FYI December 13, 2019

On This Day

1962 – NASA launches Relay 1, the first active repeater communications satellite in orbit.
The Relay program consisted of Relay 1 and Relay 2, two early American satellites in elliptical Low Earth orbit. Both were primarily experimental communications satellites funded by NASA and developed by RCA.[1] As of December 2, 2016, both satellites were still in orbit.[2][3] Relay 1 provided the first American television transmissions across the Pacific Ocean.

Relay 1
Relay 1 was launched atop a Delta B rocket on December 13, 1962 from LC-17A at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. Its payload included radiation experiments designed to map the Earth’s radiation belts. Apogee was 7500 km; perigee 1300. The spin-stabilized satellite had an initial spin rate of 167.3 rpm and an initial spin axis orientation with a declination of -68.3 deg and a right ascension of -56 deg. Its orbital period was 185.09 minutes.[4] Shortly after launch, two basic problems evolved. One was the satellite’s response to spurious commands, and the other was the leakage of a high-power regulator. This leakage caused the first two weeks of satellite operation to be useless. After this period, satellite operation returned to normal. The satellite carried one transmitter for tracking and one for telemetry. The telemetry system was PCM at 1152 bit/s. Each 128 words per telemetry frame (of one s duration) used 113 words for the particle experiment. The leakage problem caused the spacecraft to revert to a low voltage state early in 1965. Sporadic transmission occurred until February 10, 1965, after which no usable scientific data was obtained.

Relay 1 was the first satellite to broadcast television from the United States to Japan. The first broadcast during orbit 2677 (1963-11-22, 2027:42-2048 (GMT), or 1:27 pm Dallas time) was to be a prerecorded address from the president of the United States to the Japanese people, but was instead the announcement of the John F. Kennedy assassination. On orbit 2678, this satellite carried a broadcast titled Record, Life of the Late John F. Kennedy, the first television program broadcast simultaneously in the U.S. and Japan.[5] In later orbits, NBC transmitted coverage of the funeral procession from the White House to the cathedral.[6][7] In the three days following the Kennedy assassination, Relay 1 handled a total of 11 spot broadcasts; eight to Europe and three to Japan. All the useful passes of the satellite were made available to permit immediate coverage of the tragic events.[8]

In August 1964, this satellite was used as the United States-Europe link for the broadcast of the 1964 Summer Olympics from Tokyo, after the signal was relayed to the United States via Syncom 3.[1] This marked the first time that two satellites were used in tandem for a television broadcast.[8]

COSPAR satellite ID: Relay 1 1962-Beta-Upsilon 1 (62BU1)

Relay 2
Relay 2 was launched atop a Delta B rocket on January 21, 1964 from LC-17B at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. Apogee 7600 km; perigee 1870 km. It was physically similar to Relay 1. Design changes in this satellite improved its performance so response to spurious commands was essentially eliminated. One of the two onboard transponders operated normally until November 20, 1966. From that time until its failure on January 20, 1967, it required a longer time than normal to come on. The other transponder continued to operate until June 9, 1967, when it too failed to operate normally.

COSPAR satellite ID: Relay 2 1964-003A

 
 

Born On This Day

1814 – Ana Néri, Brazilian nurse and philanthropist (d. 1880)
Ana Justina Ferreira Néri (December 13, 1814 – May 20, 1880) was a Brazilian nurse, considered the first in her country. She is best known for her volunteer work with the Triple Alliance during the Paraguayan War.

Biography
Ana Néri was born in the Bahian village of Cachoeira de Paraguaçu to José Ferreira de Jesus and his wife, Luísa Maria das Virgens.[1] At age 23, Ana married Navy Commander Isidoro Antônio Néri.[2] With her husband always on duty, Ana accustomed to have their house under her responsibility.[2] She became a widow at age 29, having to take care of their children Justiniano, Isidoro, and Pedro Antônio all by herself.[2] Justiniano, and Isidoro became doctors, while Pedro Antônio joined the Army,[2] becoming a cadet.[1]

Work as a nurse
In 1865, Brazil joined the Triple Alliance in the Paraguayan War, and Ana’s sons were all called upon duty,[2] in addition to both her brothers, Manuel Jerônimo, and Joaquim Maurício.[3] Unhappy with the fact that she would stay away from all the men in her family, she wrote a letter to Manuel Pinho de Sousa Dantas, governor of Bahia, offering to take care of injured soldiers of the Triple Alliance for the duration of the conflict.[2][3]

Later that year, Ana left Bahia for the first time in her life, assisting the Army’s health corps,[1] which was small and had little material.[3] She started working alongside Vincentian nuns in a hospital in Corrientes, where she would take care of more than 6,000 hospitalized soldiers.[2][3] Not a long time later, she assisted the injured in Salto, Humaitá, Curupaiti, and Asunción.[2][3]

A wealthy woman, Ana founded a nursing house in the Paraguayan capital, then occupied and besieged by the Brazilian Army.[1][2][3] For that purpose, she used personal financial resources that she inherited from her family.[1][2][3] She worked selflessly there until the end of the war.[3] Her son Justiniano and a nephew which had enlisted as a volunteer, both died in battle.[3]

At the end of the war, in 1870, Ana returned to Brazil and received several honors, among them the distinctions of silver and humanitarian campaign medals.[1][2][3] Emperor Pedro II granted Ana, via decree, a lifelong pension, which she used to provide education for the four orphans that she had brought from Paraguay with her.[2][3]

Death and homages
Ana died on May 20, 1880, in Rio de Janeiro.[2][3] In 1926, Carlos Chagas named the first official Brazilian school of nursing after her.[2][3] Her full-body portrait, painted by Victor Meirelles, currently occupies a place of honor at the Salvador City Hall.[2][3] According to the federal law number 12.105, sanctioned by acting president José Alencar on December 2, 2009, Ana Néri is now a character of the Book of the Fatherland Heroes, and will have her name added in the Pantheon of the Fatherland and Freedom,[4] a monument in Brasília consisting of a steel book designed by Oscar Niemeyer.

 
 

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