This Day In Astro History

Tim Peake heads into space
Tim Peake, Britain's first EVA comet wild
Comet Wild 2

January 15

2016 - Tim Peake becomes the first Briton to walk in space for 4 hrs 42 minutes. He and Tim Kopra replace a voltage regulator that took down a solar power channel in November 2015, and install a cable for a future airlock. The EVA (192nd EVA for ISS) was terminated early, but after completing the main accomplishment, due to a small water bubble which appeared in the helmet of Tim Kopra.

2014 - John Dobson, an amateur astronomer, was best known for the Dobsonian telescope, a portable, low-cost Newtonian reflector telescope and his performances of "sidewalk astronomy", dies at age 98.

2005 - Smart 1, Moon orbiter. Calcium detection in Mare Crisium is announced.

2001 - Stardust spacecraft gets a gravity assist as flew by the Earth to change the spacecraft's orbit relative to the Sun. Stardust intercepted the comet Wild 2 (81P/Wild) in 2004. 

2000 - Astronomers Reveal Coolest Solar Neighbour ever imaged. Using infrared technology Adam Burgasser and Dr. Davy Kirkpatrick at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) in Pasadena, Calif., announced their identification of the coolest body ever imaged outside of the solar system, a brown dwarf that lies only 19 light years from Earth. Known as Gliese 570D, it shows methane in its spectrum which makes it's type closer to a planet than a star. Gliense570D is roughly the same size as Jupiter, but its mass is believed to be 50 times greater than Jupiter. "The dividing line between planets and stars was once obvious," said Burgasser, "but we are now finding objects that really blur that distinction." 

1976 - Helios2 was launched into a solar orbit. It was the first instrument capable of exploring linear time profiles of gamma-raybursts. The mission ended in 1981.
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It is my conclusion that human evolution and the motions of matter in space are intrinsically linked. The observation and understanding of the complexity of biological history on Earth cannot be complete without the tandem observation and understanding of a dynamic greater cosmos. - SpaceGene