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astronautix.com Vega 5VK

Vega lander
Vega lander - VeGa-1/2 Venus lander

Credit: Andy Salmon. 33,243 bytes. 336 x 439 pixels.



Manufacturer's Designation: 5VK. Class: Planetary. Type: Venus. Nation: USSR. Manufacturer: Lavochkin.

Probe designed for investigations of the planet Venus and Halley's Comet. Original plans called for two versions, 5VS and 5VP. The 5VP Venus orbiter would be a relay station for a big Soviet-French balloon, to be dropped into the Venusian atmosphere by the 5VP Halley's comet probe as it flew by Venus. In 1981, it was decided to cancel the 5VS orbiters and redesign the 5VP to expand the Halley research programme (this may have been in response to the cancellation of the US Halley probe the same year).

On the resulting Vega 5VK spacecraft the big Soviet-French balloon was replaced by a smaller Soviet-built balloon and a Venera 4V-1 type lander (minus camera). The flyby bus was equipped with the same solar panels as the Venera 4V-2 and carried a scan platform with remote sensing instruments to study Halley as well as extra dust protection shields.

The Vega 5VK spacecraft were fitted with scientific apparatus and equipment built in the USSR, Austria, Bulgaria, Hungary, German Democratic Republic, Poland, France, Federal Republic of Germany and Czechoslovakia.


Specification

Total Mass: 4,000 kg.


Vega 5VK Chronology


15 December 1984 Vega 1 Program: Venera. Launch Site: Baikonur . Launch Vehicle: Proton 8K82K / 11S824M. Mass: 4,000 kg.

Investigations of the planet Venus and Halley's Comet. The APV-V plasma antenna did not deploy until the first mid-course correction burn. Deployed lander and balloon at Venus on June 19 1985. Rendezvoused with comet Halley on March 6, 1986. Fitted with scientific apparatus and equipment built in the USSR, Austria, Bulgaria, Hungary, German Democratic Republic, Poland, France, Federal Republic of Germany and C zechoslovakia.


21 December 1984 Vega 2 Program: Venera. Launch Site: Baikonur . Launch Vehicle: Proton 8K82K / 11S824M. Mass: 4,000 kg.

Investigations of the planet Venus and Halley's Comet. The APV-V plasma antenna did not deploy until the first mid-course correction burn. Deployed lander and balloon at Venus on June 14, 1985. The surface experiments of the lander failed to send back data because they were inadvertently switched on at an altitude of 20 km. Apparently high winds activated a G-force sensor that was to automatically switch on the surface package after the jolt of touchdown. The bus continued in heliocentric orbit and rendezvoused with comet Halley on March 9, 1986. The images of the comet were nearly lost when a television sensor failed shortly before the flyby. A back-up sensor was activated just in time. Fitted with scientific apparatus and equipment built in the USSR, Austria, Bulgaria, Hungary, German Democratic Republic, Poland, France, Federal Republic of Germany and C zechoslovakia.



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Last update 12 March 2001.
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