The United States launches a V-2 rocket from Launch Complex 33 at White Sands Missile Range, N.M., on a suborbital flight to study the upper atmosphere. It also carries the first primate ever launched into space, a monkey named Albert who died of suffocation during the mission.
IMEWS 4 (Integrated Missile Early Warning Satellite 4), the first U.S. geosynchronous satellite designed to detect the launch of ballistic missiles, is successfully launched from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla., aboard a Titan 3C launch vehicle.
John Knauss, chief of the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, tells a Senate subcommittee that “commercialization of Landsat as had originally been envisioned [by the Reagan administration] is not possible.” One reason cited is that scientists studying global climate change cannot afford the imagery.
Speaking at a conference in Paris organized by the U.S. Embassy, former Air Force Sec. John McLucas says improving East-West relations should not be at the expense of U.S. and European launch providers, noting that the Bush administration appears inclined to allow Russia’s Proton and China’s Long March rockets to launch commercial satellites.
The United States launches a V-2 rocket from White Sands Missile range in New Mexico and another monkey, Albert II, is killed on impact when the capsule returns to Earth.
Mariner 5 is launched toward Venus from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla.
The Soviet Union’s Venera 10 spacecraft is launched from the BaikonurCosmodrome on its way to Venus.
NASA releases the results of the Apollo 13 Review Board, the investigation into the accident that forced NASA to abort its third attempt to land men on the Moon. The Review Board concluded that a bare wire used as a heating element in Oxygen Tank No. 2 caused a fire that severely damaged the spacecraft.
The Fleming Committee, which had 20 members from NASA headquarters and several of the agency’s filed centers, delivers its report, which concludes that “it is not unreasonable to achieve the first attempt of a manned lunar landing in 1967 provided there is a truly determined national effort,” and the development of a sufficiently powerful launch vehicle.
The U.S. Air Force successfully conducts the first flight test of a Peacekeeper missile from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif., delivering six unarmed independently targetable re-entry vehicles to pre-assigned sites at the Kwajalein Test Range in the Pacific Ocean.