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October 27, 2014 - Constellation Prize

Constellation Prize Constellation was a NASA human spaceflight program that intended to use shuttle-derived launch vehicles and Apollo-derived capsules to return humans to space after the space shuttles were retired. The launch vehicles designed for Ares included the Ares 1, which was based on the shuttle’s solid rocket boosters with a liquid-fuel upper stage. The design would have been capable of sending the crewed Orion capsule into low-Earth orbit. Development of the Ares 1 got as far as the six-minute test flight of the unmanned Ares 1-X test vehicle, which took place five years ago this week. Although the flight was a success, the Constellation program was canceled in favor of the Space Launch System, which will use different launch vehicles but will retain the Orion capsule.

Image credit: NASA

Weekly Calendar

October 27 - November 2, 2014

Holidays - Sky Events - Space History


Moon phase Monday 27

1961: SA-1 launched, first Saturn rocket
2003: ISS Expedition 7 crew returns to Earth after 184 days in orbit

Moon phase Tuesday 28

Mars 7° south of Moon

1971: Britain launches its first satellite
1974: Luna 23 launched
2009: Ares I-X test flight

Moon phase Wednesday 29

1964: First flight of Lunar Landing Research Vehicle
1987: Cosmos 1894 becomes 2,000th satellite
1991: Galileo flies past Gaspra
1998: STS-95 Discovery launched

Moon phase Thursday 30

First Qtr Moon 10:48 PM ET

1981: Venera 13 launched
1985: STS-61A Challenger launched
1997: First successful Ariane 5 rocket launched

Moon phase Friday 31


2005: Hubble Space Telescope discovers two new moons orbiting Pluto
2006: NASA announces SM4, the fifth and final Hubble servicing mission
2014: SpaceShipTwo crashes during atmospheric test flight, one pilot killed

Moon phase Saturday 1

Mercury at greatest elongation (19° W)

1962: Mars 1 launched
1999: Area Code 321 goes into effect for areas near Kennedy Space Center

Moon phase Sunday 2

Daylight Saving Time ends 2:00 AM

Neptune 5° south of Moon
Moon at perigee

1885: Harlow Shapley born
1917: First light for Mount Wilson Observatory 100-inch Hooker telescope

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