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Encyclopedia > Operation Argus

Operation Argus was secretly conducted during August and September of 1958, in the South Atlantic (see: South Atlantic Anomaly), by the US Atomic Energy Commission, in conjunction with the Explorer IV mission. About 1800 km southwest of Cape Town, South Africa USS Norton Sound, of Top Secret Task Force 88, launched three modified X-17A missiles armed with 1.7 kt W-25 nuclear warheads into the upper atmosphere, in order to conduct tests regarding the magnetosphere and the Van Allen radiation belts. The tests were proposed by Nicholas Christofilos of the Lawrence Radiation Laboratory (LRL) as a means to determine the possibility of creating artificial radiation belts for military purposes. 1958 was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see Atlantic (disambiguation) The Atlantic Ocean is Earths second-largest ocean, covering approximately one-fifth of its surface. ... The South Atlantic Anomaly (or SAA) is the region where Earths inner van Allen radiation belt makes its closest approach to the planets surface. ... Almost a year after World War II ended, Congress established the United States Atomic Energy Commission to foster and control the peace time development of atomic science and technology. ... Explorer 4 was a US satellite launched on July 26, 1958. ... A kilometre (American spelling: kilometer) (symbol: km) is a unit of length equal to 1000 metres (from the Greek words khilia = thousand and metro = count/measure). ... City motto: Spes Bona (Latin: Good Hope) Province Western Cape Mayor Nomaindia Mfeketo Area  - % water 1,644 km² 0. ... USS Norton Sound (AV-11/AVM-1) was originally built as a Currituck-class seaplane tender built by Los Angeles Shipbuilding and Drydock Company in San Pedro, California. ... The Lockheed X-17 was a three stage solid-fuel research rocket to test the effects of high mach reentry. ... A megaton or megatonne is a unit of mass equal to 1,000,000 metric tons, i. ... The mushroom cloud of the atomic bombing of Nagasaki, Japan, 1945, rose some 18 km (11 mi) above the hypocenter. ... A magnetosphere is the region around an astronomical object, in which phenomena are dominated by its magnetic field. ... Van Allen radiation belts The Van Allen radiation belt is a torus of energetic charged particles (ie. ... The Berkeley Lab is perched on a hill overlooking the Berkeley central campus and San Francisco Bay. ... An act of war - the atomic bombing of Nagasaki, Japan during World War II War is a state of widespread conflict between states, organisations, or relatively large groups of people, which is characterised by the use of lethal violence between combatants or upon civilians. ...


The Argus explosions created artificial electron belts resulting from the β-decay of fission fragments. These lasted for several weeks. Such radiation belts affect radio and radar transmissions, damage or destroy arming and fusing mechanisms of intercontinental ballistic missile warheads, and endanger crews of orbiting space vehicles. Properties The electron is a fundamental subatomic particle which carries a negative electric charge. ... In nuclear physics, beta decay (sometimes called neutron decay) is a type of radioactive decay in which a beta particle (an electron or a positron) is emitted. ... Sketch of induced nuclear fission, a neutron (n) strikes a uranium nucleus which splits into similar products (F. P.), and releases more neutrons to continue the process, and energy in the form of gamma and other radiation. ... This long range radar antenna (approximately 40m (130ft) in diameter) rotates on a track to observe activities near the horizon. ... It has been suggested that fuze for ammunition be merged into this article or section. ... A Minuteman III missile soars after a test launch. ... A warhead is an explosive device used in military conflicts, used to destroy enemy vehicles or buildings. ... In physics, an orbit is the path that an object makes, around another object, whilst under the influence of a source of centripetal force, such as gravity. ... Space exploration is the physical exploration of outer-Earth objects and generally anything that involves the technologies, science, and politics regarding space endeavors. ...


The tests were first reported by the New York Times on March 19, 1959. More than 4,500 people participated in the operation. Followed the Hardtack I series, but preceded Hardtack II. The New York Times is an internationally known daily newspaper published in New York City and distributed in the United States and many other nations worldwide. ... March 19 is the 78th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (79th in leap years). ... 1959 was a common year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Hardtack Oak mushroom cloud Hardtack Sorocco mushroom cloud An RB-57 Canberra observes Juniper. ... Hardtack Oak mushroom cloud Hardtack Sorocco mushroom cloud An RB-57 Canberra observes Juniper. ...


Argus Missile Launches

  • Argus II
    • Time: 03:18 August 30, 1958 (GMT)
    • Location: 49.5 deg South, 8.2 deg West
    • Altitude: 182 Miles
  • Argus III
    • Time: 22:13 September 6, 1958 (GMT)
    • Location: 48.5 deg South, 9.7 deg West
    • Altitude: 466 Miles (750 km) (perhaps the highest nuclear explosion ever)
    • Yield: 1.7 kilotons.


See also: Operation Hardtack I August 27 is the 239th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (240th in leap years), with 126 days remaining. ... 1958 was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) is the mean solar time at the Royal Greenwich Observatory in Greenwich near London in England, which by convention is at 0 degrees geographic longitude. ... Latitude, denoted by the Greek letter φ, gives the location of a place on Earth north or south of the Equator. ... A compass rose with South highlighted South is most commonly a noun, adjective, or adverb indicating direction or geography. ... Map of Earth showing curved lines of longitude Longitude, sometimes denoted by the Greek letter λ, describes the location of a place on Earth east or west of a north-south line called the Prime Meridian. ... A compass rose with west highlighted This article refers to the cardinal direction; for other uses see West (disambiguation). ... A kilometre (American spelling: kilometer) (symbol: km) is a unit of length equal to 1000 metres (from the Greek words khilia = thousand and metro = count/measure). ... August 30 is the 242nd day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (243rd in leap years), with 123 days remaining. ... September 6 is the 249th day of the year (250th in leap years). ... Hardtack Oak mushroom cloud Hardtack Sorocco mushroom cloud An RB-57 Canberra observes Juniper. ...


  Results from FactBites:
 
Operation Argus (182 words)
Operation Argus was secretly conducted during August and September of 1958, in the South Atlantic[?] (see: South Atlantic Anomaly), by the US Atomic Energy Commission, in conjunction with the Explorer IV mission.
The tests were proposed by Nicholas Christofilos[?] of the Lawrence Radiation Laboratory (LRL)[?] as a means to determine the possibility of creating artificial radiation belts for military purposes.
The Argus explosions created artificial electron belts resulting from the β-decay of fission fragments.
Operation Argus: Information from Answers.com (1181 words)
Operation Argus was a series of nuclear weapons tests and missile tests secretly conducted during August and September of 1958, in the South Atlantic (see: South Atlantic Anomaly), by the Defense Nuclear Agency, in conjunction with the Explorer IV mission.
The timeframe for Argus was substantially impacted due to the instability of the political environment (bans on atmospheric and exoatmospheric testing were forthcoming).
She also housed VS-32 aircraft for search and security operations as well as scientific measurement, photographic, and observer missions for each shot.
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