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This Month in Exploration - June
06.01.07
Visit "This Month in Exploration" every month to find out how aviation and space exploration have changed throughout the years, improving life for humans and answering questions about the universe. While reflecting on the events that led to NASA's formation and its rich history of accomplishments, "This Month in Exploration" will also reveal where the agency is leading us -- to the moon, Mars and beyond.

Glenn H. Curtiss 100 Years Ago

June 28, 1907: Glenn H. Curtiss made his first flight in a Baldwin dirigible airship, or blimp, in Hammondsport, N.Y. This aviation pioneer went on to form his own aircraft company, which merged with the Wright Aeronautical Company, still in existence today.

Image right: Curtiss hangs below a dirigible airship as he makes his first flight. Credit: Glenn H. Curtiss Museum

90 Years Ago

June 28, 1917: The National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics established the first national civil aeronautics laboratory called the Langley Memorial Aeronautical Laboratory. Located in Hampton, Va., this facility is now known as NASA's Langley Research Center.

75 Years Ago

June 16, 1932: The Lockheed Aircraft Company, formed by Allan and Malcolm Loughead, closed its doors. On June 21, Robert E. Gross and his consortium purchased the aircraft manufacturing company. After continuing the construction of wooden Lockheed airplanes for awhile, the new company focused on producing all-metal aircraft.

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50 Years Ago

June 11, 1957: The Air Force launched the first Atlas rocket in Cape Canaveral, Fla. This Series A model only flew for 24 seconds. A later model of the Atlas rocket was used to launch John Glenn's Mercury capsule into space.


30 Years Ago

June 16, 1977: NASA launched the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) 2 as part of a weather satellite system used to study Earth's meteorological conditions from a fixed location in space.

Extreme Ultraviolet Explorer Satellite 25 Years Ago

June 27, 1982: NASA launched Space Shuttle Columbia to begin the STS-4 mission, the last Space Transportation System research and development flight. The payload included academic, commercial and medical experiments.

Image right: Extreme Ultraviolet Explorer Satellite. Credit: NASA

15 Years Ago

June 7, 1992: NASA started the first dedicated extreme ultraviolet mission by launching the Extreme Ultraviolet Explorer satellite. This NASA explorer-class satellite mission lasted about eight years and helped scientists study white dwarf stars and binary star systems.

10 Years Ago

June 25, 1997: NASA's Galileo satellite passed by Callisto, one of Jupiter's moons, at a distance of only 258 miles. During the flyby, Galileo gathered data from the magnetospheric environment, the Valhalla multi-ringed structure and a bright crater.

Five Years Ago

June 5, 2002: NASA launched Space Shuttle Endeavor to begin the 14th mission, STS-111, to the International Space Station. Endeavor delivered the Expedition 5 crew, new experiments, supplies and a new platform for the mechanical arm of the space station. Two members of Expedition 4, Carl Walz and Dan Bursch, set U.S. spaceflight endurance records by spending 196 days in space before returning to Earth aboard Endeavor.

Present Day

June 8, 2007: NASA will launch Space Shuttle Atlantis to begin STS-117, the 21st U.S. mission to the International Space Station. During the 11-day mission, Atlantis' crew will resume construction of the International Space Station, working with the station crew to install the girder-like S3/S4 truss segment, unfold a new set of solar arrays and retract one array on the starboard side of the station. STS-117 is scheduled to land at NASA's Kennedy Space Center, Fla., on Tuesday, June 19.

Emily Groh (Analex Corporation)

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