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September 5, 2016 - To Boldy Go

To Boldly Go  “Space: the final frontier. These are the voyages of the starship Enterprise.” Fifty years ago this week, American television viewers heard Captain Kirk’s famous monologue begin the first regular episode of the TV series Star Trek. Despite initial mixed reviews and a run of just three seasons, Star Trek struck a powerful chord with fans and continues to be one of the most beloved science fiction series of all time. One of the show’s core tenets, the exploration of “strange new worlds,” is being upheld by NASA as it develops a dedicated mission to Jupiter’s moon Europa. Planned to launch in the 2020s, the spacecraft will orbit Jupiter and make flybys of Europa, studying its icy shell and its subsurface oceans, which scientists suspect might be a habitable environment for some forms of life.

Image credit: NASA / JPL-Caltech / SETI Institute

Weekly Calendar

September 5-11, 2016

Holidays - Sky Events - Space History


Moon phase Monday 5

Labor Day

1964: OGO-1 launched
1977: Voyager 1 launched

Moon phase Tuesday 6

Moon at apogee

1947: First rocket launch (V-2) from an aircraft carrier
1983: STS-8 Challenger makes first shuttle night landing
2013: LADEE lunar orbiter launched

Moon phase Wednesday 7

1995: STS-69 Endeavour launched

Moon phase Thursday 8

Saturn 4° south of Moon

1966: “Star Trek” premieres
1967: Surveyor 5 launched
2000: STS-106 Atlantis launched
2004: Genesis spacecraft crash-lands on return to Earth
2016: OSIRIS-REx launched

Moon phase Friday 9

First Qtr Moon 7:49 AM ET
Mars 8° south of Moon

1789: William Bond born
1892: E. E. Barnard discovers Amalthea
1975: Viking 2 launched
1982: Conestoga 1 launched
1994: STS-64 Discovery launched
2006: STS-115 Atlantis launched

Moon phase Saturday 10

1857: James Keeler born
1967: Surveyor 5 lands on Moon
1978: Venera 11 launched
2011: GRAIL spacecraft launched

Moon phase Sunday 11

1877: James Jeans born
1985: International Cometary Explorer satellite probes Comet Giacobini-Zinner (first comet flyby)
1997: Mars Global Surveyor arrives at Mars

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