Goldstone: Pioneer Dish


The Goldstone Deep Space Communications complex is the Deep Space Network facility located in California's Mojave Desert. The Deep Space Network, operated for NASA by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, provides the communications link to dozens of far-flung spacecraft. Three stations spaced around the globe comprise the network; this gives continual coverage to any point in space as the earth turns. The other two stations are in Canberra, Australia, and Madrid, Spain.

The 26-meter diameter "Pioneer" dish seen here was the first constructed at Goldstone, in 1958. It was named for the first American space probe to escape Earth's gravity. Designated a National Historical Landmark by the U.S. Department of the Interior, it was deactivated in 1981, and now it only listens to the sound of the wind.

Revised: March 14, 2003
Copyright © 2003 Joe Orman
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