August 19, 1976, Forty Years Ago

Today in histroy

Published:August 19, 2016 12:31 am

Luna on moon

The automatic Soviet moon probe Luna 24 made a successful soft landing on the moon, Moscow radio reported. The station, launched from earth on August 9, went in to orbit around the moon four days ago and landed in the scheduled region. All systems aboard Luna 24 were functioning correctly and the probe had begun its lunar programme, the announcement said. Apart from saying Luna 24 would carry out scientific exploration of the moon and the lunar area, the Soviet media did not give any details about the mission. The last one, Luna-23, crash-landed in November 1974. But Luna 22 launched in May 1974, orbited the moon for over a year, scanning the surface with television devices and relaying the information back to scientists. In January 1973, Luna 21 landed on the moon and released the Lunokhod-2 moon buggy which trundled across the surface for more than four months, sending information back to earth.

Mars visuals

New pictures of Mars’ northern regions reveal mysterious patterns resembling contour ploughing on the planet’s red surface. Scientists say they are hardpressed to find a natural explanation. Michael Carr, a team member interpreting pictures of Mars taken by the orbiting Viking 2, said the newest pictures of the target zone showed huge, striped patterns that resemble an aerial photograph of a farmer’s field after ploughing It is “hard to think of a natural cause, because the stripes are so regular,” he said.

Quake kills 3,000

At least 3,100 people died and 2,000 more were missing following the devastating earthquake and tidal waves in Mindanao island, Filipino authorities reported. Most of the dead were caught by the tidal wave as it rolled over low lying areas. Many of the dead were children asleep when the shock of the tremor wave struck the mainland and small islands.

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