abbreviation of Missile Defense Alarm System, any of a series of unmanned U.S. military satellites developed to provide warning against surprise attacks by Soviet intercontinental ballistic missiles. Midas was the first such warning system in the world. Launched during the early 1960s, the reconnaissance satellites were equipped with infrared sensors capable of detecting the heat of a ballistic missile's rocket exhaust shortly after firing. To provide global coverage, the Midas satellites were placed into polar orbits. Midas 1 and 2, launched Feb. 25 and May 24, 1960, respectively, suffered mechanical failures. The warning system finally became operational with the launching of Midas 3 on July 12, 1961. in Greek and Roman legend, king known for his foolishness and greed. The stories of Midas, part of the Dionysiac cycle of legends, were first elaborated in the gay burlesques of the Athenian satyr plays. The tales are familiar to modern readers through the late classical versions, such as those in Ovid's Metamorphoses. According to the myth, Midas captured Silenus, the satyr and companion of the god Dionysus. For his kind treatment of Silenus Midas was rewarded by Dionysus with a wish. The king wished that all he touched might turn to gold, but when his food became gold and he nearly starved to death as a result, he realized his error. Dionysus then granted him release by having him bathe in the Pactolus River (near Sardis in modern Turkey), an action to which the presence of alluvial gold in that stream is attributed. In another story the king was asked to judge a musical contest between Apollo and the satyr Marsyas. When Midas decided against Apollo, the god changed his ears into those of an ass. Midas concealed them under a turban and made his barber swear to tell no living soul. The barber, bursting with his secret, whispered it into a hole in the ground. He filled in the hole, but reeds grew from the spot and broadcast the sibilant secretMidas has ass's earswhen the wind blew through them. flourished , 700 BC? king of Phrygia (an ancient district in west-central Anatolia), first mentioned in extant Greek literature by Herodotus as having dedicated a throne at Delphi, before Gygesi.e., before or little after 700 BC. Later reports that he married a daughter of Agamemnon, king of Aeolic Cyme, and that Midas, or Midacritus (a Greek sailor named for his royal patron?), traded with a western Tin Island, suggest the picture of a real king with commercial interests. The name Midas appears on the facade of one of the great rock-cut monuments of the upper Sangarius (Sakarya) region (in present-day northwestern Turkey); and before 700 BC Assyrian troops fought in the Taurus region (in southern Turkey) with the troops of Mita of Mushki, probably the same Midas, known there as king of a more easterly people, the Moschi (the biblical Meshech). The name Midas was probably dynastic, alternating in Phrygia with Gordieus. Both names are perpetuated in those of towns near the upper Sangarius, Midas city (Midaeion, or Midaeum) being about 60 miles (97 km) west of the more famous Gordium.
Meaning of MIDAS in English
Britannica English vocabulary. Английский словарь Британика. 2012