|Chang'e-5 Chang'e-5 Flight Test Vehicle, also called the Reentry Return Flight Test Mission. The spacecraft was launched into a 209 km x 413,000 km lunar transfer orbit. The vehicle was a precursor to the planned Chang'e-5 mission and consisted of a satellite bus similar to the Chang'e-2 lunar orbiter, topped with a reentry vehicle, a subscale version of the Shenzhou landing module. The craft made an 8-day flight to loop around the Moon and return to Earth. It passed 11,300 km from the Moon on October 27 and returned to Earth on October 31. The descent capsule separated from the main vehicle at 21:53 GMT and landed north of Hohhot at 22:42 GMT. The service module made a burn at 21:56 GMT to avoid reentry and swung past the Earth to head out towards the Earth-Moon L2 point. Stationed at L2 Lagrangian point.|
|Chang'e-5 RRFV Reentry vehicle portion of Chang'e-5. The craft made an 8-day flight to loop around the Moon and return to Earth. The reentry vehicle separated from the main bus at 21:53 GMT and landed north of Hohhot at 22:42 GMT. Technology satellite built by CAST, China. Launched 2014. Used the DFH-3A Bus bus.|
|LM-300 NASA dual-spacecraft lunar gravity mapping mission.|
|LRO The Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter was a NASA spacecraft that comprehensively mapped the lunar surface at a resolution of up to 0.5 m and determined the extent of water ice for possible use by future manned bases. Lunar lander built by Goddard Space Flight Center for NASA, USA. Launched 2009.|
|MCSB NASA Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Enviroment Explorer mission. It carried an ultraviolet spectrometer, a lunar dust experiment, a neutral mass spectrometer, and a laser communications experiment. An Aerojet Rocketdyne/Redmond R-4D-15 HiPAT 455N thruster, with 135 kg of propellant, was used for lunar orbit insertion and orbit maneuvers.|
|Yutu Lunar rover delivered to lunar surface by Chang'e-3.|
|BIS Lunar Lander British manned lunar lander. Study 1939. Design of the British Interplanetary Society's BIS Spaceship began in 1937 and was published in January and July 1939.|
|Von Braun Lunar Lander American manned lunar lander. Study 1952. Von Braun's first lunar lander design was an immense spacecraft, larger in earth orbit than a Saturn V booster.|
|Pioneer 0-1-2 American lunar orbiter. Pioneers 0, 1 and 2 were the first U. S. spacecraft to attempt to leave Earth orbit.|
|Luna E-1 Russian lunar impact probe. The first spacecraft to achieve escape velocity and the first to reach the Moon. The spacecraft was sphere-shaped. Five antennae extended from one hemisphere.|
|Pioneer 3-4 American lunar flyby probe. Smaller than the previous Pioneers, Pioneer 3 and 4 each carried only a single experiment to detect cosmic radiation.|
|Early Soviet Lunar Lander Russian manned lunar lander. Study 1958. Painting of early Soviet concept of a lunar lander. This was similar to Von Braun designs popular in the 1950's.|
|Lunex Lunar Lander American manned lunar lander. Studied 1958-1961. The largest single development objective for the Lunex program was to provide a spacecraft capable of transporting men and equipment to the lunar surface and returning them to a selected earth base.|
|Horizon Lunar Outpost American manned lunar base. Study 1959. In 1959 the US Army completed a plan for a manned military outpost on the moon.|
|Navy SLV American manned lunar lander. Study 1961. The spacecraft for a US Navy lunar landing program that was to place a naval aviator on the moon by 1967.|
|RISP American lunar flyby probe. Study 1959. The Recoverable Interplanetary Space Probe was a 1957 proposal of the MIT Instrumentation Laboratory.|
|Luna E-1A Russian lunar impact probe. First probe to impact lunar surface. Delivered a pennant to the surface of the Moon and conducted research during flight to the Moon.|
|Luna E-3 Russian lunar flyby probe. The E-3 was designed to loop around the moon and photograph the Moon's far side.|
|Pioneer P 3 American lunar orbiter. The least successful lunar spacecraft; none even achieved orbit in four attempts.|
|Horizon LERV American manned lunar lander. Study 1959. Lunar landing and return vehicle planned to take up to 16 crew to the lunar surface and back in the US Army's Project Horizon of 1959.|
|Apollo LM American manned lunar lander.|
|Apollo CSM The Apollo Command Service Module was the spacecraft developed by NASA in the 1960's as a standard spacecraft for earth and lunar orbit missions. Manned spacecraft for earth orbit and lunar orbit satellite operated by NASA, USA. Launched 1967 - 1975.|
|L1-1960 Russian manned lunar flyby spacecraft. Study 1960. Circumlunar manned spacecraft proposed by Korolev in January 1960. The L1 would a man on a loop around the moon and back to earth by 1964.|
|L4-1960 Russian manned lunar orbiter. Study 1960. Lunar orbiter proposed by Korolev in January 1960. The spacecraft was to take 2 to 3 men to lunar orbit and back to earth by 1965.|
|Prospector American lunar rover. Study 1961. The Prospector spacecraft was a NASA/JPL unmanned lunar rover of the early 1960's.|
|Gemini LOR American manned lunar lander. Study 1961. Original Mercury Mark II proposal foresaw a Gemini capsule and a single-crew open cockpit lunar lander undertaking a lunar orbit rendezvous mission, launched by a Titan C-3.|
|LK-1 Russian manned lunar flyby spacecraft. Cancelled 1965. The LK-1 was the spacecraft designed by Chelomei for the original Soviet manned lunar flyby project. The re-entry vehicle and propulsion systems would continue in development for the LK-700 lunar lander and TKS space station resupply vehicle.|
|Ranger 1-2 American lunar impact probe.|
|Bendix Manned Lunar Vehicle 4 Wheel American manned lunar rover. Study 1961. The Bendix Manned Lunar Vehicle was a lunar rover design of November 1961. The vehicle had 4 wheels and a range of 400 km with a crew of 3 on a 14 day traverse.|
|Gemini Lunar Lander American manned lunar lander. Study 1961. A direct lunar lander design of 1961, capable of being launched to the moon in a single Saturn V launch through use of a 2-man Gemini re-entry vehicle instead of the 3-man Apollo capsule.|
|Bendix Manned Lunar Vehicle 3 Wheel American lunar rover. Study 1961. The Bendix Lunar Mobile System was an unmanned lunar rover design of September 1961. The vehicle had 3 wheels, powered separately, and a range of 800 km.|
|LEAP lunar flyer American manned lunar flyer. Study 1961. LEAP was an early 1960's British design for getting disabled astronauts on the lunar surface quickly to lunar orbit for ferrying home.|
|LM Langley Lighter American manned lunar lander. Study 1961. This early open-cab Langley design used cryogenic propellants. The cryogenic design was estimated to gross 3,284 kg - to be compared with the 15,000 kg / 2 man LM design that eventually was selected.|
|LM Langley Light American manned lunar lander. Study 1961. This early open-cab single-crew Langley lunar lander design used storable propellants, resulting in an all-up mass of 4,372 kg.|
|LM Langley Lightest American manned lunar lander. Study 1961. Extremely light-weight open-cab lunar module design considered in early Langley studies.|
|Ranger 3-4-5 American lunar lander.|
|L1-1962 Russian manned lunar flyby spacecraft. Study 1962. Early design that would lead to Soyuz. A Vostok-Zh manned tug would assemble rocket stages in orbit. It would then return, and a Soyuz L1 would dock with the rocket stack and be propelled toward the moon.|
|Lunar Bus American lunar logistics spacecraft. Study 1962. The lunar 'bus'; was an early NASA Apollo logistics vehicle study.|
|Apollo ULS American lunar logistics spacecraft. Study 1962. An Apollo unmanned logistic system to aid astronauts on a lunar landing mission was studied.|
|Apollo D-2 American manned lunar orbiter. Study 1962. The General Electric design for Apollo put all systems and space not necessary for re-entry and recovery into a separate jettisonable 'mission module', joined to the re-entry vehicle by a hatch.|
|DLB Module Russian manned lunar habitat. Cancelled 1974. Basic module developed by Barmin's OKB from 1962 for the Zvezda Lunar Base. Cancelled, together with the N1 booster, in 1974.|
|Gemini-Centaur American manned lunar flyby spacecraft. Study 1962. In the first Gemini project plans, it was planned that after a series of test dockings between Gemini and Agena rocket stages, Geminis would dock with Centaur stages for circumlunar flights.|
|LK-700 Russian manned lunar lander. Chelomei's direct-landing alternative to Korolev's L3 manned lunar landing design. Developed at a low level 1964 to 1974, reaching mockup and component test stage.|
|Luna E-6 Russian lunar lander. E-6 probes were designed by Korolev's OKB-1 with the objective of making the first soft landing on the moon and beaming back pictures of the surface. Lunar soft lander, Russia. Launched 1963 - 1966.|
|Apollo LLRV American manned lunar lander test vehicle. Bell Aerosystems initially built two manned lunar landing research vehicles (LLRV) for NASA to assess the handling characteristics of Apollo LM-type vehicles on earth.|
|L3-1963 Russian manned lunar lander. Study 1963. Korolev's original design for a manned lunar landing spacecraft was described in September 1963 and was designed to make a direct lunar landing using the earth orbit rendezvous method.|
|L2-1963 Russian lunar rover. Study 1963. The L2 was a project to land a remote-controlled self-propelled rover on the surface of the moon. It was described in a 23 September 1963 letter setting out the space exploration plan for 1965 to 1975.|
|L4-1963 Russian manned lunar orbiter. Study 1963. The L-4 Manned Lunar Orbiter Research Spacecraft would have taken two to three cosmonauts into lunar orbit for an extended survey and mapping mission.|
|Apollo LLRF American Lunar Landing Research Facility. The huge structure (76.2 m high and 121.9 m long) was used to explore techniques and to forecast various problems of landing on the moon.|
|Surveyor American lunar lander. Jet Propulsion Laboratory's Surveyor series soft-landed on the moon, provided images of the lunar surface, and tested the characteristics of the lunar soil. Lunar lander built by Hughes (for Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL)) for NASA, USA. Launched 1966 - 1968.|
|Apollo LM Shelter American manned lunar habitat. Cancelled 1968. The LM Shelter was essentially an Apollo LM lunar module with ascent stage engine and fuel tanks removed and replaced with consumables and scientific equipment for 14 days extended lunar exploration.|
|Apollo LM Taxi American manned lunar lander. Cancelled 1968. The LM Taxi was essentially the basic Apollo LM modified for extended lunar surface stays.|
|Bendix Lunar Logistic System American manned lunar rover. Study 1963. The Bendix Lunar Logistic System was a lunar rover design of January 1963. The vehicle had 4 wheels with alternative front or all-wheel steering and a range of 800 km with a crew of 3 on a 14 day traverse.|
|Boeing LES Rover American manned lunar rover. Study 1963. The Boeing Lunar Exploration Systems lunar rover design of November 1963 was for a multipurpose rover with a range of 480 km with a crew of 2 on a 8 day traverse. The cabin had a volume of 4.95 cubic meters.|
|Grumman LSS Project 344 Rover - Unmanned American lunar rover. Study 1963. The Grumman Lunar Logistics System Project 344 unmanned rover design of February 1963 had 4 wheels (two equal-weight, 2 wheel modules of 360 cm diameter). The robot had a range of 750 km.|
|Grumman LSS Project 344 Rover - 1 man American manned lunar rover. Study 1963. The Grumman Lunar Logistics System Project 344 single-crew rover of January 1963 had 2 x two-wheeled power modules. Each wheel was 360 cm in diameter, and the rover had a range of 300 km on a 3.3 day traverse.|
|Grumman LSS Project 344 Rover - 2 man American manned lunar rover. Study 1963. The Grumman Lunar Logistics System Project 344 two-man rover design of January 1963 consisted of the basic vehicle, a manned module, and a tanker. This provided a range of 370 km on a 7 day traverse.|
|Grumman LSS Project 344 Rover - 3 man American manned lunar rover. Study 1963. The Grumman Lunar Logistics System Project 344 three-man lunar rover design of January 1963 used a 3 module vehicle. It had a range of 2340 km on a 28 day traverse.|
|Grumman LSS Project 344 Rover - 2 man 3 kW American manned lunar rover. Study 1963. The Grumman Lunar Logistics System Project 344 alternate three-crew lunar rover design of February 1963 vehicle had three x two wheeled modules. The rover would have a range of 770 km on a 23.5 day traverse.|
|LSS Site Survey Payload American lunar rover. Study 1963. The BellComm Lunar Logistic System unmanned Site Survey Payload was outlined in a January 1963 study. The 2 x 2 vehicle had articulated wheels, a 1.5 m diameter folded chassis. and a range of 260 km.|
|Lunar Logistic System 13.7 kW American manned lunar rover. Study 1963. This NASA Lunar Logistic System lunar rover design of March 1963 had 4 wheels, rigidly mounted, and a range of 450 km with a crew of 2 on a 30 day traverse. The cabin had a volume of 9.72 cubic meters.|
|Lunar Logistic System 6 kW American manned lunar rover. Study 1963. This NASA Lunar Logistic System lunar rover design of March 1963 had 4 wheel unit, each wheel 1.3 m in diameter and 20 cm wide. It had a range of 370 km with a crew of 2 on a 7 day traverse.|
|Northrop LSS Lunar Rover RV-1 American lunar rover. Study 1963. The Northrop Lunar Logistic System RV-1 unmanned lunar rover design of January 1963 had 3 wheels, rigidly mounted, and a range of 80 km.|
|Northrop LSS Lunar Rover RV3 RV4 American lunar rover. Study 1963. The unmanned portion of the January 1963 Northrop Lunar Logistic System had 4 articulated wheels and a range of 240 km.|
|Northrop LSS Lunar Rover RV5 American manned lunar rover. Study 1963. This Northrop Lunar Logistic System design of January 1963 was a 3 wheel open cart and had a range of 30 km with a crew of 2. It could also tow the RV6 50 kg, 2 to 4 wheeled dolly or trailer.|
|Northrop LSS Lunar Rover RV7 American manned lunar rover. Study 1963. The Northrop Lunar Logistic System RV7 was a lunar rover design of January 1963. The one-crew vehicle was designed for scooping and dozing operations.|
|Northrop LSS Lunar Rover RV8 American manned lunar rover. Study 1963. The Northrop Lunar Logistic System RV8 was a lunar rover design of January 1963. Dual single-crew vehicles were designed to be operated separately or together as a system.|
|Northrop LSS Lunar Rover RV-1A American manned lunar rover. Study 1963. The Northrop Lunar Logistic System RV-1A crewed rover of January 1963 had 4 tracks and a range of 2900 km on a 27 day traverse.|
|Ranger 6-7-8-9 American lunar impact probe. After a series of failures with the more ambitious early Ranger spacecraft, the design was simplified and the lander was deleted. Lunar hard lander built by Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) for NASA, USA. Launched 1964 - 1965.|
|Apollo LM Truck American lunar logistics spacecraft. Cancelled 1968. The LM Truck was an LM Descent stage adapted for unmanned delivery of payloads of up to 5,000 kg to the lunar surface in support of a lunar base using Apollo technology.|
|Apollo MSS American manned lunar orbiter. Study 1965. The Apollo Mapping and Survey System was a kit of photographic equipment that was at one time part of the basic Apollo Block II configuration.|
|Surveyor Block II American lunar lander. Study 1964. The Surveyor Block II spacecraft was imagined as an unmanned scout that could reconnoiter a specific lunar landing site for Apollo and assist the manned Lunar Module in making a precise touch down.|
|Gemini - Saturn I American manned lunar flyby spacecraft. Study 1964. In the spring of 1964, with manned Apollo flights using the Saturn I having been cancelled, use of a Saturn I to launch a Gemini around the moon was studied.|
|Gemini - Saturn IB American manned lunar flyby spacecraft. Study 1964.|
|Gemini - Saturn V American manned lunar orbiter. In late 1964 McDonnell, in addition to a Saturn 1B-boosted circumlunar Gemini, McDonnell proposed a lunar-orbit version of Gemini to comprehensively scout the Apollo landing zones prior to the first Apollo missions.|
|KLE Complex Lunar Expedition Russian manned lunar base. Chelomei's design for a lunar base, studied 1964 to 1974 as a UR-700-launched predecessor or alternative to Barmin's DLB.|
|L3 Russian manned lunar expedition. Development begun in 1964. All hardware was test flown, but program cancelled in 1974 due to repeated failures of the project's N1 launch vehicle.|
|Northrop Molab American manned lunar rover. Study 1964. The Northrop Molab lunar rover design of March 1964 had 4 wheels, each a flexible torus or controlled flexible disc. It could accommodate a crew of 2 on a 14 day traverse.|
|Northrop ALSS Rover American manned lunar rover. Study 1964. Northrop completed Molab Studies under a Apollo Logistic Support Systems contract in March 1964.|
|Project Selena American manned lunar base. Study 1964. Bono's enormous ROMBUS booster could fly all the way to the lunar surface and back if low Earth orbit rendezvous and propellant transfer were used. He therefore proposed using the booster to establish a lunar base.|
|Surveyor Lunar Rover American lunar rover. Cancelled 1965. Follow-on Surveyor unmanned lunar landers were to deploy small nuclear-powered rovers (a carry-over from the cancelled Prospector spacecraft).|
|Surveyor Orbiter American lunar orbiter. Study 1965. NASA originally planned to have a version of the Surveyor spacecraft conduct detailed orbital photographic reconnaissance of the moon in preparation for the Apollo manned landings.|
|Gemini - Double Transtage American manned lunar orbiter. Study 1965. In June 1965 astronaut Pete Conrad conspired with the Martin and McDonnell corporations to advocate an early circumlunar flight using Gemini.|
|LFV Bell American manned lunar flyer. Study 1965. Bell Aerosystems designed a rocket-propelled Lunar Flying Vehicle (LFV) to aid Apollo astronauts in their exploration of the moon.|
|MFS American manned lunar flyer. Study 1965. Bell Aerosystems designed a Manned Flying System for Apollo as a tool for lunar surface exploration.|
|Apollo Experiments Pallet American manned lunar orbiter. Study 1965. The Apollo Experiments Pallet was a sophisticated instrument payload that would have been installed in the Apollo CSM for dedicated lunar or earth orbital resource assessment missions.|
|Bendix Molab American manned lunar rover. Study 1965. The Bendix Molab lunar rover design of June 1965 had 4 wheels and a range of 400 km with a crew of 2 on a 14 day traverse. The cabin had a volume of 12.8 cubic meters.|
|Bendix LSSM American manned lunar rover. Study 1965. The Bendix LSSM lunar rover design of October 1965 had 4 wheels. and a range of 400 km with a crew of 2 on a 14 day traverse.|
|Boeing LSSM American manned lunar rover. Study 1965. The Boeing LSSM lunar rover design of June 1965 had 4 wheels of 1.2 or 1.6 m diameter. and a range of 200 km with a crew of 2 on a 14 day traverse.|
|Bendix ALSS Rover American manned lunar rover. Study 1965. The Bendix ALSS Payloads lunar rover design of June 1965 had a range of 400 km with a crew of 2 on a 14 day traverse. A variety of configurations were studied in detail.|
|Luna E-6S Russian lunar orbiter. Lunar lander, Russia. Launched 1966.|
|Apollo LMSS American manned space station. Cancelled 1967. Under the Apollo Applications Program NASA began hardware and software procurement, development, and testing for a Lunar Mapping and Survey System. The system would be mounted in an Apollo CSM.|
|Gemini Lunar Surface Rescue Spacecraft American manned lunar lander. Study 1966. This version of Gemini would allow a direct manned lunar landing mission to be undertaken in a single Saturn V flight, although it was only proposed as an Apollo rescue vehicle.|
|Lunar Orbiter American lunar orbiter. Photography of the moon's surface from selenocentric orbit. The Lunar Orbiter series took photos of lunar surface from selenocentric orbit. Lunar lander built by Boeing for NASA, USA. Launched 1966 - 1967.|
|Luna E-6LF Russian lunar orbiter. Photographed lunar surface and orbital space environment in preparation for manned missions. Lunar lander, Russia. Launched 1966.|
|Luna E-6M Russian lunar lander. Luna 13. Modernized version of the E-6 with the ALS lander mass increased from 84 kg to 150 kg. Lunar soft lander, Russia. Launched 1966.|
|Apollo LASS S-IVB American lunar logistics spacecraft. Study 1966. The Douglas Company (DAC) proposed the "Lunar Application of a Spent S-IVB Stage (LASS)". The LASS concept required a landing gear on a S-IVB Stage.|
|Apollo SMLL American lunar logistics spacecraft. Study 1966. North American Aviation (NAA) proposed use of the SM as a lunar logistics vehicle (LLV) in 1966. The configuration, simply stated, put a landing gear on the SM.|
|Apollo CMLS American manned lunar habitat. Study 1966.|
|MOBEV F1B American manned lunar flyer. Study 1966. The MOBEV F1B one-man pogo flying vehicle was the selected configuration for the one-man pogo application from three alternatives. Maximum operational mass with astronaut and payload, 258 kg.|
|MOBEV R1B American manned lunar rover. Study 1966. Early manned operations would utilize the basic Apollo LM or an augmented version of it. The augmented version would a small mobility unit.|
|MOBEV R1CB American manned lunar rover. Study 1966. The MOBEV R1CB Base Support Vehicle -- Special Purpose was a manned lunar tractor, which provided base support capability in terms of earth moving, towing, and general utility within close proximity of the base.|
|MOBEV F2E American manned lunar flyer. Study 1966. The MOBEV selected return to orbit vehicle, F2E, was provided with six degree of freedom control for rendezvous as well as normal attitude control. Maximum operational mass with 2 astronauts and payload, 1364.5 kg.|
|MOBEV R0AE American lunar rover. Study 1966. The MOBEV R0AE was based on the cancelled Surveyor Lunar Roving Vehicle, originally conceived for the Apollo site selection program.|
|MOBEV R0CE American lunar rover. Study 1966. The MOBEV R0CE utilized a Surveyor probe from a lunar orbiting vehicle. The rover would operate in lunar day or night and have a total range capability of 200 km over a 90-day period.|
|MOBEV R0DE American lunar rover. Study 1966. Robotic vehicle delivered to the lunar surface with a LM-Shelter or a LM-Truck-Shelter and used during and after the manned mission to explore areas prior to committing a man.|
|MOBEV R1DE American manned lunar rover. Study 1966. The MOBEV R1DE recommended Lunar Station Vehicle was a Cabined LSSM, a manned exploration vehicle designed to provide a shirt-sleeve (open spacesuit faceplate) environment.|
|MOBEV R2C(1)E American manned lunar rover. Study 1966. The MOBEV R2C(1)E manned Mobile Laboratory Vehicle (MOLAB) was to be used for exploration of the moon. The MOLAB provided complete life support capabilities for its two-man crew during a 14-day, 400-km mission.|
|MOBEV R3DE American manned lunar rover. Study 1966. The MOBEV R3DE Extended Traverse Vehicle was a 90-Day MOBEX, a manned mobile laboratory used for exploration of the moon.|
|MOBEV RIB(1)E American manned lunar rover. Study 1966. The MOBEV RIB(1)E recommended Lunar Station Vehicle was a Greater Versatility LSSM, an exploration vehicle designed for both manned and unmanned operation.|
|MOCOM American manned lunar rover. Study 1966. Third generation versions of the CM were studied by North American in 1966 to further modify a CM shelter to provide mobility. Essentially the CM was mounted on a four-wheel chassis.|
|MOLEM American manned lunar rover. Study 1966. Third generation versions of LM derivative equipment were studied by Grumman in a report delivered on 10 May 1966.|
|MOCAN American manned lunar rover. Study 1966. The MOCAN was a manned Lunar Rover using the planned Boeing pressurized Apollo Multipurpose Mission Module (CAN) as the basic structure and MOLAB wheels|
|Soyuz 7K-L1 Russian manned lunar flyby spacecraft. The Soyuz 7K-L1, a modification of the Soyuz 7K-OK, was designed for manned circumlunar missions. Lunar flyby and return satellite, Russia. Launched 1967 - 1970.|
|Luna E-6LS Russian lunar orbiter. The E-6LS was a radio-equipped version of the E-6 used to test tracking and communications networks for the Soviet manned lunar program. Lunar lander, Russia. Launched 1967 - 1968.|
|L5-1967 Russian manned lunar lander. Study 1967. At a Lunar Soviet meeting in October 1967 preliminary agreement was reached to study a follow-on to the first N1-L3 lunar landings. A new N1 model was to be developed to launch a new 'L5' spacecraft.|
|Gemini Lunar Surface Survival Shelter American manned lunar habitat. Study 1967. Prior to an Apollo moon landing attempt, the shelter would be landed, unmanned, near the landing site of a stranded Apollo Lunar Module.|
|Gemini LORV American manned lunar orbiter. Study 1967. This version of Gemini was studied as a means of rescuing an Apollo CSM crew stranded in lunar orbit. The Gemini would be launched unmanned on a translunar trajectory by a Saturn V.|
|L3M-1970 Russian manned lunar lander. Study 1970. The first design of the L3M lunar lander had the crew of two accommodated in a Soyuz capsule atop the lander.|
|DLB Lunar Base Russian manned lunar base. Substantial development activity from 1962 to cancellation in 1974. The N1 draft project of 1962 spoke of 'establishment of a lunar base and regular traffic between the earth and the moon'.|
|Apollo LPM American lunar logistics spacecraft. Study 1968. The unmanned portion of the Lunar Surface Rendezvous and Exploration Phase of Apollo envisioned in 1969 was the Lunar Payload Module (LPM).|
|Apollo ELS American manned lunar habitat. Cancelled 1968. The capabilities of a lunar shelter not derived from Apollo hardware were surveyed in the Early Lunar Shelter Study (ELS), completed in February 1967 by AiResearch.|
|Apollo LASS American manned lunar habitat. Cancelled 1968. In the LASS (LM Adapter Surface Station) lunar shelter concept, the LM ascent stage was replaced by an SLA 'mini-base' and the position of the Apollo Service Module (SM) was reversed.|
|LESA Lunar Base American manned lunar base. Cancelled 1968. LESA (Lunar Exploration System for Apollo) represented the ultimate lunar base concept studied by NASA prior to the cancellation of further Saturn V production in June 1968.|
|LSSM American manned lunar rover. Study 1968. The Bendix Local Science Survey Module was a forerunner of the Lunar Rover. The LSSM was a small size vehicle used to support a local manned survey. It was proposed for delivery with an LM Shelter.|
|MOBEV F2B American manned lunar flyer. Cancelled 1968. The F2B was the MOBEV selected configuration for a multi-man surface-to-surface flying vehicle. Maximum operational mass with 2 astronauts and payload, 844 kg.|
|Molab American manned lunar rover. Cancelled 1968. The moderate capacity mobile laboratory (MOLAB) concept was studied in two NASA/MT contracts to determine configurations and capabilities of vehicles in the 2950 to 3850 kg class.|
|Luna Ye-8 Russian lunar rover. Lunar lander and rover satellite, Russia. Launched 1969 - 1973.|
|Soyuz 7K-L1A Russian manned lunar orbiter. Hybrid spacecraft used in N1 launch tests.|
|Luna Ye-8-5 Russian lunar lander. Unmanned lunar soil sample return mission. Lunar lander and sample return satellite, Russia. Launched 1969 - 1972.|
|Apollo ALSEP American lunar lander. 7 launches, 1969.07.16 (EASEP) to 1972.12.07 (ALSEP). ALSEP (Apollo Lunar Surface Experiment Package) was the array of connected scientific instruments left behind on the lunar surface by each Apollo expedition.|
|Apollo LRM American manned lunar orbiter. Study 1969. Grumman proposed to use the LM as a lunar reconnaissance module. But NASA had already considered this and many other possibilities (Apollo MSS, Apollo LMSS); and there was no budget available for any of them.|
|LESA Shelter American manned lunar habitat. Study 1966. LESA (Lunar Exploration System for Apollo) was an advanced lunar surface shelter.|
|LFV North American American manned lunar flyer. Cancelled 1969. The North American design for a Lunar Flying Vehicle would have taken one astronaut and up to 167 kg of cargo to a distance of 3. 2 to 8.5 km from a lunar landing site in minutes, at a maximum speed of 85 m/s.|
|Soyuz 7K-L1E Russian manned lunar orbiter. Modification of Soyuz circumlunar configuration used in propulsion tests of the Block D stage. Technology satellite, Russia. Launched 1969 - 1970. Used the Blok-D bus.|
|Apollo MET American lunar hand cart. Flown 1971. NASA designed the MET lunar hand cart to help with problems such as the Apollo 12 astronauts had in carrying hand tools, sample boxes and bags, a stereo camera, and other equipment on the lunar surface.|
|OS-1 Lunar Russian manned lunar orbiter. Study 1969. A version of the OS-1 station was proposed for use in lunar orbit. No other details beyond this sketch.|
|LK Russian manned lunar lander. The LK ('Lunniy korabl' - lunar craft) was the Soviet lunar lander - the Russian counterpart of the American LM Lunar Module. Manned Lunar lander test satellite, Russia. Launched 1970 - 1971.|
|L3M Russian manned lunar base. Study 1970-1972. Follow-on to the L3, a two N1-launch manned lunar expedition designed and developed in the Soviet Union between 1969 and 1974.|
|Soyuz 7K-LOK Russian manned lunar orbiter. The two-crew LOK lunar orbiting spacecraft was the largest derivative of Soyuz developed. Manned Lunar orbit and return satellite, Russia. Launched 1972.|
|Apollo LRV American manned lunar rover. The Apollo Lunar Roving Vehicle was one of those sweet pieces of hardware that NASA and its contractors seemed to be able to develop so effortlessly during the short maturity of the Apollo program. The Lunar Rover was the only piece of equipment from NASA's ambitious post-Apollo lunar exploration plans to actually fly in space, being used on Apollo missions 15, 16, and 17 in 1971-1972. The design was based on three years of studies for light, two-crew, open-cockpit 'Local Science Survey Modules'. Although Bendix built a prototype, Boeing ended up with the production contract.|
|PFS American lunar orbiter. Released from Apollo; particles and fields experiments. Lunar Orbit (Selenocentric). Lunar lander built by TRW for NASA, USA. Launched 1971 - 1972.|
|Luna Ye-8-LS Russian lunar orbiter. Lunar surface mapping. Lunar lander, Russia. Launched 1971 - 1974.|
|DLB Lunokhod 1 Russian manned lunar rover. Study 1971. One of several conceptual models of Lunokhod or Marsokhod pressurized surface rovers planned for Soviet moon or Mars expeditions.|
|DLB Lunokhod 2 Russian manned lunar rover. Study 1971. One of several conceptual models of Lunokhod or Marsokhod pressurized surface rovers planned for Soviet moon or Mars expeditions.|
|DLB Lunokhod 3 Russian manned lunar rover. Study 1971. One of several conceptual models of Lunokhod or Marsokhod pressurized surface rovers planned for Soviet moon or Mars expeditions.|
|DLB Beacon Lander Russian lunar logistics spacecraft. Study 1971. In most Soviet manned lunar landing scenarios, versions of the Ye-8 unmanned landers would precede manned landings on the moon.|
|LSV American manned lunar rover. Study 1971. The Lunar Sortie Vehicle (LSV), was a North American Rockwell design of 1971, conceived as a railroad train without the rails.|
|L3M-1972 Russian manned lunar lander. Study 1972. Revised L3M design of the L3M lunar lander for use with the Block Sr crasher stage. The Soyuz return capsule was completely enclosed in a pressurized 'hangar'.|
|LK-3 Russian manned lunar lander. Reached mock-up stage, 1972. The LK-3 was Chelomei's preliminary design for a direct-landing alternative to Korolev's L3 manned lunar landing design.|
|Luna Ye-8-5M Russian lunar lander. 4 launches, 1974.10.28 (Luna 23) to 1976.08.09 (Luna 24 Return Vehicle). Lunar sample return. Conduct of further scientific investigation of the moon and circumlunar space.|
|LEK Lunar Expeditionary Complex Russian manned lunar base. In 1974 Mishin was fired as head of the Korolev design bureau, the N1 was cancelled, together with the L3 and Zvezda DLB lunar base projects, However Glushko, Mishin's replacement, still considered the establishment of a moon base to be a primary goal for his country.|
|LEK Russian manned lunar lander. Study 1973. Lunar lander for the Vulkan surface base. As in the original LK lunar lander, this would be taken to near zero velocity near the lunar surface by the Vulkan Block V 'lunar crasher' rocket stage.|
|Lunokhod LEK Russian manned lunar rover. Study 1973. Lunar rover for the Vulkan Lunar Expedition. The rover provided pressurized quarters for 2 crew, allowing trips up to 200 km from the lunar base at a top speed of 5 km/hr.|
|LZhM Russian manned lunar habitat. Study 1973. Laboratory-living module. Three story lunar surface residence and laboratory for Vulkan-launched Lunar Expedition.|
|LZM Russian manned lunar habitat. Study 1973. Laboratory-Factory Module for the Vulkan surface base.|
|Bendix SLRV American lunar rover. Study 1964. The Bendix SLRV unmanned lunar rover design of April 1964 had a speed up to 25 kph on 4 tracks with floating pivot articulation. It was designed for a 105 day traverse mission.|
|Lunar Leaper American manned lunar rover. Study 1964. One of the many bizarre modes for lunar transportation proposed in the early 1960's.|
|Lunar Worm American manned lunar rover. Study 1966. The Aeronutronic Division of Philco Corp. proposed the unique Lunar Worm Planetary Roving Vehicle Concept in 1966.|
|LLV American lunar logistics spacecraft. Study 1966. Many versions of new Lunar Logistic Vehicles (LLV's) using several possible candidate propellants were studied by NASA and its contractors in the mid-1960's for post-Apollo lunar base support.|
|AES Lunar Base American manned lunar base. Cancelled 1968. AES (Apollo Extension Systems) was planned as the first American lunar base. It would involve minimal modification of Apollo hardware. The Apollo CSM would be modified for long duration lunar orbit storage.|
|ALSS Lunar Base American manned lunar base. Cancelled 1968. The ALSS (Apollo Logistics Support System) Lunar Base would require a new development, the LM Truck, to allow delivery of up to 4100 kg in payload to the lunar surface.|
|DRM 1 Mars Local Rover American manned Mars rover. Study 1987. The local unpressurized rover for the Mars Design Reference Mission was conceptually the same as the Apollo lunar rover.|
|Outpost on the Moon American manned lunar base. Study 1987. Former astronaut Sally Ride was asked to head a task force to formulate a new NASA strategic plan in August 1986.|
|Energia Lunar Expedition Russian manned lunar base. Study 1988. In 1988, with development of the Buran space shuttle completed, Glushko ordered new studies on a lunar based that could be established using the Energia booster.|
|Lunar Exploration Program 1968 American manned lunar base. Cancelled 1968. In January 1968, BellComm, NASA's Apollo project management advisor, proposed a four-phase program for exploration of the lunar surface using Apollo and Apollo-derived hardware.|
|LK Energia Russian manned lunar lander. Study 1988. Lunar lander for Energia-launched lunar expedition. The LOK and LK lander would be inserted into lunar orbit by separate Energia launches.|
|LOK Energia Russian manned lunar orbiter. Study 1988. Lunar orbiter for Energia-launched lunar expedition. The LOK and LK lander would be inserted into lunar orbit by separate Energia launches.|
|Lunar Outpost American manned lunar base. Study 1989.|
|Hagoromo Japanese lunar orbiter. Lunar orbiter ejected from Muses A 3/19/90; contact lost after release; engineering test. Lunar Orbit (Selenocentric).|
|Hiten Japanese lunar orbiter. MUSES-A was renamed Hiten after launch. It developed of lunar swing-by techniques for future missions and ejected a lunar orbiter.|
|Daylight Rover American manned lunar rover. Study 1990. The Daylight Rover was a Boeing concept of 1990, which consisted of two separate pressure vessels. The forward served as the driving station, and the rear served as a storm shelter and EVA airlock.|
|DMLRV American manned lunar rover. Study 1990.|
|Light Utility Rover American manned lunar rover. Study 1990. In 1990, Boeing Advanced Civil Space Systems performed an Advanced Civil Space Systems Piloted Rover Technology Assessment Study, which considered both a large pressurized and a small unpressurized rover.|
|First Lunar Outpost American manned lunar base. Study 1992. The First Lunar Outpost was a very comprehensive moon base study carried out by NASA's Office of Exploration in 1992.|
|Mega Rover American manned lunar rover. Study 1992. The Mega Rover was conceived to support a crew of six over thousands of kilometers of traverses. Variants had masses as great as 45 metric tons, exclusive of the descent and landing system.|
|Pressurized Lunar Rover - Dual Hull American manned lunar rover. Study 1992. An alternate April 1992 USRA study by students at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University sketched out a design for a Pressurized Lunar Rover (PLR) using dual hulls.|
|PLR American manned lunar rover. Study 1992. A May 1992 USRA study by students at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University sketched out a design for a Pressurized Lunar Rover (PLR).|
|Rover First American manned lunar rover. Study 1992. Boeing updated their Apollo-era MOLAB pressurized rover concept in 1992. The concept, dubbed "Rover First," was smaller than the traditional pressurized rovers, and did not require a separate landing vehicle.|
|Lunox American manned lunar base. Study 1993. The NASA/JSC LUNOX proposal of 1993 tried to reduce the cost of maintaining a First Lunar Outpost by producing liquid oxygen propellant for the return to Earth from lunar soil.|
|Clementine American lunar orbiter. Clementine was jointly sponsored by BMDO and NASA as the Deep Space Program Science Experiment (DSPSE). Lunar orbiter, asteroid flyby, technology experiments satellite built by Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) for BMDO, USA. Launched 1994.|
|DFH-3 Chinese satellite bus used for geosynchronous communications and navigation satellites and deep space probes. Total mass, payload mass, and payload power improved through three versions from 2320 kg to 3800 kg; 230 kg to 450 kg; and 1000 W to 4000 W.|
|Human Lunar Return American manned lunar base. Study 1996.|
|LANTR Moon Base American manned lunar base. Study 1997. Liquid oxygen mined from the moon combined with a LOX-Augmented Nuclear Thermal Rocket earth-to-moon shuttle to achieve dramatic reductions in launch requirements for a lunar base.|
|Lunar Prospector American lunar orbiter. Lunar lander built by Lockheed Martin for NASA, USA. Launched 1998. Used the LM-100 bus.|
|Chinese Lunar Base Chinese manned lunar base. Study 2025. Beginning in 2000, Chinese scientists began discussing preliminary work on a Chinese manned lunar base.|
|Lunar Polar Rover American manned lunar rover. Study 1999. Pressurized rover concept for a hypothetical lunar polar mission.|
|MSTS American manned lunar rover. Study 1999.|
|Habot American manned lunar rover. Study 2000. The Habot (Habitat Robot) modules would land on six articulated legs, which also provided the locomotion. These walking modules could operate autonomously or in a teleoperation mode.|
|Morphlab American manned lunar rover. Study 2004. Morphlab (Modular Roving Planetary Habitat, Laboratory, and Base) was a lunar exploration system proposed by the University of Maryland.|
|CEV CM American manned spacecraft module. Study 2006.|
|CEV SM American manned spacecraft module. Study 2006. The Service Module of NASA's Crew Exploration Vehicle provided basic consumables, control systems, and sufficient delta-V for return of the CEV from lunar orbit to the earth.|
|CEV Andrews American manned spacecraft. Study 2005. The Andrews Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV) design adopted NASA's preferred Apollo CM re-entry vehicle shape, but combined it with a mission module crew cabin to minimize the CEV's mass.|
|DSE-Alpha Russian manned lunar flyby spacecraft. Study 2005. Potential commercial circumlunar manned flights were offered in 2005, using a modified Soyuz spacecraft docked to a Block DM upper stage.|
|CEV Spacehab American manned spacecraft. Study 2005. The final Spacehab CEV concept was a three-module spacecraft using a slightly enlarged Apollo command module for return of the crew to earth.|
|Orion CEV The Orion Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV) was NASA's manned spacecraft for the 21st Century, a throwback to the Apollo capsule, a shuttle replacement with an uncertain future.|
|Kaguya Japanese lunar orbiter. Launched 2007.09.14.|
|Chang'e Chinese unmanned lunar orbiter. Originally announced in March 2003 with the first spacecraft to reach the moon by the end of 2005. Lunar lander and rover satellite built by CAST, China. Launched 2013.|
|Chandraayan Indian lunar orbiter. First Indian lunar orbiter. It released the MIP impactor. Lunar lander operated by ISRO, India. Launched 2008.|
|MIP Indian lunar impact probe. Moon Impact Probe, released from Chandraayan-1 in lunar orbit. The MIP fired its own deorbit motor and impacted the moon near the Shackleton Crater at the south pole.|
|CEV SAIC American manned spacecraft. Study 2012. SAIC's notional CEV was a Soyuz-shaped aeroshell, enclosing a common pressurized module, and accommodating a crew of four.|
|CEV Lockheed American manned spacecraft. Study 2012. The Crew Exploration Vehicle first proposed by Lockheed was a lifting body with a total mass of 18 metric tons and a crew of four.|
|CEV Boeing American manned spacecraft. Study 2012. Boeing's CEV consisted of a four-crew Apollo-type capsule, a service module, and a pressurized mission module.|
|CEV Orbital American manned spacecraft. Study 2012. Orbital's nominal CEV was an Apollo-derived capsule. The CEV's service module would take the capsule from low earth orbit, to lunar orbit, and back to earth.|
|CEV Raytheon American manned spacecraft. Study 2012. Raytheon's CEV was a low L/D capsule, designed for three crew, sized so that an existing EELV Heavy could send it towards L1.|
|CEV Northrop American manned spacecraft. Study 2012. Northrop Grumman kept its CEV final proposal very secret, citing competitive concerns.|
|CEV Schafer American manned spacecraft. Study 2012. Schafer proposed a lightweight 11 metric ton integral CEV, staged from L1.|
|CEV Draper MIT American manned spacecraft. Study 2012. The Draper-MIT CEV proposal was an 8-metric ton integral ballistic capsule.|
|LSAM American manned lunar lander. Lunar lander proposed by NASA in 2005 for their planned return to the moon by 2018.|
|Lunex US Air Force manned lunar base. Studied 1958-1961. The final lunar expedition plan of 1961 was for a 21-airman underground Air Force base on the moon by 1968 at a total cost of $ 7.5 billion.|
An Air Force Thor/Able It launch vehicle, carrying the first U.S. International Geophysical Year (IGY) lunar payload, exploded 77 seconds after liftoff from Cape Canaveral because of a first-stage engine failure. First US lunar attempt. The first US Air Force lunar probe, using a Thor-Able booster. An explosion ripped it apart 77 seconds after launch.
Failed to reach moon; provided radiation data. Pioneer III, the third U.S.-IGY intended lunar probe under the direction of NASA with the Army acting as executive agent, was launched from the Atlantic Missile Range by a Juno II rocket. The primary objective, to place the 12.95 pound scientific payload in the vicinity of the moon, failed. Pioneer III reached an altitude of approximately 70,000 miles and revealed that the earth's radiation belt comprised at least two distinct bands.
Lunar probe; passed within 5,995 km of moon but did not hit it as planned due to a failure of the launch vehicle control system. Went into solar orbit. First manmade object to attain of escape velocity. Also known as Mechta ("Dream"), popularly called Lunik I. Because of its high velocity and its announced package of various metallic emblems with the Soviet coat of arms, it was concluded that Luna 1 was intended to impact the Moon. After reaching escape velocity, Luna 1 separated from its 1472 kg third stage. The third stage, 5.2 m long and 2.4 m in diameter, travelled along with Luna 1. On 3 January, at a distance of 113,000 km from Earth, a large (1 kg) cloud of sodium gas was released by the spacecraft. This glowing orange trail of gas, visible over the Indian Ocean with the brightness of a sixth-magnitude star, allowed astronomers to track the spacecraft. It also served as an experiment on the behavior of gas in outer space. Luna 1 passed within 5,995 km of the Moon's surface on 4 January after 34 hours of flight. It went into orbit around the Sun, between the orbits of Earth and Mars. The measurements obtained during this mission provided new data on the Earth's radiation belt and outer space, including the discovery that the Moon had no magnetic field and that a solar wind, a strong flow of ionized plasma emmanating from the Sun, streamed through interplanetary space.
The fourth U.S.-IGY lunar probe effort, Pioneer IV, a joint project of the Army Ballistic Missile Agency and Jet Propulsion Laboratory under the direction of NASA, was launched by a Juno II rocket from the Atlantic Missile Range. Intended to impact on the lunar surface, Pioneer IV achieved earth-moon trajectory, passing within 60,200 km of the moon before going into permanent orbit around the sun.
First probe to impact lunar surface. Delivered a pennant to the surface of the Moon and conducted research during flight to the Moon. Impacted Moon 13 Sep 1959 at 22:02:04 UT, Latitude 29.10 N, Longitude 0.00 - Palus Putredinis, east of Mare Serenitatis near the Aristides, Archimedes, and Autolycus craters. After launch and attainment of escape velocity, Luna 2 separated from its third stage, which travelled along with it towards the Moon. On 13 September the spacecraft released a bright orange cloud of sodium gas which aided in spacecraft tracking and acted as an experiment on the behavior of gas in space. On 14 September, after 33.5 hours of flight, radio signals from Luna 2 abruptly ceased, indicating it had impacted on the Moon. Some 30 minutes after Luna 2, the third stage of its rocket also impacted the Moon. The mission confirmed that the Moon had no appreciable magnetic field, and found no evidence of radiation belts at the Moon.
Luna 3 was the third spacecraft successfully launched to the Moon and the first to return images of the lunar far side. It was launched on a figure-eight trajectory which brought it over the Moon (closest approach to the Moon was 6200 km) and around the far side, which was sunlit at the time. It was stabilized while in optical view of the far side of the Moon. On October 7, 1959, the television system obtained a series of 29 photographs over 40 minutes, covering 70% of the surface, that were developed on-board the spacecraft. The photographs were scanned and 17 were radio transmitted to ground stations in facsimile form on October 18, 1959, as the spacecraft, in a barycentric orbit, returned near the Earth. The photographs were to be retransmitted at another point close to Earth but were not received. The spacecraft returned very indistinct pictures, but, through computer enhancement, a tentative atlas of the lunar farside was produced. These first views of the lunar far side showed mountainous terrain, very different from the near side, and two dark regions which were named Mare Moscovrae (Sea of Moscow) and Mare Desiderii (Sea of Dreams).
An intended lunar probe launched from the Atlantic Missile Range by an Atlas-Able booster disintegrated about 45 seconds later when the protective sheath covering the payload detached prematurely. The probe was sponsored by NASA, developed by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and launched by the Air Force Ballistic Missile Division.
In initial study contracts, Martin proposed vehicle similar to the Apollo configuration that would eventually fly and closest to STG concepts. GE proposed design that would lead directly to Soyuz. Convair proposed a lifting body concept. All bidders were influenced by STG mid-term review that complained that they were not paying enough attention to conical blunt-body CM as envisioned by STG.
The final reports on the feasibility study contracts for the advanced manned spacecraft were submitted to STG at Langley Field, Va., by the General Electric Company, Convair Astronautics Division of General Dynamics Corporation, and The Martin Company. These studies had begun in November 1960.
1,000 persons from 300 potential Project Apollo contractors and government agencies attended the conference. STG pushed the conical CM shape, in defiance of Gilruth's preference for the competitive blunt body/lifting body designs. Scientists from NASA, the General Electric Company, The Martin Company, and General Dynamics/Astronautics presented the results of studies on Apollo requirements. Within the next four to six weeks NASA was expected to draw up the final details and specifications for the Apollo spacecraft.
NASA selected MIT's Instrumentation Laboratory to develop the guidance-navigation system for Project Apollo spacecraft. This first major Apollo contract was required since guidance-navigation system is basic to overall Apollo mission. The Instrumentation Laboratory of MIT, a nonprofit organization headed by C. Stark Draper, has been involved in a variety of guidance and navigation systems developments for 20 years. This first major Apollo contract had a long lead-time, was basic to the overall Apollo mission, and would be directed by STG.
Lunar probe; failed to leave Earth orbit. Ranger 1, a test version of the spacecraft which would attempt an unmanned crash landing on the moon, was launched from the Atlantic Missile Range by an Atlas-Agena B booster. The 306 kg spacecraft did not attain the scheduled extremely elongated orbit because of the misfiring of the Agena B rocket. Although the spacecraft systems were tested successfully, only part of the eight project experiments could be carried out. Ranger 1 reentered on August 29 after 111 orbits. Ranger 1's primary mission was to test the performance of those functions and parts that are necessary for carrying out subsequent lunar and planetary missions using essentially the same spacecraft design.
This was a flight test of the Ranger spacecraft system designed for future lunar and interplanetary missions. The spacecraft was launched into a low earth parking orbit, but an inoperative roll gyro prevented Agena restart resulting in Ranger 2 being stranded in low earth orbit. The orbit decayed and the spacecraft reentered Earth's atmosphere on 20 November 1961.
Despite an announcement at Martin on 27 November that they had won the Apollo program, the decision was reversed at the highest levels of the US government. NASA announced instead that the Space and Information Systems Division of North American Aviation, Inc., had been selected to design and build the Apollo spacecraft. The official line: 'the decision by NASA Administrator James E. Webb followed a comprehensive evaluation of five industry proposals by nearly 200 scientists and engineers representing both NASA and DOD. Webb had received the Source Evaluation Board findings on November 24. Although technical evaluations were very close, NAA had been selected on the basis of experience, technical competence, and cost'. NAA would be responsible for the design and development of the command module and service module. NASA expected that a separate contract for the lunar landing system would be awarded within the next six months. The MIT Instrumentation Laboratory had previously been assigned the development of the Apollo spacecraft guidance and navigation system. Both the NAA and MIT contracts would be under the direction of MSC.
The RD-270 engine was proposed for Chelomei's UR-700 and Yangel R-56 lunar landing launchers in competition to Korolev N1. The RD-270 was in the same class as the F-1 engine developed for America's Saturn V launch vehicle, but burned storable but toxic propellants.
Lunar impact probe; missed the moon by 36,874 km and went into solar orbit. A malfunction in the booster guidance system resulted in excessive spacecraft speed. Reversed command signals caused the telemetry antenna to lose earth acquisition, and mid-course correction was not possible. Some useful data were obtained from the flight. Of four scientific experiments only one was partially completed: gamma-ray readings of the lunar surface. Attempts to relay television pictures of the moon and to bounce radar signals off the moon at close range were unsuccessful.
The 6555th Aerospace Test Wing launched an Atlas D/Agena B vehicle that carried NASA's Ranger IV to the moon. This was the first U.S. instrument package to impact on the moon. Ranger IV was launched by an Atlas-Agena B booster from the Atlantic Missile Range, attained a parking orbit, and was fired into the proper lunar trajectory by the restart of the Agena B engine. Failure of a timer in the spacecraft payload caused loss of both internal and ground control over the vehicle. The Goldstone Tracking Station maintained contact with the spacecraft until it passed behind the left edge of the moon on April 26. It impacted at a speed of 9,617 km per hour, the first American spacecraft to land on the lunar surface. The Agena B second stage passed to the right of the moon and later went into orbit around the sun. Lunar photography objectives were not achieved.
The Ranger V lunar probe was launched from Atlantic Missile Range by an Atlas-Agena B launch vehicle. The Agena B stage attained parking orbit and 25 minutes later reignited to send Ranger V toward the moon. A malfunction in the Agena B guidance system resulted in excessive spacecraft velocity. The spacecraft's solar cells did not provide power and reversed command signals caused the telemetry antenna to lose earth acquisition. This made reception of the flight-path correction signal impossible and rendering its television cameras useless. Reversed command signals caused the telemetry antenna to lose earth acquisition, and mid-course correction was not possible. The spacecraft missed the Moon by 725 km and went into solar orbit. Gamma-ray data were collected for 4 hours prior to the loss of power. Ranger V was to have relayed television pictures of the lunar surface and rough-landed an instrumented capsule containing a seismometer. The spacecraft was tracked for 8 hours, 44 minutes, before its small reserve battery went dead. Additional Details: here....
Luna 4 was the second attempted Soviet unmanned lunar soft lander probe. The spacecraft, rather than being sent on a straight trajectory toward the Moon, was placed first in an earth parking orbit. The rocket stage then reignited and put the spaccecraft on a translunar trajectory. Failure of Luna 4 to make a required midcourse correction resulted in it missing the Moon by 8336.2 km on April 6, at 4:26 a.m. Moscow time. It thereafter entered a barycentric Earth orbit. The Soviet news agency, Tass, reported that data had been received from the spacecraft throughout its flight and that radio communication would continue for a few more days.
Launched from Cape Canaveral, Atlas/Centaur (AC-2) was the first successful use of the high-energy liquid hydrogen/ liquid oxygen Centaur upper stage vehicle developed for NASA by General Dynamics. The spent Centaur stage entered orbit. Launch vehicle test. Launch vehicle put dummy payload into geosynchronous transfer orbit. First successful Centaur (liquid hydrogen-fueled) flight.
Impacted Moon but TV camera malfunctioned. A midcourse trajectory correction was accomplished early in the flight by ground control. On February 2, 1964, 65.5 hours after launch, Ranger 6 impacted the Moon on the eastern edge of Mare Tranquillitatis (Sea of Tranquility). No camera data were obtained, probably because of failure due to an arc-over in the TV power system when it inadvertently turned on during the period of booster-engine separation.
First successful Ranger; returned 4,308 photos before lunar impact. The Atlas- Agena B inserted the Agena and Ranger into a 192 km altitude Earth parking orbit. Half an hour after launch a second burn of the Agena engine injected the spacecraft into a lunar intercept trajectory. After separation from the Agena, the solar panels were deployed, attitude control activated, and spacecraft transmissions switched from the omniantenna to the high-gain antenna. The next day the planned mid-course maneuver was successfully initiated at 10:27 GMT. The only anomaly during flight was a brief loss of two-way lock on the spacecraft by the DSIF tracking station at Cape Kennedy following launch.
Ranger 7 reached the Moon on 31 July. The F-channel began its one minute warm up 18 minutes before impact. The first image was taken at 13:08:45 GMT at an altitude of 2110 km. Transmission of 4,308 photographs of excellent quality occurred over the final 17 minutes of flight. The final image taken before impact had a resolution of 0.5 meters. The spacecraft encountered the lunar surface in direct motion along a hyperbolic trajectory, with an incoming asymptotic direction at an angle of -5.57 degrees from the lunar equator. The orbit plane was inclined 26.84 degrees to the lunar equator. After 68.6 hours of flight, Ranger 7 impacted in an area between Mare Nubium and Oceanus Procellarum (subsequently named Mare Cognitum) at approximately 10.35 S latitude, 339.42 E longitude. Impact occurred at 13:25:48.82 GMT at a velocity of 2.62 km/s.
Following the August decree that gave the circumlunar project to Chelomei and the lunar landing project to Korolev, further work on development of the UR-700 by Chelomei was cancelled. However development of the RD-270 engine was continued and Chelomei continued to do UR-700 design studies.
Returned 7137 photos before lunar impact. The Atlas- Agena B booster injected the Agena and Ranger 8 into an Earth parking orbit at 185 km altitude 7 minutes after launch. Fourteen minutes later a 90 second burn of the Agena put the spacecraft into lunar transfer trajectory, and several minutes later the Ranger and Agena separated. The Ranger solar panels were deployed, attitude control activated, and spacecraft transmissions switched from the omni-directional antenna to the high-gain antenna by 21:30 GMT. On 18 February at a distance of 160,000 km from Earth the planned mid-course manoeuvre took place, involving reorientation and a 59 second rocket burn. During the 27 minute manoeuvre, spacecraft transmitter power dropped severely, so that lock was lost on all telemetry channels. This continued intermittently until the rocket burn, at which time power returned to normal. The telemetry dropout had no serious effects on the mission. A planned terminal sequence to point the cameras more in the direction of flight just before reaching the Moon was cancelled to allow the cameras to cover a greater area of the Moon's surface.
Ranger 8 reached the Moon on 20 February 1965. The first image was taken at 9:34:32 GMT at an altitude of 2510 km. Transmission of 7,137 photographs of good quality occurred over the final 23 minutes of flight. The final image taken before impact has a resolution of 1.5 meters. The spacecraft encountered the lunar surface in a direct hyperbolic trajectory, with incoming asymptotic direction at an angle of -13.6 degrees from the lunar equator. The orbit plane was inclined 16.5 degrees to the lunar equator. After 64.9 hours of flight, impact occurred at 09:57:36.756 GMT on 20 February 1965 in Mare Tranquillitatis at approximately 2.67 degrees N, 24.65 degrees E. Impact velocity was slightly less than 2.68 km/s.
Ranger 9, last of the series, returned 5814 images before lunar impact. The target was Alphonsus, a large crater about 12 degrees south of the lunar equator. The probe was timed to arrive when lighting conditions would be at their best. The Atlas- Agena B booster injected the Agena and Ranger 9 into an Earth parking orbit at 185 km altitude. A 90 second Agena 2nd burn put the spacecraft into lunar transfer trajectory. This was followed by the separation of the Agena and Ranger. The initial trajectory was highly accurate; uncorrected, the craft would have landed only 650 km north of Alphonsus. 70 minutes after launch the command was given to deploy solar panels, activate attitude control, and switch from the omni-directional antenna to the high-gain antenna. The accuracy of the initial trajectory enabled delay of the planned mid-course correction from 22 March to 23 March when the manoeuvre was initiated at 12:03 GMT. After orientation, a 31 second rocket burn at 12:30 GMT, and reorientation, the manoeuvre was completed at 13:30 GMT. Ranger 9 reached the Moon on 24 March 1965. At 13:31 GMT a terminal manoeuvre was executed to orient the spacecraft so the cameras were more in line with the flight direction to improve the resolution of the pictures. Twenty minutes before impact the one-minute camera system warm-up began. The first image was taken at 13:49:41 at an altitude of 2363 km. Transmission of 5,814 good contrast photographs was made during the final 19 minutes of flight. The final image taken before impact has a resolution of 0.3 meters. The spacecraft encountered the lunar surface with an incoming asymptotic direction at an angle of -5.6 degrees from the lunar equator. The orbit plane was inclined 15.6 degrees to the lunar equator. After 64.5 hours of flight, impact occurred at 14:08:19.994 GMT at approximately 12.83 S latitude, 357.63 E longitude in the crater Alphonsus. Impact velocity was 2.67 km/s. Millions of Americans followed the spacecraft's descent via real time television coverage provided to the three networks of many of the F-channel images (primarily camera B but also some camera A pictures) were provided for this flight.
The pictures showed the rim and floor of the crater in fine detail: in those just prior to impact, objects less than a foot in size were discernible.
A panel of scientists presented some preliminary conclusions from Ranger IX at a press conference that same afternoon. Crater rims and ridges inside the walls, they believed, were harder and smoother than the moon's dusty plains, and therefore were considered likely sites for future manned landings. Generally, the panel was dubious about landing on crater floors however. Apparently, the floors were solidified volcanic material incapable of supporting a spacecraft. Investigators believed several types of craters were seen that were of nonmeteoric origin. These findings reinforced arguments that the moon at one time had experienced volcanic activity. Later the images were shown to the press as a continuous-motion movie, leading astronaut Wally Schirra to yell 'bail out you fool!' just before the final frame.
Soft lunar landing attempt. Western observers, among them England's Sir Bernard Lovell, correctly speculated that the craft's mission was a soft landing. After launch fom Baikonur and five successful communications sessions the spacecraft performed a midcourse correction maneuver on 10 May. Unfortunately a problem developed in a flotation gyroscope (it did not have enough time to warm up properly) in the I-100 guidance control unit and control was lost so the spacecraft began spinning around its main axis. It was brought back under control, but at the time of the next maneuver, the main retrorocket system failed due to a ground control error in calculating the setpoints, and the spacecraft, though still headed for the Moon, was far off its intended landing site. Problems again cropped up with the I-100 unit so a retrorocket burn could not take place and Luna 5 impacted the lunar surface some 700 km from the target point at about 19:10 UT on 12 May 1965, becoming the second Soviet probe to hit the Moon. A Soviet announcement gave the impact point as the Sea of Clouds at roughly 31 degrees S, 8 degrees W. (Although a later analysis gave a very different estimate of 8 degrees N, 23 degrees W.)
Attempted unmanned lunar soft lander. Tass reported that all onboard equipment was functioning normally. During the mid-course correction on 9 June the main retro-rocket failed to cut off as scheduled and fired until all of its propellant was exhausted, due to an erroneous ground command sent to the timer. This put the spacecraft on a trajectory to miss the Moon. The spacecraft was put through all the motions of an actual landing, jettisoning the lander and deploying the airbags, as an apparently successful practice run for the ground crew despite the fact that it flew by the Moon at a distance of 161,000 km on 11 June. Contact was lost at a distance of 600,000 km from Earth, the spacecraft presumably entering a heliocentric orbit.
Lunar soft landing attempt. The Luna 7 spacecraft was intended to achieve a soft landing on the Moon. However, due to loss of attitude control during the final approach to the lunar surface, the retrorockets were prevented from firing to slow the spacecraft and it impacted the lunar surface at 9.8 N, 47.8 W in the Sea of Storms on 7 October 1965 at 22:08:24 UT.
Lunar soft landing attempt failed. Luna 8's objectives were to test a soft lunar landing system and scientific research. Weighing 1,552 kg (3,422 lbs), the spacecraft was following a trajectory close to the calculated one and the equipment was functioning normally. However, a puncture to a cushioning airbag caused the spacecraft to spin, losing attitude control and preventing full firing of the retrorockets. The spacecraft impacted the lunar surface at 9.1 N, 63.3 W in the Sea of Storms at 21:51:30 UT on 6 December 1965. The mission did complete the experimental development of the star-orientation system and ground control of radio equipment, flight trajectory, and other instrumentation.
Soft landed on Moon; photographed surface for 3 days. Landed on Moon 3 February 1966 at 18:44:52 GMT, Latitude 7.08 N, Longitude 295.63 E - Oceanus Procellarum. The Luna 9 spacecraft was the first spacecraft to achieve a lunar soft landing and to transmit photographic data to Earth. Seven radio sessions, totaling 8 hours and 5 minutes, were transmitted as were three series of TV pictures. When assembled, the photographs provided a panoramic view of the nearby lunar surface. The pictures included views of nearby rocks and of the horizon 1.4 Km away from the spacecraft.
Lunar Orbit (Selenocentric). Development of system to permit the creation of an artificial lunar satellite for the investigation of circumlunar space; development of onboard systems for putting a station into a selenocentric (circumlunar) orbit. Orbit: Lunar Orbiter. The Luna 10 spacecraft was launched towards the Moon from an Earth orbiting platform. The spacecraft entered lunar orbit 3 50 x 1017 km, inclination 71.9 deg to plane of the lunar equator. on April 4, 1966. Scientific instruments included a gamma-ray spectrometer for energies between 0.3--3 MeV, a triaxial magnetometer, a meteorite detector, instruments for solar-plasma studies, and devices for measuring infrared emissions from the Moon and radiation conditions of the lunar environment. Gravitational studies were also conducted. The spacecraft played back to Earth the `Internationale' during the Twenty-third Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. Luna 10 was battery powered and operated for 460 lunar orbits and 219 active data transmissions before radio signals were discontinued on May 30, 1966.
The first operational Atlas/Centaur (AC-10) carried the NASA Surveyor I spacecraft to the moon in a direct ascent lunar transfer trajectory. This was the first in a series of seven Surveyors designed to develop soft-landing technology and to provide basic scientific and engineering data in support of Project Apollo. On 2 June, Surveyor I became the first U.S. spacecraft to soft-land on the moon and transmit television pictures Surveyor 1 soft landed on the moon in the Ocean of Storms and began transmitting the first of more than 11,150 clear, detailed television pictures to Jet Propulsion Laboratory's Deep Space Facility, Goldstone, Calif. The landing sequence began 3,200 kilometers above the moon with the spacecraft traveling at a speed of 9,700 kilometers per hour. The spacecraft was successfully slowed to 5.6 kilometers per hour by the time it reached 4-meter altitude and then free-fell to the surface at 13 kilometers per hour. The landing was so precise that the three footpads touched the surface within 19 milliseconds of each other, and it confirmed that the lunar surface could support the LM. It was the first U.S. attempt to soft land on the moon.
Lunar Orbiter I was launched from Cape Kennedy Launch Complex 13 at 3:26 p.m. EDT August 10 to photograph possible Apollo landing sites from lunar orbit. The Atlas-Agena D launch vehicle injected the spacecraft into its planned 90-hour trajectory to the moon. A midcourse correction maneuver was made at 8 p.m. the next day; a planned second midcourse maneuver was not necessary. A faultless deboost maneuver on August 14 achieved the desired initial elliptic orbit around the moon, and one week later the spacecraft was commanded to make a transfer maneuver to place it in a final close-in elliptic orbit of the moon.
During the spacecraft's stay in the final close-in orbit, the gravitational fields of the earth and the moon were expected to influence the orbital elements. The influence was verified by spacecraft tracking data, which showed that the perilune altitude varied with time. From an initial perilune altitude of 58 kilometers, the perilune decreased to 49 kilometers. At this time an orbit adjustment maneuver began an increase in the altitude, which was expected to reach a maximum after three months and then begin to decrease again. The spacecraft was expected to impact on the lunar surface about six months after the orbit adjustment.
During the photo-acquisition phase of the flight, August 18 to 29, Lunar Orbiter I photographed the 9 selected primary potential Apollo landing sites, including the one in which Surveyor I landed; 7 other potential Apollo landing sites; the east limb of the moon; and 11 areas on the far side of the moon. Lunar Orbiter I also took photos of the earth, giving man the first view of the earth from the vicinity of the moon (this particular view has been widely publicized). A total of 207 frames (sets of medium- and high-resolution pictures) were taken, 38 while the spacecraft was in initial orbit, the remainder while it was in the final close-in orbit. Lunar Orbiter I achieved its mission objectives, and, with the exception of the high-resolution camera, the performance of the photo subsystem and other spacecraft subsystems was outstanding. At the completion of the photo readouts, the spacecraft had responded to about 5,000 discrete commands from the earth and had made about 700 maneuvers.
Photographs obtained during the mission were assessed and screened by representatives of the Lunar Orbiter Project Office, U.S. Geological Survey, DOD mapping agencies, MSC, and Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The spacecraft was deliberately crashed into moon after the mission was completed.
Automatic station Luna 11. Further development of artificial lunar satellite systems and conduct of scientific experiments in circumlunar space. Lunar orbit 160 km x 1200 km x 27 degrees. Luna 11 was launched towards the Moon from an earth-orbiting platform and entered lunar orbit on August 28, 1966. The objectives of the mission included the study of: (1) lunar gamma- and X-ray emissions in order to determine the Moon's chemical composition; (2) lunar gravitational anomalies; (3) the concentration of meteorite streams near the Moon; and, (4) the intensity of hard corpuscular radiation near the Moon. A total of 137 radio transmissions and 277 orbits of the Moon were completed before the batteries failed on October 1, 1966.
Soft lunar landing attempt failed. Surveyor II was launched from Cape Kennedy at 8:32 a.m. EDT. The Atlas-Centaur launch vehicle placed the spacecraft on a nearly perfect lunar intercept trajectory that would have missed the aim point by about 130 kilometers. Following injection, the spacecraft successfully accomplished all required sequences up to the midcourse thrust phase. This phase was not successful because of the failure of one of the three vernier engines to ignite, causing eventual loss of the mission. Contact with the spacecraft was lost at 5:35 a.m. EDT, September 22, and impact on the lunar surface was predicted at 11:18 p.m. on that day.
Lunar Orbiter, further development of artificial lunar satellite systems and conduct of scientific experiments in circumlunar space. Luna 12 was launched towards the Moon from an earth-orbiting platform and achieved a lunar orbit of of 100 km x 1740 km on October 25, 1966. The spacecraft was equipped with a television system that obtained and transmitted photographs of the lunar surface. The photographs contained 1100 scan lines with a maximum resolution of 14.9--19.8 m. Pictures of the lunar surface were returned on October 27, 1966. According to contemporary US intelligence sources, only four pictures were returned. Radio transmissions from Luna 12 ceased on January 19, 1967, after 602 lunar orbits and 302 radio transmissions.
Lunar Orbiter II was launched at 6:21 p.m. EST from Launch Complex 13 at Cape Kennedy, to photograph possible landing sites on the moon for the Apollo program. The Atlas-Agena D booster placed the spacecraft in an earth-parking orbit and, after a 14-minute coast, injected it into its 94-hour trajectory toward the moon. A midcourse correction maneuver on November 8 increased the velocity from 3,051 to 3,133 kilometers per hour. At that time the spacecraft was 265,485 kilometers from the earth.
The spacecraft executed a deboost maneuver at 3:26 p.m., November 10, while 352,370 kilometers from the earth and 1,260 kilometers from the moon and traveling at a speed of 5,028 kilometers per hour. The maneuver permitted the lunar gravitational field to pull the spacecraft into the planned initial orbit around the moon. On November 15, a micrometeoroid hit was detected by one of the 20 thin-walled pressurized sensors.
The spacecraft was transferred into its final close-in orbit around the moon at 5:58 p.m. November 15 and the photo-acquisition phase of Lunar Orbiter II's mission began November 18. Thirteen selected primary potential landing sites and a number of secondary sites were to be photographed. By the morning of November 25, the spacecraft had taken 208 of the 211 photographs planned and pictures of all 13 selected potential landing sites. It also made 205 attitude change maneuvers and responded to 2,421 commands.
The status report of the Lunar Orbiter II mission as of November 28 indicated that the first phase of the photographic mission was completed when the final photo was taken on the afternoon of November 25. On November 26, the developing web was cut with a hot wire in response to a command from the earth. Failure to achieve the cut would have prevented the final readout of all 211 photos. Readout began immediately after the cut was made. One day early, December 6, the readout terminated when a transmitter failed, and three medium-resolution and two high-resolution photos of primary site 1 were lost. Full low-resolution coverage of the site had been provided, however, and other data continued to be transmitted. Three meteoroid hits had been detected.
Soft landed on Moon 24 December 1966 at 18:01:00 GMT, Latitude 18.87 N, 297.95 E - Oceanus Procellarum. The petal encasement of the spacecraft was opened, antennas were erected, and radio transmissions to Earth began four minutes after the landing. On December 25 and 26, 1966, the spacecraft television system transmitted panoramas of the nearby lunar landscape at different sun angles. Each panorama required approximately 100 minutes to transmit. The spacecraft was equipped with a mechanical soil-measuring penetrometer, a dynamograph, and a radiation densitometer for obtaining data on the mechanical and physical properties and the cosmic-ray reflectivity of the lunar surface. It is believed that transmissions from the spacecraft ceased before the end of December 1966.
Lunar Orbiter V was launched from the Eastern Test Range at 6:33 p.m. EDT August 1. The Deep Space Net Tracking Station at Woomera, Australia, acquired the spacecraft about 50 minutes after liftoff. Signals indicated that all systems were performing normally and that temperatures were within acceptable limits. At 12:48 p.m. EDT August 5, Lunar Orbiter V executed a deboost maneuver that placed it in orbit around the moon. The spacecraft took its first photograph of the moon at 7:22 a.m. EDT August 6. Before it landed on the lunar surface on January 31, 1968, Lunar Orbiter V had photographed 23 previously unphotographed areas of the moon's far side, the first photo of the full earth, 36 sites of scientific interest, and 5 Apollo sites for a total of 425 photos.
Atlas 94D was the 91st, and last, D series missile to be launched from Vandenberg AFB since 12D was launched on 9 September 1959. Soft landed on lunar Moon; photographed lunar surface; sampled lunar soil; used propulsion system to briefly lift off of lunar surface.
Apollo 4 (AS-501) was launched in the first all-up test of the Saturn V launch vehicle and also in a test of the CM heatshield. The Saturn V, used for the first time, carried a lunar module test article (LTA-10R) and a Block I command and service module (CSM 017) into orbit from KSC Launch Complex 39, Pad A, lifting off at 7:00:01 a.m. EST - one second later than planned. The launch was also the first use of Complex 39. The spacecraft landed 8 hours 37 minutes later in the primary recovery area in the Pacific Ocean, near Hawaii, about 14 kilometers from the planned point (30.06 N 172.32 W). CM, apex heatshield, and one main parachute were recovered by the carrier U.S.S. Bennington
Main objectives of the mission were to demonstrate the structural and thermal integrity of the space vehicle and to verify adequacy of the Block II heatshield design for entry at lunar return conditions. These objectives were accomplished.
The S-IC stage cutoff occurred 2 minutes 30 seconds into the flight at an altitude of about 63 kilometers. The S-II stage ignition occurred at 2 minutes 32 seconds and the burn lasted 6 minutes 7 seconds, followed by the S-IVB stage ignition and burn of 2 minutes 25 seconds. This series of launch vehicle operations placed the S-IVB and spacecraft combination in an earth parking orbit with an apogee of about 187 kilometers and a perigee of 182 kilometers. After two orbits, which required about three hours, the S-IVB stage was reignited to place the spacecraft in a simulated lunar trajectory. This burn lasted five minutes. Some 10 minutes after completion of the S-IVB burn, the spacecraft and S-IVB stage were separated, and less than 2 minutes later the service propulsion subsystem was fired to raise the apogee. The spacecraft was placed in an attitude with the thickest side of the CM heatshield away from the solar vector. During this four-and-one-half-hour cold-soak period, the spacecraft coasted to its highest apogee - 18,256.3 kilometers. A 70 mm still camera photographed the earth's surface every 10.6 seconds, taking 715 good-quality, high-resolution pictures.
About 8 hours 11 minutes after liftoff the service propulsion system was again ignited to increase the spacecraft inertial velocity and to simulate entry from a translunar mission. This burn lasted four and one half minutes. The planned entry velocity was 10.61 kilometers per second, while the actual velocity achieved was 10.70.
Recovery time of 2 hours 28 minutes was longer than anticipated, with the cause listed as sea conditions - 2.4-meter swells.
NASA launched Apollo 5 - the first, unmanned LM flight - on a Saturn IB from KSC Launch Complex 37B at 5:48:08 p.m. EST. Mission objectives included verifying operation of the LM structure itself and its two primary propulsion systems, to evaluate LM staging, and to evaluate orbital performances of the S-IVB stage and instrument unit. Flight of the AS-204 launch vehicle went as planned, with nosecone (replacing the CSM) jettisoned and LM separating. Flight of LM-1 also went as planned up to the first descent propulsion engine firing. Because velocity increase did not build up as quickly as predicted, the LM guidance system shut the engine down after only four seconds of operation, boosting the LM only to a 171 x 222 km orbit. Mission control personnel in Houston and supporting groups quickly analyzed the problem. They determined that the difficulty was one of guidance software only (and not a fault in hardware design) and pursued an alternate mission plan that ensured meeting the minimum requirements necessary to achieve the primary objectives of the mission. The ascent stage separated and boosted itself into a 172 x 961 km orbit. After mission completion at 2:45 a.m. EST January 23, LM stages were left in orbit to reenter the atmosphere later and disintegrate. Apollo program directors attributed success of the mission to careful preplanning of alternate ways to accomplish flight objectives in the face of unforeseen events.
Failed launch of an E-6LS radio-equipped version of the E-6 used to test tracking and communications networks for the Soviet manned lunar program. Suggestions for the abnormal consumption included the seizing up of a pintle valve for controlling fuel supply into the regulator or the seizing up of the fuel inlet control. The upper stages broke up in the atmosphere.
Apollo 6 (AS-502) was launched from Complex 39A at Kennedy Space Center. The space vehicle consisted of a Saturn V launch vehicle with an unmanned, modified Block I command and service module (CSM 020) and a lunar module test article (LTA-2R).
Liftoff at 7:00 a.m. EST was normal but, during the first-stage (S-IC) boost phase, oscillations and abrupt measurement changes were observed. During the second-stage (S-II) boost phase, two of the J-2 engines shut down early and the remaining three were extended approximately one minute to compensate. The third stage (S-IVB) firing was also longer than planned and at termination of thrust the orbit was 177.7 x 362.9 kilometers rather than the 160.9-kilometer near-circular orbit planned. The attempt to reignite the S-IVB engine for the translunar injection was unsuccessful. Reentry speed was 10 kilometers per second rather than the planned 11.1, and the spacecraft landed 90.7 kilometers uprange of the targeted landing point.
The most significant spacecraft anomaly occurred at about 2 minutes 13 seconds after liftoff, when abrupt changes were indicated by strain, vibration, and acceleration measurements in the S-IVB, instrument unit, adapter, lunar module test article, and CSM. Apparently oscillations induced by the launch vehicle exceeded the spacecraft design criteria.
The second-stage (S-II) burn was normal until about 4 minutes 38 seconds after liftoff; then difficulties were recorded. Engine 2 cutoff was recorded about 6 minutes 53 seconds into the flight and engine 3 cutoff less than 3 seconds later. The remaining second-stage engines shut down at 9 minutes 36 seconds - 58 seconds later than planned.
The S-IVB engine during its first burn, which was normal, operated 29 seconds longer than programmed. After two revolutions in a parking orbit, during which the systems were checked, operational tests performed, and several attitude maneuvers made, preparations were completed for the S-IVB engine restart. The firing was scheduled to occur on the Cape Kennedy pass at the end of the second revolution, but could not be accomplished. A ground command was sent to the CSM to carry out a planned alternate mission, and the CSM separated from the S-IVB stage.
A service propulsion system (SPS) engine firing sequence resulted in a 442-second burn and an accompanying free-return orbit of 22,259.1 x 33.3 kilometers. Since the SPS was used to attain the desired high apogee, there was insufficient propellant left to gain the high-velocity increase desired for the entry. For this reason, a complete firing sequence was performed except that the thrust was inhibited.
Parachute deployment was normal and the spacecraft landed about 9 hours 50 minutes after liftoff, in the mid-Pacific, 90.7 kilometers uprange from the predicted landing area (27.40 N 157.59 W). A normal retrieval was made by the U.S.S. Okinawa, with waves of 2.1 to 2.4 meters.
The spacecraft was in good condition, including the unified crew hatch, flown for the first time. Charring of the thermal protection was about the same as that experienced on the Apollo 4 spacecraft (CM 017).
Of the five primary objectives, three - demonstrating separation of launch vehicle stages, performance of the emergency detection system (EDS) in a close-loop mode, and mission support facilities and operations - were achieved. Only partially achieved were the objectives of confirming structure and thermal integrity, compatibility of launch vehicle and spacecraft, and launch loads and dynamic characteristics; and of verifying operation of launch vehicle propulsion, guidance and control, and electrical systems. Apollo 6, therefore, was officially judged in December as "not a success in accordance with . . . NASA mission objectives."
Lunar Orbiter; studied lunar gravitational field, Earth-Moon gravitational relationship, and conducted further scientific experiments in circumlunar space. Not revealed until years later was that the E-6LS was primarily intended to test tracking and communications networks for the Soviet manned lunar program. The Luna 14 spacecraft entered a 140 x 870 km x 42 degree lunar orbit on April 10, 1966. The spacecraft instrumentation was similar to that of Luna 10 and provided data for studies of the interaction of the earth and lunar masses, the lunar gravitational field, the propagation and stability of radio communications to the spacecraft at different orbital positions, solar charged particles and cosmic rays, and the motion of the Moon. This flight was the final flight of the second generation of the Luna series.
Apollo 7 (AS-205), the first manned Apollo flight, lifted off from Launch Complex 34 at Cape Kennedy Oct. 11, carrying Walter M. Schirra, Jr., Donn F. Eisele, and R. Walter Cunningham. The countdown had proceeded smoothly, with only a slight delay because of additional time required to chill the hydrogen system in the S-IVB stage of the Saturn launch vehicle. Liftoff came at 11:03 a.m. EDT. Shortly after insertion into orbit, the S-IVB stage separated from the CSM, and Schirra and his crew performed a simulated docking with the S-IVB stage, maneuvering to within 1.2 meters of the rocket. Although spacecraft separation was normal, the crew reported that one adapter panel had not fully deployed. Two burns using the reaction control system separated the spacecraft and launch stage and set the stage for an orbital rendezvous maneuver, which the crew made on the second day of the flight, using the service propulsion engine.
Crew and spacecraft performed well throughout the mission. During eight burns of the service propulsion system during the flight, the engine functioned normally. October 14, third day of the mission, witnessed the first live television broadcast from a manned American spacecraft.
Apollo 8 (AS-503) was launched from KSC Launch Complex 39, Pad A, at 7:51 a.m. EST Dec. 21 on a Saturn V booster. The spacecraft crew was made up of Frank Borman, James A. Lovell, Jr., and William A. Anders. Apollo 8 was the first spacecraft to be launched by a Saturn V with a crew on board, and that crew became the first men to fly around the moon.
All launch and boost phases were normal and the spacecraft with the S-IVB stage was inserted into an earth-parking orbit of 190.6 by 183.2 kilometers above the earth. After post-insertion checkout of spacecraft systems, the S-IVB stage was reignited and burned 5 minutes 9 seconds to place the spacecraft and stage in a trajectory toward the moon - and the Apollo 8 crew became the first men to leave the earth's gravitational field.
The spacecraft separated from the S-IVB 3 hours 20 minutes after launch and made two separation maneuvers using the SM's reaction control system. Eleven hours after liftoff, the first midcourse correction increased velocity by 26.4 kilometers per hour. The coast phase was devoted to navigation sightings, two television transmissions, and system checks. The second midcourse correction, about 61 hours into the flight, changed velocity by 1.5 kilometers per hour.
The 4-minute 15-second lunar-orbit-insertion maneuver was made 69 hours after launch, placing the spacecraft in an initial lunar orbit of 310.6 by 111.2 kilometers from the moon's surface - later circularized to 112.4 by 110.6 kilometers. During the lunar coast phase the crew made numerous landing-site and landmark sightings, took lunar photos, and prepared for the later maneuver to enter the trajectory back to the earth.
On the fourth day, Christmas Eve, communications were interrupted as Apollo 8 passed behind the moon, and the astronauts became the first men to see the moon's far side. Later that day , during the evening hours in the United States, the crew read the first 10 verses of Genesis on television to earth and wished viewers "goodnight, good luck, a Merry Christmas and God bless all of you - all of you on the good earth."
Subsequently, TV Guide for May 10-16, 1969, claimed that one out of every four persons on earth - nearly 1 billion people in 64 countries - heard the astronauts' reading and greeting, either on radio or on TV; and delayed broadcasts that same day reached 30 additional countries.
On Christmas Day, while the spacecraft was completing its 10th revolution of the moon, the service propulsion system engine was fired for three minutes 24 seconds, increasing the velocity by 3,875 km per hr and propelling Apollo 8 back toward the earth, after 20 hours 11 minutes in lunar orbit. More television was sent to earth on the way back.
Attempted launch of a Ye-8 with a Lunokhod lunar rover. Evidently coordinate in some way with the N1 launch two days later. A first-stage booster engine failure causes the rocket to crash 15 km from the pad after a lift-off at 09:48 local time. Kamanin meanwhile has the Hong Kong flu.
Apollo 9 (AS-504), the first manned flight with the lunar module (LM-3), was launched from Pad A, Launch Complex 39, KSC, on a Saturn V launch vehicle at 11:00 a.m. EST March 3. Originally scheduled for a February 28 liftoff, the launch had been delayed to allow crew members James A. McDivitt, David R. Scott, and Russell L. Schweickart to recover from a mild virus respiratory illness. Following a normal launch phase, the S-IVB stage inserted the spacecraft into an orbit of 192.3 by 189.3 kilometers. After post-insertion checkout, CSM 104 separated from the S-IVB, was transposed, and docked with the LM. At 3:08 p.m. EST, the docked spacecraft were separated from the S-IVB, which was then placed on an earth-escape trajectory. On March 4 the crew tracked landmarks, conducted pitch and roll yaw maneuvers, and increased the apogee by service propulsion system burns.
On March 5 McDivitt and Schweickart entered the LM through the docking tunnel, evaluated the LM systems, transmitted the first of two series of telecasts, and fired the LM descent propulsion system. They then returned to the CM.
McDivitt and Schweickart reentered the LM on March 6. After transmitting a second telecast, Schweickart performed a 37-minute extravehicular activity (EVA), walking between the LM and CSM hatches, maneuvering on handrails, taking photographs, and describing rain squalls over KSC.
On March 7, with McDivitt and Schweickart once more in the LM, Scott separated the CSM from the LM and fired the reaction control system thrusters to obtain a distance of 5.5 kilometers between the two spacecraft. McDivitt and Schweickart then performed a lunar-module active rendezvous. The LM successfully docked with the CSM after being up to 183.5 kilometers away from it during the six-and-one-half-hour separation. After McDivitt and Schweickart returned to the CSM, the LM ascent stage was jettisoned.
During the remainder of the mission, the crew tracked Pegasus III, NASA's meteoroid detection satellite that had been launched July 30, 1965; took multispectral photos of the earth; exercised the spacecraft systems; and prepared for reentry.
Final dress rehearsal in lunar orbit for landing on moon. LM separated and descended to 10 km from surface of moon but did not land. Apollo 10 (AS-505) - with crew members Thomas P. Stafford, Eugene A. Cernan, and John W. Young aboard - lifted off from Pad B, Launch Complex 39, KSC, at 12:49 p.m. EDT on the first lunar orbital mission with complete spacecraft. The Saturn V's S-IVB stage and the spacecraft were inserted into an earth parking orbit of 189.9 by 184.4 kilometers while the onboard systems were checked. The S-IVB engine was then ignited at 3:19 p.m. EDT to place the spacecraft in a trajectory toward the moon. One-half hour later the CSM separated from the S-IVB, transposed, and docked with the lunar module. At 4:29 p.m. the docked spacecraft were ejected, a separation maneuver was performed, and the S-IVB was placed in a solar orbit by venting residual propellants. TV coverage of docking procedures was transmitted to the Goldstone, Calif., tracking station for worldwide, commercial viewing.
On May 19 the crew elected not to make the first of a series of midcourse maneuvers. A second preplanned midcourse correction that adjusted the trajectory to coincide with a July lunar landing trajectory was executed at 3:19 p.m. The maneuver was so accurate that preplanned third and fourth midcourse corrections were canceled. During the translunar coast, five color TV transmissions totaling 72 minutes were made of the spacecraft and the earth.
At 4:49 p.m. EDT on May 21 the spacecraft was inserted into a lunar orbit of 110.4 by 315.5 kilometers. After two revolutions of tracking and ground updates, a maneuver circularized the orbit at 109.1 by 113.9 kilometers. Astronaut Cernan then entered the LM, checked all systems, and returned to the CM for the scheduled sleep period.
On May 22 activation of the lunar module systems began at 11:49 a.m. EDT. At 2:04 p.m. the spacecraft were undocked and at 4:34 p.m. the LM was inserted into a descent orbit. One hour later the LM made a low-level pass at an altitude of 15.4 kilometers over the planned site for the first lunar landing. The test included a test of the landing radar, visual observation of lunar lighting, stereo photography of the moon, and execution of a phasing maneuver using the descent engine. The lunar module returned to dock successfully with the CSM following the eight-hour separation, and the LM crew returned to the CSM.
The LM ascent stage was jettisoned, its batteries were burned to depletion, and it was placed in a solar orbit on May 23. The crew then prepared for the return trip to earth and after 61.5 hours in lunar orbit a service propulsion system TEI burn injected the CSM into a trajectory toward the earth. During the return trip the astronauts made star-lunar landmark sightings, star-earth horizon navigation sightings, and live television transmissions.
Another attempt to launch a Ye-8-5 to return lunar soil to the earth, 'scooping', the Americans' impending Apollo 11 mission. Yet another UR-500K launch failure. This time the UR-500K booster functioned perfectly, but the Block D upper stage did not fire, and the payload did not even attain earth orbit. Every UR-500K launch is costing the Soviet state 100 million roubles. This failure pretty much ended the chances for the Russians to trump the American moon landing. Tass yesterday began running stories to prepare the masses for the upcoming Apollo 11 triumph. The party line is that the Soviet Union is not about to risks the lives of its cosmonauts on flights to the moon, when automated probes can safely retrieve soil from the moon for study on earth. Additional Details: here....
Unmanned soil return mission launched coincident with Apollo 11 mission in last ditch attempt to return lunar soil to earth before United States. After completing 86 communications sessions and 52 orbits of the Moon at various inclinations and altitudes, crashed on the moon on 20 July in an attempted landing. Altitude data used in programming inaccurate or guidance system unable to cope with effect of lunar mascons.
Officially: Testing of on-board systems of the automatic station and further scientific investigation of the moon and circumlunar space. Parameters are for lunar orbit.
First landing on moon. Apollo 11 (AS-506) - with astronauts Neil A. Armstrong, Michael Collins, and Edwin E. Aldrin, Jr., aboard - was launched from Pad A, Launch Complex 39, KSC, at 9:32 a.m. EDT July 16. The activities during earth-orbit checkout, translunar injection, CSM transposition and docking, spacecraft ejection, and translunar coast were similar to those of Apollo 10.
At 4:40 p.m. EDT July 18, the crew began a 96-minute color television transmission of the CSM and LM interiors, CSM exterior, the earth, probe and drogue removal, spacecraft tunnel hatch opening, food preparation, and LM housekeeping. One scheduled and two unscheduled television broadcasts had been made previously by the Apollo 11 crew.
The spacecraft entered lunar orbit at 1:28 p.m. EDT on July 19. During the second lunar orbit a live color telecast of the lunar surface was made. A second service-propulsion-system burn placed the spacecraft in a circularized orbit, after which astronaut Aldrin entered the LM for two hours of housekeeping including a voice and telemetry test and an oxygen-purge-system check.
At 8:50 a.m. July 20, Armstrong and Aldrin reentered the LM and checked out all systems. They performed a maneuver at 1:11 p.m. to separate the LM from the CSM and began the descent to the moon. The LM touched down on the moon at 4:18 p.m. EDT July 20. Armstrong reported to mission control at MSC, "Houston, Tranquillity Base here - the Eagle has landed." (Eagle was the name given to the Apollo 11 LM; the CSM was named Columbia.) Man's first step on the moon was taken by Armstrong at 10:56 p.m. EDT. As he stepped onto the surface of the moon, Armstrong described the feat as "one small step for man - one giant leap for mankind."
Aldrin joined Armstrong on the surface of the moon at 11:15 p.m. July 20. The astronauts unveiled a plaque mounted on a strut of the LM and read to a worldwide TV audience, "Here men from the planet earth first set foot on the moon July 1969, A.D. We came in peace for all mankind." After raising the American flag and talking to President Nixon by radiotelephone, the two astronauts deployed the lunar surface experiments assigned to the mission and gathered 22 kilograms of samples of lunar soil and rocks. They then reentered the LM and closed the hatch at 1:11 a.m. July 21. All lunar extravehicular activities were televised in black-and-white. Meanwhile, Collins continued orbiting moon alone in CSM Columbia.
The Eagle lifted off from the moon at 1:54 p.m. EDT July 21, having spent 21 hours 36 minutes on the lunar surface. It docked with the CSM at 5:35 p.m. and the crew, with the lunar samples and film, transferred to the CSM. The LM ascent stage was jettisoned into lunar orbit. The crew then rested and prepared for the return trip to the earth.
The CSM was injected into a trajectory toward the earth at 12:55 a.m. EDT July 22. Following a midcourse correction at 4:01 p.m., an 18-minute color television transmission was made, in which the astronauts demonstrated the weightlessness of food and water and showed shots of the earth and the moon.
Apollo 12 (AS-507)-with astronauts Charles Conrad, Jr., Richard F. Gordon, Jr., and Alan L. Bean as the crewmen-was launched from Pad A, Launch Complex 39, KSC, at 11:22 a.m. EST November 14. Lightning struck the space vehicle twice, at 36.5 seconds and 52 seconds into the mission. The first strike was visible to spectators at the launch site. No damage was done. Except for special attention given to verifying all spacecraft systems because of the lightning strikes, the activities during earth-orbit checkout, translunar injection, and translunar coast were similar to those of Apollo 10 and Apollo 11.
During the translunar coast astronauts Conrad and Bean transferred to the LM one-half hour earlier than planned in order to obtain full TV coverage through the Goldstone tracking station. The 56-minute TV transmission showed excellent color pictures of the CSM, the intravehicular transfer, the LM interior, the earth, and the moon.
At 10:47 p.m. EST, November 17, the spacecraft entered a lunar orbit of 312.6 x 115.9 kilometers. A second service propulsion system burn circularized the orbit with a 122.5-kilometer apolune and a 100.6-kilometer perilune. Conrad and Bean again transferred to the LM, where they perfomed housekeeping chores, a voice and telemetry test, and an oxygen purge system check. They then returned to the CM.
Conrad and Bean reentered the LM, checked out all systems, and at 10:17 p.m. EST on November 18 fired the reaction control system thrusters to separate the CSM 108 (the Yankee Clipper) from the LM-6 (the Intrepid). At 1:55 a.m. EST November 19, the Intrepid landed on the moon's Ocean of Storms, about 163 meters from the Surveyor III spacecraft that had landed April 19, 1967. Conrad, shorter than Neil Armstrong (first man on the moon, July 20), had a little difficulty negotiating the last step from the LM ladder to the lunar surface. When he touched the surface at 6:44 a.m. EST November 19, he exclaimed, "Whoopee! Man, that may have been a small step for Neil, but that's a long one for me."
Bean joined Conrad on the surface at 7:14 a.m. They collected a 1.9-kilogram contingency sample of lunar material and later a 14.8-kilogram selected sample. They also deployed an S-band antenna, solar wind composition experiment, and the American flag. An Apollo Lunar Surface Experiments Package with a SNAP-27 atomic generator was deployed about 182 meters from the LM. After 3 hours 56 minutes on the lunar surface, the two astronauts entered the Intrepid to rest and check plans for the next EVA.
The astronauts again left the LM at 10:55 p.m. EST November 19. During the second EVA, Conrad and Bean retrieved the lunar module TV camera for return to earth for a failure analysis, obtained photographic panoramas, core and trench samples, a lunar environment sample, and assorted rock, dirt, bedrock, and molten samples. The crew then examined and retrieved parts of Surveyor III, including the TV camera and soil scoop. After 3 hours 49 minutes on the lunar surface during the second EVA, the two crewmen entered the LM at 2:44 a.m. EST November 20. Meanwhile astronaut Gordon, orbiting the moon in the Yankee Clipper, had completed a lunar multispectral photography experiment and photographed proposed future landing sites.
At 9:26 a.m. EST November 20, after 31 hours 31 minutes on the moon, Intrepid successfully lifted off with 34.4 kilograms of lunar samples. Rendezvous maneuvers went as planned. The LM docked with the CSM at 12:58 p.m. November 20. The last 24 minutes of the rendezvous sequence was televised. After the crew transferred with the samples, equipment, and film to the Yankee Clipper, the Intrepid was jettisoned and intentionally crashed onto the lunar surface at 5:17 p.m. November 20, 72.2 kilometers southeast of Surveyor III. The crash produced reverberations that lasted about 30 minutes and were detected by the seismometer left on the moon.
At 3:49 p.m. EST November 21, the crew fired the service propulsion system engine, injecting the CSM into a transearth trajectory after 89 hours 2 minutes in lunar orbit. During the transearth coast, views of the receding moon and the interior of the spacecraft were televised, and a question and answer session with scientists and the press was conducted.
Attempted test flight of Block D upper stage in N1 lunar crasher configuration. Payload was a modified Soyuz 7K-L1 circumlunar spacecraft, which provided guidance to the Block D and was equipped with television cameras that viewed the behavior of the Block D stage propellants under zero-G conditions. Mission flown successfully over a year later as Cosmos 382.
Apollo 13 (AS-508) was launched from Pad A, Launch Complex 39, KSC, at 2:13 p.m. EST April 11, with astronauts James A. Lovell, Jr., John L. Swigert, Jr., and Fred W. Haise, Jr., aboard. The spacecraft and S-IVB stage entered a parking orbit with a 185.5-kilometer apogee and a 181.5-kilometer perigee. At 3:48 p.m., onboard TV was begun for five and one-half minutes. At 4:54 p.m., an S-IVB burn placed the spacecraft on a translunar trajectory, after which the CSM separated from the S-IVB and LM Aquarius. (The crew had named lunar module 7 Aquarius and CSM 109 Odyssey.) The CSM then hard-docked with the LM. The S-IVB auxiliary propulsion system made an evasive maneuver after CSM/LM ejection from the S-IVB at 6:14 p.m. The docking and ejection maneuvers were televised during a 72-minute period in which interior and exterior views of the spacecraft were also shown.
At 8:13 p.m. EST a 217-second S-IVB auxiliary propulsion system burn aimed the S-IVB for a lunar target point so accurately that another burn was not required. The S-IVB/IU impacted the lunar surface at 8:10 p.m. EST on April 14 at a speed of 259 meters per second. Impact was 137.1 kilometers from the Apollo 12 seismometer. The seismic signal generated by the impact lasted 3 hours 20 minutes and was so strong that a ground command was necessary to reduce seismometer gain and keep the recording on the scale. The suprathermal ion detector experiment, also deployed by the Apollo 12 crew, recorded a jump in the number of ions from zero at the time of impact up to 2,500 shortly thereafter and then back to a zero count. Scientists theorized that ionization had been produced by 6,300 K to 10,300 K (6,000 degrees C to 10,000 degrees C) temperature generated by the impact or that particles had reached an altitude of 60 kilometers from the lunar surface and had been ionized by sunlight.
Meanwhile back in the CSM/LM, the crew had been performing the routine housekeeping duties associated with the period of the translunar coast. At 30:40 ground elapsed time a midcourse correction maneuver took the spacecraft off a free-return trajectory in order to control the arrival time at the moon. Ensuring proper lighting conditions at the landing site. The maneuver placed the spacecraft on the desired trajectory, on which the closest approach to the moon would be 114.9 kilometers.
At 10:08 p.m. EST April 13, the crew reported an undervoltage alarm on the CSM main bus B, rapid loss of pressure in SM oxygen tank No. 2, and dropping current in fuel cells 1 and 3 to a zero reading. The loss of oxygen and primary power in the service module required an immediate abort of the mission. The astronauts powered up the LM, powered down the CSM, and used the LM systems for power and life support. The first maneuver following the abort decision was made with the descent propulsion system to place the spacecraft back in a free-return trajectory around the moon. After the spacecraft swung around the moon, another maneuver reduced the coast time back to earth and moved the landing point from the Indian Ocean to the South Pacific.
Lunar Sample Return. Landed on Moon 20 September 1970 at 05:18:00 GMT, Latitude 0.68 S, Longitude 56.30 E - Mare Fecunditatis. Luna 16 was launched toward the Moon from a preliminary earth orbit and entered a lunar orbit on September 17, 1970. On September 20, the spacecraft soft landed on the lunar surface as planned. The spacecraft was equipped with an extendable arm with a drilling rig for the collection of a lunar soil sample. After 26 hours and 25 minutes on the lunar surface, the ascent stage, with a hermetically sealed soil sample container, left the lunar surface carrying 100 grams of collected material. It landed in the Soviet Union on September 24, 1970. The lower stage of Luna 16 remained on the lunar surface and continued transmission of lunar temperature and radiation data. Parameters are for lunar orbit.
Luna 17 was launched from an earth parking orbit towards the Moon and entered lunar orbit on November 15, 1970. Luna 17 landed on Moon 17 November 1970 at 03:47:00 GMT, Latitude 38.28 N, Longitude 325.00 E - Mare Imbrium (Sea of Rains). The payload, the Lunokhod 1 unmanned rover, rolled down a ramp from the landing stage and began exploring the surface. Lunokhod was intended to operate through three lunar days but actually operated for eleven lunar days (earth months). The operations of Lunokhod officially ceased on October 4, 1971, the anniversary of Sputnik 1. By then it had traveled 10,540 m and had transmitted more than 20,000 TV pictures and more than 200 TV panoramas. It had also conducted more than 500 lunar soil tests. Parameters are for lunar orbit.
LK moon lander test using the T2K version. First use of the Soyuz 11A511L booster modified especially for this purpose. The spacecraft made a series of engine burns, simulating the lunar landing profile. After 3.5 days in orbit, the first burn was made in imitation of a descent to the lunar surface after separation of the Block D lunar crasher stage. The orbit changed from 192 km X 233 km to 196 km X 1206 km orbit; delta V: 263 m/s. After 4 days in orbit, a large manoeuvre was made simulating the ascent from the lunar surface. The orbit was changed from 188 km X 1198 km to 177 km X 14,041 km; delta V: 1518 m/s. These main manoeuvres were followed by a series of small adjustments simulating rendezvous and docking with the LOK. The LK tested out without major problems and decayed from orbit on September 21, 1983.
The Apollo 14 (AS-509) mission - manned by astronauts Alan B. Shepard, Jr., Stuart A. Roosa, and Edgar D. Mitchell - was launched from Pad A, Launch Complex 39, KSC, at 4:03 p.m. EST January 31 on a Saturn V launch vehicle. A 40-minute hold had been ordered 8 minutes before scheduled launch time because of unsatisfactory weather conditions, the first such delay in the Apollo program. Activities during earth orbit and translunar injection were similar to those of the previous lunar landing missions. However, during transposition and docking, CSM 110 Kitty Hawk had difficulty docking with LM-8 Antares. A hard dock was achieved on the sixth attempt at 9:00 p.m. EST, 1 hour 54 minutes later than planned. Other aspects of the translunar journey were normal and proceeded according to flight plan. A crew inspection of the probe and docking mechanism was televised during the coast toward the moon. The crew and ground personnel were unable to determine why the CSM and LM had failed to dock properly, but there was no indication that the systems would not work when used later in the flight.
Apollo 14 entered lunar orbit at 1:55 a.m. EST on February 4. At 2:41 a.m. the separated S-IVB stage and instrument unit struck the lunar surface 174 kilometers southeast of the planned impact point. The Apollo 12 seismometer, left on the moon in November 1969, registered the impact and continued to record vibrations for two hours.
After rechecking the systems in the LM, astronauts Shepard and Mitchell separated the LM from the CSM and descended to the lunar surface. The Antares landed on Fra Mauro at 4:17 a.m. EST February 5, 9 to 18 meters short of the planned landing point. The first EVA began at 9:53 a.m., after intermittent communications problems in the portable life support system had caused a 49-minute delay. The two astronauts collected a 19.5-kilogram contingency sample; deployed the TV, S-band antenna, American flag, and Solar Wind Composition experiment; photographed the LM, lunar surface, and experiments; deployed the Apollo lunar surface experiments package 152 meters west of the LM and the laser-ranging retroreflector 30 meters west of the ALSEP; and conducted an active seismic experiment, firing 13 thumper shots into the lunar surface.
A second EVA period began at 3:11 a.m. EST February 6. The two astronauts loaded the mobile equipment transporter (MET) - used for the first time - with photographic equipment, tools, and a lunar portable magnetometer. They made a geology traverse toward the rim of Cone Crater, collecting samples on the way. On their return, they adjusted the alignment of the ALSEP central station antenna in an effort to strengthen the signal received by the Manned Space Flight Network ground stations back on earth.
Just before reentering the LM, astronaut Shepard dropped a golf ball onto the lunar surface and on the third swing drove the ball 366 meters. The second EVA had lasted 4 hours 35 minutes, making a total EVA time for the mission of 9 hours 24 minutes. The Antares lifted off the moon with 43 kilograms of lunar samples at 1:48 p.m. EST February 6.
Meanwhile astronaut Roosa, orbiting the moon in the CSM, took astronomy and lunar photos, including photos of the proposed Descartes landing site for Apollo 16.
Ascent of the LM from the lunar surface, rendezvous, and docking with the CSM in orbit were performed as planned, with docking at 3:36 p.m. EST February 6. TV coverage of the rendezvous and docking maneuver was excellent. The two astronauts transferred from the LM to the CSM with samples, equipment, and film. The LM ascent stage was then jettisoned and intentionally crashed on the moon's surface at 7:46 p.m. The impact was recorded by the Apollo 12 and Apollo 14 ALSEPs.
The spacecraft was placed on its trajectory toward earth during the 34th lunar revolution. During transearth coast, four inflight technical demonstrations of equipment and processes in zero gravity were performed.
The CM and SM separated, the parachutes deployed, and other reentry events went as planned, and the Kitty Hawk splashed down in mid-Pacific at 4:05 p.m. EST February 9 about 7 kilometers from the recovery ship U.S.S. New Orleans. The Apollo 14 crew returned to Houston on February 12, where they remained in quarantine until February 26.
All primary mission objectives had been met. The mission had lasted 216 hours 40 minutes and was marked by the following achievements:
Second space test of the LK moon lander test using the T2K version. Followed the same programme as Cosmos 379.
189km X 252km orbit to 186km X 1189km orbit. Delta V: 251 m/s
186km X 1189km orbit to 200km X 10905km orbit. Delta V: 1320 m/s
Total Delta V: 2832 m/s.
Officially: Investigation of the upper atmosphere and outer space.
Apollo 15 (AS-510) with astronauts David R. Scott, Alfred M. Worden, and James B. Irwin aboard was launched from Pad A, Launch Complex 39, KSC, at 9:34 a.m. EDT July 26. The spacecraft and S-IVB combination was placed in an earth parking orbit 11 minutes 44 seconds after liftoff. Activities during earth orbit and translunar injection (insertion into the trajectory for the moon) were similar to those of previous lunar landing missions. Translunar injection was at about 12:30 p.m., with separation of the CSM from the LM/S-IVB/IU at 12:56 p.m. At 1:08 p.m., onboard color TV showed the docking of the CSM with the LM.
S-IVB auxiliary propulsion system burns sent the S-IVB/IU stages toward the moon, where they impacted the lunar surface at 4:59 p.m. EDT July 29. The point of impact was 188 kilometers northeast of the Apollo 14 landing site and 355 kilometers northeast of the Apollo 12 site. The impact was detected by both the Apollo 12 and Apollo 14 seismometers, left on the moon in November 1969 and February 1971.
After the translunar coast, during which TV pictures of the CSM and LM interiors were shown and the LM communications and other systems were checked, Apollo 15 entered lunar orbit at 4:06 p.m. EDT July 29.
The LM-10 Falcon, with astronauts Scott and Irwin aboard, undocked and separated from the Endeavor (CSM 112) with astronaut Worden aboard. At 6:16 p.m. EDT July 30, the Falcon landed in the Hadley-Apennine region of the moon 600 meters north-northwest of the proposed target. About two hours later, following cabin depressurization, Scott performed a 33-minute standup EVA in the upper hatch of the LM, during which he described and photographed the landing site.
The first crew EVA on the lunar surface began at 9:04 a.m. July 31. The crew collected and stowed a contingency sample, unpacked the ALSEP and other experiments, and prepared the lunar roving vehicle (LRV) for operations. Some problems were encountered in the deployment and checkout of the LRV, used for the first time, but they were quickly resolved. The first EVA traverse was to the Apennine mountain front, after which the ALSEP was deployed and activated, and one probe of a Heat Flow experiment was emplaced. A second probe was not emplaced until EVA-2 because of drilling difficulties. The first EVA lasted 6 hours 33 minutes.
At 7:49 a.m. EDT August 1, the second EVA began. The astronauts made a maintenance check on the LRV and then began the second planned traverse of the mission. On completion of the traverse, Scott and Irwin completed the placement of heat flow experiment probes, collected a core sample, and deployed the American flag. They then stowed the sample container and the film in the LM, completing a second EVA of 7 hours 12 minutes.
The third EVA began at 4:52 a.m. August 2, included another traverse, and ended 4 hours 50 minutes later, for a total Apollo 15 lunar surface EVA time of 18 hours 35 minutes.
While the lunar module was on the moon, astronaut Worden completed 34 lunar orbits in the CSM operating scientific instrument module experiments and cameras to obtain data concerning the lunar surface and environment. X-ray spectrometer data indicated richer abundance of aluminum in the highlands, especially on the far side, but greater concentrations of magnesium in the maria.
Liftoff of the ascent stage of the LM, the first one to be televised, occurred at 1:11 p.m. EDT August 2. About two hours later the LM and CSM rendezvoused and docked, and film, equipment, and 77 kilograms of lunar samples were transferred from the LM to the CSM. The ascent stage was jettisoned and hit the lunar surface at 11:04 p.m. EDT August 2. Its impact was recorded by the Apollo 12, Apollo 14, and Apollo 15 seismometers, left on the moon during those missions. Before leaving the lunar orbit, the spacecraft deployed a subsatellite, at 4:13 p.m. August 4, in an orbit of 141.3 by 102 kilometers. The satellite would measure interplanetary and earth magnetic fields near the moon. It also carried charged-particle sensors and equipment to detect variations in lunar gravity caused by mascons (mass concentrations).
A transearth injection maneuver at 5:23 p.m. August 4 put the CSM on an earth trajectory. During the transearth coast, astronaut Worden performed an inflight EVA beginning at 11:32 a.m. August 5 and lasting for 38 minutes 12 seconds. He made three trips to the scientific instrument module (SIM) bay of the SM, twice to retrieve cassettes and once to observe the condition of the instruments in the SIM bay.
Final LK moon lander test using the T2K version.
188km X 267km orbit to 190km X 1261km orbit. Delta V: 266 m/s
188km X 1262km orbit to 180km X 11384km orbit. Delta V: 1333 m/s
Total Delta V: 1599 m/s. Ten years later the spacecraft was due to re-enter over Australia soon after the Skylab scare. The Soviet Union told the people of Australia not to worry, it was only an experimental lunar cabin - the first inadvertent admission that their manned lunar project even existed!
Attempted lunar soil return mission; crashed while attempting to soft land at Latitude 3.57 N, Longitude 50.50 E - Mare Fecunditatis. Luna 18 used a new method of navigation in lunar orbit and for landing. The spacecraft's designer, Babakhin, had died at age 56 only the month before. Luna 18 successfully reached earth parking orbit before being put on a translunar trajectory. On September 7, 1971, it entered lunar orbit. The spacecraft completed 85 communications sessions and 54 lunar orbits before it was sent towards the lunar surface by use of braking rockets. It impacted the Moon on September 11, 1971, in a rugged mountainous terrain. Signals ceased at the moment of impact. Parameters are for lunar orbit.
Heavy lunar Orbiter; conducted lunar surface mapping. Luna 19 entered an intermediate earth parking orbit and was then put on a translunar trajectory by the Proton Block D stage. It entered lunar orbit on October 3, 1971. Luna 19 extended the systematic study of lunar gravitational fields and location of mascons (mass concentrations). It also studied the lunar radiation environment, the gamma-active lunar surface, and the solar wind. Photographic coverage via a television system was also obtained. Parameters are for lunar orbit.
Soft landed on Moon; returned soil samples to Earth. Landed on Moon 21 February 1972 at 19:19:00 GMT, Latitude 3.57 N, Longitude 56.50 E - Mare Fecunditatis. Luna 20 was placed in an intermediate earth parking orbit and from this orbit was sent towards the Moon. It entered lunar orbit on February 18, 1972. On 21 February 1972, Luna 20 soft landed on the Moon in a mountainous area known as the Apollonius highlands, 120 km from where Luna 18 had crashed. While on the lunar surface, the panoramic television system was operated. Lunar samples were obtained by means of an extendable drilling apparatus. The ascent stage of Luna 20 was launched from the lunar surface on 22 February 1972 carrying 30 grams of collected lunar samples in a sealed capsule. It landed in the Soviet Union on 25 February 1972. The lunar samples were recovered the following day.
The Apollo 16 (AS-511) space vehicle was launched from Pad A, Launch Complex 39, KSC, at 12:54 p.m. EST April 16, with a crew of astronauts John W. Young, Thomas K. Mattingly II, and Charles M. Duke, Jr. After insertion into an earth parking orbit for spacecraft system checks, the spacecraft and the S-IVB stage were placed on a trajectory to the moon at 3:28 p.m. CSM transposition and docking with the LM were achieved, although a number of minor anomalies were noted.
One anomaly, an auxiliary propulsion system leak on the S-IVB stage, produced an unpredictable thrust and prevented a final S-IVB targeting maneuver after separation from the CSM. Tracking of the S-IVB ended at 4:04 p.m. EST April 17, when the instrument unit's signal was lost. The stage hit the lunar surface at 4:02 p.m. April 19, 260 kilometers northeast of the target point. The impact was detected by the seismometers left on the moon by the Apollo 12, 14, and 15 missions.
Spacecraft operations were near normal during the coast to the moon. Unexplained light-colored particles from the LM were investigated and identified as shredded thermal paint. Other activities during the translunar coast included a cislunar navigation exercise, ultraviolet photography of the earth and moon, an electrophoresis demonstration, and an investigation of the visual light-flash phenomenon noted on previous flights. Astronaut Duke counted 70 white, instantaneous light flashes that left no after-glow.
Apollo 16 entered a lunar orbit of 314 by 107.7 kilometers at 3:22 p.m. April 19. After separation of LM-11 Orion from CSM 112 Casper, a CSM active rendezvous kept the two vehicles close together while an anomaly discovered on the service propulsion system was evaluated. Tests and analyses showed the redundant system to be still safe and usable if required. The vehicles were again separated and the mission continued on a revised timeline because of the 5 3/4-hour delay.
The lunar module landed with Duke and Young in the moon's Descartes region, about 230 meters northwest of the planned target area at 9:23 p.m. EST April 20. A sleep period was scheduled before EVA.
The first extravehicular activity began at 11:59 a.m. April 21, after the eight-hour rest period. Television coverage of surface activity was delayed until the lunar roving vehicle systems were activated, because the steerable antenna on the lunar module could not be used. The lunar surface experiments packages were deployed, but accidental breaking of the electronics cable rendered the heat flow experiment inoperable. After completing activities at the experiments site, the crew drove the lunar roving vehicle west to Flag Crater, where they performed the planned tasks. The inbound traverse route was just slightly south of the outbound route, and the next stop was Spook Crater. The crew then returned via the experiment station to the lunar module and deployed the solar wind composition experiment. The duration of the extravehicular activity was 7 hours 11 minutes. The distance traveled by the lunar roving vehicle was 4.2 kilometers. The crew collected 20 kilograms of samples.
The second extravehicular traverse, which began at 11:33 a.m. April 22, was south-southeast to a mare-sampling area near the Cinco Craters on Stone Mountain. The crew then drove in a northwesterly direction, making stops near Stubby and Wreck Craters. The last leg of the traverse was north to the experiments station and the lunar module. The second extravehicular activity lasted 7 hours 23 minutes. The distance traveled by the lunar roving vehicle was 11.1 kilometers.
Four stations were deleted from the third extravehicular traverse, which began 30 minutes early at 10:27 a.m. April 23 to allow extra time. The first stop was North Ray Crater, where "House Rock" on the rim of the crater was sampled. The crew then drove southeast to "Shadow Rock." The return route to the LM retraced the outbound route. The third extravehicular activity lasted 5 hours 40 minutes, and the lunar roving vehicle traveled 11.4 kilometers.
Lunar surface activities outside the LM totaled 20 hours 15 minutes for the mission. The total distance traveled in the lunar roving vehicle was 26.7 kilometers. The crew remained on the lunar surface 71 hours 14 minutes and collected 96.6 kilograms of lunar samples.
While the lunar module crew was on the surface, Mattingly, orbiting the moon in the CSM, was obtaining photographs, measuring physical properties of the moon and deep space, and making visual observations. Essentially the same complement of instruments was used to gather data as was used on the Apollo 15 mission, but different areas of the lunar surface were flown over and more comprehensive deep space measurements were made, providing scientific data that could be used to validate findings from Apollo 15 as well as add to the total store of knowledge of the moon and its atmosphere, the solar system, and galactic space.
The LM lifted off from the moon at 8:26 p.m. EST April 23, rendezvoused with the CSM, and docked with it in orbit. Young and Duke transferred to the CSM with samples, film, and equipment, and the LM was jettisoned the next day. LM attitude control was lost at jettison; therefore a deorbit maneuver was not possible and the LM remained in lunar orbit, with an estimated orbital lifetime of about one year.
The particles and fields subsatellite was launched into lunar orbit and normal system operation was noted. However, the spacecraft orbital shaping maneuver was not performed before ejection and the subsatellite was placed in a non-optimum orbit that resulted in a much shorter lifetime than the planned year. Loss of all subsatellite tracking and telemetry data on the 425th revolution (May 29) indicated that the subsatellite had hit the lunar surface.
The mass spectrometer deployment boom stalled during a retract cycle and was jettisoned before transearth injection. The second plane-change maneuver and some orbital science photography were deleted so that transearth injection could be performed about 24 hours earlier than originally planned.
Activities during the transearth coast phase of the mission included photography for a contamination study for the Skylab program and completion of the visual light-flash-phenomenon investigation that had been partially accomplished during translunar coast. A 1-hour 24-minute transearth extravehicular activity was conducted by command module pilot Mattingly to retrieve the film cassettes from the scientific instrument module cameras, inspect the equipment, and expose a microbial-response experiment to the space environment. Two midcourse corrections were made on the return flight to achieve the desired entry interface conditions.
Apollo 17 (AS-512), the final Apollo manned lunar landing mission, was launched from Pad A, Launch Complex 39, KSC, at 12:33 a.m. EST December 7. Crew members were astronauts Eugene A. Cernan, Ronald E. Evans, and Harrison H. Schmitt. The launch had been delayed 2 hours 40 minutes by a countdown sequencer failure, the only such delay in the Apollo program caused by a hardware failure.
All launch vehicle systems performed normally in achieving an earth parking orbit of 170 by 168 kilometers. After checkout, insertion into a lunar trajectory was begun at 3:46 a.m.; translunar coast time was shortened to compensate for the launch delay. CSM 114 transposition, docking with LM-12, and LM ejection from the launch vehicle stage were normal. The S-IVB stage was maneuvered for lunar impact, striking the surface about 13.5 kilometers from the preplanned point at 3:27 p.m. EST December 10. The impact was recorded by the passive seismometers left on the moon by Apollo 12, 14, 15, and 16.
The crew performed a heat flow and convection demonstration and an Apollo light-flash experiment during the translunar coast. The scientific instrument module door on the SM was jettisoned at 10:17 a.m. EST December 10. The lunar orbit insertion maneuver was begun at 2:47 p.m. and the Apollo 17 spacecraft entered a lunar orbit of 315 by 97 kilometers. After separation of the LM Challenger from the CSM America and a readjustment of orbits, the LM began its powered descent and landed on the lunar surface in the Taurus-Littrow region at 2:55 p.m. EST on December 11, with Cernan and Schmitt.
The first EVA began about 4 hours later (6:55 p.m.). Offloading of the lunar roving vehicle and equipment proceeded as scheduled. The Apollo Lunar Surface Experiment Package was deployed approximately 185 meters west northwest of the Challenger. Astronaut Cernan drove the lunar roving vehicle to the experiments deployment site, drilled the heat flow and deep core holes, and emplaced the neutron probe experiment. Two geological units were sampled, two explosive packages deployed, and seven traverse gravimeter measurements were taken. During the 7-hour 12-minute EVA, 14 kilograms of samples were collected.
The second extravehicular activity began at 6:28 p.m. EST December 12. Because of geological interest, station stop times were modified. Orange soil was discovered and became the subject of considerable geological discussion. Five surface samples and a double core sample were taken in the area of the orange soil. Three explosive packages were deployed, seven traverse gravimeter measurements were taken, and observations were photographed. Samples collected totaled 34 kilograms during the 7 hours and 37 minutes of the second EVA.
The third and final EVA began at 5:26 p.m. EST December 13. Specific sampling objectives were accomplished. Samples - including blue-gray breccias, fine-grained vesicular basalts, crushed anorthositic rocks, and soils - weighed 66 kilograms. Nine traverse gravimeter measurements were made. The surface electrical properties experiment was terminated. Before reentering the LM, the crew selected a breccia rock to dedicate to the nations represented by students visiting the Mission Control Center. A plaque on the landing gear of the lunar module, commemorating all of the Apollo lunar landings, was then unveiled. After 7 hours 15 minutes, the last Apollo EVA on the lunar surface ended. Total time of the three EVAs was approximately 22 hours; the lunar roving vehicle was driven 35 kilometers, and about 115 kilograms of lunar sample material was acquired.
While Cernan and Schmitt were exploring the lunar surface, Evans was conducting numerous scientific activities in the CSM in lunar orbit. In addition to the panoramic camera, the mapping camera, and the laser altimeter, three new scientific instrument module experiments were included in the Apollo 17 orbital science equipment. An ultraviolet spectrometer measured lunar atmospheric density and composition; an infrared radiometer mapped the thermal characteristics of the moon; and a lunar sounder acquired data on the subsurface structure.
Challenger lifted off the moon at 5:55 p.m. EST December 14. Rendezvous with the orbiting CSM and docking were normal. The two astronauts transferred to the CM with samples and equipment and the LM ascent stage was jettisoned at 1:31 a.m. December 15. Its impact on the lunar surface about 1.6 kilometers from the planned target was recorded by four Apollo 17 geophones and the Apollo 12, 14, 15, and 16 seismometers emplaced on the surface. The seismic experiment explosive packages that had been deployed on the moon were detonated as planned and recorded on the geophones.
During the coast back to earth, Evans left the CSM at 3:27 p.m. EST December 17 for a 1-hour 7-minute inflight EVA and retrieved lunar sounder film and panoramic and mapping camera cassettes from the scientific instrument module bay. The crew conducted the Apollo light- flash experiment and operated the infrared radiometer and ultraviolet spectrometer.
Reentry, landing, and recovery were normal. The command module parachuted into the mid-Pacific at 2:25 p.m. EST December 19, 6.4 kilometers from the prime recovery ship, U.S.S. Ticonderoga. The crew was picked up by helicopter and was on board the U.S.S. Ticonderoga 52 minutes after the CM landed. All primary mission objectives had been achieved.
The Proton / Block D launcher put the spacecraft into Earth parking orbit followed by translunar injection. On 12 January 1973, Luna 21 braked into a 90 x 100 km orbit about the Moon. On 13 and 14 January, the perilune was lowered to 16 km altitude. On 15 January after 40 orbits, the braking rocket was fired at 16 km altitude, and the craft went into free fall. At an altitude of 750 meters the main thrusters began firing, slowing the fall until a height of 22 meters was reached. At this point the main thrusters shut down and the secondary thrusters ignited, slowing the fall until the lander was 1.5 meters above the surface, where the engine was cut off. Landing occurred at 23:35 GMT in LeMonnier crater at 25.85 degrees N, 30.45 degrees E. The lander carried a bas relief of Lenin and the Soviet coat-of-arms. After landing, Lunokhod 2 took TV images of the surrounding area, then rolled down a ramp to the surface at 01:14 GMT on 16 January and took pictures of the Luna 21 lander and landing site. It stopped and charged batteries until 18 January, took more images of the lander and landing site, and then set out over the Moon. The rover would run during the lunar day, stopping occasionally to recharge its batteries via the solar panels. At night the rover would hibernate until the next sunrise, heated by the radioactive source. Lunokhod 2 operated for about 4 months, covered 37 km of terrain including hilly upland areas and rilles, and sent back 86 panoramic images and over 80,000 TV pictures. Many mechanical tests of the surface, laser ranging measurements, and other experiments were completed during this time. On June 4 it was announced that the program was completed, leading to speculation that the vehicle probably failed in mid-May or could not be revived after the lunar night of May-June. The Lunokhod was not left in a position such that the laser retroreflector could be used, indicating that the failure may have happened suddenly.
Epic repair mission which brought Skylab into working order. Included such great moments as Conrad being flung through space by the whiplash after heaving on the solar wing just as the debris constraining it gave way; deployment of a lightweight solar shield, developed in Houston in one week, which brought the temperatures down to tolerable levels. With this flight US again took manned spaceflight duration record.
Skylab 2 , consisting of a modified Apollo CSM payload and a Saturn IB launch vehicle, was inserted into Earth orbit approximately 10 minutes after liftoff. The orbit achieved was 357 by 156 km and, during a six-hour period following insertion, four maneuvers placed the CSM into a 424 by 415 km orbit for rendezvous with the Orbital Workshop. Normal rendezvous sequencing led to stationkeeping during the fifth revolution followed by a flyaround inspection of the damage to the OWS. The crew provided a verbal description of the damage in conjunction with 15 minutes of television coverage. The solar array system wing (beam) 2 was completely missing. The solar array system wing (beam) 1 was slightly deployed and was restrained by a fragment of the meteoroid shield. Large sections of the meteoroid shield were missing. Following the flyaround inspection, the CSM soft-docked with the OWS at 5:56 p.m. EDT to plan the next activities. At 6:45 p.m. EDT the CSM undocked and extravehicular activity was initiated to deploy the beam 1 solar array. The attempt failed. Frustration of the crew was compounded when eight attempts were required to achieve hard docking with the OWS. The hard dock was made at 11:50 p.m. EDT, terminating a Skylab 2 first-day crew work period of 22 hours.
Continued maintenance of the Skylab space station and extensive scientific and medical experiments. Installed twinpole solar shield on EVA; performed major inflight maintenance; doubled record for length of time in space. Completed 858 Earth orbits and 1,081 hours of solar and Earth experiments; three EVAs totalled 13 hours, 43 minutes.
The space vehicle, consisting of a modified Apollo command and service module payload on a Saturn IB launch vehicle, was inserted into a 231.3 by 154.7 km orbit. Rendezvous maneuvers were performed during the first five orbits as planned. During the rendezvous, the CSM reaction control system forward firing engine oxidizer valve leaked. The quad was isolated. Station-keeping with the Saturn Workshop began approximately 8 hours after liftoff, with docking being performed about 30 minutes later.
Final Skylab mission; included observation and photography of Comet Kohoutek among numerous experiments. Completed 1,214 Earth orbits and four EVAs totalling 22 hours, 13 minutes. Increased manned space flight time record by 50%. Rebellion by crew against NASA Ground Control overtasking led to none of the crew ever flying again. Biological experiments included two Mummichog fish (Fundulus heteroclitus).
The space vehicle consisted of a modified Apollo CSM and a Saturn IB launch vehicle. All launch phase events were normal, and the CSM was inserted into a 150.1- by 227.08-km orbit. The rendezvous sequence was performed according to the anticipated timeline. Stationkeeping was initiated about seven and one-half hours after liftoff, and hard docking was achieved about 30 minutes later following two unsuccessful docking attempts. Planned duration of the mission was 56 days, with the option of extending it to a maximum of 84 days.
Heavy lunar orbiter. Scientific investigation of the moon and circumlunar space from the orbit of an artificial satellite of the Moon, which was begun by the Luna 19 automatic station. The spacecraft carried imaging cameras and also had the objectives of studying the Moon's magnetic field, surface gamma ray emissions and composition of lunar surface rocks, and the gravitational field, as well as micrometeoroids and cosmic rays. Luna 22 braked into a circular lunar orbit on 2 June 1974. The spacecraft made many orbit adjustments over its 18 month lifetime in order to optimise the operation of various experiments, lowering the perilune to as low as 25 km. Manoeuvring fuel was exhausted on 2 September and the mission was ended in early November. Parameters are for lunar orbit.
Failed lunar soil return mission. After successfully entering earth orbit, flying to the moon, entering lunar orbit, and descending toward the surface, the spacecraft was damaged during landing in Mare Crisium (Sea of Crises). The sample collecting apparatus could not operate and no samples were returned. The lander continued transmissions for three days after landing. In 1976, Luna 24 landed several hundred meters away and successfully returned samples. Parameters are for lunar orbit.
This flight marked the culmination of the Apollo-Soyuz Test Project, a post-moon race 'goodwill' flight to test a common docking system for space rescue. 15 July 1975 began with the flawless launch of Soyuz 19. Apollo followed right on schedule. Despite a stowaway - a 'super Florida mosquito' - the crew accomplished a series of rendezvous manoeuvres over the next day resulting in rendezvous with Soyuz 19. At 11:10 on 17 July the two spacecraft docked. The crew members rotated between the two spacecraft and conducted various mainly ceremonial activities. Stafford spent 7 hours, 10 minutes aboard Soyuz, Brand 6:30, and Slayton 1:35. Leonov was on the American side for 5 hours, 43 minutes, while Kubasov spent 4:57 in the command and docking modules.
After being docked for nearly 44 hours, Apollo and Soyuz parted for the first time and were station-keeping at a range of 50 meters. The Apollo crew placed its craft between Soyuz and the sun so that the diameter of the service module formed a disk which blocked out the sun. This artificial solar eclipse, as viewed from Soyuz, permitted photography of the solar corona. After this experiment Apollo moved towards Soyuz for the second docking.
Three hours later Apollo and Soyuz undocked for the second and final time. The spacecraft moved to a 40 m station-keeping distance so that the ultraviolet absorption (UVA MA-059) experiment could be performed. This was an effort to more precisely determine the quantities of atomic oxygen and atomic nitrogen existing at such altitudes. Apollo, flying out of plane around Soyuz, projected monochromatic laser-like beams of light to retro-reflectors mounted on Soyuz. On the 150-meter phase of the experiment, light from a Soyuz port led to a misalignment of the spectrometer, but on the 500-meter pass excellent data were received; on the 1,000-meter pass satisfactory results were also obtained.
With all the joint flight activities completed, the ships went on their separate ways. On 20 July the Apollo crew conducted earth observation, experiments in the multipurpose furnace (MA-010), extreme ultraviolet surveying (MA-083), crystal growth (MA-085), and helium glow (MA-088). On 21 July Soyuz 19 landed safely in Kazakhstan. Apollo continued in orbit on 22-23 July to conduct 23 independent experiments - including a doppler tracking experiment (MA-089) and geodynamics experiment (MA-128) designed to verify which of two techniques would be best suited for studying plate tectonics from earth orbit.
After donning their space suits, the crew vented the command module tunnel and jettisoned the docking module. The docking module would continue on its way until it re-entered the earth's atmosphere and burned up in August 1975.
Lunar Sample Return. Landed on Moon 18 Aug 1976 at 02:00:00 GMT, Latitude 12.25 N, Longitude 62.20 E - Mare Crisium (Sea of Crisis). The last of the Luna series of spacecraft, Luna 24 was the third Soviet mission to retrieve lunar ground samples (the first two were returned by Luna 16 and 20). The mission successfully returned 170 grams of lunar samples to the Earth on 22 August 1976.
MUSES-A was renamed Hiten after launch. It developed of lunar swingby techniques for future missions and ejected a lunar orbiter. Launching organization ISAS. On 1990 Jan 25: Period 6.665 days, inclination 30.63 deg, 262.49 x 286182.72 km. On 1992 Feb 17: Period 4.53 days, inclination 38.90 deg, perilune 2289.67 km, apolune 49013.93 km.
SDIO sensor technology demonstration; mapped lunar surface; planned asteroid flyby cancelled due to spacecraft failure. After two Earth flybys, lunar insertion was achieved on February 21. Lunar mapping took place over approximately two months, in two parts. The first part consisted of a 5 hour elliptical polar orbit with a perilune of about 400 km at 28 degrees S latitude. After one month of mapping the orbit was rotated to a perilune of 29 degrees N latitude, where it remained for one more month. This allowed global imaging as well as altimetry coverage from 60 degrees S to 60 degrees N. After leaving lunar orbit, a malfunction in one of the on-board computers on May 7 at 14:39 UTC (9:39 AM EST) caused a thruster to fire until it had used up all of its fuel, leaving the spacecraft spinning at about 80 RPM with no spin control. This made the planned continuation of the mission, a flyby of the near-Earth asteroid Geographos, impossible. The spacecraft remained in geocentric orbit and continued testing the spacecraft components until the end of mission. Additional Details: here....
The Lunar Prospector was designed for a low polar orbit investigation of the Moon, including mapping of surface composition and possible polar ice deposits, measurements of magnetic and gravity fields, and study of lunar outgassing events. Data from the 1 to 3 year mission will allow construction of a detailed map of the surface composition of the Moon, and will improve understanding of the origin, evolution, current state, and resources of the Moon. After launch, the Lunar Prospector had a 105 hour cruise to the Moon, followed by insertion into a near-circular 100 km altitude lunar polar orbit with a period of 118 minutes. The nominal mission duration was one year.
Another of a series of new lunar probes to be launched in the next few years by China, India, Japan, USA, and Europe. Selene was dubbed Kaguya, a Japanese moon goddess, after launch. It included an HDTV camera. In lunar orbit two subsatellites would be released to provide continuous communications as well as better characterize the moon's gravity field. By 30 September Kaguya was in a 2243 km x 378,132 km lunar transfer orbit. On 3 October at 21:00 GMT it entered its initial 101 km x 11741 km x 95 deg lunar orbit. It then began maneuvers to enter its operational 100 km circular orbit, releasing the subsatellites on 9 and 12 October.
China's first unmanned lunar/planetary probe. The initial orbit of 221 x 50,602 km x 31.0 deg was raised to a translunar trajectory by 31 October in a serious of spacecraft engine burns. The spacecraft entered a 210 km x 8600 km lunar orbit at 03:37 GMT on 5 November.
India's first lunar probe. Placed by the PSLV into indicated orbit. It then used its own engines for translunar injection. It entered an initial lunar orbit of 504 km x 7502 km x 90.0 deg on November 8, maneuvering to the planned 100 x 100 km orbit by November 12.
Moon Impact Probe, released from Chandraayan-1 in lunar orbit on November 14 at 14:36 GMT. The MIP fired its own deorbit motor and impacted the moon at 15:01 GMT, near the Shackleton Crater at the south pole. The impact plume was scanned by the Chandraayan-1 orbiter and ground-based telescopes for evidence of lunar polar ice.
Lunar impact probe, designed to detect ice in the lunar polar regions. LCROSS and the Centaur stage flew 3270 km from the Moon at 1030 GMT on June 23 and were hurled to a 5820,00 km apogee. On 9 October LCROSS separated from the Centaur. The Centaur impacted in Cabeus crater at 11:31 GMT on 9 October followed by LCROSS at 11:35 GMT. The impacts did not produce the expected spectacular impact plume as expected. However later data reduction did show significant amounts of water.
China's second lunar orbiter, retasked to an interplanetary explorer. Entered a 119 x 8599 km lunar orbit on 1 October at 03:14 GMT. By 9 October it had maneuvered to its operational 100-km circular lunar orbit. On 9 June 2011, its lunar mission complete, it was maneuvered out of lunar orbit, and arrived at the Sun-Earth L2 Lagrangian point on 25 August 2011. It then followed the interplanetary gravitational superhighway to a 1.02 AU x 1.03 AU x 0.2 deg solar orbit, leading to a flyby of the asteroid Toutatis on 13 December 2012 at 08:30 GMT. It came within 3.2 km of the planetoid and returned detailed images.
NASA dual-spacecraft lunar gravity mapping mission. Grail A was deployed from the Delta upper stage at 14:28 GMT and Grail B at 14:37 GMT. The spacecraft reached the Sun-Earth L1 point 1.5 million km from Earth and then fell back towards the Moon. Lunar orbit insertion was at 01:00 GMt on 1 January 2012 for Grail A, and at 02:00 GMT on 2 January for Grail B. After completing their mission, the satellites were intentionally crashed onto the lunar surface at 75.62 deg N / 26.63 deg W on 17 December 2012 at 22:29 GMT.
NASA Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Enviroment Explorer mission. It carried an ultraviolet spectrometer, a lunar dust experiment, a neutral mass spectrometer, and a laser communications experiment. An Aerojet Rocketdyne/Redmond R-4D-15 HiPAT 455N thruster, with 135 kg of propellant, was used for lunar orbit insertion and orbit maneuvers. After three perigee boost maneuvers it entered lunar gravitational sphere of influence on 6 October at 18:02 GMT. The lunar orbit insertion burn at 10:57 GMT placed LADEE in a 24-hour-period 269 km x 15,772 km selenocentric orbit inclined 157 deg to the lunar equator. Two further burns, the last on 12 October at 10:40 GMT, placed the spacecraft in a 248 km x 251 km orbit. The spacecraft was lowered into an orbit with a 2 km perilune in early April 2014, and it impacted the lunar farside between 04:30 and 05:22 GMT April 18, possibly on the east rim of the crater Sundman V at 12N 93W, north of Mare Orientale.
Unmanned lunar rover. Boosted into a 210 x 389 109 km x 28.5 deg lunar transfer orbit. On December 6 at 09:50 GMT the spacecraft entered a 100 km polar orbit around the Moon. The 3,800 kg wet / 1,200 kg at landing spacecraft had a descent engine and landing legs, and a variety of lunar surface science experiments. It also carried Yutu, a small 140 kg rover. On December 10 at 13:20 GMT the orbit was lowered from 100 x 100 to 15 x 100 km. At 12:59:52 GMT December 14, near perilune, the descent engine was turned on to decelerate the probe and fly it down to the surface. Chang'e-3 touched down at 13:11:18 GMT, at 19.51W 44.12N, about 43 km south of crater Laplace F in the Mare Imbrium. This was the first lunar soft landing since the USSR's Luna-24 in 1976.
Lunar rover delivered to lunar surface by Chang'e-3. At 20:35 GMT on December 14 the `Yutu hao' (`rabbit') rover drove down the Chang'e-3 ramp onto the lunar surface. Yutu and Chang'e-3 are both solar powered, but also carry small Pu-238 radioactive heater units to keep systems from freezing during the 14-day lunar night. Yutu had six wheels.
Chang'e-5 Flight Test Vehicle, also called the Reentry Return Flight Test Mission. The spacecraft was launched into a 209 km x 413,000 km lunar transfer orbit. The vehicle was a precursor to the planned Chang'e-5 mission and consisted of a satellite bus similar to the Chang'e-2 lunar orbiter, topped with a reentry vehicle, a subscale version of the Shenzhou landing module. The craft made an 8-day flight to loop around the Moon and return to Earth. It passed 11,300 km from the Moon on October 27 and returned to Earth on October 31. The descent capsule separated from the main vehicle at 21:53 GMT and landed north of Hohhot at 22:42 GMT. The service module made a burn at 21:56 GMT to avoid reentry and swung past the Earth to head out towards the Earth-Moon L2 point. Stationed at L2 Lagrangian point.