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OV4 1R, 1T, 2R, 2T

OV4 1R and OV4 1T [Raytheon]

The OV4 1R and OV4 1T (Orbiting Vehicle 4) satellites were an experiment to test the feasibility of using the ionosphere's F-layer as a wave guidance for HF and VHF transmissions between satellites out of line of sight of each other ("Whispering Gallery").

The 109 kg OV-1T (Transmitter) carried transmitters operating at 20 MHz, 34 MHz and 46 MHz and incorporated a small rocket motor to ensure separation from OV4-1R.

The 136 kg OV4-1R satellite carried receiving equipment.

A second set of OV4-"Whispering Gallery" satellites was to be launched in 1967 as OV4-2R and OV4-2T but the programme had been cancelled along with the cancellation of the MOL programme.

Nation: USA
Type / Application: Experimental
Operator: US Air Force (USAF)
Contractors: Raytheon
Power: Batteries
Mass: 136 kg (#1R); 109 kg (#1T)
Orbit: 298 km × 305 km, 32.82°
Satellite COSPAR Date LS Launch Vehicle Remarks
OV4 1R 1966-099B 03.11.1966 CC LC-40 Titan-3C with OV4 3, OV1 6, OV4 1T, Gemini B *
OV4 1T 1966-099D 03.11.1966 CC LC-40 Titan-3C with OV4 3, OV1 6, OV4 1R, Gemini B *
OV4 2R - cancelled with ?, OV4 2T
OV4 2T - cancelled with ?, OV4 2R


  • Directory of U.S. Military Rockets and Missiles: Orbiting Vehicle (OV)
  • J. W. Powell and G. R. Richards, “The Orbiting Vehicle series of satellites”, Journal of the British Interplanetary Society, Volume 40, pp.417-426, 1987.

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