Monday, July 11, 2016
Skylab crashes to Earth 1979
July 11, 1979, Skylab returned to Earth in a display not quite what NASA had expected, but spectacular anyway, if you were up after midnight in Australia. Despite being damaged when launched, Skylab was a successful mission for NASA. It hosted three crews, each of three men, over the course of its life, logging 700 hours observing the sun.
The last mission was in 1974 and Skylab's orbit started deteriorating sooner that NASA had expected, due to increased sunspot activity.
I was on a tractor in the middle of a field in western Oklahoma when it came down and I kept looking to the skies to see it fall. Unfortunately for me, it entered the atmosphere on the other side of the world. Oh, well.
Electric Light Orchestra dedicated their song, "Don't Bring Me Down", released just a few weeks before to Skylab.