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 . Space History News - People and events in development of space travel Space History News - People and events in development of space travel Space History News - People and events in development of space travel  

Space History for February 9

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Died, Nevil Maskelyne, fifth Astronomer Royal of England

Died, James Melville Gilliss, founded the US Naval Observatory in Washington

J Palisa discovered asteroid #222 Lucia.

Born, Max Valier, Austrian rocket pioneer, helped found the German Verein für Raumschiffahrt (VfR - "Spaceflight Society")

Born, Karel Jan 'Charlie' Bossart (at Antwerp, Belgium), American "Chief Designer" of the Atlas ICBM and launch vehicle family

M Wolf discovered asteroid #558 Carmen.

J H Metcalf discovered asteroid #729 Watsonia; and S Belyavskij discovered asteroid #849 Ara.

M Wolf discovered asteroid #863 Benkoela.

Born, Ulrich Walter (at Iserlohn, Germany), payload specialist astronaut (STS 55)

German astronaut Ulrich Walter, NASA photo

At the time the world's largest airplane, the Boeing 747 made its first flight.

1971 21:05:00 GMT
NASA's Apollo 14 splashed down in the Pacific, returning from the third mission to land humans on the Moon.

Apollo 14, launched 31 January 1971, was the third mission in which humans walked on the Lunar surface and returned to Earth, and the first to land in the Lunar highlands. On 5 February 1971 two astronauts (Apollo 14 Commander Alan B. Shepard, Jr. and LM pilot Edgar D. Mitchell) landed near Fra Mauro crater on the Moon in the Lunar Module (LM) while the Command and Service Module (CSM) (with CM pilot Stuart A. Roosa) continued in Lunar orbit. During their stay on the Moon, the astronauts set up scientific experiments, took photographs, and collected Lunar samples. The LM took off from the Moon on 6 February and the astronauts returned to Earth on 9 February.

Shepard hit golf balls on the Moon during this historic trip. Roosa carried seeds for the US Forest Service in his personal gear; the seeds were later planted by the Forest Service, and are called "Moon Trees" to reflect their journey.

This was the last Apollo mission in which the astronauts were put in quaratine after their return.

L Kohoutek discovered asteroid #1963 Bezovec.

1975 11:03:00 GMT
USSR's Soyuz 17 returned from docking with the Salyut 4 space station after nearly 30 days, setting a new Soviet space record.

Soyuz 17 was a manned Soviet mission launched 11 January 1975 from the Baikonur Cosmodrome which docked with the Salyut 4 space station. The flight crew was cosmonauts Grechko and Gubarev. The basic flight objectives were an extensive series of scientific and medical experiments onboard Salyut 4 and observation of effects of prolonged weightlessness on man. The flight was considered successful, and set a Soviet record for time in space. Soyuz 17 returned to Earth almost 30 days later on 9 February 1975, and landed 110 km NE of Tselinograd.

Died, Sergey Ilyushin, Russian aerospace engineer (Ilyushin aircraft design bureau)

L Brozek discovered asteroids #2622 Bolzano and #3423; and T Seki discovered asteroids #2396 Kochi and #2621 Goto.

Halley's Comet reached its thirtieth recorded perihelion (closest approach to Sun).

Died, Vladislav Nikolayevich Bogomolov, Russian Chief Designer of Isayev rocket engine design bureau (1971-1985), succeeded Isayev after his death

2001 10:51:00 CST (GMT -6:00:00)
NASA STS 98 (Atlantis, 102nd Shuttle mission) docked at the International Space Station to deliver the Destiny Lab module.

STS 98 was launched 7 February 2001 and spent almost 13 days in an orbit at an altitude of 177 nautical miles inclined 51.6 degrees with respect to the Equator. Seven of its days in orbit were docked at the International Space Station. While at the orbital outpost, the STS 98 crew delivered and activated the US Destiny Laboratory, and completed three space walks.

Addition of the Destiny Lab brought the space station's mass to about 101.6 metric tons (112 tons), surpassing that of the Russian Mir space station for the first time.

Mission Specialists Tom Jones and Robert Curbeam conducted three space walks that totalled nearly 20 hours. During the first space walk, they assisted shuttle robot arm operator Marsha Ivins in moving Pressurized Mating Adapter 2 and installing Destiny onto the station. During the second space walk, they focused on moving Pressurized Mating Adapter 2 from a temporary position to its new home at the forward end of Destiny. Jones and Curbeam spent most of their third space walk connecting cables and equipment outside Destiny, then performed some procedural tests to determine the best ways to help a disabled space walk partner.

STS 98 ended 20 February 2001 when Atlantis glided to a belated but textbook touchdown on runway 2-2 at Edwards Air Force Base, California.

The flight crew for STS 98 was: Kenneth Cockrell, Commander; Mark Polansky, Pilot; Robert Curbeam, Mission Specialist; Thomas Jones, Mission Specialist; and Marsha Ivins, Mission Specialist.

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