David E. Steitz

Headquarters, Washington, DC

(Phone: 202/358-1730)

Lynn Chandler (EO-1 spacecraft)

Goddard Space Flight Center , Greenbelt, MD

(Phone: 301/614-5562)

Nancy Neal

Goddard Space Flight Center , Greenbelt, MD

(Phone: 301/286-0039)

RELEASE NO: 00-174

NASA is set to embark on a mission that could change the way
we look at satellite technology, as well as change the way we look
at the Earth. Launch for this important satellite duo is scheduled
Nov. 18 from Vandenberg Air Force Base, CA.

The Earth Observing 1 (EO-1) satellite and SAC-C, an international
cooperative mission between NASA and the Argentine Commission on
Space Activities (CONAE) are scheduled to soar into orbit at 1:24
p.m. EST.

In 1996, NASA started the New Millennium Program (NMP), designed
to identify, develop and flight validate key instrument and
spacecraft technologies that can enable new or more cost-effective
approaches to conducting science missions in the 21st century. The
first of three New Millennium Program Earth-orbiting missions is
EO-1, an advanced land-imaging mission that will demonstrate new
instruments and spacecraft systems.

EO-1’s primary focus is to develop and test a set of advanced
technology land imaging instruments. However, many other key
instruments and technologies that will have wide ranging
applications for future satellite development are also part of the

Future NASA spacecraft are expected to be smaller, lighter and
less expensive than current versions, and the EO-1 mission will
provide the on-orbit demonstration and validation of several
subsystem technologies to enable this transition.

EO-1 will be inserted into an orbit flying in formation with the
Landsat 7 satellite taking a series of the same images. Comparison
of these “paired scene” images will be used to evaluate EO-1’s
land imaging instruments.

Swales Aerospace, Beltsville, MD built the EO-1 spacecraft bus
under a NASA contract. Litton Amecom, College Park, Md. is the key
avionics subcontractor. The three primary instruments on the EO-1
observatory are the Advanced Land Imager, the Hyperion and the
Linear Imaging Spectrometer Array (LEISA) Atmospheric Corrector

Joining EO-1 aboard the Delta rocket is the SAC-C spacecraft, an
international mission to study the structure and dynamics of the
Earth’s atmosphere, ionosphere and geomagnetic field. SAC-C also
will seek to measure the space radiation in the environment and
its influence on advanced electronic components and determine the
migration route of the Franca whale. Another objective of the
payload is to verify autonomous methods of attitude and orbit

The SAC-C mission is a collaboration between the United States,
Argentina, Brazil, Denmark, France and Italy.

SAC-C has an instrument payload of 11 different instruments. Eight
of those instruments are dedicated to better understanding the
Earth’s environment and ecology. SAC-C will carry three GPS
instruments to test new technology in spacecraft development and
environmental monitoring.

The Commission on Space Activities (CONAE) is responsible for
development of the spacecraft and several instruments. The
Brazilian Space Agency provided the testing facilities for SAC-C.
The Italian Space Agency has partnered with CONAE to supply both
solar panels and two GPS receivers. The Danish Space Research
Institute provided the Magnetic Mapping Payload which carries a
NASA Supplied Helium Magnetometer, and the French Space Agency is
contributing an experiment to test the response of electronic
circuitry to space radiation.

The launch vehicle and some science instruments aboard SAC-C are
provided by NASA. NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt,
MD, is responsible for overall project management, on behalf of
NASA’s Earth Sciences Enterprise, Washington, DC. The Earth
Science Enterprise is a long-term research program dedicated to
understanding how human-induced and natural changes affect our
global environment.

To learn more about EO-1 on the Internet, visit:


To learn more about SAC-C on the Internet, visit: