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Luna 10
Luna 10 Mission to Earth's Moon

Goals: This spacecraft was designed to orbit the Moon and study the lunar environment.

Accomplishments: Luna 10 was the first spacecraft to orbit the Moon. It achieved 460 orbits over 56 days before its batteries were depleted and it stopped transmitting. During that time, tracking data showed that the spacecraft's orbit was being distorted by strong irregularities in the Moon's gravity field, providing the first evidence that the Moon's internal composition wasn't uniform. It also provided data on the Moon's weak-to-nonexistent magnetic field, radiation belts, and atmosphere; its surface composition; and the region's cosmic radiation and micrometeoroid density.


Key Dates
31 Mar 1966:  Launch
3 Apr 1966:  Lunar Orbit Insertion
Status: Successful
Fast Facts
Luna 10 Facts Luna 10 was the first artificial object to orbit the Moon.

The probe also beamed the song, "The Internationale" to the 23rd Congress of the Communist Party, though what the delegates actually heard was a recording from the previous night's rehearsal.

The probe also beamed the song, "The Internationale" to the 23rd Congress of the Communist Party, though what the delegates actually heard was a recording from the previous night's rehearsal.
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Last Updated: 29 Nov 2010