The Stratospheric Aerosol and Gas Experiment (SAGE) spacecraft was the
second of the Applications Explorer Missions (AEM). This small, versatile,
and relatively low-cost spacecraft was made of two ... distinct parts:
(1) The SAGE instrument module containing the detectors
and the associated hardware, and
(2) The base module containing the necessary data handling,
power, communications, command, and the attitude control
subsystem to support the instruments.
The objective of the SAGE mission was to obtain stratospheric aerosol
and ozone data on a global scale for a better understanding of the earth's
environmental quality and the radiation budget. The SAGE spacecraft was
designed for a 1-year life in orbit. Unfortunately, SAGE experienced
power problems after May 15, 1979. Nevertheless, spacecraft operations
continued until November 19, 1981. The signal from the spacecraft was
last received on January 7, 1982 when the battery failed.
[Source: NASA NSSDC]