On this day in 1962 a NASA rocket took off from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. On board was Alouette 1, Canada’s first spacecraft. From its low-Earth orbit the 147-kg Alouette 1 made measurements of the ionosphere until it was deactivated 10 years later. The mission marked the first time a country other than the USSR and the US had built and operated an artificial satellite.
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