Exploration Programs - Research Article from Macmillan Science Library: Space Sciences

This encyclopedia article consists of approximately 9 pages of information about Exploration Programs.
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Beyond the Moon

As plans were getting under way to explore the Moon, NASA also focused on the rest of the solar system. The Mariner series of missions were designed to be the first U.S. spacecraft to reach other planets. Mariner 2 became Earth's first interplanetary success. After a flawless launch, the Mariner 2 spacecraft encountered Venus at a range of 35,000 kilometers in December 1962. As it flew by, Mariner 2 scanned the planet and revealed that Venus has an extremely hot surface. Mariner 2 also measured the solar wind, a constant stream of charged particles flowing outward from the Sun.

In July 1965, Mariner 4 provided the first close look at Mars. The twenty-two fuzzy images returned by Mariner 4 revealed a planet pocked with craters. Four years later, Mariner 6 and 7 provided 200 more images of the Red Planet. Late in 1971, Mariner 9 went into orbit around Mars and a new era of Mars exploration dawned...

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This section contains 2,628 words
(approx. 9 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Exploration Programs Encyclopedia Article
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Macmillan Science Library: Space Sciences
Exploration Programs from Macmillan Science Library: Space Sciences. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.
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