• Short Summary

    The Untied States will shortly be the first country in the world to use satellites to relay mail massages.

  • Description

    The Untied States will shortly be the first country in the world to use satellites to relay mail massages.

    On Thursday (5 September) the first ever transmission of mail by satellite will carry massages from New York to Los Angeles on the West Coast.

    The messages will be relayed via Westar I, a 1,265 pound (573 kilogram) craft, which was launched by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration in April for the Western Union communication company. It's the world's first "domestically" owned satellite.

    Drbitting some 22,300 miles (35,800 kilometers) above the earth Wester I has the capacity to carry 14,000 private telephone conversations or simultaneous colour television signals. The satellite casts a shaped beam that covers the 48 continental states as well as Alaska, Hawaii and Puerto Rico.

    The satellite system is linked to ground communications networks which feed transcontinental messages to their destinations. The United States postal service provides door-to-door delivery of messages sent via the satellite.

    Messages sent via the satellite travel at the speed of light. Up to eight million words can be transmitted through the satellite every second.

    Western Union - which is charging about half the coast of ground communication systems - has described the use of satellites in mail services as the start of a new are in communications. The company points out that using satellites eliminates the need for hundreds of ground relay stations; satellite signals go from one point to any other with just one repeater - the satellite itself.

    The company plans to expand the service soon by launching a second satellite - Wester II - possibly in October.

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    Film ID:
    Media URN:
    Reuters - Source to be Verified
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    Available on request
    Black & White
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