Apollo 1 was scheduled to be the first manned mission of the U.S. Apollo manned lunar landing program, with a target launch date of February 21, 1967. A cabin fire during a launch pad test on January 27, 46 years ago today, at Launch Pad 34 at Cape Canaveral killed all three crew members—Command Pilot Virgil “Gus” Grissom, Senior Pilot Edward H. White and PilotRoger B. Chaffee—and destroyed the Command Module. The photo above shows the astronauts at the launch pad 10 days before the fire and below the crew hanging out with the Command Module in a swimming pool while testing it’s water landing equipement. It is a rough week in history for NASA. Tomorrow, January 28th will mark the 27th anniversary of Challenger, and Friday, February 1, will be 10th anniversary of Columbia.
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Long before Stonehenge was built, well before the Dead Sea Scrolls were written, ancient artists painted life-sized figures on canyon walls in Utah, USA — but why? Nobody is sure. The entire panel of figures, which dates back about 7,000 years, is called the Great Gallery and was found on the walls of Horseshoe Canyon in Canyonlands National Park. The humans who painted them likely hunted Mammoths. The unusual fuzziness of largest figure led to this mural section‘s informal designation as the Holy Ghost Panel, although the intended attribution and societal importance of the figure are really unknown. The above image was taken during a clear night in March. The oldest objects in the above image are not the pictographs, however, but the stars of our Milky Way Galaxy far in the background, some of which are billions of years old.