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Spacecraft
A spacecraft or spaceship is a craft or machine designed for spaceflight. Spacecraft are used for a variety of purposes, including communications, earth observation, meteorology, navigation, planetary exploration and transportation of humans and cargo....
Timeline of Events
1959
1.2.1959
Luna 1, the first spacecraft to reach the vicinity of the Moon and to orbit the Sun, is launched by the U.S.S.R.
1.4.1959
Luna 1 becomes the first spacecraft to reach the vicinity of the Moon.
1961
11.29.1961
Project Mercury: Mercury-Atlas 5 Mission – Enos, a chimpanzee, is launched into space. The spacecraft orbited the Earth twice and splashed-down off the coast of Puerto Rico.
1962
12.14.1962
NASA's ''Mariner 2'' becomes the first spacecraft to fly by Venus.
1965
3.24.1965
NASA spacecraft Ranger 9, equipped to convert its signals into a form suitable for showing on domestic television, brings images of the Moon into ordinary homes before crash landing.
5.12.1965
The Soviet spacecraft ''Luna 5'' crashes on the Moon.
11.16.1965
Venera program: The Soviet Union launches the Venera 3 space probe toward Venus, the first spacecraft to reach the surface of another planet.
1966
3.1.1966
Venera 3 Soviet space probe crashes on Venus becoming the first spacecraft to land on another planet's surface.
6.2.1966
Surveyor program: ''Surveyor 1'' lands in Oceanus Procellarum on the Moon, becoming the first U.S. spacecraft to soft land on another world.
1971
11.13.1971
The American space probe, Mariner 9, becomes the first spacecraft to orbit another planet successfully, swinging into its planned trajectory around Mars.
1972
2.21.1972
The Soviet unmanned spaceship Luna 20 lands on the Moon.
1973
4.6.1973
Launch of ''Pioneer 11'' spacecraft.
1975
2.9.1975
The Soyuz 17 Soviet spacecraft returns to Earth.
1981
11.12.1981
Space Shuttle program: Mission STS-2, utilizing the Space Shuttle Columbia, marks the first time a manned spacecraft is launched into space twice.
1988
9.7.1988
Abdul Ahad Mohmand, the first Afghan in space, returns aboard the Soviet spacecraft Soyuz TM-5 after 9 days on the Mir space station.
2003
12.25.2003
The ill-fated Beagle 2 probe, released from the Mars Express Spacecraft on December 19, disappears shortly before its scheduled landing.
2005
7.27.2005
STS-114: NASA grounds the Space Shuttle, pending an investigation of the continuing problem with the shedding of foam insulation from the external fuel tank. During ascent, the external tank of the Space Shuttle Discovery sheds a piece of foam slightly smaller than the piece that caused the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster; this foam does not strike the spacecraft.
2009
10.9.2009
First lunar impact of the Centaur and LCROSS spacecrafts as part of NASA's Lunar Precursor Robotic Program.