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September 28, 2020 - Say “Cheese”

Say “Cheese”  Although astronomical photographs were taken as early as 1840, when the Moon was first captured in a daguerreotype, it wasn’t until 1880 that the technology had advanced sufficiently to allow the first nebula to be photographed. One hundred forty years ago this week, Henry Draper, a physician by trade but astronomer by calling, made that historic photograph. His subject was the Orion Nebula, the brightest nebula in the sky. Advances in emulsion-based photography occurred at a steady pace, and very soon astrophotographs were able to reveal more detail than the human eye could see. Astrophotography on film has now given way to digital imaging, such as this breathtaking image of the Orion Nebula taken by Göran Nilsson with a 5” (127 mm) apochromatic refractor and a DSLR camera.

Image credit: Göran Nilsson / Hole Observatory / CC BY-SA 4.0

Weekly Calendar

September 28 - October 4, 2020

Holidays - Sky Events - Space History

 

Moon phase Monday 28

Saturn stationary

Moon phase Tuesday 29

Neptune 4° north of Moon

1977: Salyut 6 space station launched
1988: STS-26 Discovery launched, first shuttle flight since Challenger disaster
2001: First satellite launch from Alaska
2009: MESSENGER makes its third and final flyby of Mercury

Moon phase Wednesday 30

1880: Henry Draper takes first photograph of Orion Nebula
1994: STS-68 Endeavour launched
1995: Daily communication with Pioneer 11 ends
2005Soyuz TMA-7 launched carrying ISS Expedition 12 crew
2009Soyuz TMA-16 launched carrying ISS Expedition 21/22 crew
2016: Rosetta mission ends with controlled descent to surface of Comet 67P

Moon phase Thursday 1

Mercury greatest elongation (26° E)
Full Moon 5:05 PM ET

1897: 40-inch refractor dedicated at Yerkes Observatory
1958: NASA founded
1962: 300-foot radio telescope at Green Bank goes into operation
2010: Chang’e-2 lunar spacecraft launched

Moon phase Friday 2

Venus 0.09° south of Regulus
Mars 0.7° north of Moon

Moon phase Saturday 3

Moon at apogee

1935: Charlie Duke born
1942: First V2 rocket launched
1962: Mercury Sigma 7 launched
1967: X-15A-2 flies at mach 6.7
1985: STS-51J Atlantis launched
2018: MASCOT lander deployed to asteroid Ryugu

Moon phase Sunday 4

World Space Week begins

Pluto stationary
Uranus 3° north of Moon

1957: Sputnik 1 launched
1959
: Luna 3 launched
2004: SpaceShipOne wins X Prize

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