2019-07-31 (Wednesday)

Today, I learned that:

Yet another month has passed by, and what a month it has been! In my most recent post, on 2019-06-21, I talked about the international space station (ISS) and even made an update later on. But here comes more!

1. More about ISS

Further to my previous facts about the ISS, the following also deserves to be told.

We saw a most spectacular flyover in the early hours of 2019-07-22, about one hour before the sun rise. It came in from the North West and left us in the South East. The whole passing over the American continent took exactly 27 minutes, from the entry close to Oil City, WA, USA until the exit on the shores of the Brazilian state of Santa Catarina by the town of Barra Velha.

Below you can see two instances of its route, first when it was at its highest peak for our viewing, in the town of Inajá, state of Paraná, 35 km away from our location, and then after 5 more seconds, when even our town appears on the Google map below the world chart.

The international space station ISS on its route over the state of Paraná. The upper map shows its closest location to my home town, which also appears explicitly in the lower left corner of the lower map.

In reference #1 below is a link to the web site from which the above maps were taken, and reference #2 gives extensive background information about the ISS.

And finally, here is a photo taken at the same moment:

The mighty moon tries to outshine its artificial satellite contender further down in this picture taken on 2019-07-22 at 06.13 local time (GMT – 3 h), when the ISS was seen at its highest apparent location from earth.

2. Walking on the moon

Everybody has of course heard about the historic feat in July 1969 when two American astronauts first set foot on the moon. But do you know the story behind the spacesuit that they wore?

It was made by the International Latex Corporation at their Playtex division, known for producing female garment. Their employees were responsible for manually sewing all the 4 000 pieces that made up each spacesuit. It consisted of 21 layers of synthetics, neoprene rubber and metallized polyester films, which protected Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin from the extreme climate conditions on the moon surface. Each suit cost in the region of US$ 100 000 to US$ 250 000!

Read more about this fantastic story in reference #3 below. And in reference #4 is mentioned a book called ‘The golden thread’ in which the author Kassia Saint Clair gives even more details about the whole process of developing and manufacturing this lunar edition of a spacesuit.

3. Dog years

In my post of 2016-06-14, I wrote about our dog Prins, who has was commemorating his 7th birthday, counted in human years, that day. Thus, last month he completed 10 human years.

However, as I also wrote then, the second year and onward for a dog corresponds to a 7 times longer period of time. That means that last Sunday, 2019-07-28, Prins turned himself into the oldest living creature in our family, at least within his conception!

And here is a photo of Prins in his spacesuit, somewhat cheaper than Neil’s and Buzz’s, but equally well made by his human mother:

Prins loves to lie in the sun, wearing his specially made spacesuit. Photo taken by Karina Johansson on 2019-07-28.

That’s what I learned in school !


1: Spot the International Space Station

2: International Space Station

3: Neil Armstrong’s Spacesuit Was Made by a Bra Manufacturer

4: The golden thread

*: What did you learn in school today ?

2016-07-20 (Wednesday)

Today, I learned that:

Looking at today’s full moon, I cannot forget that it is exactly 47 years since man first set foot on non-terrestrial ground, on 1969-07-20. Of course everyone remembers Neil Armstrong’s “small step for a man, a giant leap for mankind”. Reference #1 has more about that historical feat.

The historic crew of Apollo 11, from left to right: Neil Armstrong, Mike Collins, and Buzz Aldrin. Photo by NASA, taken in May, 1969.

But did you know that the source code of the program used in the computer of the Eagle, Apollo 11’s moonlander, is now available to the public?

If you are curious about what it looks like, see references # 2 and 3 below.

The Mediterranean sea shows its tantalizing colors in a beach of the village of Kokkari, island of Samos, Greece. Photo taken by my wife, Maria José, on 2008-07-11.

But of course there are interesting views on Mother Earth, as well. The photo above was taken by my wife, Maria José, in Kokkari, island of Samos, Greece, on 2008-07-11. Enjoy!

… That’s what I learned in school !


1: Apollo 11

2: Apollo 11 sourcecode

3: Original Apollo 11 Guidance Computer (AGC) source code for the command and lunar modules.

+: What did you learn in school today ?