Venera 6

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Venera 6
The Soviet Union 1969 CPA 3821 stamp (Space Probe, Space Capsule and Orbits).jpg
Venera 6
Mission type Venus atmospheric probe
Operator Lavochkin
COSPAR ID 1969-002A[1]
SATCAT no. 3648
Mission duration Travel: 127 days
Atmosphere: 51 minutes
Spacecraft properties
Spacecraft 2V (V-69) No.331
Manufacturer Lavochkin
Launch mass 1,130 kg (2,490 lb)
Dry mass 410 kg (900 lb)
Start of mission
Launch date 10 January 1969, 05:51:52 (1969-01-10UTC05:51:52Z) UTC
Rocket Molniya 8K78M
Launch site Baikonur 1/5
End of mission
Last contact 17 May 1969 (1969-05-18)
Orbital parameters
Reference system Heliocentric
Perihelion 0.71 AU
Apohelion 0.98 AU
Inclination 2.0°
Period 285 days
Venus atmospheric probe
Atmospheric entry 17 May 1969, 06:05 UT
Impact site 5°S 23°E / 5°S 23°E / -5; 23
(10-12 km altitude)

Venera 6 (Russian: Венера-6 meaning Venus 6), or 2V (V-69) No.331, was a Soviet spacecraft, launched towards Venus to obtain atmospheric data. It had an on-orbit dry mass of 1,130 kg (2,490 lb).

The spacecraft was very similar to Venera 4 although it was of a stronger design. When the atmosphere of Venus was approached, a capsule with a mass of 405 kilograms (893 lb) was jettisoned from the main spacecraft. This capsule contained scientific instruments.

During descent towards the surface of Venus, a parachute opened to slow the rate of descent. For 51 minutes on May 17, 1969, while the capsule was suspended from the parachute, data from the Venusian atmosphere were returned. It landed at 5°S 23°E / 5°S 23°E / -5; 23.

The spacecraft also carried a medallion bearing the State Coat of Arms of the Soviet Union and a bas-relief of Lenin to the night side of Venus.

Given the results from Venera 4, the Venera 5 and Venera 6 landers contained new chemical analysis experiments tuned to provide more precise measurements of the atmosphere's components. Knowing the atmosphere was extremely dense, the parachutes were also made smaller so the capsule would reach its full crush depth before running out of power (as Venera-4 had done).

Instruments[edit]

Spaceship[edit]

  • Instrument COP-18-3M for the study of cosmic particle streams;
  • LA-2U device for determining the distribution of oxygen and hydrogen in the planet's atmosphere.

Lander[edit]

  • Pressure sensors MDDA-A type to measure atmospheric pressure in the range from 100 to 30,000 mm Hg Art. (0,13-40 atm);
  • G-8 gas analyzers to determine the chemical composition of the atmosphere;
  • VIP device for determining the density of the atmosphere at an altitude;
  • FD-69 for illumination measurements in the atmosphere;
  • EC-164D to determine the temperature at the height of the atmosphere.

Mission[edit]

Venera 6 was launched into an Earth parking orbit on 10 January 1969 at 05:51:52 UT and then from a Tyazheliy Sputnik (69-002C) towards Venus. After a mid-course maneuver on 16 March the Venera 6 probe was released on 17 May 1969, 25,000 kilometers (16,000 mi) from the planet.

It entered the nightside atmosphere at 06:05 UT and deployed the parachute. The probe sent back readouts every 45 seconds for 51 minutes and ceased operation due the temperature and pressure effects at roughly 10 to 12 km altitude. The photometer failed to operate, but the atmosphere was sampled at 2 bar and 10 bar pressures.[1]

See also[edit]

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b NASA, Goddard Space Flight Center. "Venera 6". NSSDC Master Catalog. Retrieved July 3, 2017.