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September 28, 2009 - Separation Anxiety

Separation Anxiety Originally set for an 18 August 1994 launch, the shuttle Endeavour wasn’t quite ready to leave the home planet. The launch was aborted five seconds after the three main engines had been ignited, and a mere two seconds before the enormously powerful solid rocket boosters were to ignite. This was the fifth time in shuttle history that a launch was aborted after main engine ignition. Endeavour’s computers initiated the automatic abort when they sensed that a turbopump in one main engine was operating three degrees above its acceptable operating temperature. STS-68 launched without a hitch on its second attempt, fifteen years ago this week. Endeavor is seen here atop the Shuttle Carrier Aircraft, being ferried back to Florida from California, where it ended its eleven-day mission.

Image credit: NASA

Weekly Calendar

September 28 - October 4, 2009

Holidays - Sky Events - Space History

Moon phase Monday 28

Moon at apogee
Mercury appears stationary

Moon phase Tuesday 29

Jupiter 3° south of Moon

1977: Salyut 6 space station launched
1988: STS-26 Discovery launched, first shuttle flight since Challenger disaster
2001: First satellite launch from Alaska
2009: MESSENGER makes its third and final flyby of Mercury

Moon phase Wednesday 30

Neptune 3° south of Moon

1880: Henry Draper takes first photograph of Orion Nebula
1994: STS-68 Endeavour launched
1995: Daily communication with Pioneer 11 ends
2005Soyuz TMA-7 launched carrying ISS Expedition 12 crew
2009Soyuz TMA-16 launched carrying ISS Expedition 21/22 crew

Moon phase Thursday 1

1897: 40-inch refractor dedicated at Yerkes Observatory
1958: NASA founded
1962: 300-foot radio telescope at Green Bank goes into operation

Moon phase Friday 2

Uranus 6° south of Moon

Moon phase Saturday 3

1935: Charlie Duke born
1942: First V2 rocket launched
1962: Mercury Sigma 7 launched
1967: X-15A-2 flies at mach 6.7
1985: STS-51J Atlantis launched

Moon phase Sunday 4

World Space Week begins

Full Moon 2:10 am

1957: Sputnik 1 launched
1959
: Luna 3 launched
2004: SpaceShipOne wins X Prize

Suggestions for new history dates or better links? Corrections for errors on this page? Please e-mail me.