Advertisement

Cosmic Research

, Volume 56, Issue 4, pp 276–282 | Cite as

Luna-5 (1965): Some Results of a Failed Mission to the Moon

Article

Abstract

Luna-5 was the second Soviet spacecraft to reach the Moon. During the first decade of space exploration of the Moon, the Luna probe series was the main part of the Soviet scientific program. The tasks of the Luna-5 probe launched to the Moon in May 1965 were to land softly on the lunar surface, take photos, and study the surface. Before the Luna-5 landing, the prospective coordinates of the landing site were telegraphed to observatories so that they would observe the event. However, during its descent, the braking engine failed and the probe crash landed at 22 h 13 min on May 12, 1965. Later, new supposed coordinates of the impact were reported. All the experiments were undoubtedly lost; nevertheless, successive television images of the failed landing made at the Abastumani Astrophysical Observatory (AbAO) of the Georgian Academy of Sciences can be considered a specific scientific result of the mission. In the images, a changeable object was detected near the large Lansberg crater; for obscure secrecy reasons, almost nothing was reported to specialists about this object. It has been identified as a small, gradually spreading impact cloud. An analysis of the reprocessed images taken at the AbAO has revealed the exact coordinates of the Luna-5 impact for the first time to be 1.35° S, 25.48° W, which differ substantially the calculation data published earlier. Some properties of the regolith at the Luna-5 impact site are compared to the results of the Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite (LCROSS) related to the region near the south pole of the Moon and reported in 2010.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. 1.
    Dzhapiashvili, V.P. and Korol’, A.N., Polarimetric Atlas of the Moon, Abastumanskaya astrofizicheskaya observatoriya AN Gruzinskoi SSR, 1982.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Dollfus, A. and Bouell, E., Photometric and polarimetric analysis of lunar soil samples delivered by the Luna-5 Soviet automatic station of lunar regolith properties, in Lunnyi grunt iz Morya Izobiliya (Lunar Soil of the Sea of Fecundity), Moscow: Nauka, 1974, pp. 512–516.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Dollfus, A. and Bouell, E., Photo-polarization studies of lunar samples—the negative branch, in Lunnyi grunt iz Morya Izobiliya (Lunar Soil of the Sea of Fecundity), Moscow: Nauka, 1974, pp. 517–523.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Ksanfomaliti, L.V., The role of TV in observed lunar landings of space objects, in Elektronno-luchevye i fotoelektricheskie pribory (Cathode-Ray and Photoelectric Devices), vol. 2, Vil’dgrube, G.S, Ed., Moscow: Ministerstvo elektronnoi promyshlennosti SSSR, 1966, pp. 238–240.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Gladstone, G.R., Hurley, D.M., Retherford, K.D., et al., LRO-LAMP observations of the LCROSS impact plume, Science, 2010, vol. 330, no. 6003, pp. 472–476.ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Hayne, P.O., Greenhagen, B.T., Foote, M.C., et al., Diviner Lunar Radiometer observations of the LCROSS impact, Science, 2010, vol. 330, no. 6003, pp. 477–479.ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Kerr, R.A., How wet the Moon? Just damp enough to be interesting, Science, 2010, vol. 330, no. 6003, p. 434.ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Melosh, H.J., Impact Cratering. A Geologic Process, Oxford: Oxford Univ. Press, 1989.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Paige, D.A., Siegler, M.A., Zhang, J.A., et al., Diviner Lunar Radiometer observations of cold traps in the Moon’s south polar region, Science, 2010, vol. 330, no. 6003, pp. 479–482.ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Schultz, P.H., Hermalyn, B., Colaprete, A., et al., The LCROSS Cratering Experiment, Science, 2010, vol. 330, no. 6003, pp. 468–472.ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Tompkins, S. and Pieters, C.M., Mineralogy of the lunar crust: Results from Clementine, Meteorit. Planet. Sci., 1999, vol. 34, pp. 25–41.ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Pleiades Publishing, Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Space Research InstituteRussian Academy of SciencesMoscowRussia

Personalised recommendations