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English: In this Project Mercury test, a spacecraft booster by a modifiedAtlas was launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida. The Mercury capsule reached a peak altitude of 107 statute miles and landed 1.425 miles down range. Atlas was designed to launch payloadsinto low Earth orbit, geosynchronous transfer orbit orgeosynchronous orbit. NASA first launched Atlas as a spacelaunch vehicle in 1958. Project SCORE, the first communications satellite that transmitted President Eisenhower's pre-recorded Christmas speech around the world, was launched on an Atlas.For all three robotic lunar exploration programs, Atlas wasused. Atlas/ Centaur vehicles launched both Mariner and Pioneer planetary probes. The current operational Atlas II family has a 100% mission success rating. For more information about Atlas, please see Chapter 2 in Roger Launius and Dennis Jenkins' bookTo Reach the High Frontier published by The University Press ofKentucky in 2002 (in which Dennis Jenkins notes on page 98 that"as a space launch vehicle there is no question that Atlas hasmade a mark for itself, and a great deal of money for itsmanufacturers").
|Source||Great Images in NASA Description|
(Reusing this file)
|This image or video was catalogued by Kennedy Space Center of the United States National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) under Photo ID: GPN-2003-00036 AND Alternate ID: Atlas.
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