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Zond 5
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Zond 05
Zond 5 Mission to Earth's Moon

Goals: Fly around the Moon and return to Earth, taking photographs and testing the effect of space travel on a group of passengers consisting of 2 steppe tortoises, some wine flies, meal worms, plants, seeds, bacteria, and other living things.

Accomplishments: Following three failed attempts, Luna 5 was the Soviet Union's first successful flight around the Moon and back to Earth, during which it took high-resolution pictures of Earth and the Moon. It was announced that the onboard tortoises lost about 10% of their body weight but remained active and showed no loss of appetite. Radiation was measured on a life-size mannequin that rode in the pilot's seat.

Key Dates
14 Sep 1968:  Launch (21:42:11 UT)
21 Sep 1968:  Safe Return to Earth (16:08 UT)
Status: Successful
Fast Facts
Zond 05 Facts This was the first Soviet spacecraft to fly around the Moon and return to Earth.

It carried two tortoises and assorted flies, worms and other living things to help study the effects of space travel.

The spacecraft also carried a voice tape to help test communication from the Moon.
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Last Updated: 2 Dec 2010