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Race To Space
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               ... but at what cost?
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A Lunar eclipse occurred which was the first astronomical event recorded by European colonists in (what would become) the US.
Lunar eclipse of 25 June 1638, NASA illustrationSource: NASA Eclipse Web Site LE1638-06-26T.gif
Lunar eclipse of 25 June 1638, NASA illustration
Source: NASA Eclipse Web Site
ref: buhlplanetarium4.tripod.com

Died, Giovanni Riccioli, Italian astronomer (names of Lunar features)
ref: en.wikipedia.org

Born, Walther Nernst, German physicist (heat theorem: the Third Law of Thermodynamics, electrochemistry, and more), Nobel 1920, chemistry, "in recognition of his work in thermochemistry"
ref: www.nobelprize.org

The Great Comet of 1881 was observed with a tail's length of about 25 degrees, and a nucleus brightness of magnitude 1.
ref: en.wikipedia.org

Born, Hermann Oberth (at Hermannstadt, Hungary (now Sibiu, Romania)), rocket pioneer, one of the founding fathers of rocketry and astronautics
ref: en.wikipedia.org

Astronomer George Ellery Hale determined "solar vortices" (sunspots) were magnetic phenomenon on the Sun.
ref: en.wikipedia.org

Born, Petr Aleksandrovich Tyurin, Russian Chief Designer, KB Arsenal 1953-1981, specialized in L3 Lunar program components, later performed EORSAT (ELINT Ocean Reconnaissance Satellite) work
ref: www.astronautix.com

K. Reinmuth discovered asteroid #1023 Thomana.

Robert Goddard launched one of his A series rockets, with a new timing device for the parachute and a cushioned gyro. The day was windy, the rocket tipped into the wind as it left the tower, and rose to 120 feet in its 10 second flight.
ref: en.wikipedia.org

The term "flying saucer" was first used in a report of an unidentified flying object (UFO).
ref: en.wikipedia.org

Died, Walter Baade, astronomer (star populations, Cephid variables, Bruce Medal 1955)

Wilhelm Heinrich Walter Baade (24 March 1893 - 25 June 1960) was a German astronomer who emigrated to the USA in 1931.

Along with Fritz Zwicky, he proposed that supernovae could create neutron stars.

He took advantage of wartime blackout conditions during World War II, which reduced light pollution at Mount Wilson Observatory, to resolve stars in the center of the Andromeda galaxy for the first time, which led him to define distinct "populations" for stars (Population I and Population II).

He discovered that there are two types of Cepheid variable stars, and identified the Crab Nebula as the remnant of the supernova of the year 1054, and identified the optical counterparts of various radio sources.

He discovered 10 asteroids, including notably 944 Hidalgo (long orbital period) and the Apollo-class asteroid 1566 Icarus (whose perihelion is closer than that of Mercury) and the Amor asteroid 1036 Ganymed.

He won the Gold Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society in 1954. He also won the Bruce Medal in 1955, and the Henry Norris Russell Lectureship of the American Astronomical Society in 1958.
See also Walter Baade on Wikipedia
ref: phys-astro.sonoma.edu

Died, Bertil Lindblad, Swedish astronomer (studied the rotation of galaxies)
ref: en.wikipedia.org

1966 10:19:00 GMT
Cosmos 122, the first announced Soviet meteorological satellite, was launched from Baikonur.
ref: nssdc.gsfc.nasa.gov

In excess of 350 million viewers watched the Beatles "Our World" TV special, the first global satellite television program.
ref: web.archive.org

1974 04:15:00 GMT
USSR launched Salyut 3 from Baikonur, an unmanned orbital workshop that would be visited and manned by Soyuz crews to perform experiments and observations.

Salyut 3, launched 25 June 1974, was the Soviet Union's first successful Almaz military manned space station flight, and attained an altitude of 219-270 km, with a final orbital altitude of 268-272 km. It tested a wide array of reconnaissance sensors. Salyut 3 had a total mass of about 19 tons (18500 kg). It had two solar panels laterally mounted at the center of the station, and a detachable recovery module for return of research data and materials. Salyut 3 was only operated by one team of Soyuz cosmonauts, from Soyuz 14 (July 1974). The Soyuz 15 cosmonauts (August 1974) were unable to dock successfully with the station. On 23 September 1974, the station's recovery module was released and re-entered the atmosphere, and was recovered by the Soviets. The KSI capsule suffered damage during re-entry, but all of the film was recoverable. On 24 January 1975 trials of the on board Nudelmann aircraft cannon were conducted with positive results: Cosmonauts have confirmed that a target satellite was destroyed in the test. The next day the station was commanded to retrofire to a destructive re-entry over the Pacific Ocean. Although only one of three planned crews managed to board the station, that crew did complete the first completely successful Soviet space station flight.
ref: nssdc.gsfc.nasa.gov

E. F. Helin and S. J. Bus discovered asteroids #2343 Siding Spring, #2392 Jonathan Murray, #2441 Hibbs, #2618 Coonabarabran, #2619 Skalnate Pleso, #2628 Kopal, #2682 Soromundi, #2704 Julian Loewe, #3129 Bonestell, #3205 and #3756.

1992 12:12:23 EDT (GMT -4:00:00)
NASA launched STS 50 (Columbia 12, 48th Shuttle mission) carrying the US Microgravity Laboratory-1 (USML-1) experiment package to orbit.

NASA launched STS 50 on 25 June 1992. The liftoff was delayed five minutes due to weather. It was the first flight of Columbia after its scheduled checkout and extensive modification period at the Rockwell plant in California in which more than 50 modifications were completed, including the installation of a drag chute for use during landing. Columbia was the first orbiter outfitted with Extended Duration Orbiter (EDO) hardware, including the EDO cryogen pallet.

The primary payload, US Microgravity Laboratory-1 (USML-1), made its first flight on STS 50, which featured a pressurized Spacelab module. USML-1 was the first in a planned series of flights to advance the US microgravity research effort in several disciplines. Experiments conducted were: Crystal Growth Furnace (CGF); Drop Physics Module (DPM); Surface Tension Driven Convection Experiments (STDCE); Zeolite Crystal Growth (ZCG); Protein Crystal Growth (PCG); Glovebox Facility (GBX); Space Acceleration Measurement System (SAMS); Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus (GBA); Astroculture-1 (ASC); Extended Duration Orbiter Medical Project (EDOMP); and the Solid Surface Combustion Experiment (SSCE).

Secondary experiments performed during the STS 50 flight were: Investigations into Polymer Membrane Processing (IPMP); Shuttle Amateur Radio Experiment II (SAREX II); and the Ultraviolet Plume Instrument (UVPI).

STS 50 ended on 9 July 1992 when Columbia landed on revolution 221 on Runway 33, Kennedy Space Center, Florida. Rollout distance: 10,674 feet (3,253 meters). Rollout time: 59 seconds. Launch weight: 257,265 pounds. Landing weight: 228,127 pounds. Mission duration: 13 days, 19 hours, 30 minutes, four seconds. Orbit altitude: 160 nautical miles. Orbit inclination: 28.45 degrees. Miles Traveled: 5.8 million. The drag chute was deployed, again with the nosegear down. The landing was delayed one day due to rain at the primary landing site, Edwards AFB. This was the first landing of Columbia at KSC, and the first with the new synthetic tread tires. The mission's duration eclipsed all previous US manned space flights to date except the three Skylab space station flights in 1973 and 1974.

The flight crew for STS 50 was: Richard N. Richards, Commander; Kenneth D. Bowersox, Pilot; Bonnie J. Dunbar, Payload Commander; Lawrence J. DeLucas, Payload Specialist 1; Ellen S. Baker, Mission Specialist 2; Carl J. Meade, Mission Specialist 3; Eugene H. Trinh, Payload Specialist 2.
ref: www.nasa.gov

NASA's Galileo orbiter made its second Callisto flyby during its ninth orbit around Jupiter.

The STS 34 launch set for 12 October 1989 was rescheduled due to a faulty main engine controller on main engine number two. The launch set for 17 October was rescheduled due to weather constraints for a return-to-launch-site landing at the Kennedy Space Center's Shuttle Landing Facility.

The primary payload, the Galileo/Jupiter spacecraft and attached Inertial Upper Stage (IUS), was deployed six hours, 30 minutes into the flight. The IUS stages fired, placing Galileo on a trajectory for its six-year trip to Jupiter via gravitational boosts from Venus and Earth and possible observational brushes with asteroids Gaspra and Ida.

The secondary payloads aboard STS 34 included the Shuttle Solar Backscatter Ultraviolet (SSBUV) experiment carried in cargo bay, and in the crew cabin, Growth Hormone Crystal Distribution (GHCD); Polymer Morphology (PM), Sensor Technology Experiment (STEX); Mesoscale Lightning Experiment (MLE); IMAX camera; Shuttle Student Involvement Program (SSIP) experiment that investigated ice crystal formation in zero-gravity; and ground-based Air Force Maui Optical Site (AMOS) experiment.

STS 34 ended on 23 October 1989 when Atlantis landed on revolution 80 on Runway 23, Edwards Air Force Base, California. Rollout distance: 9,677 feet. Rollout time: 60 seconds. Launch weight: 257,569 pounds. Landing weight: 195,954 pounds. Orbit altitude: 185 nautical miles. Orbit inclination: 34.3 degrees. Mission duration: four days, 23 hours, 39 minutes, 21 seconds. Miles traveled: 2 million. Atlantis was returned to the Kennedy Space Center on 29 October 1989.

The flight crew for STS 34 was: Donald E. Williams, Commander; Michael J. McCulley, Pilot; Franklin R. Chang-Diaz, Mission Specialist 1; Shannon W. Lucid, Mission Specialist 2; Ellen S. Baker, Mission Specialist 3.
ref: nssdc.gsfc.nasa.gov
ref: www.nasa.gov

Progress M-34 collided with and damaged the Mir space station under manual control of Vasily Tsibliyev while testing an attempted cost saving measure, to be achieved through eliminating the automatic docking system.
ref: en.wikipedia.org

1997 23:44:00 GMT
Intelsat 802 was launched from Kourou on an Ariane 44P and positioned in geosynchronous orbit at 174 deg E in 1997-2000; 177 deg E in 2000.
ref: nssdc.gsfc.nasa.gov

Died (aircraft crash after heart failure at Zhukovsky Flight Research Center, Russia), Yuri Petrovich Sheffer, Russian cosmonaut candidate (Buran Test Pilot)
ref: www.spacefacts.de

2019 02:30:00 EDT (GMT -4:00:00)
SapceX launched its third Falcon Heavy rocket from Pad 39 at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida for the USAF STP-2 mission comprised of 24 individual satellites.

The first night launch of the SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket took place on 25 June 2019 for the USAF Space Test Program-2 flight. The STP-2 mission is a partnership between the Defense Department, NASA, NOAA and a number of other government agencies and private companies. A total of 24 individual satellites were carried into orbit, including the Planetary Society's Lightsail2, the Deep Space Atomic Clock, and the cremated remains of 152 people. SpaceX's CEO Elon Musk called it their "most difficult launch ever."

Following the successful launch, the two side boosters successfully returned to the side-by-side landing pads at Kennedy. However, the center core missed the drone ship "Of Course I Still Love You" stationed in the Atlantic and was lost. Telemetry data included live camera feeds from the three boosters and multiple views of the second stage. The second stage went out of range of the Bermuda tracking station moments before the first satellite was to be deployed, so no live views of satellite deployment were seen during the initial broadcast of the event.
ref: blogs.nasa.gov

2019 04:30:00 EDT (GMT -4:00:00)
Planetary Society's crowdfunded LightSail 2 satellite was released into orbit following its launch on a SpaceX Heavy mission lofting the USAF STP-2 mission from Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
ref: www.planetary.org

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