astronomy Newsletter


August 21 2018 Astronomy Newsletter

Hi everybody

Here is the latest article from the Astronomy site at

Exoplanets - Hottest, Darkest, and Oldest
Our Solar System was the only one we knew. Astronomers used it to explain how star systems were made. But beware the theory based on only one example! We now know of thousands of planets around other suns, and the theories need revising. Here are a few of the astonishing planets we've found.

*Birth anniversaries*
(1) August 17, 1936: Margaret Hamilton, the lead developer for the Apollo flight software; her rigorous systems approach was essential to its success.
(2) August 19, 1646: John Flamsteed, the first Astronomer Royal at the Royal Observatory Greenwich; his star atlas was the standard for a nearly a century.
(3) August 19, 1891: Milton Humason whose careful measurements of the radial velocities of several hundred galaxies underpinned the work of Edwin Hubble.

(1) August 10, 1966: NASA's Lunar Orbiter 1, the first American spacecraft to orbit the Moon.
(2) August 12, 2005: NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO), which is still carrying out reconnaissance and exploration of Mars from orbit.
(3) August 17, 1970: Soviet probe Venera 7, which landed on the Venusian surface, becoming the first spacecraft both to land on another planet and to transmit data from there back to Earth.
(4) August 20, 1977: NASA's Voyager 2, the only probe to visit Uranus and Neptune, now on its way to interstellar space.
(5) August 20, 1975: Viking 1, the first of two Viking spacecraft sent to Mars. A year after its launch it became the first spacecraft to land successfully on Mars and perform its mission.

*Other events*
(1) August 12, 1877: Asaph Hall discovered Deimos, moon of Mars.
(2) August 18, 1877: Asaph Hall discovered Phobos, moon of Mars.
(3) August 18, 1868: During a total solar eclipse Pierre Janssen observed an unknown line in the spectrum of the Sun, which turned out to be a new element, helium. The same result was found independently by British astronomer Norman Lockyer, and both Janssen's and Lockyer's communications were presented to the French Academy of Sciences on October 26, 1868.

Please visit for even more great content about Astronomy. I hope to hear from you sometime soon, either in the forum or in response to this email message. I welcome your feedback!

Do pass this message along to family and friends who might also be interested. Remember it's free and without obligation.

I wish you clear skies.

Mona Evans, Astronomy Editor

Unsubscribe from the Astronomy Newsletter

Online Newsletter Archive for Astronomy Site

Master List of BellaOnline Newsletters

Editor's Picks Articles
Top Ten Articles
Previous Features
Site Map