Lost city's centenary
July 24 marks the 100th anniversary of the rediscovery of Machu Picchu. Yale lecturer Hiram Bingham dubbed the ruins the "Lost City of the Incas" after purportedly rediscovering in 1911 the pre-15th-century Inca city near Cuzco, Peru. In June, Yale University returned to Peru some of the artifacts Bingham took.
Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner says Aug. 2 is the day that the United States will blow past its current debt limit of $14.2 trillion unless congressional Republicans, Democrats, and President Barack Obama forge a deal to raise the limit or drastically cut spending. (See "Time bomb," by Emily Belz and Edward Lee Pitts.)
Mubarak on trial
Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, 83, will stand trial beginning Aug. 3 on charges of murder and corruption, making him the first Arab head of state to answer in court after being overthrown. At least he will have company-his sons Gamal and Alaa will also face charges from the Egyptian attorney general.
On Aug. 4 President Obama becomes only the eighth president to celebrate his 50th birthday in the White House, following James K. Polk, Franklin Pierce, Ulysses S. Grant, James A. Garfield, Grover Cleveland, Teddy Roosevelt, and Bill Clinton.
Life after the shuttle
NASA launches an Atlas 5 rocket into space on Aug. 5 carrying the Juno probe for its five-year mission to study Jupiter-a preview of the space agency's low-profile work in the post-shuttle era. When the Juno probe arrives in 2016, it will orbit Jupiter more than 30 times to learn more about how the gas giant was formed and what might lie at its center.
For a nation still recovering from the disaster at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, the 66th anniversary of Japan's original nuclear disaster promises to be especially somber. According to the Radioactive Effects Research Foundation, between 90,000 and 166,000 people died as a direct result of the atomic bomb dropped from the Enola Gay on Aug. 6, 1945.