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Heao 2

Also called "Einstein observatory"


Designation 11101 / 78103A
Launch date 13 Nov 1978
Country of origin United States
Mission Scientific: X-ray astronomy
Perigee/Apogee 526/548 km
Inclination 23.5°
Period 95.4 min
Launch vehicle Atlas Centaur
Launch site Cape Canaveral

Equipped with a 58cm diameter telescope with a 3.3m focal length. The satellite also contained five other instruments, 4 of which shared the use of the telescope to make a variety of measurements of X-rays emitted by stellar objects. The fifth instrument, independent of the telescope, measured properties of X-rays beyond the telescope's energy range.

Built by TRW Defense and Space Systems for NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center

End of life

Decay 25 Mar 1982

External resources


Technical data


Prime contractor TRW
Mass at launch approx. 3 t
Mass in orbit  
Solar array  
Stabilization 3-axis
DC power 600 W
Design lifetime 0.5 year

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