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August 24, 2020 - Mister Fix-It

Mister Fix-It   Space Shuttle mission STS-51I, which was launched 35 years ago this week, will go down in the history books as the first mission to retrieve, repair, and relaunch a satellite in orbit. During their week in space, the crew of five astronauts on the shuttle Discovery deployed three new satellites (Aussat 1, ASC 1, and Leasat 4), and then chased down the non-functioning Leasat 3 satellite.  After two successful space walks, which included some rewiring of the satellite, Leasat 3 was redeployed and eventually went on to fulfill its mission as a communications satellite for the Navy. At the end of the second spacewalk, astronaut James “Ox” van Hoften is seen here relaxing on the end of the shuttle’s robot arm after releasing the newly repaired Leasat 3, which can be seen in the distance.

Image credit: NASA

Weekly Calendar

August 24 - 30, 2020

Holidays - Sky Events - Space History


Moon phase Monday 24

Moon phase Tuesday 25

First Qtr Moon 1:58 PM ET

1965: President Johnson approves full-scale development of Manned Orbital Laboratory
1966: Apollo-Saturn 202 launched
1981: Voyager 2 flies past Saturn
1989: Voyager 2 flies past Neptune
2003: Spitzer Space Telescope launched

Moon phase Wednesday 26

Moon phase Thursday 27

1962: Mariner 2 launched
1984: Teacher In Space program announced
1985: STS-51I Discovery launched

Moon phase Friday 28

Ceres at opposition
Jupiter 1.4° north of Moon

1789: William Herschel discovers Enceladus, moon of Saturn
1993: Galileo spacecraft flies by asteroid Ida
2009: STS-128 Discovery launched

Moon phase Saturday 29

Pluto 1.2° north of Moon
Saturn 2° north of Moon

Moon phase Sunday 30

1963: Lunar Orbiter program approved by NASA
1983: STS-8 Challenger launched; first night shuttle launch
1984: STS-41D Discovery launched

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