The Explorer I [PRIME] small satellite project


At the Montana State Space Science and Engineering Lab I helped (as Project Manager) students from rural Montana to design, build, and fly a reflight of the first US satellite, Explorer I which discovered the van Allen radiation belts.  After 6 years of work and one failed rocket launch, E1P made it to space on 28 October 2011 and was rechristened the Hiscock Radiation Belt Explorer (HRBE) after Bill Hiscock, late director of Montana Space Grant and E1P patron.

Bill paid students to figure out how to build a satellite from scratch because he believed in them.   Several have gone on to work at NASA, SpaceX, and elsewhere.

News Articles