U. S. Air Force. The AM-21 generates about 170,000 pounds of It will

thrust during its burning time of two minutes and 25 seconds. The liquid-fuel second stage, produced by AeroJet General Corp., has a 7,500 pound-thrust engine which burns about 160 seconds. The guidance system for the second stage is the Bell

Telephone Laboratories Series "600" system.

The TIROS mission

calls for Delta to coast for about six minutes following second stage burnout. The rocket's third stage is an NPP-X-24i8 solid-fuel, 3,000-pound thrust engine, which burns about 40 seconds. It is produced by the Naval Propellant Plant.



The Delta flight sequence is as follows: the spent first stage falls away. immediately.

After burnout,

The second stage ignites

Thirty seconds after second stage ignition, the

nose fairing covering to: third stage and the payload is jettisoned. coast period. After burnout, the vehicle begins its six-minute Then the third stage is spin stabilized, the

empty second stage falls away, and third stage ignition occurs. At this point the rocket achieves orbital velocity of about 17,000 miles an hour, third stage separation takes place, and the payload is pushed into its orbit. Delta program management is by the Office of Space Sciences, NASA Headquarters. Project management of the Delta program is charged to the Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md.











Apr. 1, 1960 Nov.23,1960

77 days 76 days 141 days

22,952 36,156

Proved feasibility of meteorologic satellites Successful infra-red experiments, ice reconnaissance for first time. Tropical storms observed for first time. Ice reconnaissance Tropical Storm Coverage Tropical Storm Coverage


Jul.12,1961 Feb. 8,1962 Jun.19,1962 Sep.19,1962

145 days 120 days 330 days Still operating

81 days 146 days

35,033 32,593 58,226 54,368 *

Project Management: Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md. Satellite Production: RCA Astro-Electronics Division, Princeton, N.J. Delta Booster Vehicle: Douglas Aircraft Company, Santa Monica, Calif.


As of June 5, 1963

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