PIGGYBACK SATELLITE PACKAGES
AIR FORCE CAMBRIDGE RESEARCH LABS HANSCOM AFB MA
Pagination or Media Count:
The purpose of the measurements proposed by Project 6.12 was to investigate the spread of fission debris around the globe and its effects on ionization and radio noise. It was assumed that for the high-altitude shot the fission debris would expand from the detonation point until it was stopped either by the magnetic containment or, in the case of downward-moving debris, by the denser air, causing ionization. A high content of atomic ions is formed in this way around 200 km in height and, due to the low recombination rate, is only slowly removed. The fission products eventually spread around the earth and, if charged, will form a belt. Another belt produced by the trapped fission betas is formed even faster. This belt was expected to emit synchrotron noise. To make these measurements of the world-wide and long-time effects, Discoverer satellites were instrumented with specially designed research packages. Because of the difficulties and schedule slippages encountered in attempting the nuclear detonations, this project was not able to obtain data during the time of primary interest.
- Nuclear Physics and Elementary Particle Physics