|astronautix.com||Chronology - 1970 - Quarter 3|
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High resolution photo reconnaissance mission. References: 279 .
Heavily instrumented suborbital flight to provide data to root out causes of continuing launch vehicle failures. Heavy mass model of an unspecified spacecraft used to simulate payload.. References: 5 , 67 , 274 .
Venera 7 was launched from an earth parking orbit towards Venus to study the Venusian atmosphere and other phenomena of the planet. Venera 7 entered the atmosphere of Venus on December 15, 1970, and a landing capsule was jettisoned. After aerodynamic braking, a parachute system was deployed. The capsule antenna was extended, and signals were returned for 35 min. Another 23 min of very weak signals were received after the spacecraft landed on Venus. The capsule was the first man-made object to return data after landing on another planet. References: 1 , 2 , 5 , 6 , 64 , 296 .
MSFC issued a modification to an existing contract with McDonnell Douglas for Skylab Program work. The modification would pay for the conversion of the original OWS to be launched by a Saturn IB booster to a completely outfitted Workshop to be launched by a Saturn V. Originally the plan was to launch the second stage (S IVB) of a Saturn IB into Earth orbit. The S-IVB would be filled with fuel so that it could propel itself into orbit. Astronauts launched by a second Saturn IB would then rendezvous with the empty stage and convert it into living and working quarters. A decision was made 21 May 1969 to outfit an S-IVB on the ground and launch it ready for use on a Saturn V.
NASA was canceling Apollo missions 15 and 19 because of congressional cuts in FY 1971 NASA appropriations, Administrator Thomas O. Paine announced in a Washington news conference. Remaining missions would be designated Apollo 14 through 17. The Apollo budget would be reduced by $42.1 million, to $914.4 million - within total NASA $3.27 billion. References: 16 .
Lunar Sample Return. Landed on Moon 20 September 1970 at 05:18:00 GMT, Latitude 0.68 S, Longitude 56.30 E - Mare Fecunditatis. Luna 16 was launched toward the Moon from a preliminary earth orbit and entered a lunar orbit on September 17, 1970. On September 20, the spacecraft soft landed on the lunar surface as planned. The spacecraft was equipped with an extendable arm with a drilling rig for the collection of a lunar soil sample. After 26 hours and 25 minutes on the lunar surface, the ascent stage, with a hermetically sealed soil sample container, left the lunar surface carrying 100 grams of collected material. It landed in the Soviet Union on September 24, 1970. The lower stage of Luna 16 remained on the lunar surface and continued transmission of lunar temperature and radiation data. Parameters are for lunar orbit. References: 1 , 2 , 5 , 6 , 67 , 274 , 296 .
An Orbital Workshop critical design review was conducted at McDonnell Douglas, Huntington Beach. Personnel from NASA Hq, MSC, KSC, MSFC, and McDonnell Douglas participated. The review was conducted by panels representing six different technological disciplines. Areas of potential major impact included the urine system, microbiological contamination, the water storage system, and the OWS window vibration test.
George M Low became Acting Administrator of NASA until a successor could be chosen to replace Thomas O. Paine who had resigned to return to General Electric Company. Low served in that capacity until the appointment of James C. Fletcher as NASA Administrator in March 1971.
Operation of a system of long range telephone-telegraph radiocommunication, and transmission of USSR Central Television programmes to the stations of the Orbita network. References: 1 , 2 , 5 , 6 , 64 .
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