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IDCSP (Initial Defense Communications Satellite Program)




The American military's first near-geosynchronous satellite communications system. A total of 26 IDSCP satellites were launched between 1966 and 1968 in four groups by Titan IIICs to near-equatorial, 29,500-km-high orbits. Each weighed about 45 kg and drifted from west to east at a rate of up to 30° per day. IDCSP satellites transmitted reconnaissance photos and other data during the Vietnam War. When IDCSP reached initial operational capability, the system was renamed DSCS I (Defense Satellite Communications System I). It was succeeded by NATO and DSCS II true geosynchronous satellites in the 1970s.


Related categories

   • MILITARY RECONNAISSANCE AND SURVEILLANCE
   • SATELLITES AND SPACE PROBES