Venera 1

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Venera 1
Venera 1 (a) (Memorial Museum of Astronautics).JPG
Mockup of the Venera 1 spacecraft
Mission type Venus impactor
Operator OKB-1
Harvard designation1961 Gamma 1
COSPAR ID 1961-003A
SATCAT no. 80
Mission duration7 days
Spacecraft properties
Spacecraft 1VA No.2
Manufacturer OKB-1
Launch mass6,424.0 kilograms (14,162.5 lb)
Dry mass643.5 kilograms (1,419 lb)
Start of mission
Launch dateFebruary 12, 1961, 00:34:36 (1961-02-12UTC00:34:36Z) UTC
Rocket Molniya 8K78
Launch site Baikonur 1/5
End of mission
Last contact19 February 1961 (1961-02-20)
Orbital parameters
Reference system Heliocentric
Eccentricity 0.173
Perihelion altitude 1.019 AU
Aphelion altitude 0.718 AU
Inclination 0.58°
Period 311 days
Flyby of Venus
Closest approach19 May 1961
Distance100,000 km (62,000 mi)
1961 CPA 2556.jpg  

Venera 1 (Russian : Венера-1 meaning Venus 1), also known as Venera-1VA No.2 and occasionally in the West as Sputnik 8 was the first spacecraft to fly past Venus, as part of the Soviet Union's Venera programme. [1] Launched in February 1961, it flew past Venus on 19 May of the same year; however, radio contact with the probe was lost before the flyby, resulting in it returning no data.

Russian language East Slavic language

Russian is an East Slavic language, which is official in the Russian Federation, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan, as well as being widely used throughout Eastern Europe, the Baltic states, the Caucasus and Central Asia. It was the de facto language of the Soviet Union until its dissolution on 25 December 1991. Although nearly three decades have passed since the breakup of the Soviet Union, Russian is used in official capacity or in public life in all the post-Soviet nation-states, as well as in Israel and Mongolia.

Venus Second planet from the Sun in the Solar System

Venus is the second planet from the Sun, orbiting it every 224.7 Earth days. It has the longest rotation period of any planet in the Solar System and rotates in the opposite direction to most other planets. It does not have any natural satellites. It is named after the Roman goddess of love and beauty. It is the second-brightest natural object in the night sky after the Moon, and is bright enough to cast shadows at night and, rarely, visible to the naked eye in broad daylight. Orbiting within Earth's orbit, Venus is an inferior planet and never appears to venture far from the Sun; its maximum angular distance from the Sun (elongation) is 47.8°.

Soviet Union 1922–1991 country in Europe and Asia

The Soviet Union, officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR), was a Marxist-Leninist sovereign state in Eurasia that existed from 1922 to 1991. Nominally a union of multiple national Soviet republics, its government and economy were highly centralized. The country was a one-party state, governed by the Communist Party with Moscow as its capital in its largest republic, the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic. Other major urban centres were Leningrad, Kiev, Minsk, Tashkent, Alma-Ata, and Novosibirsk. It spanned over 10,000 kilometres (6,200 mi) east to west across 11 time zones, and over 7,200 kilometres (4,500 mi) north to south. It had five climate zones: tundra, taiga, steppes, desert and mountains.

Contents

Spacecraft

Venera 1 was a 643.5-kilogram (1,419 lb) probe consisting of a cylindrical body 1.05 metres (3 ft 5 in) in diameter topped by a dome, totalling 2.035 metres (6 ft 8.1 in) in height. This was pressurized to 1.2 standard atmospheres (120 kPa) with dry nitrogen, with internal fans to maintain even distribution of heat.[ citation needed ] Two solar panels extended from the cylinder, charging a bank of silver-zinc batteries. A 2-metre parabolic wire-mesh antenna was designed to send data from Venus to Earth on a frequency of 922.8 MHz. A 2.4-metre antenna boom was used to transmit short-wave signals during the near-Earth phase of the mission. Semidirectional quadrupole antennas mounted on the solar panels provided routine telemetry and telecommand contact with Earth during the mission, on a circularly-polarized decimetre radio band.

A quadrupole or quadrapole is one of a sequence of configurations of things like electric charge or current, or gravitational mass that can exist in ideal form, but it is usually just part of a multipole expansion of a more complex structure reflecting various orders of complexity.

The probe was equipped with scientific instruments including a flux-gate magnetometer attached to the antenna boom, two ion traps to measure solar wind, micrometeorite detectors, and Geiger counter tubes and a sodium iodide scintillator for measurement of cosmic radiation. An experiment attached to one solar panel measured temperatures of experimental coatings. Infrared and/or ultraviolet radiometers may have been included. The dome contained a KDU-414 engine used for mid-course corrections. Temperature control was achieved by motorized thermal shutters.

Magnetometer measuring instrument for magnetism

A magnetometer is a device that measures magnetism—the direction, strength, or relative change of a magnetic field at a particular location. The measurement of the magnetization of a magnetic material is an example. A compass is one such device, one that measures the direction of an ambient magnetic field, in this case, the Earth's magnetic field.

Ion trap combination of electric or magnetic fields used to capture charged particles

An ion trap is a combination of electric or magnetic fields used to capture charged particles, often in a system isolated from an external environment. Ion traps have a number of scientific uses such as mass spectrometry, basic physics research, and controlling quantum states. The two most common types of ion trap are the Penning trap, which forms a potential via a combination of electric and magnetic fields, and the Paul trap which forms a potential via a combination of static and oscillating electric fields.

Micrometeorite smallest extraterrestrial materials that make it to the surface of the Earth

A micrometeorite is essentially a micrometeoroid that has survived entry through Earth's atmosphere. The size of such a particle ranges from 50 µm to 2 mm. Usually found on Earth's surface, micrometeorites differ from meteorites in that they are smaller in size, more abundant, and different in composition. They are a subset of cosmic dust, which also includes the smaller interplanetary dust particles (IDPs).

During most of its flight, Venera 1 was spin stabilized. It was the first spacecraft designed to perform mid-course corrections, by entering a mode of 3-axis stabilization, fixing on the Sun and the star Canopus. Had it reached Venus, it would have entered another mode of 3-axis stabilization, fixing on the Sun and Earth, and using for the first time a parabolic antenna to relay data.

Canopus Star in the constellation of Carina

Canopus is the brightest star in the southern constellation of Carina, and is located near the western edge of the constellation around 310 light-years from the Sun. Its proper name is generally considered to originate from the mythological Canopus, who was a navigator for Menelaus, king of Sparta. Canopus has the Bayer designation α Carinae, which is Latinised to Alpha Carinae and abbreviated Alpha Car or α Car. It is the second-brightest star in the night sky, after Sirius. Canopus' visual apparent magnitude is −0.74, and it has an absolute magnitude of −5.71.

Sun Star at the centre of the Solar System

The Sun is the star at the center of the Solar System. It is a nearly perfect sphere of hot plasma, with internal convective motion that generates a magnetic field via a dynamo process. It is by far the most important source of energy for life on Earth. Its diameter is about 1.39 million kilometers, or 109 times that of Earth, and its mass is about 330,000 times that of Earth. It accounts for about 99.86% of the total mass of the Solar System. Roughly three quarters of the Sun's mass consists of hydrogen (~73%); the rest is mostly helium (~25%), with much smaller quantities of heavier elements, including oxygen, carbon, neon, and iron.

Earth Third planet from the Sun in the Solar System

Earth is the third planet from the Sun and the only astronomical object known to harbor life. According to radiometric dating and other sources of evidence, Earth formed over 4.5 billion years ago. Earth's gravity interacts with other objects in space, especially the Sun and the Moon, Earth's only natural satellite. Earth orbits around the Sun in 365.26 days, a period known as an Earth year. During this time, Earth rotates about its axis about 366.26 times.

Launch

Venera 1 was the second of two attempts to launch a probe to Venus in February 1961, immediately following the launch of its sister ship Venera-1VA No.1, [2] which failed to leave Earth orbit. [3] Soviet experts launched Venera-1 using a Molniya carrier rocket from the Baikonur Cosmodrome. The launch took place at 00:34:36 UTC on 12 February 1961. [4]

Tyazhely Sputnik,, also known by its development name as Venera 1VA No.1, and in the West as Sputnik 7, was a Soviet spacecraft, which was intended to be the first spacecraft to explore Venus. Due to a problem with its upper stage it failed to leave low Earth orbit. In order to avoid acknowledging the failure, the Soviet government instead announced that the entire spacecraft, including the upper stage, was a test of a "Heavy Satellite" which would serve as a launch platform for future missions. This resulted in the upper stage being considered a separate spacecraft, from which the probe was "launched", on several subsequent missions.

Molniya (rocket) Soviet rocket

The Molniya, GRAU Index 8K78, was a modification of the well-known R-7 Semyorka rocket and had four stages.

Baikonur Cosmodrome Rocket launch complex in Kazakhstan, used by Russia

The Baikonur Cosmodrome is a spaceport located in an area of southern Kazakhstan leased to Russia.

The spacecraft, along with the rocket's Blok-L upper stage, were initially placed into a 229 × 282 km low Earth orbit, [1] before the upper stage fired to place Venera 1 into a heliocentric orbit, directed towards Venus. The 11D33 engine was the world's first staged-combustion-cycle rocket engine, and also the first use of an ullage engine to allow a liquid-fuel rocket engine to start in space.

Low Earth orbit Orbit around Earth with an altitude between 160 kilometers and 2,000 kilometers

A low Earth orbit (LEO) is an Earth-centered orbit with an altitude of 2,000 km (1,200 mi) or less, or with at least 11.25 periods per day and an eccentricity less than 0.25. Most of the manmade objects in outer space are in LEO.

Heliocentric orbit Solar orbit around the sun

A heliocentric orbit is an orbit around the barycenter of the Solar System, which is usually located within or very near the surface of the Sun. All planets, comets, and asteroids in the Solar System, and the Sun itself are in such orbits, as are many artificial probes and pieces of debris. The moons of planets in the Solar System, by contrast, are not in heliocentric orbits, as they orbit their respective planet.

Failure

Three successful telemetry sessions were conducted, gathering solar-wind and cosmic-ray data near Earth, at the Earth's magnetopause, and on February 19 at a distance of 1,900,000 km (1,200,000 mi). After discovering the solar wind with Luna 2, Venera 1 provided the first verification that this plasma was uniformly present in deep space. Seven days later, the next scheduled telemetry session failed to occur. On May 19, 1961, Venera 1 passed within 100,000 km (62,000 mi) of Venus. With the help of the British radio telescope at Jodrell Bank, some weak signals from Venera 1 may have been detected in June. Soviet engineers believed that Venera-1 failed due to the overheating of a solar-direction sensor.

See also

Related Research Articles

Venera Space programme

The Venera program was the name given to a series of space probes developed by the Soviet Union between 1961 and 1984 to gather information about the planet Venus. Ten probes successfully landed on the surface of the planet, including the two Vega program and Venera-Halley probes, while thirteen probes successfully entered the Venusian atmosphere. Due to the extreme surface conditions on Venus, the probes could only survive for a short period on the surface, with times ranging from 23 minutes to two hours. The Venera program established a number of precedents in human space exploration, among them being the first human-made devices to enter the atmosphere of another planet, the first to make a soft landing on another planet, the first to return images from another planet's surface, and the first to perform high-resolution radar mapping scans.

Ranger 5 US unmanned spaceprobe

Ranger 5 was a spacecraft of the Ranger program designed to transmit pictures of the lunar surface to Earth stations during a period of 10 minutes of flight prior to impacting on the Moon, to rough-land a seismometer capsule on the Moon, to collect gamma-ray data in flight, to study radar reflectivity of the lunar surface, and to continue testing of the Ranger program for development of lunar and interplanetary spacecraft. Due to an unknown malfunction, the spacecraft ran out of power and ceased operation. It passed within 725 km of the Moon.

Mars 1

Mars 1, also known as 1962 Beta Nu 1, Mars 2MV-4 and Sputnik 23, was an automatic interplanetary station launched in the direction of Mars on November 1, 1962, the first of the Soviet Mars probe program, with the intent of flying by the planet at a distance of about 11,000 km (6,800 mi). It was designed to image the surface and send back data on cosmic radiation, micrometeoroid impacts and Mars' magnetic field, radiation environment, atmospheric structure, and possible organic compounds.

Kosmos 27, also known as Zond 3MV-1 No.3 was a space mission intended as a Venus flyby. The spacecraft was launched by a Molniya-M carrier rocket from LC-1 at Baikonur on March 27, 1964. The Blok L stage and probe reached Earth orbit successfully, but the attitude control system failed to operate and so the stage could not be oriented properly for main engine start. It reentered the atmosphere one day after launch and burned up. Examination of telemetry data found that the failure was due to a design flaw in the circuitry of the BOZ unit, which resulted in power not being transferred to the attitude control jets on the Blok L stage.

Vega 1 Space probe

Vega 1 is a Soviet space probe part of the Vega program. The spacecraft was a development of the earlier Venera craft. They were designed by Babakin Space Centre and constructed as 5VK by Lavochkin at Khimki. The name VeGa (ВеГа) combines the first two letters Russian words for Venus and Halley.

Vega 2 space probe

Vega 2 was a Soviet space probe part of the Vega program to explore Halley's comet and Venus. The spacecraft was a development of the earlier Venera craft. The name VeGa (ВеГа) combines the first two letters Russian words for Venus and Halley They were designed by Babakin Space Centre and constructed as 5VK by Lavochkin at Khimki. The craft was powered by twin large solar panels and instruments included an antenna dish, cameras, spectrometer, infrared sounder, magnetometers (MISCHA), and plasma probes. The 10,850 pounds (4,920 kg) craft was launched by a Proton 8K82K rocket from Baikonur Cosmodrome, Tyuratam, Kazakh SSR. Both Vega 1 and 2 were three-axis stabilized spacecraft. The spacecraft were equipped with a dual bumper shield for dust protection from Halley's Comet.

Venera 4V-2 was a series of two identical spacecraft sent to Venus by the Soviet Union, consisting of Venera 15 and Venera 16. Both unmanned orbiters were to map the surface of Venus using high resolution imaging systems. The spacecraft were identical and based on modifications to the earlier Venera space probes.

<i>Pioneer 5</i> Space probe

Pioneer 5 was a spin-stabilized space probe in the NASA Pioneer program used to investigate interplanetary space between the orbits of Earth and Venus. It was launched on March 11, 1960 from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station Launch Complex 17A at 13:00:00 UTC with an on-orbit dry mass of 43 kg. It was a 0.66 m diameter sphere with 1.4 m span across its four solar panels and achieved a solar orbit of 0.806 × 0.995 AU.

<i>Pioneer 6</i>, <i>7</i>, <i>8</i>, and <i>9</i>

Pioneer 6, 7, 8, and 9 were space probes in the Pioneer program. They were a series of solar-orbiting, spin-stabilized, solar cell- and battery-powered satellites designed to obtain measurements on a continuing basis of interplanetary phenomena from widely separated points in space. They were also known as Pioneer A, B, C, and D. The fifth was lost in a launch accident, and therefore did not receive a numerical designation.

Venera 16 space probe

Venera 16 was a spacecraft sent to Venus by the Soviet Union. This unmanned orbiter was to map the surface of Venus using high resolution imaging systems. The spacecraft was identical to Venera 15 and based on modifications to the earlier Venera space probes.The latest data from the spacecraft were received on June 13, 1985, when it responded to the signal sent From the earth for «Vega-1».

Venera 15 was a spacecraft sent to Venus by the Soviet Union. This unmanned orbiter was to map the surface of Venus using high resolution imaging systems. The spacecraft was identical to Venera 16 and based on modifications to the earlier Venera space probes.

Mars 1M

Mars 1M was a series of two unmanned spacecraft which were used in the first Soviet missions to explore Mars. They were the earliest missions of the Mars program. The Western media dubbed the spacecraft "Marsnik", a portmanteau of Mars and Sputnik.

Venera 10 Space probe

Venera 10, or 4V-1 No. 661, was a Soviet unmanned space mission to Venus. It consisted of an orbiter and a lander. It was launched on June 14, 1975 03:00:31 UTC and had a mass of 5033 kg (11096 lb).

Venera 7

Venera 7 was a Soviet spacecraft, part of the Venera series of probes to Venus. When it landed on the Venusian surface, it became the first spacecraft to land on another planet and first to transmit data from there back to Earth.

Venera 2 Soviet spacecraft intended to explore Venus

Venera 2, also known as 3MV-4 No.4 was a Soviet spacecraft intended to explore Venus. A 3MV-4 spacecraft launched as part of the Venera programme, it failed to return data after flying past Venus.

Venera 5 space probe

Venera 5 was a space probe in the Soviet space program Venera for the exploration of Venus.

Venera 2MV-2 No.1, also known as Sputnik 21 in the West, was a Soviet spacecraft, which was launched in 1962 as part of the Venera programme, and was intended to make a flyby of Venus. Due to a problem with the rocket which launched it, it failed to leave low Earth orbit, and reentered the atmosphere a few days later. It was the second Venera 2MV-2 spacecraft, both of which failed to leave Earth orbit.

Kosmos 96

Kosmos 96, or 3MV-4 No.6, was a Soviet spacecraft intended to explore Venus. A 3MV-4 spacecraft launched as part of the Venera programme, Kosmos 96 was to have made a flyby of Venus; however, due to a launch failure, it did not depart low Earth orbit.

Kosmos 167, or 4V-1 No.311, was a 1967 Soviet spacecraft intended to explore Venus. A 4V-1 spacecraft launched as part of the Venera programme, Kosmos 167 was intended to land on Venus, but never departed low Earth orbit due to a launch failure.

References

  1. 1 2 "NASA - NSSDCA - Spacecraft - Details - Venera 1". nssdc.gsfc.nasa.gov. Retrieved 2019-08-15.
  2. NSSDC Chronology of Venus Exploration (NASA Goddard Space Center), accessed August 9, 2010
  3. NSSDC Tentatively Identified (Soviet) Missions and Launch Failures (NASA Goddard Space Center), accessed August 9, 2010
  4. McDowell, Jonathan. "Launch Log". Jonathan's Space Page. Retrieved 3 January 2013.