NASA’s OAO (Orbiting Astronomical Observatory) program was a series of four satellites that launched between 1966 and 1972, two of which were successful. These missions included OAO 2 (Stargazer) and OAO 3 (Copernicus), the direct ancestors of Hubble, Chandra, Swift, and many other astronomy satellites.
April 8, 1966
Aug. 21, 1972
50 Years Ago, NASA’s Copernicus Set the Bar for Space Astronomy
At 6:28 a.m. EDT on Aug. 21, 1972, NASA’s Copernicus satellite, the heaviest and most complex space telescope of its…