Venera 14

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Venera 14
1982 CPA 5278.jpg
Seal of Venera 14
Mission typeVenus flyby / lander
OperatorSoviet Academy of Sciences
COSPAR ID1981-110A
SATCAT no.12939
Mission durationTravel: 4 months and 1 day
Lander: 57 minutes
Spacecraft properties
Spacecraft type4V-1 No. 761
ManufacturerNPO Lavochkin
Launch mass4,394.5 kg (9,688 lb)
Landing mass760 kilograms (1,680 lb)
Dry mass1,632.71 kilograms (3,599.5 lb)
Dimensions2.7 m × 2.3 m × 5.7 m (8.9 ft × 7.5 ft × 18.7 ft)
Start of mission
Launch dateNovember 4, 1981 (1981-11-04), 05:31:00 UTC
Launch siteBaikonur 200/39
End of mission
Last contactlander: 5 March 5, 1982 / carrier: 9 April 1983[1]
Orbital parameters
Reference systemHeliocentric
Perihelion altitude0.71 Astronomical units
Aphelion altitude0.99 Astronomical units
Inclination2.3 degrees
Period286 days
Flyby of Venus
Spacecraft componentVenera 14 flight platform
Closest approachMarch 3, 1982
Distance26,050 km (16,190 mi)
Venus lander
Spacecraft componentVenera 14 descent craft
Landing dateMarch 5, 1982, 07:00:10 UTC
Landing site13°15′S 310°0′E / 13.250°S 310.000°E / -13.250; 310.000 (east of Phoebe Regio)

Venera 14 (Russian: Венера-14 meaning Venus 14) was a probe in the Soviet Venera program for the exploration of Venus.

Venera 14 was identical to the Venera 13 spacecraft and built to take advantage of the 1981 Venus launch opportunity and launched 5 days apart. It was launched on 4 November 1981 at 05:31:00 UTC and Venera 13 on 30 October 1981 at 06:04:00 UTC, both with an on-orbit dry mass of 760 kg (1,680 lb).


Each mission consisted of a cruise stage and an attached descent craft.

Cruise stage[edit]

As the cruise stage flew by Venus the bus acted as a data relay for the lander and then continued on into a heliocentric orbit. It was equipped with a gamma-ray spectrometer, UV grating monochromator, electron and proton spectrometers, gamma-ray burst detectors, solar wind plasma detectors, and two-frequency transmitters which made measurements before, during, and after the Venus flyby.

Descent lander[edit]

The descent lander was a hermetically sealed pressure vessel, which contained most of the instrumentation and electronics, mounted on a ring-shaped landing platform and topped by an antenna. The design was similar to the earlier Venera 9–12 landers. It carried instruments to take chemical and isotopic measurements, monitor the spectrum of scattered sunlight, and record electric discharges during its descent phase through the Venusian atmosphere. The spacecraft utilized a camera system, an X-ray fluorescence spectrometer, a screw drill and surface sampler, a dynamic penetrometer, and a seismometer to conduct investigations on the surface.

List of lander experiments and instruments:[2]


After launch and a four-month cruise to Venus the descent vehicle separated from the bus and plunged into the Venusian atmosphere on March 5, 1982. After entering the atmosphere a parachute was deployed. At an altitude of about 50 km the parachute was released and simple airbraking was used the rest of the way to the surface.

Venera 14 landed at 13°15′S 310°00′E / 13.25°S 310°E / -13.25; 310 (about 950 km southwest of Venera 13) near the eastern flank of Phoebe Regio on a basaltic plain.

The lander had cameras to take pictures of the ground and spring-loaded arms to measure the compressibility of the soil. The quartz camera windows were covered by lens caps which popped off after descent. Venera 14, however, ended up measuring the compressibility of the lens cap, which landed right where the probe was to measure the soil.[3]

The composition of the surface samples was determined by the X-ray fluorescence spectrometer, showing it to be similar to oceanic tholeiitic basalts.

Like its predecessor, the lander was equipped with acoustic microphones designed to record atmospheric noise which was later used in calculations to determine the average wind speed on the Venusian surface. Later analysis of said data determined the average wind speed at the surface to be between 0.3 and 0.5 m/s.[4]

The lander functioned for at least 57 minutes (the planned design life was 32 minutes) in an environment with a temperature of 465 °C (869 °F) and a pressure of 94 Earth atmospheres (9.5 MPa). Telemetry had been maintained by means of the orbiting bus that carried signals from the lander's uplink antenna.[5]

Fictional references[edit]

Image processing[edit]

American researcher Don P. Mitchell has processed the color images from Venera 13 and 14 using the raw original data.[6] The new images are based on a more accurate linearization of the original 9-bit logarithmic pixel encoding.

See also[edit]


  1. ^
  2. ^ Mitchell, Don P. "Drilling into the Surface of Venus". Retrieved 13 April 2013.
  3. ^ Images available at
  4. ^ Ksanfomaliti, L. V., Goroshkova, N. V., Naraeva, M. K., Suvorov, A. P., Khondryev, V. K., & Yabrova, L. V., , (1982-05-17). "Acoustic Measurements of the Wind Velocity at the VENERA-13 and VENERA-14 Landing Sites". Soviet Astronomy Letters. 8: 227-229.CS1 maint: extra punctuation (link) CS1 maint: uses authors parameter (link)
  5. ^ NASA Space Science Data Coordinated Archive
  6. ^ The versions currently available on Mitchell's website

External links[edit]