Reference Sheet


From the dataset abstract

Designed and assembled in Canada, Alouette-1 was the first satellite built by a nation other than the United States or the Soviet Union. It was constructed at a time when most satellites had a useful lifespan of a few months. Although Alouette-1 was as complex as any previously launched satellite, rapidly advancing technology and the extreme care exercised in all phases of Alouette-1’s development had led the Canadian builders to expect that their satellite would operate for at least 1 year. However, Alouette-1 operated for 10 years. In its first 3 months of operation, Alouette-1 produced some of the most exciting data obtained during the entire 50-year history of ionospheric research, and it continued to provide valuable information until its 10th birthday. Alouette-1 is best known for its swept-frequency topside sounder experiment. The other experiments (VLF, cosmic noise, and energetic particle measurements) were, however, equally successful, and they also remained operational for 10 years. The Alouette-1 mission resulted in over 300 publications in refereed scientific journals. About 80 percent of Alouette-1 publications were based on the ionograms obtained from the topside sounder experiment. In its first 3 years of operation, Alouette-1 obtained over a million ionograms, each equivalent to a snapshot of the ionosphere from the Alouette-1 altitude of 1000 km down to an altitude of about 300 km. These ionograms have provided data at all geomagnetic latitudes and at geographic latitudes ranging from 80° N to 80° S. After 10 years, Alouette-1 had produced 2 million ionograms. Please note that the metadata and parameters extracted from the ionogram images (see more about the extraction process) found in the "Processed ionogram data" file are provided primarily for demonstration purposes. These values are subject to error, and should not be directly used in a scientific context. Explore this data using CSA's Alouette micro application, available here:

Source: Ionosphere images from Alouette satellites

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