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Stella




Stella
A French geodetic satellite, carrying 60 laser reflectors mounted on a dense sphere of uranium alloy, which is tracked to measure small perturbations in Earth's gravitational field. Reflected laser beams enable measurements, accurate to about 1 cm, of the geoid, oceanic and terrestrial tides, and tectonic movements. Stella's twin, Starlette, launched in 1975, is also still in use. See also France in space.


launch date Sep. 26, 1993
launch vehicle Ariane 4
launch site Kourou
orbit 793 × 803 km × 98.7°
mass 48 kg


Related category

   • SATELLITES AND SPACE PROBES