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Re: 2020: On this day . . . [Re: Mona - Astronomy] #932292 02/15/20 08:06 AM
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On this day in 2013 - February 15th - a meteor explosion occurred over Chelyabinsk in Russia causing around 1500 injuries.

The meteoroid was about 20 meters across with a mass of 12,000-13,000 metric tonnes. Fortunately, the explosion occurred high in the atmosphere and the atmosphere absorbed much of the energy. However the shock waves caused a lot of damage, and many of the injuries were from flying glass.



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Re: 2020: On this day . . . [Re: Mona - Astronomy] #932293 02/15/20 08:10 AM
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On this day in 1973 - February 15th - Pioneer 10 became the first ever spacecraft to cross the asteroid belt.

Pioneer 10 was launched in 1972, and is is now over three times as far away from the Sun as Pluto.


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Re: 2020: On this day . . . [Re: Mona - Astronomy] #932295 02/16/20 06:41 PM
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On this day in 1948 - February 16th -Gerard Kuiper discovered Miranda, a moon of Uranus.


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Re: 2020: On this day . . . [Re: Mona - Astronomy] #932297 02/17/20 10:04 AM
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On this day in 1996 - February 17th - NASA's NEAR Shoemaker spacecraft was launched.

The spacecraft went on to do a fly-by of asteroid Mathilde and then studied asteroid Eros from orbit.


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Re: 2020: On this day . . . [Re: Mona - Astronomy] #932298 02/17/20 10:07 AM
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On this day in 2018 - February 17th - it was the 5000th sol for NASA's Mars rover Opportunity on the red planet.

Opportunity's mission was originally planned for 90 sols. A sol is a Martian day, and it's just over 39.5 minutes longer than an Earth day. A severe planet-wide dust storm in the summer would finally end Opportunity's amazing mission.


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Re: 2020: On this day . . . [Re: Mona - Astronomy] #932299 02/17/20 10:24 AM
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On this day in 1723 - February 17th - German cartographer and astronomer Tobias Mayer was born.

Mayer's chart of the full moon was the standard for half a century, but he's best known for his lunar tables. The accuracy of the lunar positions (and the theory behind them) enhanced the lunar distance method for determining longitude at sea. It enabled navigators to find longitude accurately to half a degree.


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Re: 2020: On this day . . . [Re: Mona - Astronomy] #932304 02/18/20 04:17 AM
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On this day in 1930 - February 18th - Clyde Tombaugh discovered Pluto.

Pluto was considered to be the ninth planet for many years. It's now the largest known Kuiper Belt object, and is classified as a dwarf planet.


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Re: 2020: On this day . . . [Re: Mona - Astronomy] #932305 02/18/20 04:26 AM
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On this day in 1677 - February 18th - Jacques Cassini was born at the Paris Observatory.

He was the son of the director of the observatory Jean Dominique Cassini, with whom he made numerous astronomical observations. Eventually, he took over his father's duties as head of the Paris Observatory and continued the astronomical work.





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Re: 2020: On this day . . . [Re: Mona - Astronomy] #932306 02/18/20 04:30 AM
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On this day in 1677 - February 19th - Mir was launched by the Soviet Union.

Mir was the first modular space station and was assembled in orbit. It was the first continuously inhabited long-term research station in orbit. The failing station was deorbited in March 2001.




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Re: 2020: On this day . . . [Re: Mona - Astronomy] #932308 02/18/20 07:07 PM
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On this day in 1473 - February 19th - Nicolaus Copernicus was born in Torun, Poland.

His work De revolutionibus orbium coelestium (On the Revolutions of the Celestial Spheres) set out his arguments for a heliocentric (sun-centered) system instead of a geocentric (Earth-centered) system.


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