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On this day in 1747 - January 19th - Johann Bode was born.

Although his name lives on in "Bode's Law", he was a celestial cartographer who, amazingly, created two influential sky atlases.


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On this day in 2006 - January 19th - NASA's New Horizons spacecraft was launched.

The spacecraft made a flyby of the Plutonian system in the summer of 2015 that stunned everyone with the data that turned the dwarf planet and its moons from distant icy bodies into unbelievably complex worlds.

Last edited by Mona - Astronomy; 01/20/18 03:13 PM.

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On this day in 2014 - January 20th - ESA's Rosetta spacecraft awoke from a deep space hibernation of over thirty months.

Rosetta's historic mission saw her rendezvous with a comet, put a lander on its surface, and follow the comet as it went around the Sun.


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On this day in 1930 - January 20th - Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin was born.

The second man to step onto the Moon has been an astronaut, Air Force combat pilot, aerial gunnery instructor and flight commander. His doctoral thesis at MIT was on techniques for manned orbital rendezvous.


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On this day in 1573 - January 20th - Simon Marius was born.

Marius was a German astronomer who claimed he had seen Jupiter's moons before Galileo. Galileo's documentation was more extensive and published first, but the suggestions Marius made for naming the four large moons were eventually adopted.


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On this day in 2003 - January 22nd - Pioneer 10's last signal was received.

Pioneer 10 was the first spacecraft to pass through the asteroid belt and later the first to pass the orbit of Pluto. Originally designed for a 21-month mission, it lasted more than 30 years.


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On this day in 1592 - January 22nd - Pierre Gassendi was born.

Gassendi was a French philosopher, priest, astronomer, and scientific observer, experimentalist and chronicler. He was the first person ever to see a planet transiting the Sun when he observed the 1631 transit of Mercury.


Last edited by Mona - Astronomy; 01/22/18 10:54 PM.

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On this day in 1986 - January 24th - Voyager 2 flew past Uranus.

This fly-by was the first and only visit of a spacecraft to Uranus.


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On this day in 1736 - January 25th - Joseph Lagrange was born.

French mathematician Lagrange was one of the greats of the 18th century, and his work included major contributions to physics and astronomy. He's best known now for his identification of equilibrium points between the gravity of the Earth and that the Sun. NASA's SOHO (Solar and Heliospheric Observatory) sits at one of these points.


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On this day in 1983 - January 25th - the Infrared Astronomical Satellite (IRAS) was launched.

IRAS, a joint project of NASA (USA), NIVR (Netherlands) and SERC (UK), was the first space telescope to carry out a survey of the whole night sky at infrared wavelengths.


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