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Mariner 03
Mariner 3 Mission to Mars

Goals: Mariner 3 was designed to snap a series of photos of Mars after an eight month journey studying interplanetary space.

Accomplishments: None. The spacecraft mysteriously lost power eight hours after launch and its solar panels apparently never unfurled to replenish the batteries. The inert spacecraft never achieved the correct Mars trajectory and eventually entered heliocentric (sun-centered) orbit.


Key Dates
5 Nov 1964:  Launch
6 Nov 1964:  End of Mars Mission
Status: Unsuccessful
Fast Facts
Mariner 03 Facts Mariner 4 was equipped to snap only 21 pictures during its planned Mars flyby.

Its journey to Mars was to take about eight months.

Electrical power for all experiments and spacecraft functions was provided by 28,244 solar cells mounted on four collapsed panels designed to deploy in flight.
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Al Hibbs Al Hibbs
Al Hibbs decided as a five-year-old that he wanted to go to the Moon. He did qualify as an astronaut, but his legacy is in robotic exploration. Read More...
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Last Updated: 30 Nov 2010