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Pioneer 5
Pioneer 5 Mission to Our Solar System

Goals: Pioneer 5 was sent into a heliocentric orbit between Earth and Venus as a technology test. It also carried equipment to confirm scientists' theories of an interplanetary magnetic field.

Accomplishments:The spacecraft proved to be a successful test of technologies that would carry later missions in the series -- such as Pioneers 10 and 11 -- deep into the outer solar system. It also confirmed the existence of the interplanetary magnetic field.

Key Dates
11 Mar 1960:  Launch
Status: Successful
Fast Facts
Pioneer 5 Facts Pioneer 5 was the first spacecraft to carry a digital telemetry system into interplanetary space.

It was also the first to observe the interplanetary magnetic field.

It was the only success of the seven interplanetary missions launched by the U.S. and Soviet Union in 1960.

This spacecraft was initially intended to be sent to Venus, but the mission was changed to test new technologies.

Pioneer 5 carried Telebit, the first digital telemetry system (orginally tested on Explorer 6).
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Last Updated: 30 Nov 2010