These are based on data collected by University of Iowa-developed instruments

Explorer 1 February 1, 1958 Designed and developed the science instrument on the first successful U.S. satellite, which lead to the discovery of Earth's radiation belts
Explorer 3 March 1958 Designed and developed the first tape recorder for spaceflight
Injun 1 June 29, 1961 First university to design, assemble, operate, and track a successful satellite
Mariner 2 August 1962 Instrumentation on the first flight to another planet (Venus)
Mariner 4 November 1964 Instrumentation on the first flight to Mars
Pioneer 10 March 1972 Instrumentation on the first flight to Jupiter
Pioneer 11 April 1973 Instrumentation on the first flight to Saturn
Pioneer 10 December 1973 Discovery of radiation belts at Jupiter
Voyager 2 August 1977 Instrumentation on the first flight to Uranus
Voyager 2 August 1977 Instrumentation on the first flight to Neptune
Pioneer 10/11 1979 Discovery and first survey of radiation belts of Saturn
Voyager 1 1979 Establish the presence of lightning at Jupiter
Plasma Diagnostics Package July 1985 First satellite released and recovered during a space shuttle mission
ISEE 3 September 1985 Instrumentation on the first flyby of a comet (Comet Giacobini-Zinner)
Galileo October 1989 Instrumentation on the first orbiter of Jupiter
Galileo October 1991 In situ measurements of the asteroid Gaspra
Galileo August 1993 In situ measurements of the asteroid Ida
Galileo June 1996 Discovery of the first magnetosphere of a planetary moon (Ganymede)
Cassini October 1997 Instrumentation on the first orbiter of Saturn
Galileo/Cassini December 2000 Three scientific instruments on two spacecraft simultaneously collected data at Jupiter
Mars Express 2004 First subsurface and ionospheric radar measurements at Mars
Voyager 2 August 2007 First measurements of plasma waves at heliospheric termination shock
Cassini December 2010 First measurements of lightning from a global storm on Saturn
Voyager 1 Oct./Nov. 2012 First man-made object to enter interstellar space and make measurements in interstellar medium
Mars Express October 2014 First measurements during a close comet flyby of Mars (Comet Siding-Spring)
Juno July 2016 Instrument on the first polar orbiter of Jupiter
HaloSat May 2018 First astrophysics-focused and competitively selected CubeSat mission funded by NASA's Astrophysics Division

 

Snapshot summary of U. of Iowa space physics research milestones

  • Developed the science instrument on the first successful U.S. satellite, Explorer 1
  • Discovery of radiation belts at Earth, Jupiter, and Saturn
  • Between 1958 and 1998 developed more spaceflight instruments than any other university
  • First observations by spacecraft at 7 of the 8 planets in our solar system
  • First studies of radio emissions and plasma waves at Uranus and Neptune
  • First evidence of lightning at Jupiter
  • Discovery of a magnetosphere at Ganymede
  • First in situ observations with spacecraft of a comet and an asteroid
  • Observations by most-distant spacecraft from Earth
  • Developed the first object (a satellite) released and recovered by the space shuttle remote manipulator arm
  • Developed the first subsurface radar to explore Mars
  • First measurements at the heliospheric termination shock
  • First man-made object to enter interstellar space and make measurements of interstellar medium
  • First measurements during a close comet flyby of a planet
  • First astrophysics-focused and competitively selected CubeSat mission funded by NASA's Astrophysics Division
  • Design and fabrication of 7 complete, successfully launched spacecraft
  • Developed instrumentation on 70 successfully launched spacecraft (as of 2020)
  • In early 2021 the University of Iowa has operating science instruments on 14 spacecraft