Maximum Speed - 800 kph. Unofficial world speed record. Aircraft crashed. Pilot was killed. References: 94 .
Council of Soviet Ministers (SM) Decree 'On renaming the Ministry of Armaments to the Ministry of Defence Industry' was issued. References: 474 .
Launched at 2022 hours EST from AMR. The flight was successful from the standpoint of missions accomplished, with cut-off time 112 seconds and separation time 126 seconds after range zero time. Impact point was 220 meters short and 320 meters to the right, a radial miss distance of 390 meters, primary objective was to test the accuracy of the guidance system when the missile was fired in a short range trajectory at an extreme altitude to range ratio. Missed aimpoint by 390 m. References: 439 .
President Eisenhower gave his approval to the plans for outer space exploration announced by Secretary of Defense Neil H. McElroy. The Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA) was to undertake several space projects including the launching of certain earth satellites and five space probes as a part of this country's contribution to the IGY program. The Air Force Ballistic Missile Division was authorized by ARPA to carry out three lunar probes with a Thor-Vanguard system, and lunar probes utilizing the Jupiter-C rocket were assigned to the Army Ballistic Missile Agency. References: 17 .
Dr. T. Keith Glennan, the NASA Administrator, provided instructions for the marking of vehicles launched for the NASA, including the Mercury spacecraft. He stated that policy would be to paint UNITED STATES in bold block form. References: 483 .
Test Series I on spacecraft 001 was completed at WSTF Propulsion Systems Development Facility. Vehicle and facility updating in progress consisted of activating the gimbal subsystem and installing a baffled injector and pneumatic engine propellant valve. The individual test operations were conducted satisfactorily, and data indicated that all subsystems operated normally. Total engine firing time was 765 seconds. References: 16 .
Central Committee of the Communist Party and Council of Soviet Ministers Decree 270-105 'On Preparation of Cosmonaut-Testers and Cosmonaut Researchers --formation of group of research and test-cosmonauts to support future missions' was issued. References: 474 .
Gagarin's death in a MiG-15UTI trainer on a routine mission was deeply demoralizing. References: 72 .
Mars flyby 5 August 1969; returned 126 images of Martian surface. Mariner 7 was launched on a direct-ascent trajectory to Mars 31 days after Mariner 6. On 8 April 1969 a midcourse correction was made by firing the hydrazine moter for 7.6 seconds. On 8 May Mariner 7 was put on gyro control to avoid attitude control problems which were affecting Mariner 6. On 31 July telemetry from Mariner 7 was suddenly lost and the spacecraft was commanded to switch to the low-gain antenna. It was later successfully switched back to the high-gain antenna. It was thought that leaking gases, perhaps from the battery which later failed a few days before encounter, had caused the anomaly.
At 09:32:33 GMT on 2 August 1969 Mariner 7 bagan the far-encounter sequence involving imaging of Mars with the narrow angle camera. Over the next 57 hours, ending about 5 hours before closest approach, 93 images of Mars were taken and transmitted. The spacecraft was reprogrammed as a result of analysis of Mariner 6 images. The new sequence called for the spacecraft to go further south than originally planned, take more near-encounter pictures, and collect more scientific data on the lighted side of Mars. Data from the dark side of Mars were to be transmitted directly back to Earth but there would be no room on the digital recorder for backup due to the added dayside data. At closest approach, 05:00:49 GMT on 5 August, Mariner 7 was 3430 km above the martian surface. Over this period, 33 near-encounter images were taken. About 19 minutes after the flyby, the spacecraft went behind Mars and emerged roughly 30 minutes later. X-band occultation data were taken during the entrance and exit phases. Science and imaging data were played back and transmitted over the next few days. The spacecraft was then returned to cruise mode which included engineering and communications tests, star photography TV tests, and UV scans of the Milky Way and an area containing comet 1969-B. Periodic tracking of the spacecraft in its heliocentric orbit was also done.
The total data return for Mariners 6 and 7 was 800 million bits. Mariner 7 returned 93 far and 33 near encounter images. Close-ups from the near encounter phases covered 20% of the surface. The spacecraft instruments measured UV and IR emissions and radio refractivity of the Martian atmosphere. Images showed the surface of Mars to be very different from that of the Moon, in some contrast to the results from Mariner 4. The south polar cap was identified as being composed predominantly of carbon dioxide. Atmospheric surface pressure was estimated at between 6 and 7 mb. Radio science refined estimates of the mass, radius and shape of Mars. References: 1 , 2 , 5 , 6 , 278 , 296 .
Venus atmospheric probe. The spacecraft took 117 days to reach Venus, entering the atmosphere on 22 July 1972. Descent speed was reduced from 41,696 km/hr to about 900 km/hr by aerobraking. The 2.5 meter diameter parachute opened at an altitude of 60 km, and a refrigeration system was used to cool the interior components. Venera 8 transmitted data during the descent and continued to send back data for 50 minutes after landing. The probe confirmed the earlier data on the high Venus surface temperature and pressure returned by Venera 7, and also measured the light level as being suitable for surface photography, finding it to be similar to the amount of light on Earth on an overcast day. References: 1 , 2 , 5 , 6 , 64 , 296 .
Start long-lead fabrication aft fuselage, Columbia (OV-102) References: 15 .
Upper atmospheric experiments. Study of dynamic processes in the earth's magnetosphere and polar ionosphere and investigation of low-frequency electromagnetic waves. References: 1 , 2 , 5 , 6 , 99 , 116 .
Unmanned supply vessel for Salyut 6. Delivery of various cargoes to the Salyut-6 orbital station. Docked with Salyut 6 on 29 Mar 1980 20:01:00 GMT. Undocked on 25 Apr 1980 08:04:00 GMT. Destroyed in reentry on 26 Apr 1980 06:54:00 GMT. Total free-flight time 3.0 days. Total docked time 26.50 days. References: 1 , 2 , 6 , 275 .
Phobos 2 operated nominally throughout its cruise and entered Mars orbit on January 29, 1989. Contact with the vehicle was lost on March 27, 1989 shortly before the final phase of the mission during which the spacecraft was to approach within 50 meters of Phobos' surface and release its two landers. The cause of the failure was determined to be a malfunction of the on-board computer.
Attached MEEP materials exposure experiment to outside of Mir (retrieved on STS-86). References: 66 .