Explorer 2

Explorer Spacecraft Explorer Spacecraft

A model of the Explorer series of spacecraft. Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech
› Larger view

Mission Summary

Explorer 2 was the second satellite of the notable Explorer mission series that launched the United States into the Space Age, however, it did not reach the same success as its predecessor, Explorer 1. On launch day, the fourth stage of the Jupiter-C rocket carrying the satellite failed to ignite, and the mission was scrubbed.

The Explorer series consisted of more than fifty satellites launched over a period of about 15 years. In 1960, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, which designed, built and operated the first five satellites of the series, turned the project over to NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center and turned its attention to planetary exploration with its Mariner, Ranger and Surveyor spacecraft projects.

Mission Events

March 5, 1958: The fourth stage of the Jupiter-C rocket launching Explorer 2 failed to ignite, scrubbing the mission.

Scientific Instrument(s)

- Cosmic-ray detector
- Micrometeorite detector


Type: Orbiter
 
Status: Past
 
Launch Date: March 05, 1958
 
Launch Location: Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida
 
Mission End Date: March 05, 1958
 
Target: Earth
 
Planning for NASA's 2020 Mars rover envisions a basic structure that capitalizes on the design NASA Announces Mars 2020 Rover Payload to Explore the Red Planet as Never Before

› Read more

Artist's concept of the payload for NASA's Mars 2020 rover Mars 2020 Rover's PIXL to Focus X-Rays on Tiny Targets

› Read more

Artist's concept of the payload for NASA's Mars 2020 rover SHERLOC to Micro-Map Mars Minerals and Carbon Rings

› Read more