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February 6, 2012 - Hubble Telescope Tune-Up

Hubble Telescope Tune-Up A little more than three years after the December 1993 repair mission that corrected its blurred vision, the Hubble Space Telescope was ready for another tune-up. In February 1997 (fifteen years ago this week), the Shuttle Discovery was launched on STS-82, the second Hubble servicing mission. Over the course of five days, two pairs of astronauts completed five space walks and gave Hubble an extensive overhaul which included new instruments (a spectrograph, a near-infrared camera, and a spectrometer), a fine-guidance sensor, a new computer and data recorder, new electronics and covers on the magnetometer sensors, plus repairs to Hubble’s insulation which, after seven years in space, had begun to show signs of damage from collisions with micrometeoroids and other space debris.

Image credit: NASA

Weekly Calendar

February 6-12, 2012

Holidays - Sky Events - Space History

Moon phase Monday 6

1971: Alan Shepard hits first golf balls on Moon

Moon phase Tuesday 7

Mercury in superior conjunction
Full Moon 4:54 PM ET

1984: Bruce McCandless makes first untethered spacewalk during STS-41B
1999: Stardust comet probe launched
2001: STS-98 Atlantis launched
2008: STS-122 Atlantis launched

Moon phase Wednesday 8

Saturn appears stationary

1828: Jules Verne born
1974: 84-day Skylab 4 mission ends, last crew to occupy Skylab
2010: STS-130 Endeavour launched

Moon phase Thursday 9

1971: Apollo 14 returns from Moon; last post-mission quarantine

Moon phase Friday 10

Venus 0.3° north of Uranus
Mars 10° north of Moon

1990: Galileo spacecraft passes by Venus on its way to Jupiter
1992: First Atlas II launch

Moon phase Saturday 11

Moon at perigee

1970: First Japanese satellite launched
1984: STS-41B Challenger makes first shuttle landing at KSC
1997: STS-82 Discovery launched
2000: STS-99 Endeavour launched
2010: Solar Dynamics Observatory launched

Moon phase Sunday 12

Saturn 6° north of Moon

1963: NASA selects contractor to build the Crawler Transporter
1974: Mars 5 enters orbit around Mars
2001: NEAR-Shoemaker lands on asteroid Eros

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