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KH-4 CORONA

Early systems (KH-1, KH-2, KH-3 and KH-6) carried a single panoramic camera, or a single frame camera (KH-5), while the later systems (KH-4, KH-4A, and KH-4B) carried two panoramic cameras with 30 degrees separation angle. For KH-4, KH-4A,and KH-4B missions, the two cameras are referred to as fore (for forward looking) and aft (for rear looking). The KH-6 camera was programmed to tilt between fore and aft to cover the same land area twice during a photographic pass and thus to acquire stereo coverage. The satellites were designed to deorbit a film capsule (referred to as a "bucket")from space with mid-air recovery of the returning capsule by a specially equipped aircraft. Early systems operated with a single bucket, while later systems were configured with two buckets; the KH-4A was the first satellite with multiple film buckets.

+------------+---------+-----------+------------+------------+------------+
| KH         | System  | Successful| Period of  | Amount of  | No. of     |
| Designator |         |  Mission  | Operations | Film       | Primary    |
|            |         |  Numbers  |            | (ft.)      | Camera     |
|            |         |           |            |            | Frames     |
|------------|---------|-----------|------------|------------|------------|
| KH-4       | CORONA  | 9031,     | February   | 239,299    | 101,743    |
|            |         | 9032,     | 1962 -     |            |            |
|            |         | 9035,     | December   |            |            |
|            |         | 9037,     | 1963       |            |            |
|            |         | 9038,     |            |            |            |
|            |         | 9039,     |            |            |            |
|            |         | 9040,     |            |            |            |
|            |         | 9041,     |            |            |            |
|            |         | 9043,     |            |            |            |
|            |         | 9044,     |            |            |            |
|            |         | 9045,     |            |            |            |
|            |         | 9047,     |            |            |            |
|            |         | 9048,     |            |            |            |
|            |         | 9050,     |            |            |            |
|            |         | 9051,     |            |            |            |
|            |         | 9053,     |            |            |            |
|            |         | 9054,     |            |            |            |
|            |         | 9056,     |            |            |            |
|            |         | 9057,     |            |            |            |
|            |         | 9062      |            |            |            |
|------------|---------|-----------|------------|------------|------------|
| KH-4A      | CORONA  | 1001,     | August     | 1,293,025  | 517,688    |
|            |         | 1002,     | 1963 -     |            |            |
|            |         | 1004,     | October    |            |            |
|            |         | 1006      | 1969       |            |            |
|            |         | through   |            |            |            |
|            |         | 1031,     |            |            |            |
|            |         | 1033      |            |            |            |
|            |         | through   |            |            |            |
|            |         | 1052      |            |            |            |
|------------|---------|-----------|------------|------------|------------|
| KH-4B      | CORONA  | 1101      | September  | *505,970   | 188,526    |
|            |         | through   | 1967 - May |            |            |
|            |         | 1112,     | 1972       |            |            |
|            |         | 1114      |            |            |            |
|            |         | through   |            |            |            |
|            |         | 1117      |            |            |            |
+------------+---------+-----------+------------+------------+------------+

The following table gives a listing of all missions organized according to mission number order. The statement "mission failed" is made under the mission description for missions that failed to acquire imagery.


|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| KH-4 Mission  | Date          | Short Mission Description            |
|               | Launched      |                                      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9031          | 27FEB2962     | *First mission of the KH-4 series.   |
|               |               | Much of film slightly out of focus.  |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9032          | 18-Apr-62     | *Best mission to date.               |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9033          | 28-Apr-62     | Mission failed.  Parachute ejector   |
|               |               | squibs holding parachute container   |
|               |               | cover failed to fire.  No recovery.  |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9034A         | See KH-5      |                                      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9035          | 30-May-62     | *Slight corona static on film.       |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9036          | 2-Jun-62      | Mission failed.  During air catch,   |
|               |               | chute tore loose.  Capsule sank.     |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9037          | 23-Jun-62     | Corona static occurs on some film.   |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9038          | 28-Jun-62     | *Severe corona static.               |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9039          | 21-Jul-62     | Aborted after 6 photo passes.  Heavy |
|               |               | corona and radiation fog.            |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9040          | 28-Jul-62     | *No filters on slave horizon         |
|               |               | cameras.  Heavy corona and radiation |
|               |               | fog.                                 |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9041          | 2-Aug-62      | *Severe corona and radiation fog.    |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9042A         | See KH-5      |                                      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9043          | 17-Sep-62     | Capping shutter malfunction, slight  |
|               |               | corona and radiation fog.            |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9044          | 29-Aug-62     | *Erratic vehicle attitude.           |
|               |               | Radiation fog minimal.               |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9045          | 29-Sep-62     | *First use of stellar camera,        |
|               |               | erratic vehicle attitude, numerous   |
|               |               | light leaks.                         |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9046A         | See KH-5      |                                      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9047          | 5-Nov-62      | Camera door malfunctioned, flare     |
|               |               | degraded 15% of film.                |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9048          | 24-Nov-62     | Some film exposed through base.      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9049          | 4-Dec-62      | Mission failed.  During air catch    |
|               |               | chute tore, capsule sank.            |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9050          | 14-Dec-62     | Best mission to date.                |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9051          | 7-Jan-63      | Erratic vehicle attitude.  Frame     |
|               |               | ephemeris not created.               |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9052          | 28-Feb-63     | Mission failed.  Destroyed by range  |
|               |               | safety officer, 100 seconds after    |
|               |               | launch.                              |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9053          | 1-Apr-63      | Best imagery to date.                |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9054          | 12-Jun-63     | *Some imagery seriously affected by  |
|               |               | corona.                              |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9055A         | See KH-5      |                                      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9056          | 26-Jun-63     | *Experimental camera carried.  Film  |
|               |               | affected by light leaks.             |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9057          | 18-Jul-63     | Best mission to date.                |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9058A         | See KH-5      |                                      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9059A         | See KH-5      |                                      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9060          | 9-Nov-63      | Mission failed.  No orbit.           |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9061          | 27-Nov-63     | Mission failed.  Return capsule      |
|               |               | separated from satellite but         |
|               |               | remained in orbit.                   |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9062          | 21-Dec-63     | Corona static fogged much of film.   |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9065A         | See KH-5      |                                      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 9066A         | See KH-5      |                                      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
|               |               |                                      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| KH-4A         | Date          | Short Mission Description            |
| Mission       | Launched      |                                      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1001          | 24-Aug-63     | *First mission of KH-4A.  Some film  |
|               |               | was fogged.  Two buckets but 1001-2  |
|               |               | was never recovered.                 |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1002          | 23-Sep-63     | *Severe light leaks, 1002-2 never    |
|               |               | recovered, indefinite postponement   |
|               |               | of KH-4A series.                     |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1003          | 24-Mar-64     | Mission failed.  Guidance system     |
|               |               | failed.  No orbit.                   |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1004          | 15-Feb-64     | *Main cameras operated               |
|               |               | satisfactorily.  Minor degradations  |
|               |               | due to static and light leaks.       |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1005          | 27-Apr-64     | Mission failed.  Recovery vehicle    |
|               |               | impacted in Venezuela.               |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1006          | 4-Jun-64      | Highest quality imagery attained to  |
|               |               | date from the KH-4 system.           |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1007          | 19-Jun-64     | Out-of-focus area on some film.      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1008          | 10-Jul-64     | *Cameras operated satisfactorily,    |
|               |               | some light leaks.                    |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1009          | 5-Aug-64      | *Cameras operated successfully.      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1010          | 14-Sep-64     | *Small out of focus areas on both    |
|               |               | cameras at random times throughout   |
|               |               | the mission.                         |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1011          | 5-Oct-64      | *Primary mode of recovery failed on  |
|               |               | second portion of the  mission       |
|               |               | (1011-2).  Small out of focus areas  |
|               |               | present at random on both cameras.   |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1012          | 17-Oct-64     | *Vehicle attitude became erratic on  |
|               |               | the second portion of the mission    |
|               |               | necessitating an early recovery.     |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1013          | 2-Nov-64      | *Program anomaly occurred            |
|               |               | immediately after launch when both   |
|               |               | cameras operated for 417 frames.     |
|               |               | Main cameras ceased operation on rev |
|               |               | 52D of first portion of mission      |
|               |               | negating second portion.  About 65%  |
|               |               | of aft camera film is out of focus.  |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1014          | 18-Nov-64     | *Cameras operated successfully.      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1015          | 19-Dec-64     | *Discrepancies in planned and        |
|               |               | actual coverage due to telemetry     |
|               |               | problems during the first 6          |
|               |               | revolutions.  Small out-of-focus     |
|               |               | areas on film from aft camera.       |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1016          | 15-Jan-65     | *Smearing of highly reflective       |
|               |               | images due to reflections within     |
|               |               | camera.                              |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1017          | 25-Feb-65     | *Capping shutter malfunction         |
|               |               | occurred during last 5 passes of     |
|               |               | mission.                             |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1018          | 25-Mar-65     | *Cameras operated successfully.      |
|               |               | First KH-4A reconnaissance system to |
|               |               | be launched into a retrograde        |
|               |               | orbit.                               |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1019          | 29-Apr-65     | *Cameras operated successfully.      |
|               |               | Malfunction in recovery mode on      |
|               |               | 1019-2 negated recovery.             |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1020          | 9-Jun-65      | *All cameras operated                |
|               |               | satisfactorily.  Erratic attitude    |
|               |               | caused an early recovery after the   |
|               |               | second day of 1020-2.                |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1021          | 18-May-65     | *Aft camera ceased operation on pass |
|               |               | 102.                                 |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1022          | 19-Jul-65     | *All cameras operated                |
|               |               | satisfactorily.                      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1023          | 17-Aug-65     | * Program anomaly caused the fore    |
|               |               | camera to cease operation during     |
|               |               | revolutions 103-132.                 |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1024          | 22-Sep-65     | *All cameras operated                |
|               |               | satisfactorily.  Cameras not         |
|               |               | operated on passes 88D-93D.          |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1025          | 5-Oct-65      | *Main cameras operated               |
|               |               | satisfactorily.                      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1026          | 28-Oct-65     | * All cameras operated               |
|               |               | satisfactorily.                      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1027          | 9-Dec-65      | *Erratic attitude necessitated       |
|               |               | recovery after two days of           |
|               |               | operation.  All cameras operated     |
|               |               | satisfactorily.                      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1028          | 24-Dec-65     | * Cameras operated satisfactorily.   |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1029          | 2-Feb-66      | *Both panoramic cameras were         |
|               |               | operational throughout.              |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1030          | 9-Mar-66      | *All cameras operated                |
|               |               | satisfactorily.                      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1031          | 7-Apr-66      | *The aft-looking camera              |
|               |               | malfunctioned after the recovery of  |
|               |               | bucket "1".  No material was         |
|               |               | received in bucket "2" (1031-2).     |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1032          | 3-May-66      | Mission failed.  Vehicle failed to   |
|               |               | achieve orbit.                       |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1033          | 24-May-66     | *The stellar camera shutter of       |
|               |               | bucket "2" remained open for         |
|               |               | approximately 200 frames.            |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1034          | 21-Jun-66     | *Failure of velocity/altitude        |
|               |               | programmer produced poor imagery     |
|               |               | after revolution 5.                  |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1035          | 20-Sep-66     | *All cameras operated                |
|               |               | satisfactorily.  First mission flown |
|               |               | with pan geometry modification.      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1036          | 9-Aug-66      | *All cameras operated                |
|               |               | satisfactorily.                      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1037          | 8-Nov-66      | *Second pan geometry mission.        |
|               |               | Higher than normal base plus fog     |
|               |               | encountered on both main camera      |
|               |               | records.                             |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1038          | 14-Jan-67     | *Fair image quality.                 |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1039          | 22-Feb-67     | *Normal KH-4 mission.  Light from    |
|               |               | horizon camera on both main camera   |
|               |               | records during 1039-1.               |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1040          | 30-Mar-67     | Satellite flown nose first, all      |
|               |               | cameras operated satisfactorily.     |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1041          | 9-May-67      | *Due to the failure of the booster   |
|               |               | cut-off switch, the satellite went   |
|               |               | into a highly eccentric orbit.       |
|               |               | Significant image degradation.       |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1042          | 16-Jun-67     | *Small out-of-focus area in forward  |
|               |               | camera of 1042-1.                    |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1043          | 7-Aug-67      | *Forward camera film came out of the |
|               |               | rails on pass 230D.  Film degraded   |
|               |               | past this point.                     |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1044          | 2-Nov-67      | *All cameras operated fine.          |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1045          | 24-Jan-68     | *All cameras operated                |
|               |               | satisfactorily.                      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1046          | 14-Mar-68     | * Image quality good for 1046-1 and  |
|               |               | fair for 1046-2.                     |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1047          | 20-Jun-68     | *Out-of-focus imagery is present on  |
|               |               | both main camera records.            |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1048          | 18-Sep-68     | *Film in the forward camera          |
|               |               | separated and camera failed on       |
|               |               | mission 1048-2, also the             |
|               |               | stellar/index camera unit failed.    |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1049          | 12-Dec-68     | *Degraded film                       |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1050          | 19-Mar-69     | *Due to abnormal rotational rates    |
|               |               | after revolution 22, the mission was |
|               |               | terminated after a total of three    |
|               |               | days collecting photography.         |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1051          | 2-May-69      | *Imagery of both pan camera records  |
|               |               | is soft and lacks crispness and edge |
|               |               | sharpness.                           |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1052          | 22-Sep-69     | *Last of the KH-4A missions, all     |
|               |               | camera systems operated              |
|               |               | satisfactorily.                      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
|               |               |                                      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| KH-4B         | Date          | Short Mission Description            |
| Mission       | Launched      |                                      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1101          | 15-Sep-67     | First mission of the KH-4B series.   |
|               |               | Best film to date.                   |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1102          | 9-Dec-67      | *Noticeable image smear for forward  |
|               |               | camera, but best imagery to date.    |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1103          | 1-May-68      | *Out-of-focus imagery is present on  |
|               |               | both main camera records.            |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1104          | 7-Aug-68      | *Best imagery to date on any KH-4    |
|               |               | systems.  Bicolor and color infrared |
|               |               | experiments were conducted on this   |
|               |               | mission.                             |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1105          | 3-Nov-68      | *Image quality is variable and       |
|               |               | displays areas of soft focus and     |
|               |               | image smear.                         |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1106          | 5-Feb-69      | *The best image quality to date.     |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1107          | 24-Jul-69     | Forward camera failed on pass 1 and  |
|               |               | remained inoperative throughout the  |
|               |               | rest of the mission.                 |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1108          | 4-Dec-69      | Cameras operated satisfactorily and  |
|               |               | the mission carried 811 ft of aerial |
|               |               | color film added to the end of the   |
|               |               | film supply.                         |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1109          | 4-Mar-70      | Cameras operated satisfactorily but  |
|               |               | the overall image quality of both    |
|               |               | the forward and aft records is       |
|               |               | variable.                            |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1110          | 20-May-70     | The overall image quality is less    |
|               |               | than that provided by recent         |
|               |               | missions and 2,000 feet of S0-349    |
|               |               | (new film) was spliced into the      |
|               |               | regular film.                        |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1111          | 23-Jul-70     | The overall image quality is good.   |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1112          | 18-Nov-70     | The forward camera failed on pass    |
|               |               | 104 and remained inoperative         |
|               |               | throughout the rest of the mission.  |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1113          | 17-Feb-71     | Mission failed due to failure of     |
|               |               | Thor booster.  Destroyed shortly     |
|               |               | after launch.                        |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1114          | 24-Mar-71     | *The overall image quality is good   |
|               |               | and comparable to the best of past   |
|               |               | missions.  On-board program failed   |
|               |               | after pass 235, ceasing photographic |
|               |               | acquisition.                         |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1115          | 10-Sep-71     | *Overall image quality is good.      |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1116          | 19-Mar-72     | *Very successful mission and image   |
|               |               | quality was good.                    |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|
| 1117          | 25-May-72     | *Last KH-4B mission.  Very           |
|               |               | successful mission, image quality    |
|               |               | was good.  Final CORONA mission.     |
|---------------|---------------|--------------------------------------|



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