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1927 – The Lockheed Vega

4 July

On this day in 1927 the Lockheed Vega had its first flight.

Continue reading “1927 – The Lockheed Vega”

1977 – Optical fibre

21 April

For the first time, optical fibre is used to carry live telephone traffic. Continue reading “1977 – Optical fibre”

2001 – Mars Odyssey is launched

7 April

2001 Mars Odyssey is a robotic spacecraft orbiting the planet Mars. The project was developed by NASA, and contracted out to Lockheed Martin, with an expected cost for the entire mission of US$297 million. Its mission is to use spectrometers and a thermal imager to detect evidence of past or present water and ice, as well as study the planet’s geology and radiation environment. Continue reading “2001 – Mars Odyssey is launched”

1968 – NASA launches Apollo 6

4 April

Apollo 6, launched on this day in 1968, was the second A type mission of the United States Apollo program, an unmanned test of the Saturn V launch vehicle. It was also the final unmanned Apollo test mission. Continue reading “1968 – NASA launches Apollo 6”

1981 – The Osborne 1 is unveiled

3 April

The Osborne 1 was the first commercially successful portable microcomputer, released on this day in 1981 by Osborne Computer Corporation. Continue reading “1981 – The Osborne 1 is unveiled”

1977 – Tenerife airport disaster

27 March

The Tenerife airport disaster was a fatal runway collision between two Boeing 747s on this day in 1977, at Los Rodeos Airport (now Tenerife North Airport) on the Spanish island of Tenerife, one of the Canary Islands. The crash killed 583 people, making it the deadliest accident in aviation history. As a result of the complex interaction of organizational influences, environmental preconditions, and unsafe acts leading up to this aircraft mishap, the disaster at Tenerife has served as a textbook example for reviewing the processes and frameworks used in aviation mishap investigations and accident prevention. Continue reading “1977 – Tenerife airport disaster”

1922 – The USS Langley is commissioned

20 March

USS Langley (CV-1/AV-3) was the United States Navy’s first aircraft carrier, converted in 1920 from the collier USS Jupiter (AC-3), and also the U.S. Navy’s first turbo-electric-powered ship. Continue reading “1922 – The USS Langley is commissioned”

2008 – GRB 080319B: A cosmic burst that is the farthest object visible to the naked eye is briefly observed

19 March

GRB 080319B was a gamma-ray burst (GRB) detected by the Swift satellite at 06:12 UTC on this day in 2008. The burst set a new record for the farthest object that was observable with the naked eye: it had a peak visual apparent magnitude of 5.8 and remained visible to human eyes for approximately 30 seconds. The magnitude was brighter than 9.0 for approximately 60 seconds. Continue reading “2008 – GRB 080319B: A cosmic burst that is the farthest object visible to the naked eye is briefly observed”

1942 – The first V-2 rocket test launch

16 March

The V-2 (Vergeltungswaffe 2, “Retribution Weapon 2”), technical name Aggregat-4 (A-4), was the world’s first long-range guided ballistic missile. The missile with a liquid-propellant rocket engine was developed during the Second World War in Germany as a “vengeance weapon,” designed to attack Allied cities as retaliation for the Allied bombings against German cities. The V-2 rocket also became the first artificial object to cross the boundary of space with the vertical launch of V-177 on 20 June 1944. Continue reading “1942 – The first V-2 rocket test launch”

1918 – The first case of Spanish flu occurs

11 March

The 1918 flu pandemic (January 1918 – December 1920) was an unusually deadly influenza pandemic, the first of the two pandemics involving H1N1 influenza virus. It infected 500 million people across the world, including remote Pacific islands and the Arctic, and resulted in the deaths of 50 to 100 million (three to five percent of the world’s population), making it one of the deadliest natural disasters in human history. Continue reading “1918 – The first case of Spanish flu occurs”

1906 – The Courrières mine disaster

10 March

The Courrières mine disaster, Europe’s worst mining accident, caused the death of 1,099 miners (including many children) in Northern France on this day in 1906. Continue reading “1906 – The Courrières mine disaster”

1966 – Apollo program: Launch of AS-201, the first flight of the Saturn IB rocket

26 February

The Saturn IB (pronounced “one B”, also known as the Uprated Saturn I) was an American launch vehicle commissioned by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) for the Apollo program. It replaced the S-IV second stage of the Saturn I with the much more powerful S-IVB, able to launch a partially fueled Apollo Command/Service Module (CSM) or a fully fueled Lunar Module (LM) into low Earth orbit for early flight tests before the larger Saturn V needed for lunar flight was ready. Continue reading “1966 – Apollo program: Launch of AS-201, the first flight of the Saturn IB rocket”

1984 – The first Apple Macintosh goes on sale

24 January

The Macintosh (branded as Mac since 1997) is a series of personal computers (PCs) designed, developed, and marketed by Apple Inc. Steve Jobs introduced the original Macintosh computer on this day in 1984. Continue reading “1984 – The first Apple Macintosh goes on sale”

1911 – The first Monte Carlo Rally takes place

21 January

The Monte Carlo Rally, officially Rallye Automobile Monte Carlo, is a rallying event organised each year by the Automobile Club de Monaco which also organises the Formula One Monaco Grand Prix and the Rallye Monte-Carlo Historique. Continue reading “1911 – The first Monte Carlo Rally takes place”

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