On today’s date in 1983, astronaut Sally Ride, the first U.S. woman in space, deployed Canada’s Anik C2 satellite into Earth’s orbit from the Challenger space shuttle.
The Anik (which means “little brothers” in Inuktitut) was retired on Jan. 7, 1998.
While the Anik was a geostationary communications satellite, another satellite launched nearly two decades before the C2 was the Alouette 2 research satellite.
The Alouette 2 was launched in California in November 1965 in an attempt to explore the ionosphere. With updated support systems from the earlier model, it lasted for 10 years before it was terminated in August 1975.
In 1966, Canada’s Post Office Department (now Canada Post) featured the Alouette 2 on a five-cent commemorative stamp (Scott #445) printed by Canadian Bank Note Company.