This Week In Space History

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  Space News Business

This Week In Space History

posted: 19 February 2008
02:54 pm ET















Feb. 18





1930:

U.S. astronomer Clyde Tombaugh discovers the ninth




planet, Pluto. However, in August 2006, the International Astronomical Union redesignated Pluto as a dwarf planet




.


2000:

Japan’s Superbird 4 communications satellite is launched into geosynchronous-transfer orbit by Arianespace on an Ariane 5 launch vehicle




from Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana.




Feb. 19







1987:

Japan launches Marine Observation Satellite-1, a remote-sensing, ocean-monitoring satellite, from Tanegashima Space Center on a Japanese H-1 rocket. The satel


lite was the country’s first marine observation satellite.




Feb. 20



1947:

The United States begins the Blossom Project, in which V-2 rockets




carrying fruit flies and different seed types are launched to test their reaction to exposure to cosmic radiation.






2001:

Odin, an astronomy and atmospheric research satellite developed by the Swedish Space Corp.,




launches on a Start-1 launch vehicle from Svobodny in Russia’s Far East.




Feb. 21



2006:

The Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency launches the Akari sky surveyor satellite on an M-5 rocket from Japan’s Uchinoura Space Center. The probe’s primary mission was to create an infrared map of the known universe.




Feb. 22





1986:

In the last flight of the launch vehicle, a




n Ariane 1 rocket lofts France’s Spot 1 remote sensing satellite and Sweden’s Viking science satellite from Kourou, French Guiana.






2000:

NASA’s Galileo probe performs a flyby of




Jupiter’s moon Io. The spacecraft was deployed in October 1989 from




Space Shuttle Atlantis during the STS-34 mission.