Discoverer 26


Discoverer 26
Mission typeOptical reconnaissance
OperatorUS Air Force/NRO
Harvard designation1961 Pi 1
COSPAR ID1961-016A
SATCAT no.00160Edit this on Wikidata
Mission duration2 days
Spacecraft properties
Spacecraft typeCorona KH-2
Launch mass1,150 kilograms (2,540 lb)
Start of mission
Launch date7 July 1961, 23:29:48 (1961-07-07UTC23:29:48Z) UTC
RocketThor DM-21 Agena-B 308
Launch siteVandenberg LC-75-3-5
End of mission
Decay date5 December 1961 (1961-12-06)
Orbital parameters
Reference systemGeocentric
RegimeLow Earth
Perigee altitude229 kilometers (142 mi)
Apogee altitude713 kilometers (443 mi)
Inclination82.9 degrees
Period94 minutes
The launch of Discoverer 26

Discoverer 26, also known as Corona 9019, was an American optical reconnaissance satellite which was launched in 1961. It was the sixth of ten Corona KH-2 satellites, based on the Agena-B.[1]

The launch of Discoverer 26 occurred at 23:29:48 UTC on 7 July 1961. A Thor DM-21 Agena-B rocket was used, flying from Launch Complex 75-3-5 at the Vandenberg Air Force Base.[2] Upon successfully reaching orbit, it was assigned the Harvard designation 1961 Pi 1.

Discoverer 26 was operated in a low Earth orbit, with a perigee of 229 kilometres (142 mi), an apogee of 713 kilometres (443 mi), 82.9 degrees of inclination, and a period of 94 minutes.[3] The satellite had a mass of 1,150 kilograms (2,540 lb),[4] and was equipped with a panoramic camera with a focal length of 61 centimetres (24 in), which had a maximum resolution of 7.6 metres (25 ft).[5] Images were recorded onto 70-millimeter (2.8 in) film, and returned in a Satellite Recovery Vehicle, which was deorbited two days after launch. The Satellite Recovery Vehicle used by Discoverer 26 was SRV-511. Once its images had been returned, Discoverer 26's mission was complete, and it remained in orbit until it decayed on 5 December 1961.[3]


  1. ^ Krebs, Gunter. "KH-2 Corona". Gunter's Space Page. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  2. ^ McDowell, Jonathan. "Launch Log". Jonathan's Space Page. Retrieved 26 June 2010.
  3. ^ a b McDowell, Jonathan. "Satellite Catalog". Jonathan's Space Page. Retrieved 26 June 2010.
  4. ^ Wade, Mark. "KH-2". Encyclopedia Astronautica. Archived from the original on 23 January 2013. Retrieved 26 June 2010.
  5. ^ "Corona". Mission and Spacecraft Library. NASA. Archived from the original on 3 October 2007. Retrieved 26 June 2010.