A Week's Worth of Space History

I’ll be on the road for a few days, and I’m not sure how the connectivity will be, and I wasn’t forward-thinking enough to front-load a bunch of space history items for automatic posting, so … here are a few different space history items that you can enjoy* all at once.

One hundred thirty years ago today — October 5, 1882 — Robert H. Goddard, the father of modern liquid-fueled rocketry, was born in Worcester, Massachusetts.

Twenty years ago tomorrow — October 6, 1992 — the joint Swedish-German Freja mission to study the aurora was launched on a Chinese Long March rocket out of Jiuquan. (It was launched along with the PRC 36 mission.)

Ten years ago Sunday — October 7, 2002 — the Space Shuttle Atlantis launched from Kennedy Space Center on a mission to the International Space Station (ISS). The crew of STS-112 consisted of U.S. astronauts Sandra H. Magnus, David A. Wolf, Pamela A. Melroy, Jeffrey S. Ashby, and Piers J. Sellers, along with cosmonaut Fyodor N. Yurchikhin. They delivered and installed a new truss as part of the station’s structural support system.

(The International Space Station, taken from STS-112. NASA image.)

And finally, let’s note two other space station-related launches in this compendium:

  • On October 9, 1977 — 35 years ago — the Soviet Union launched Soyuz-25 from the Baikonur Cosmodrome, carrying Vladimir V.Kovalyonok and Valeri V.Ryumin to their Salyut-6 station. The docking maneuver failed, however, and the cosmonauts returned early. Cosmonauts:.
  • On October 10, 2007 — 5 years ago — Soyuz TMA-11 launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome carrying a Russian,Yuri I. Malenchenko; American Peggy A. Whitson; and a Malaysian, Shukor A. Muszaphar, to the ISS.

Have a great week!

*Or ignore.

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