First successful lunar planet research vehicle

The moon rover-1 became the first successful planet research vehicle intended for a research of other worlds. He was brought to the surface of the Moon on November 17, 1970 onboard the landing Moon-17 module. Management was made by it operators of remote control in the Soviet Union, it overcame more than 10 kilometers (6 miles) in nearly 10 months of the work. For comparison — the device Mars Opportunity needed about six years to reach the same indicators.

Participants of a space race

In the 1960th years the United States and the Soviet Union were involved in “a space race”, and each of the parties aimed to direct the first the person to the Moon that was a demonstration method to the world of the technological capabilities. As a result of each of the parties it was succeeded to make something the first — the first person (Soviet Union) was started in space, the first starts of two and three people in space (United States) were made, the first joining in an orbit is performed (United States) and, at last, disembarkation of the first crew to the Moon (United States).

The Soviet Union pinned the hopes for sending the person for the Moon on the Probe rockets. However after a series of unsuccessful test starts, including explosion on the launch pad in 1968 with loss of human life, the Soviet Union instead began to focus the attention on other lunar programs. Among them there was also a program of landing in the automatic mode of the spacecraft to the surface of the Moon and remote management of a planet research vehicle.

Here list of progress of the lunar program of Councils: The moon-3 (with its help the image of a reverse side of the Moon was for the first time received), the Moon-9 (this device in 1966 for the first time soft-landed, that is in three years prior to flight of Appolona-11 and disembarkation of astronauts to the Moon), and also the Moon-16 (this device returned to Earth with samples of lunar soil in 1970). And the Moon-17 delivered to the Moon remotely the being controlled planet research vehicle.

Landing and descent of the device to the surface of the Moon

The device Moon-17 successfully started on November 10, 1970, and in five days it appeared in an orbit of the Moon. After soft landing near the Sea of rains, Lunakhod-1 which was onboard on a ramp went down on a lunar surface.

“Lunakhod-1 is a lunar planet research vehicle, in a form he reminds a keg with a convex cover, and it moves by means of eight wheels independent from each other — it was noted in the short message of the NASA agency on this flight. — The moon rover is equipped with the conic antenna, precisely directed cylindrical antenna, four TV cameras, and also the special device for impact on a lunar surface for the purpose of studying of density of lunar soil and carrying out mechanical tests”.

This planet research vehicle worked from the solar battery, and in night cold time its functioning was provided by the heater using radioactive isotope polonium-210. Temperature fell to this moment to minus 150 degrees Celsius (238 degrees Fahrenheit). The moon is always converted by one side to Earth and therefore luminous day in the majority of points on its surface proceeds about two weeks. Night time also proceeds two weeks. According to the plan, this planet research vehicle shall work three lunar days. He exceeded original operational plans and worked 11 lunar days — its operation ended on October 4, 1971, that is 14 years later after the first satellite of the Soviet Union was put to Earth orbit.

According to NASA, by the time of the end of the mission the Moon rover-1 overcame about 10,54 kilometers (6,5 miles), it transferred 20 thousand television pictures and 200 television panoramas to Earth. Besides, with its help more than 500 researches of lunar soil were conducted.

Heritage of the Moon rover-1

Success of the Moon rover-1 was repeated by the Moon rover-2 in 1973, and the second device already passed about 37 kilometers (22,9 miles) on a lunar surface. The planet research vehicle of Opportunity needed 10 years to show the same result on Mars. The image of the place of fit of the Moon rover-1 was received by means of the lunar Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter space probe with the camera of high resolution onboard. So, for example, in the pictures made in 2012 the lander, a Moon rover and its trace on the surface of the Moon clearly is visible.

The retroreflector of this planet research vehicle made very surprising “saltus” in 2010 when scientists sent a laser signal to it that demonstrates that it wasn’t damaged under the influence of lunar dust or other elements.

Lasers are used for measurement of exact distance from Earth to the Moon, and for same lasers within the Apollo program were used.

After the Moon rover-2 more any device didn’t soft-land until Chinese within the space program didn’t launch the device “Chanje-3” with a moon rover Yuyta. Though Yuyta ceased to move after the second moonlight night, it continued to remain in working order and stopped functioning only 31 months later after the beginning of the mission and by that it much more exceeded the previous record.