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March 6, 2017 - First Solar Satellite

First Solar Satellite  The Space Age was just five years old when NASA’s first Orbiting Solar Observatory (OSO-1) was launched this week in 1962. OSO-1 was the first satellite to conduct extended scientific observations of the Sun from space. The first of eight OSO satellites, OSO-1 was 1.2 meters (4 ft) in diameter and weighed 200 kg (440 lbs). It measured solar radiation in the UV, X-ray, and gamma-ray regions of the spectrum, and it was the first spacecraft with onboard tape recorders for data storage. OSO-1 was fully operational for several months before its tape recorder failed, and it continued to transmit real-time data until its batteries died in 1964. This extreme ultraviolet view of a complex of active solar loops was obtained by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory in 2014.

Image credit: Solar Dynamics Observatory / NASA

Weekly Calendar

March 6-12, 2017

Holidays - Sky Events - Space History

 

Monday 6

Mercury in superior conjunction
Vesta appears stationary

1787: Joseph Fraunhofer born
1937: Valentina Tereshkova born, first woman in space
1986: Vega 1 flies by Halley’s Comet
2009: Kepler Observatory launched
2015: Dawn becomes first spacecraft to orbit dwarf planet Ceres

Tuesday 7

1792: John Herschel born
1837: Henry Draper born
1962: OSO-1 launched
1969: Apollo 9 astronauts complete first solo flight of lunar module

Wednesday 8

1979: Active volcanoes found on Io
2001: STS-102 Discovery launched
2007: Orbital Express launched
2008: First Automated Transfer Vehicle launched

Moon phase Thursday 9

1564: David Fabricius born
1934: Yuri Gagarin born, first human in space
1961: Sputnik 9 launched
1986: Vega 2 flies by Halley’s Comet

Moon phase Friday 10

Regulus 0.8° north of Moon

1820: Royal Astronomical Society founded
1977: Rings discovered around Uranus
2006: Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter arrives at Mars

Moon phase Saturday 11

1811: Urbain Le Verrier born
1965: Pioneer 5 launched
2008: STS-123 Endeavour launched

Moon phase Sunday 12

Daylight Saving Time begins 2:00am

Full Moon 10:54 AM ET

1835: Simon Newcomb born
1981: Victor Savinykh becomes 100th person to travel in space, Soyuz T-4 mission
2015: Magnetospheric Multiscale Mission launched

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