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Transitional Region and Coronal Explorer, also called SMEX 4


Designation 25280 / 98020A
Launch date 2 Apr 1998
Country of origin United States
Operator NASA
Mission Scientific: sun observation
Perigee/Apogee 602/652 km sun-synchronous
Inclination 97.8°
Period 97 min
Launch vehicle Pegasus XL
Launch site Vandenberg
Mass at launch 224 kg

Launch worth $12 million

The TRACE satellite, designed by an international team of 13 scientists from America, Britain, Sweden and the Netherlands, will explore the connections between fine-scale magnetic fields and the associated plasma structures of the Sun. Will be built at the Lockheed Palo Alto Research Laboratory.

External resources


sat-index articles

Technical data


Prime contractor LM
Mass at launch 213 kg
Mass in orbit  
Dimension 0.86 m octogonal prism
Solar array 4 panels, total: 2 m²
Stabilization 3-axis
DC power 220 W
Design lifetime 1 year

Telemetry: 2215 MHz (realtime: 23.4375 kpbs, playback: 1.125 or 2.25 Mbps) (5 W transmitter)
Command: 2039.65 MHz (2 kbps)
Date: 2275.3 MHz ?

Field of view: 8.5 x 8.5 arcminute
Telescope: 30 cm diameter x 160 cm length, 8.66 m focal length Cassegrain

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