Welcome to “Today in Space,” where we peer back in our archives to find historic moments in spaceflight and astronomy. So enjoy a blast from the past with Space.com’s Hanneke Weitering to look back at what happened on this day in space!
This space telescope can detect X-ray radiation emitted by things in the universe that are hot and have a lot of energy, like supernova explosions and black holes. When it launched, Chandra was the most sophisticated X-ray telescope ever built. But there’s another reason why this shuttle mission is considered a major milestone for NASA. STS-93 astronaut Eileen Collins also became the first woman to command the space shuttle on this flight.
The Chandra X-ray Observatory and its upper stage (at right) are seen just after being deployed from the space shuttle Columbia’s payload bay on July 23, 1999 in this still image from a video recorded by an STS-93 mission crewmember.
And that’s what happened today in space!