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January 19 Science History

Science History of January 19


Learn about the history of science by reading about the significant scientific events that took place on this day in history.

2006 - NASA launches New Horizons mission to Pluto.

New Horizons Spacecraft to Pluto
NASA launched their New Horizons spacecraft on a flyby mission to the dwarf planet, Pluto. It is scheduled to arrive and investigate Pluto and its moons in July 2015. After its Pluto flyby, NASA may investigate other objects in the Kuiper Belt to increase the understanding of the outer edges of our Solar System.

1927 - Carl Gräbe died.

Carl Gräbe (1841 - 1927)
Wikimedia Commons
Gräbe (or Graebe) was a German organic chemist who synthesized the dye alizarin with Carl Liebermann. This discovery would lead to and push the German dye and pigment industry to prominence. Gräbe also introduced the nomenclature 'para', 'meta' and 'ortho' to describe the position of groups where they attach to benzene rings.

1878 - Henri-Victor Regnault died.

Henri-Victor Regnault (1810 - 1878)
Regnault was a French physical chemist who researched the properties of gases. He proved that Boyle's law only applied to ideal gases and approximated real gases. He made many precise measurements of the specific heats of several solids, liquids and gases and coefficients of thermal expansion of several gases. He also showed no two gases had the same coefficient of expansion.

1826 - Johann Elert Bode was born.

Johann Elert Bode (1747 – 1826)
Bode was a German astronomer who determined the orbit of Uranus. He is also known for his empirical law to determine the distances of the planets from the Sun. To use Bode's law, start with the sequence 0, 3, 6, 12, 24, etc. where each number after 3 is twice the previous number. Add 4 to each number and divide the result by 10. The resulting first six numbers of the sequence are 0.4, 0.7, 1.0, 1.6, 2.8, 5.2, and 10.0. These values closely approximate the distances in astronomical units of the planets from the Sun.

1813 - Henry Bessemer was born.

Henry Bessemer (1813 - 1898)
Wikimedia Commons
Bessemer was an English inventor who developed an inexpensive steel manufacturing process. The Bessemer process involves blowing oxygen through the molten iron to burn off impurities.
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