There are days when everything goes right.
Here we are at the end of a difficult year for space travel. The Air Force had nearly a dozen failures in a row with its Discoverer
proto spy satellite. The Pioneer Atlas Ables
moon shots were all a bust. Even the successful probes rarely made it into space on the first try, viz. the communications satellites, Echo
. The American manned space program was dealt a number of setbacks, limping along at a pace that will likely get it to the orbital finish line quite a bit behind the Soviets.
But Discoverer now has enjoyed a several-mission success streak. The latest Explorer probe
is sending back excellent data on the ionosphere, and it's elder sibling
is still plugging away in orbit, returning information on the heat budget of the atmosphere. TIROS 2
provides up-to-date weather photos from overhead.
And this morning, just a few hours ago...
(find out what happened at Galactic Journey