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astronautix.com ERS

ERS
ERS -

Credit: NASA. 17,899 bytes. 371 x 158 pixels.



Class: Earth. Type: Magnetosphere. Nation: USA. Agency: U.S. Air Force. Manufacturer: TRW.

The Environmental Research Satellites were especially designed for piggyback launching from large primary mission vehicles. Ranging in mass from 0.7 to 45 kg, and carrying from 1 to 14 experiments, these ERS "hitch-hiker" spacecraft provided an inexpensive, flexible vehicle capable of making scientific and engineering measurements in space. A major role of the ERS satellites was to act as a test bed to determine the reliability of improved components and subsystems destined for use in later generations of spacecraft. A unique feature of the system was its capability to function without a battery. The key to this advantage was the design which permited solar cells, fastened to all exterior surfaces of the vehicle, to maintain constant exposure of about 15 percent of the sun. The ERS was a small satellite, measuring in one version only 22 cm on a side and weighing 680 g; the larger version weighed 45 kg and was a 51 cm diameter cylinder. At least 12 satellites were launched from 1962 for a variety of missions and sponsors. The 8-sided version was designated the OV-5 and became a part of a program conducted by the Air Force Office of Aerospace Research. Prime Contractor was TRW Systems Group of TRW Inc.


Specification


ERS Chronology


17 September 1962 TRS Launch Site: Vandenberg . Launch Vehicle: Thor Agena B.
11 November 1962 TRS 1 Launch Site: Vandenberg . Launch Vehicle: Atlas LV-3A / Agena B.
18 July 1963 TRS 10 Launch Site: Vandenberg . Launch Vehicle: Atlas LV-3A / Agena B.
20 July 1965 ORS 3 Launch Site: Cape Canaveral . Launch Vehicle: Atlas LV-3A / Agena D. Mass: 5 kg. Perigee: 566 km. Apogee: 111,793 km. Inclination: 36.9 deg.

Radiation data. Space craft engaged in investigation of spaceflight techniques and technology (US Cat A).


09 June 1966 ORS 2 Launch Site: Vandenberg . Launch Vehicle: SLV-3 Atlas / Agena D. Mass: 15 kg. Perigee: 178 km. Apogee: 3,641 km. Inclination: 90.0 deg.

Metal-to-metal bonding experiments. Space craft engaged in investigation of spaceflight techniques and technology (US Cat A).


19 August 1966 ORS 1 Launch Site: Vandenberg . Launch Vehicle: SLV-3 Atlas / Agena D. Mass: 5 kg. Perigee: 3,680 km. Apogee: 3,700 km. Inclination: 89.7 deg.

Cold welding experiments. Space craft engaged in investigation of spaceflight techniques and technology (US Cat A).


28 April 1967 ERS 18 Launch Site: Cape Canaveral . Launch Vehicle: Titan 3C. Mass: 9 kg. Perigee: 8,991 km. Apogee: 110,842 km. Inclination: 0.0 deg.

Radiation research. Space craft engaged in investigation of spaceflight techniques and technology (US Cat A).



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Last update 12 March 2001.
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© Mark Wade, 2001 .