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Luna 11
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Luna 11
Luna 11 Mission to Earth's Moon

Goals: Launched 2 weeks after NASA's Lunar Orbiter 1, Luna 11 was designed to take the Soviet Union's first pictures of the surface of the Moon from lunar orbit and to obtain data on the Moon's composition, the mass concentrations first detected by Luna 10, and the lunar environment.

Accomplishments: The TV system failed to return usable images, but the other instruments functioned properly. The spacecraft completed 137 radio transmissions and 277 orbits of the Moon before its batteries were depleted.

Key Dates
24 Aug 1966:  Launch
27 Aug 1966:  Lunar Orbit Insertion (21:49 UT)
Status: Partial Success
Fast Facts
Luna 11 Facts A jammed thruster prevented Luna 11 from pointing its TV camera at the lunar surface.

The spacecraft carried a experiment to test gears for a future robotic Moon rover.

Four Soviet Luna missions were launched in 1966.
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Last Updated: 29 Nov 2010