When we say that our space products are out of this world, we mean it. Our heritage in space exploration is rich, dating as far back as 1958 with the launch of the U.S.’s first satellite, Explorer I, several months before our very own Jack Kilby invented the integrated circuit. Since, then, TI semiconductors have been instrumental in a number of major space applications, missions, explorations and discoveries.
From that first satellite to the first moon landing and first comet landing to exploring the planets, TI was there. This year, we will be highlighting and updating this blog post with some of the significant space missions that included TI devices in the last 60-plus years, on the anniversaries of their respective launches. Up first, naturally it’s our first space adventure, Explorer I.
Jan. 31, 1958: Explorer IExplorer I facts and figures:
Sixty-one years ago, Explorer I was instrumental in the discovery of the Van Allen radiation belt. Originally scheduled to launch Jan. 28, a jet-stream-related issue postponed it for three days. With an original expected lifetime of three years, Explorer I made its final transmission on May 23, 1958, but remained in orbit for more than 12 years, re-entering the Earth’s atmosphere on March 31, 1970.
Be sure to check back on March 2 when we highlight Rosetta and Philae, the first mission to successfully land on the surface of a comet.
Upcoming anniversariesMarch 2: Rosetta and PhilaeApril 24: Hubble telescopeJune 10: Mars Rover – SpiritJuly 10: TelstarJuly 16: Apollo 11July 27: Mariner 2Aug. 5: JunoSept. 5: Voyager I and IIOct. 1: NASA’s 61st birthdayNov. 5: Mars orbiter missionNov. 20: International Space Station
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