Venera programme

Venera 7

Venera programme

The Soviet Union sent a series of 16 unmanned Venera probes to study Venus, starting in 1961.

Venera 4, 5 and 6 surveyed the atmosphere, but were destroyed by the planet's extreme pressures and temperatures before they reached the surface.

In 1970 Venera 7 became the first probe to land on another planet and transmitted pressure and temperature data for 23 minutes.

In 1975 Venera 9 and 10 returned the first close-up photographs taken from the surface Venus.

Photo: Venera 7 (NASA)

Watch and listen to clips from past programmes TV clips [5]

Venera 7

About Venera programme

Soviet probes battle extreme conditions on Venus.

About Venera programme

The Venera (Russian: Венера, pronounced [vʲɪˈnʲerə]) series probes were developed by the Soviet Union between 1961 and 1984 to gather data from Venus, Venera being the Russian name for Venus. As with some of the Soviet Union's other planetary probes, the later versions were launched in pairs with a second vehicle being launched soon after the first of the pair.

Ten probes from the Venera series successfully landed on Venus and transmitted data from the surface, including the two Vega program and Venera-Halley probes. In addition, thirteen Venera probes successfully transmitted data from the atmosphere of Venus.

Among the other results, probes of the series became the first man-made devices to enter the atmosphere of another planet (Venera 4' on October 18, 1967), to make a soft landing on another planet (Venera 7 on December 15, 1970), to return images from the planetary surface (Venera 9 on June 8, 1975), and to perform high-resolution radar mapping studies of Venus (Venera 15 on June 2, 1983). The entire series could be considered highly successful. Unfortunately the surface conditions on Venus are extreme, therefore the probes only survived on the surface for a duration of 23 minutes (initial probes) up to about two hours (final probes).

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