First liquid-fuel rocket successfully fired in Europe, a methane-liquid oxygen rocket constructed by Johannes Winkler and flown from Dessau, Germany. References: 17 .
Maximum Altitude - 4000 m. References: 94 .
Solar radiation, sky brightness research. Launched at 1343 local time. Reached 3.2 km.
Nitric oxide attempt to recombine atomic oxygen research. Launched at 0145 local time. Reached 106.2 km.
The first Jupiter A launching, by ABMA at Cape Canaveral. RS-18 was launched at 1936 hours EST from AMR. The flight was successful. The scheduled launching date of this missile was 13 March. Three holds were called because of LOX difficulties, telemetry difficulties, and replacement of a gate valve. The actual range was 133.58 nm; 10.3 nm under; and 5.66 nm right of the intended impact point. Separation occurred before the missile gained its correct velocity. Improper assumption of propellant flow for the trajectory calculation was primarily responsible for the incorrect cut-off. The primary test objectives were to test the complete guidance and control system to establish the performance qualities of the complete missile system. Missed aimpoint by 19,100 m. References: 439 .
The first missile shipped directly from the Chrysler Factory to the test site to be flight tested was launched at 0312 hours EST from AMR The flight was successful. Actual range was 138.178 nm; 2.2 nm under; and 1250 meters left of the intended impact point. The missile functioned properly until 182 seconds when an unexplainable pitch deviation caused a slow tilting of the missile top section. The cut-off function at 120 seconds and the separation function at 135 seconds, after flight zero time, were both satisfactory. Missed aimpoint by 4,183 m. References: 439 .
Central Committee of the Communist Party and Council of Soviet Ministers Decree 'On Work on the R-7 Product and Flight-Design Testing of the R-7A Product-- testing of the R-7 and R-7A ICBMs' was issued. References: 474 .
Homer E. Newell, Director of NASA's Office of Space Sciences, summarized results of studies by Langley Research Center and Space Technology Laboratories on an unmanned lunar orbiter spacecraft. These studies had been prompted by questions of the reliability and photographic capabilities of such spacecraft. Both studies indicated that, on a five-shot program, the probability was 0.93 for one and 0.81 for two successful missions; they also confirmed that the spacecraft would be capable of photographing a landed Surveyor to assist in Apollo site verification. References: 16 .
Area survey photo reconnaissance satellite; returned film capsule; separated Nauka autonomous subsatellite 17KS M15000-171 / 1L which tested astro-visir and radio altimeter systems for Yantar. References: 1 , 2 , 6 , 69 .
Geostationary at 125 deg W. Spent boosters, spent maneuvering stages, shrouds and other non-functional objects (US Cat D). Launch vehicle put payload into geosynchronous transfer orbit with GCS trajectory option. References: 1 , 2 , 5 , 6 , 278 .
Mir Expedition EO-18. Soyuz TM-21 carried the EO-18 Mir crew and American Norman Thagard. Thagard was the first American to be launched in a Soyuz. Soyuz docked with Mir at 07:45:26 GMT on March 16 . On July 4 Soyuz TM-21 undocked and backed off to a distance of 100 m from Mir. The US space shuttle Atlantis, with the EO-18 crew aboard, then undocked and began a flyaround at a distance of 210 m, while the EO-19 crew aboard Soyuz took pictures before redocking with the station. Soyuz TM-21 again undocked with the EO-19 crew on September 11 from the Kvant rear port on Mir and landed at 50 deg 41'N 68 deg 15'E, 108 km northeast of Arkalyk in Kazakhstan, at 06:52:40 GMT . Additional Details: Soyuz TM-21. References: 2 , 6 , 51 , 276 .
Progress M-38 was specially modified to carry the second VDU (Vynosnaya Dvigatel'naya Ustanovka, External Engine Unit) propulsion unit. The VDU was mounted externally on a special structure between the cargo module and the service module, replacing the OKD fuel section present on normal Progress vehicles. The crew spacewalks to extract the VDU from Progress and place it on the end of the Sofora boom extending from the Kvant module. The VDU was used to provide attitude control capability for the station. By 03:20 GMT on March 15 1998 Progress M-38 had successfully completed its first two orbital manoeuvres. It replaced Progress M-37 at the docking port on the Kvant module, with a successful docking on March 16 1998 at 22:45 GMT. Undocked May 15 at 1844 UTC, freeing up the docking port on the Kvant module for Progress M-39. Deorbited over Pacific May 15, 1998.