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January 20, 2014 - Darling Spacecraft

Darling Spacecraft Twenty years ago this week the Clementine spacecraft began an ambitious journey to the Moon. A fast-track project of NASA and the Department of Defense (from initial concept to launch in under two years), Clementine spent seventy days orbiting the Moon, capturing 1.8 million multi-spectral images of the Moon’s surface. Clementine also used a laser altimeter to create a detailed relief map of the Moon’s surface. On this map, the deepest areas are purple or blue, the highest areas are red or pink. The most prominent feature here is Mare Orientale (blue), the 320 km (200 mi) wide floor of an ancient impact crater, whose higher concentric rings span 900 km (560 mi) in diameter. The large Aitken Basin, in purple on the lower left edge, is one of the lowest elevation areas on the Moon.

Image credit: NASA

Weekly Calendar

January 20-26 2014

Holidays - Sky Events - Space History


Moon phase Monday 20

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

1573: Simon Marius born
1930: Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin born
1966: Apollo A-004 launched, first flight test of CSM hardware
1978: Progress 1 launched

Moon phase Tuesday 21

Moon phase Wednesday 22

1968: Apollo 5 launched
1978: First automatic resupply ship docking (Progress 1)
1992: STS-42 Discovery launched
1998: STS-89 Endeavour launched
2003: Pioneer 10’s last signal to Earth

Moon phase Thursday 23

Mars 4° north of Moon

Moon phase Friday 24

Last Qtr Moon 12:19 AM ET

1978: Cosmos 954 satellite reenters atmosphere over Canada
1985: STS-51C Discovery launched
1986: Voyager 2 flies past Uranus
1992: Magellan begins third mapping cycle of Venus

Moon phase Saturday 25

Saturn 0.6° north of Moon

1736: Joseph Lagrange born
1962: NASA authorizes Saturn V rocket
1983: IRAS launched
1994: Clementine spacecraft launched
2004: Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity lands

Moon phase Sunday 26

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