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RM 1, 2 (Discoverer 19, 21)

RM 1 (Discoverer 19)

Although flown within the Corona program, RM 1 and 2 (Radiometer 1 and 2) were not used for reconnaissance, but technical tests of instruments for the MIDAS early warning satellite program.

The satellites consisted of an instrument package integrated with the Agena-B upper stage, which provided attitude control and power during the mission. They carried no return capsule like the contemporary Corona spy satellites, but downlinked to ground stations by radio telemetry.

The satellites carried radiometers, which characterized the planet's background infrared radiation for use calibrating the MIDAS infra-red detection system. RM 2 also tested the reignition of the Agena engine.

Both satellites successfully reached orbit. RM 1 operated for 4.25 days or 26 orbits, while RM 2 operated for only 6 orbits.

Nation: USA
Type / Application: Technology
Operator: ARPA
Equipment: ?
Configuration: Agena-B, 1 SRVs
Propulsion: Bell 8081, Star 12 retro motor
Power: Batteries
Orbit: 206 km × 578 km, 83.40 (#1); 243 km × 1026 km, 80.74 (#2)
Satellite COSPAR Date LS Launch Vehicle Remarks
RM 1 (Discoverer 19, Corona 19) 1960 τ 20.12.1960 Va 75-3-5 Thor-DM21 Agena-B
RM 2 (Discoverer 21, Corona 21) 1961 ζ 18.02.1961 Va 75-3-5 Thor-DM21 Agena-B