Matra built the SPOT 1 satellite for CNES, which launched it aboard an Ariane into sun synchronous polar orbit in Feb 1986. Launch mass was 1830 kg, dry mass was 1680 kg. The Ariane launch was notable in that the H8 final stage exploded and became one of the largest single contributors to the cataloged orbital debris population.
SPOT 1 was deactivated in 1993, but was to be reactivated in Nov 1996 to make up for the loss of SPOT 3. By this time, the on board tape recorders had failed and data had to be recovered by ground station real time passes.
|1986 Feb 22||Launch by Ariane I||CSG|
|1986 Feb 22||101.42 823 x 828 x 98.8|
|1986 Nov 14||H8 stage explodes|
|1990 Sep||In reserve|
|1992 Oct||Deactivated for winter|
|1993 Sep||101.41 824 x 825 x 98.71|