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astronautix.com Pioneer 6-7-8-9-E

Pioneer 6
Pioneer 6 -

Credit: NASA. 11,180 bytes. 333 x 240 pixels.



Class: Solar. Nation: United States. Agency: NASA, Ames Research Center . Manufacturer: TRW.

Pioneers 6, 7, 8, and 9 were created to make the first detailed, comprehensive measurements of the solar wind, solar magnetic field and cosmic rays. Designed to measure large scale magnetic phenomena and particles and fields in interplanetary space, data from the vehicles has been used to better understand stellar processes as well as the structure and flow of the solar wind. The vehicles also acted as the world's first space-based solar weather network, providing practical data on solar storms which impact communications and power on Earth. A fifth spacecraft, Pioneer E, was lost when it failed to orbit due to a launch vehicle failure. The Pioneer 6-9 program has been touted as one of the least expensive of all NASA spacecraft programs in terms of scientific results per dollar spent. As of 1996, Pioneer 6 was NASA's oldest operational satellite, having been in orbit over 30 years. Spacecraft: Spin stabilised at ~60 rpm. Body mounted solar cells provide 79 watts. Payload: 6 instruments total including Plasma Analyser, Cosmic Ray Detector.


Specification

Design Life: 6 months. Total Length: 0.8 m. Maximum Diameter: 0.9 m. Total Mass: 64 kg.


Pioneer 6-7-8-9-E Chronology


16 December 1965 Pioneer 6 Program: Pioneer. Launch Site: Cape Canaveral . Launch Vehicle: Delta E. Mass: 63 kg.

Measured solar wind, Sun's magnetic field. Solar Orbit (Heliocentric). Spacecraft engaged in research and exploration of the upper atmosphere or outer space (US Cat B).


17 August 1966 Pioneer 7 Program: Pioneer. Launch Site: Cape Canaveral . Launch Vehicle: Delta E. Mass: 63 kg. Perigee: 246 km. Apogee: 993 km. Inclination: 33.0 deg.

Monitored solar wind, cosmic rays. SOLAR ORB. Spacecraft engaged in research and exploration of the upper atmosphere or outer space (US Cat B).


13 December 1967 Pioneer 8 Program: Pioneer. Launch Site: Cape Canaveral . Launch Vehicle: Delta E. Mass: 63 kg.

Solar radiation data. Solar Orbit (Heliocentric). Spacecraft engaged in research and exploration of the upper atmosphere or outer space (US Cat B).


08 November 1968 Pioneer 9 Program: Pioneer. Launch Site: Cape Canaveral . Launch Vehicle: Delta E. Mass: 63 kg.

Solar radiation data. Solar Orbit (Heliocentric). Spacecraft engaged in research and exploration of the upper atmosphere or outer space (US Cat B).


27 August 1969 Pioneer E Program: Pioneer. Launch Site: Cape Canaveral . Launch Vehicle: Delta L. FAILURE: First stage hydraulics failure; destroyed by range safety. Mass: 67 kg.

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Last update 12 March 2001.
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