Video encyclopedia

Flashback calendar

Space Shuttle Columbia heads back to space

STS-78 was the fifth dedicated Life and Microgravity Spacelab mission for the Space Shuttle program, flown partly in preparation for the International Space Station project. The mission used the Space Shuttle Columbia, which lifted off successfully from Kennedy Space Center’s in June 1996.

Belgian cosmologist Georges Lemaitre dies

Georges Lemaître, was a Belgian Catholic Priest, astronomer, professor of physics and inventor of the Big bang theory. When studying general relativity, he realized that if the universe was expanding, then the further we go in the past, the universe's contents must have been closer together. At some point in the distant past, all the matter in the universe was crushed into a single object, which he called the primeval super-atom.

Viking 1 probe lands on Mars

Viking 1 was the first of two identical probes, each consisting of an orbiter designed to photograph the surface of Mars and a lander. It was the first spacecraft to land successfully on Mars and perform its mission. Besides surveying the red planet, the lander performed an experiment to test relativistic time dilatation.

Bell installs the world's first commercial telephone service

The Bell Telephone Company was created in 1877, and by 1886, more than 150,000 people in the U.S. owned telephones. Bell Company engineers made numerous other improvements to the telephone, which emerged as one of the most successful products ever.

Anniversaries of the (in)famous