Talk:Timeline of Solar System exploration

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First lunar rover[edit]

Suggest adding comment in bold for Apollo 15 - First Lunar Rover. This was a significant first in lunar exploration as it allowed much greater range of manned exploration. Tony (talk) 20:49, 8 September 2009 (UTC)

Use Solar System[edit]

This page should probably be move to something like Timeline of solar system exploration as it is not limited to actual planets. It already includes comets, the sun, etc. Rmhermen 00:32, Mar 25, 2004 (UTC)

Cancelled missions[edit]

Do missions that have been cancelled really belong in this topic (either in the "past" or "planned" section)? JTN 19:14, 2004 Aug 10 (UTC)

  • No. Hektor 14:06, 31 December 2006 (UTC)
    • Yes Rmhermen 20:20, 31 December 2006 (UTC)
  • I am removing the cancelled missions (but not failures) since they clutter the timeline with speculative proposals that achieved nothing. Eluchil404 14:51, 28 February 2007 (UTC)
    • Thanks Eluchil404. Personally, I don't mind if "canceled" notices are left up for a little while after a mission is canceled--readers are likely to have not heard the news, so it provides useful information. But I definitely agree that they shouldn't be left around forever, unless somebody wants to start a Timeline of proposed Solar System exploration. vasi 09:25, 13 March 2007 (UTC)


Are Chinese missions included?

Yes Rmhermen 15:09, 4 February 2006 (UTC)


I reverted the additional of nationalities and national firsts added by a recent anon editor. This is already covered in the similar list List of planetary probes which is organized by target instead of by time sequence. I don't think the origin needs to be duplicated and I especially disagree with the national firsts. Opinions? Rmhermen 15:09, 4 February 2006 (UTC)

the 1940s[edit]

I put the date of the first postwar V2 launch to get past 100 miles in the timeline. You've got to start somewhere, and the first verified unmaned spaceflight is as good as any. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 16:13, 16 December 2006 (UTC).

Except that wasn't the first. Rmhermen 04:26, 17 December 2006 (UTC)
And even if it was the first, it certainly wasn't "Solar System exploration", I think I'll be removing them if that's alright with everyone. vasi 09:33, 13 March 2007 (UTC)
I concur. Have removed (again, I guess?) --Mtu (talk) 23:45, 30 January 2017 (UTC)

More iffy missions[edit]

I'd appreciate thoughts on whether the following items should be left in or not:

  • The early Earth orbiters (Sputnik 1 through Vanguard 1): These were definitely "exploratory", perhaps not so much "solar system". I don't think we want to include all Earth orbiters on this timeline, so we could be consistent and exclude them all. Or maybe include only the first (Sputnik) because it provided such an impetus for further progress?
  • Vostok 1 (Gagarin): Again, it's not really consistent but I don't terribly mind leaving it in because of the historical importance.
  • Skylab: I don't see any way we can include Skylab but not Salyut or Mir. I favor leaving all space stations off the list (well, until we start seeing some outside Earth orbit).
  • Space telescopes (Hubble and Kepler): Hubble certainly has contributed to our knowledge about the Solar System, but I'm not sure if I'd call it "exploration". Spitzer is outside of Earth orbit and has also been used for viewing Solar System objects, so if we include Hubble we also should include it. Kepler and the Terrestrial Planet Finder don't really have much to do with the solar system aside from being in it, so I'd rather leave those out. Not sure what to do about JWST...

vasi 09:56, 13 March 2007 (UTC)

I'd say keep everything with a scientific payload that made a notable first in terms of area directly accessed (100km sub orbital, Earth orbit, etc). Human spaceflight should probably follow a similar pattern (i.e. Vostok 1, Apollo 8, Apollo 11) or be cut altogether. Space telescopes should probably be cut as outside the scope of the article unless we want to include notable telescopic discoveries generally since their location is of secondary importance when it comes to exploration. In any event JWST should be treated the same as Hubble. Eluchil404 12:11, 15 March 2007 (UTC)


Mars 2 wasn't the first Mars orbiter. Mariner 9 got there before Mars 2. Shrewpelt 17:39, 1 September 2007 (UTC)

The Vikings[edit]

This totally ignores the Vikings progress. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Shark113 (talkcontribs) 00:51, 8 May 2008 (UTC)

Viking 1 and 2 are listed but they were not the first Mars landers. Rmhermen (talk) 13:30, 10 June 2008 (UTC)

Venera 1964B[edit]

i can't find any reference to Venera 1964B on the Venera page, would someone like to add it to that page or should there be no link at all?--Lord Aro (talk) 12:41, 14 May 2010 (UTC)

Failed missions?[edit]

Question: Should missions that failed at launch (launch failures) be included? I'm inclined towards the 'no'...--Lord Aro (talk) 13:49, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

They should. If the effort and the try was made, they deserve to be in the list since in the moment they launch, they are missions. (talk) 16:37, 9 March 2011 (UTC)
Seems like Philadelphia 2009 has gone and said 'no', and just got rid of all of them --- Lord Aro (talk page) 09:32, 2 June 2011 (UTC)

Voyager 1[edit]

The description for Voyager 1 states that it was the first to leave the Solar System, but on the Voyager webpage from JPL it says that it has not technically left the Solar System, merely passed all the planets in the System ( Should this be corrected? ThatKidFromWhere (talk) 15:02, 13 March 2011 (UTC)

I vote yes, change it to something like 'First to leave the planets' or something like that... --Lord Aro (talk) 11:13, 14 March 2011 (UTC)
Agreed as well. Xionbox 12:15, 14 March 2011 (UTC)


All spacecraft have a national flag, showing which nation launched them, but half appear named after the nation eg "Chinese lunar rover" and half just contain mission type "lunar rover" - I'll update to make consistant Philadelphia 2009 (talk) 11:51, 30 May 2011 (UTC)

Space stations?[edit]

Should space stations be included? I'm heading towards the 'no' as they are Earth orbiters, not 'exploring the solar system' as this page is for. (I think the first space station should stay though) - Lord Aro (talk page) 09:32, 2 June 2011 (UTC)

Space Shuttle?[edit]

should the notable space shuttle missions be included? I'm thinking first and last should - Lord Aro (talk page) 10:36, 14 July 2011 (UTC)

Mars One[edit]

Someone needs to include something in the Planned or Scheduled section of the article about Mars One.

From the website:

Human settlement of Mars in 2023[edit]

Mars One will establish the first human settlement on Mars in 2023. A habitable settlement will be waiting for the settlers when they land. The settlement will support them while they live and work on Mars the rest of their lives. Every two years after 2023 an additional crew will arrive, such that there is a real living, growing community on Mars. Mars One has created a technical plan for this mission that is as simple as possible. For every component of the mission we have identified at least one potential supplier. Mars One invites you to join us in this next giant leap for mankind!

--Kluutak (talk) 21:00, 3 August 2012 (UTC)

First question in their FAQ: Is this for real? Not real encouraging. It sounds like they are trying to raise money to study how much money they will need before starting designing. This looks pretty far away. Rmhermen (talk) 23:42, 3 August 2012 (UTC)

Private Mars missions[edit]

Mars One is looking more promising now, and their website is also much better. It certainly seems like they have a good chance of making it work, it's really a matter of funding. They have a 2018 orbiter, 2020 rover, and 2025 human landings planned. (

SpaceX also has Mars colony plans that are much moe likely than Mars One. Elon Musk says he could land the first people on Mars in 2026, and if that doesn't work, an early 2030s time-frame is very likely. This article should at least mention one of these plans. Smt98 (talk) 02:35, 13 November 2014 (UTC)

Timeline visualization[edit]

Added a timeline chart in the gallery section (don't know if it's the right one). Maybe the picture needs to be tweaked, every suggestion is appreciated. Don't know if this is the correct page (there is also "Discovery and exploration of the Solar System" and "List of Solar System probes").FraPado86 (talk) 15:18, 1 December 2014 (UTC)

I don't see a number of features explained anywhere. Why are some listed in white, others black letters in white boxes? What are the solid line/dotted lines? What are the balls? Why are some two different colors? More explanation will add more value to the image. Rmhermen (talk) 02:08, 2 December 2014 (UTC)

Thanks, i will try to implement the picture with a better legend right away. FraPado86 (talk) 11:08, 2 December 2014 (UTC)

Added more explanation below the picture and changed its position in the page since I think it doesn't belong to the gallery section and I guess it would be good as an introductory image. I tried to respect all the guidelines that are given in the list of mission, and if anybody finds out that some mission is missing or some other shouldn't be there it can be edited. FraPado86 (talk) 14:45, 3 December 2014 (UTC)

Merge proposal?[edit]

What's up with that merge proposal from May 2014? Moving content from Space probe#Some notable probes into this article? I can't see any discussion going on nor any reasoning for that change. Well... for what it's worth: I no Disagree , it'd basically mean permanently removing an entire section, while it is quite valuable highlighting some notable probes. That said though: I think this section in space probe article needs an improvements: at a very least adding {{see also|Timeline of Solar System exploration}} and altering it's name to one that's more... serious. SkywalkerPL (talk) 08:25, 1 August 2015 (UTC)

I have removed the undiscussed templates. Cleanup of space probe doesn't need to involve this page. Rmhermen (talk) 15:56, 1 August 2015 (UTC)

The image from the spacial timeline is confusing..[edit]

Why do Pioneers 10 and 11 appear on the "interplanetary" space section, and the Voyagers 1 and 2 on Jupiter, when all 4 ships where intended for interplanetery space at the end, and first thrown to fly-by Jupiter for gravity assists (and the Voyagers and Pioneer 11 fly-by Saturn, and Voyager 2 Uranus and Nepture too..).

Why is no proper section for Uranus or Neptune, and there is a section for Pluto??

That graph is awesome for 1-objective only missions. For all of the moon mission or others it is AWESOME and very detailed, but for multi-flyby's missions like Voyagers, Pioneers and even New Horizons it is just terrible. Also for example Rosetta did in total 3 gravity assist to Earth, one to Mars, fly-by'ed 2 asteroids and ended up at the comet, where is all that information?

That graph could be excellent with horizontal lines and those multi-celestial body missions getting on every section where they belong. For example Voyager 2 starting on Jupiter, then moving to Saturn section, then moving to Uranus section, then moving to Neptune section, and ending up on Interplanetary Space. There should be also an Interestelar section for Voyager 1.

Also if there's a section for Titan, why there isn't one for the rest of moons which had been fly-by'd also? the fact that huygens landed there isn't enough to justify a section for itself and not the others.

Don't consider me wrong, that graph is awesome for the most part, but it should re-made the sections in order to reflect the missions with multi-visits, add new sections for the proper missions to planets, order them properly (pluto shouldn't be the last after comets and interplanetary space..) and if needed separate it in 2 versions for the moons to get extremely good detailed graph of every single fly-by :)

EDIT: There is also too much blue stuff and it's very hard to diferentiate all those sections using closely shades of blue for a normal person.

— Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:50, 4 September 2015 (UTC)

Agree You raised several very good concerns. I agree with pretty much everything. If I may add something:
IMHO there should be no separate group for Pluto, but rather one for Dwarf planets, including Vesta and Ceres.
In 1920x1080 this image is very difficult to read, while the color-coding along with legend spread on top and bottom of the graph doesn't make it any easier (there's really a lot of scrolling up/down and left/right trying to look up any information, as the symbols along with colors rarely make it intuitive). Perhaps add a text label with the meaning of each color every 10 years? Also make sure that the colors on a legend are used in exactly the same order they are used for the graph backgrounds, from left to right, because right now they... seem to be in a chronological order by the fill colors? That really adds to the confusion, especially with the shades of blue, as already pointed out. I have quite a bit of knowledge on a topic and still was really confused by what information this graph is trying to convey.
Looks like it really needs some change to the logic behind it, as it seems to have a lot of problems accommodating to the missions that had more than one body as a primary objective. To give you another example on top of what mentioned: According to the graph Mariner 10 is a Venus flyby mission that begun it's mission with Mercury as a secondary objective (what makes no sense to begin with), while according to the article - both Venus and Mercury were a primary objectives, while interplanetary space would perfectly fit as a secondary objective.
Chang'e 2 is marked as a failure?
SkywalkerPL (talk) 12:10, 5 September 2015 (UTC)

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