Geek Fact for April 11th


In 1984, Challenger astronauts completed the first in-space satellite repair.

Shuttle astronauts George Nelson and James van Hoften used the Remote Manipulator System robot arm to retrieve the malfunctioning Solar Max astronomy satellite, fix it and send it back into orbit. The Solar Maximum Mission had been launched Feb. 14, 1980. It was having trouble with its altitude-control system, and the electronics in the coronagraph instrument were malfunctioning. The refurbished satellite continued to observe the solar-activity cycle for another five years, before it re-entered the Earth’s atmosphere and went down in flames Dec. 2, 1989.

Learn more at http://www.wired.com/science/discoveries/news/2008/04/dayintech_0411

Posted in:
About the Author

Judy Novotny

Judy is a computer veteran with 30 years of experience. She has owned everything from a TRS-80, Apple IIe and various Windows-based PCs. She is currently living in her Apple ecosystem at home consisting of an iPhone, iPad, iMac, MacBook, Apple TV, iPod nano and two Time Capsules. She is a fan of all things mobile since she got her first Palm Pilot in 1999. Check out her iPad app, Number Wizard, in the App Store. Follow her on Twitter @junovotech or at Junovo.com.