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Venera 7: The First Landing on Another Planet

15 Dec 2020, 14:40 UTC
Venera 7: The First Landing on Another Planet Roskosmos

During the summer of 1990, I got a chance to check out a large exhibit of Soviet space hardware at the Boston Museum of Science (see “The Soviet Space Exhibit at the Boston Museum of Science – July 1990”). Tucked away among the displays of Phobos, Vega and other impressive pieces of planetary mission hardware was a comparatively small, egg-shaped probe painted white with “CCCP” (the Cyrillic initials for the USSR) emblazoned in red letters across the exterior. What was on display was an engineering model of Venera 7 which made the first landing on the surface of another planet on December 15, 1970 (almost 20 years before this exhibit). The culmination of over a decade’s worth of work by Soviet engineers and scientists, this historic landing was the beginning of a decade and a half of increasingly ambitious (and largely successful) missions to study our sister planet, Venus.

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