Fifty years ago, on 29 November 1967, Australia launched its first satellite, WRESAT (Weapons Research Establishment Satellite), from the Woomera Rocket Range in South Australia. The satellite was designed, constructed and launched in just 11 months in a collaboration between the Weapons Research Establishment Salisbury (now Defence Science and Technology Group Edinburgh) and the University of Adelaide. The WRESAT project was made possible by the donation of a launch vehicle by an American-led research project being conducted at Woomera as well as their offer to assist in the launch.

Conical in shape, WRESAT and its motor weighed 72.6 kilograms. During its five-day orbit, it gathered a large amount of data on upper-atmospheric conditions. At the time, Australia was one of only a handful of countries to have successfully launched a satellite.

Learn more about WRESAT and Australian space-themed stamps.

Products released in this issue

  • Covers (blank pictorial, gummed)
  • Sheetlet of 10 (gummed)
  • Sheetlet pack
  • Booklet of 20 (self-adhesive)
  • Maxicard

Technical specifications

Issue date
12 September 2017
Issue withdrawal date
31 March 2018
1 x $1
Stamp design
Nigel Buchanan
Product design
Jo Mure, Australia Post Design Studio
Paper - gummed
Tullis Russell Red Phos
Paper - self-adhesive
Securepost MC90
Printing process
Offset lithography
Stamp size
26mm x 37.5mm
14.60 x 13.86
Sheet layout
Sheetlet of 10
FDI postmark
Woomera SA 5720
FDI withdrawal date
11 October 2017

Stamps in this issue

50th anniversary of WRESAT $1 stamp

Illustrator and designer Nigel Buchanan has used a “retro” style and colour scheme to set the scene. The design depicts the conically shaped satellite orbiting the Earth and the launch rocket, and is based on some original drawings and diagrams relating to the WRESAT launch.

This content was produced at the time of the stamp issue release date and will not be updated.