Encyclopedia Astronautica
Venera 4V-2



venera15.jpg
Venera 15
Venera-15 Venus radar lunar surface mapper
Credit: Andy Salmon
Russian Venus probe. 2 launches, 1983.06.02 (Venera 15) to 1983.06.07 (Venera 16). Venera radar mappers which used an 8 cm band side-looking radar to study the surface properties of Venus.

In comparison to the 4V-1 bus flown previously they had extra solar panels and their propellant compartments were lengthened by a little over one meter.

Two spacecraft were inserted into Venus orbit a day apart with their orbital planes shifted by an angle of approximately 4 degrees relative to one another. This made it possible to reimage an area if necessary. Each spacecraft was in a nearly polar orbit with a periapsis at 62 N latitude. Together, the two spacecraft imaged the area from the north pole down to about 30 degrees N latitude over the 8 months of mapping operations. Each spacecraft consisted of a 5 m long cylinder with a 6 m diameter, 1.4 m tall parabolic dish antenna for the synthetic aperture radar (SAR) at one end. A 1 meter diameter parabolic dish antenna for the radio altimeter was also located at this end. The electrical axis of the radio altimeter antenna was lined up with the axis of the cylinder. The electrical axis of the SAR deviated from the spacecraft axis by 10 degrees. During imaging, the radio altimeter would be lined up with the center of the planet (local vertical) and the SAR would be looking off to the side at 10 degrees. A bulge at the opposite end of the cylinder held fuel tanks and propulsion units. Two square solar arrays extended like wings from the sides of the cylinder. A 2.6 m radio dish antenna for communications was also attached to the side of the cylinder.

Gross mass: 4,000 kg (8,800 lb).
First Launch: 1983.06.02.
Last Launch: 1983.06.07.
Number: 2 .

More... - Chronology...


Associated Countries
Associated Engines
  • KTDU-425A Isayev N2O4/UDMH rocket engine. 18.890 kN. Mars 4-7, Venera 9-16, Vega 1-2, and Phobos 1-2 maneuvering engine. Out of Production. Could be throttled to 9.86/9.5/2870. Chamber pressure 149 - 95 bar. Isp=315s. First flight 1973. More...

See also
  • Proton The Proton launch vehicle has been the medium-lift workhorse of the Soviet and Russian space programs for over forty years. Although constantly criticized within Russia for its use of toxic and ecologically-damaging storable liquid propellants, it has out-lasted all challengers, and no replacement is in sight. More...

Associated Launch Vehicles
  • Proton The Proton launch vehicle has been the medium-lift workhorse of the Soviet and Russian space programs for over forty years. Although constantly criticized within Russia for its use of toxic and ecologically-damaging storable liquid propellants, it has out-lasted all challengers, and no replacement is in sight. Development of the Proton began in 1962 as a two-stage vehicle that could be used to launch large military payloads or act as a ballistic missile with a 100 megaton nuclear warhead. The ICBM was cancelled in 1965, but development of a three-stage version for the crash program to send a Soviet man around the moon began in 1964. The hurried development caused severe reliability problems in early production. But these were eventually solved, and from the 1970's the Proton was used to launch all Russian space stations, medium- and geosynchronous orbit satellites, and lunar and planetary probes. More...
  • Proton-K/D-1 Russian orbital launch vehicle. This derivative of the original four stage Block D / 11S824 version of the Proton was used from 1978 to launch Lavochkin OKB planetary probes (Mars, Venera) and high earth orbit astronomical observatories (Astron, Granat). Guidance to the Block D-1 stage must be supplied by spacecraft. Equipped with N2O4/UDMH verniers for precise placement of payloads in high orbits or planetary trajectories. More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • MOM Russian agency overseeing development of spacecraft. Ministry of General Machine Building (Moskva, Russia), Moscow, Russia. More...
  • Lavochkin Russian manufacturer of rockets and spacecraft. Lavochkin Design Bureau, Moscow, Russia. More...

Associated Programs
  • Venera Russian series of spacecraft that explored the planet Venus. Venera spacecraft made the first soft landings on the surface of Venus and returned the first images from the surface. More...

Bibliography
  • McDowell, Jonathan, Jonathan's Space Home Page (launch records), Harvard University, 1997-present. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • JPL Mission and Spacecraft Library, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, 1997. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • Kaesmann, Ferdinand, et. al., "Proton - Development of A Russian Launch Vehicle", Journal of the British Interplanetary Society, 1998, Volume 51, page 3.
  • Vladimirov, A, "Tablitsa zapuskov RN 'Proton' i 'Proton K'", Novosti kosmonavtiki, 1998, Issue 10, page 25.
  • National Space Science Center Planetary Page, As of 19 February 1999.. Web Address when accessed: here.
  • Vekshin, Boris, "Letter to the editor", Novosti kosmonavtiki, Number 5 - 1999.

Associated Launch Sites
  • Baikonur Russia's largest cosmodrome, the only one used for manned launches and with facilities for the larger Proton, N1, and Energia launch vehicles. The spaceport ended up on foreign soil after the break-up of Soviet Union. The official designations NIIP-5 and GIK-5 are used in official Soviet histories. It was also universally referred to as Tyuratam by both Soviet military staff and engineers, and the US intelligence agencies. Since the dissolution of the Soviet Union the Russian Federation has insisted on continued use of the old Soviet 'public' name of Baikonur. In its Kazakh (Kazak) version this is rendered Baykonur. More...

Venera 4V-2 Chronology


1983 June 2 - . 02:38 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC200/39. LV Family: Proton. Launch Vehicle: Proton-K/D-1. LV Configuration: Proton-K/D-1 321-01.
  • Venera 15 - . Payload: 4V-2 s/n 860. Mass: 4,000 kg (8,800 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Program: Venera. Class: Venus. Type: Venus probe. Spacecraft: Venera 4V-2. USAF Sat Cat: 14104 . COSPAR: 1983-053A. Apogee: 65,000 km (40,000 mi). Perigee: 1,000 km (600 mi). Inclination: 87.5000 deg. Period: 1,440.00 min. Venera 15 was part of a two spacecraft mission (along with Venera 16) designed to use side-looking radar mappers to study the surface properties of Venus. The two spacecraft were inserted into Venus orbit a day apart with their orbital planes shifted by an angle of approximately 4 degrees relative to one another. This made it possible to reimage an area if necessary. Each spacecraft was in a nearly polar orbit with a periapsis at 62 N latitude. Together, the two spacecraft imaged the area from the north pole down to about 30 degrees N latitude over the 8 months of mapping operations. Data is for Venus orbit.

1983 June 7 - . 02:32 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC200/40. LV Family: Proton. Launch Vehicle: Proton-K/D-1. LV Configuration: Proton-K/D-1 321-02.
  • Venera 16 - . Payload: 4V-2 s/n 861. Mass: 4,000 kg (8,800 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Program: Venera. Class: Venus. Type: Venus probe. Spacecraft: Venera 4V-2. USAF Sat Cat: 14107 . COSPAR: 1983-054A. Venus radar mapper; entered Venus orbit 10/14/83. Venera 16 was part of a two spacecraft mission (along with Venera 15) designed to use side-looking radar mappers to study the surface properties of Venus. The two spacecraft were inserted into Venus orbit a day apart with their orbital planes shifted by an angle of approximately 4 degrees relative to one another. This made it possible to reimage an area if necessary. Each spacecraft was in a nearly polar orbit with a periapsis at 62 N latitude. Together, the two spacecraft imaged the area from the north pole down to about 30 degrees N latitude over the 8 months of mapping operations.

1983 October 10 - .
  • Venera 15, Venus Orbit Insertion - . Nation: USSR. Spacecraft: Venera 4V-2.

1983 October 16 - .
  • Venera 16, Venus Orbit Insertion - . Nation: USSR. Spacecraft: Venera 4V-2.

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