NOAA / ESSA satellite seriesNASA and the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration launch NOAA-5, a weather satellite intended to operate in a near-polar low Earth orbit. Within two weeks of its launch, NOAA-5 proves instrumental in tracking Hurricane Belle, a category 1 hurricane, as it approaches and makes landfall in the northeastern United States. NOAA-5 will operate without any major malfunctions through July 1979.