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Tycho BraheWhat 16th century Danish astronomer is known for his accurate astronomical and planetary observations?


What is the name of the first satellite launched into Earth orbit?

PleiadesWhat star group is known as "The Seven Sisters?


What was the name of the first dog in space?

What is the "sea creature" name of a supernova explosion that was visible on Earth in the year 1054?
"What is the name of NASA's newest Mars probe, Landing in November, 2018?

What NASA probe was put into orbit around Saturn in 2004?

Who was the first woman in space?

What is the name of the Apollo 11 landing module?

What is the name of the first Space Shuttle, used for atmospheric tests only?

What is the name of the largest known volcano in the solar system?
Telestar What is the name of the first tele-communications satellite?

What is the name of this "equine" nebula?
CuriosityWhat NASA probe landed on Mars in August of 2012?
Eugene Cernan Who was the last man to walk on the moon?

Astronomy & Space

Planets and Their Moons:

Mercury: The smallest planet
- Closest to the sun; no moons
- Orbital period: 88 days

Venus: The “greenhouse effect” planet
- No moons
- Probes: Venera (Russian)
- Orbital period: 225 days

Earth: The only planet not named after a mythological figure
- One moon, walked on by twelve astronauts from the Apollo program
- Lunar probe: Surveyor

Mars: The red planet
- Moons: Phobos (largest) and Demos (fear and dread)
- Probes: Ranger and Pathfinder, Spirit, Opportunity, Curiosity (2012)
- Volcano: Olympus Mons (largest known volcano in the solar system)
- Orbital period: 1.9 years

Jupiter: The largest planet; larger than all others put together
- Distinguishing feature: a great red spot (a huge storm bigger than Earth)
- Galilean moons: Io, Europa, Callisto, and Ganymede (largest moon in the solar system)
- Jupiter has many other smaller moons
- Probes: Voyager I & II, Galileo
- Orbital period: 12 years

Saturn: The ringed planet
- Moons: Titan (moon with mysterious atmosphere) and many others
- Probes: Voyager I & II, Cassini
- Orbital period: 29 years

- Moons: Titania, Oberon, Umbriel, Ariel, Miranda, and others (Thirteen of Uranus’ moons are named after Shakespearian characters).
- Probe: Voyager II
- Discoverer: William Herschel, 1781
- Orbital period: 84 years

Neptune: The blue planet
- Moons: Triton, Nereid and others.
- Distinguishing feature: the great blue spot
- Probe: Voyager II
- Discoverer: Johann Galle, 1856
- Orbital period: 165 years

Pluto: (declassified from planet to dwarf planet in 2006)
- Moon: Charon
- Discoverer: Clyde Taumbaugh (on calculations from Percival Lowell, the “PL” in Pluto)
- Orbital period: 248 years

Other Facts:

Early 20th century American astronomer Edwin Hubble

American female astronomer Maria Mitchell

Danish astronomer Tycho Brahe

English astronomer royal Sir Edmund Halley

English astronomer family Herschel

French astronomer family Cassini

German astronomer Johannes Kepler

Greek astronomer (2nd century) Ptolemy

Italian astronomer Galileo (Galilei)

Polish astronomer Copernicus

First dog in space Laika (Russian German Shepard)

First man in space Yuri Gagarin

Yuri Gagarin's capsule Vostok

First woman in space Valentina Tereshkova

First space walk Alexei Leonov

First American in space (suborbital) Alan Shepard

Second American in space (suborbital) Gus Grissom

Third American in space (three orbits) John Glenn

First American woman in space Sally Ride

First American to walk in space Edward White

First American woman to walk in space Kathryn Sullivan

American female who has longest duration in space Shannon Lucid

First man to walk on the moon Neil Armstrong

Second man to walk on the moon Buzz Aldrin

Apollo 13 commander James Lovell

Oldest U.S. astronaut, launched in 1998 John Glenn (77 yrs. old)

Man who played golf on the moon Alan Shepard

First space shuttle crew Young and Crippen

Frist female space shuttle commander Eileen Collins

First satellite, 1957 Sputnik

First U.S. satellite Explorer I

First weather satellite Tiros

First communications satellite Echo I

First telecommunications satellite Telstar

USA's first space station Skylab

Russian space station ("Peace" in Russian) MIR

Current space station ISS (International Space Station)

The sun's visable surface Photosphere

The sun’s “halo” Corona

The sun’s “breeze” Solar wind

Solar magnetic storms with 11-year cycles Sun spots

The Earth’s magnetic belt Van Allen Belt

Belt between Mars and Jupiter Asteroid belt

Largest known asteroid Ceres

Closest major galaxy Andromeda (can be seen by naked eye)

Milky Way’s satellite galaxies Large and Small Magellanic Cloud

Galactic cloud of dust and gas Nebula

Nebula named for sea creature Crab nebula

“Equine” nebula Horsehead nebula

Nebula that can be seen with naked eye Orion Nebula

Measure of a star's brightness Magnitude

“Dog Star”, brightest star in the sky Sirius

North star or pole star Polaris

Closest star Proxima Centauri (some references say Alpha Centauri)

Stars known as “seven sisters” Pleiades

Twin star systems a.k.a Binary systems

Theory of the expanding universe Big Bang theory

Moon probe Surveyor

Mars probes Mariner and Pathfinder

Pathfinder mobile rover Sojourner

Jupiter probe Galileo

Saturn probe Cassini

“Grand tour of planets” probes Voyager I & II

First man-made object to leave the solar system Pioneer 10

One-person U.S. space program Mercury

Two-person U.S. space program Gemini

Three-person U.S. space program Apollo

Apollo 11 landing module Eagle

Where the Eagle landed Sea of Tranquility

Apollo 12 landing site Ocean of Storms

First two astronauts on the moon Neil Armstrong, Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin

He “played golf” on the moon Alan Shepard

Last man on the moon Eugene Cernan

Reusable U.S. space vehicle Space Shuttle

Space shuttle names Enterprise (atmospheric

tests only), Columbia, Challenger, Atlantis, Discovery, Endeavor

1983 book chronicling the U.S. space program The Right Stuff

Comet that returns every 76 years Halley’s Comet

Comet that struck Jupiter in 1994 Shoemaker-Levy 9

Comet visible for several months in 1996 Hale-Bopp

Highly-touted comet that fizzled in 1973 Comet Kahoutek

For more Astronomy Facts see Game Show Trivia, now in its 6th edition