Created: 10/4/1967

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Space Event Report






Soviet Press

Announcements released by the official Soviet news agency TASS on the launch and completion of mission are presented below.etailed description of the lunar craft and results published by the Soviets, see the Appendix.

ASS Announcement; Moscow, Pravda,age 2.

(Translation) In accordance with the program for space research, the Soviet Unionpace rocket in the direction of the moon on6 atoursinutes Moscow time.

The rocket carried theutomatic station.

The main purpose of the station is the continuation ofinvestigations of the moon and clrcumlunar space.

Preliminary results of the processing of measurements show that the station Is movingrajectory close to the calculated one.

Atours Moscow time on6 thetation wasistance0 kilometers from earthoint on the earth's surface with the coordinates: egreesinutes north latitude and BO degreesinutes east longitude.

Two radio communication sessions have been conducted with the station. On the basis of telemetry data it was established that the equipment on the station is functioning normally.

A special ground measurement complex is observing the flight of the station. The coordination-computation center is processing incoming data.

"Automatic Stationas Successfully Completed Its Program for Investigation of theASS Announcement, Moscow, Krasnaya Zvezda,age 1

(Translation) The program for Investigation of the moon by means of theutomatic station, whichoft landing on the surface of the moon onas been fully completed.


esult of the Investigations which wore carried out, unique data of great scientific Importance were obtained on the physicome-chanical properties of the surface layer of the moon. Televisionwere receivedanorama of tho lunar surface in the landing area of the station which were taken with the sun at different elevations.

The scientific information received from theutomatic station is being processed.

top seglret


TASS Describestation and Experiments

Thereumber of structural differences between theutomatic station and its predecessor, thotation. Experience in working with the first station, which soft-landed on the surface of the moon, made it passible to introduce improvements in the design of thetation, and the solutionumber of scientific problems required that the station be equipped with new scientific apparatus.

Within the hermetically sealed housing of thetationack with radio receiving and transmitting equipment, electronic time-programmed devices, chemical batteries, automatic andinstruments and telemetry equipment, as wellystem of heat regulation.

On the outside of theousing were mounted four petal-shaped antennas and four rodelevision device, and two instrument extension mechanisms. Before the automatic lunar station was placed in its working position, the petal and rod antennas as well as the extension mechanisms wereolded position and were held in this positionpecial lock. The station was converted to the working position upon command from the on-board time-pro--grammed device; then the lock opened and permitted the antennas and extension mechanisms to unfold. At the end of one of the extension mechanismsechanical punch-penetrometer, and at the end of the other mechanismadiation densimeter. The extension mechanisms made it possible to place the penetrometer and densimeter on theof the moonistanceeters from the station.

Theelevision device is an optico-mechanical scanner whose design resembles mechanical television or phototelegraphyIt should be noted that the optico-mechanical system meets the rigid demands of weight, size, power consumption and reliability of operation which are placed upon the instruments of the automatic lunar station.

The time requiredomplete circular scan of the television camerainutes) and the depth of fieldeters to Infinity) made it possible to distinguish detailsillimetersistanceeters.

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The television equipment has automatic contrast adjustment responsive to the Illumination of the lunar surface. The axis of the television deviceufficiently flat horizontal surface wasapproximatelyegrees to tho local vertical. This created favorable conditions for the transmission of microrallef pictures of both regions near the camera as well as those lying at greaterincluding tho line of the horizon.

In order to Insure the necessary temperature conditions on theystem of heat regulation of the active type Is used in conjunction with special outer thermal Insulation. The active system of heat regulation was activated immediately after the station landed on the moon.esult of the effect of gas pressure within the station, water passedlexible tank into an evaporator valvo which served simultaneouslyeat exchanger. As water evaporates in the valve, the heat given off by instruments during their operation is absorbed. Adjustment of the evaporator valve made it possible toemperature in the station within limitsegrees Centigrade.

The telemetry information received from thetation showed that the operation of all systems was reliable and stable.

The rocket booster launched on6 atoursinutes Moscow time placed theutomatic station and the rocket stagearking orbit as an artificial earth satellite.recisely calculated time, the rocket stage imparted the velocity to tho station necessary for its flight trajectory toward the moon. On the basis of data calculated by the coordination-computationid-flight correction was made onecember,esult of which the new flight trajectory passed practically through thelunar impact point.

At two hours prior to landing on the moon preparations were begun for braking the station. Tho station was oriented and stabilized in space, and atoursinutes the braking engine was actuated; atoursinutes Moscow time on6 thetationoft landing in the region of the Ocean of Storms.

Withininutes after landing and upon command of the on-board time-programmed device, the station was converted to the operating position and the first radio communications session was hold with the station. Telemetry data indicated that all systems of the station were operating normally, and the temperature and pressure on board the station wore within the prescribed limits.

Thetationoft landingegion locatedistance ofilometers from the landing area of theutomatic lunar station. It is essential to note the morphological differences In the landing regions of bothhileanded In the immediate vicinity of theontinental shield extending over the entire far side of the moon, the landing area of theutomatic station is locatedroad plain of the "sea" type.

The closest lunar formations are the craters Seleucusiameter ofilometers) and Schiappareliiameter ofround the landing zone, ia an areaadius ofilometers, formations largerIn size are not observed. In addition, one should emphasize the absence of rather large formations rising above the surrounding area. This may be seen in the accompanying photograph, which shows that the line of the horizon isore interesting feature of the landing region, which was known on the basis offrom earth, is the abundanco of so-called crevices (extensive depressionsength of tens of kilometers). They are arranged in the formivergent beam and runirection from the southwest to the northeast. The great number of bright spots noted in this region is evidence of the presence of localof different types of depressions.

In some respects the landing region of thetation resembles the Mare Orientalis located on the far side of the moon, photographs of which are obtained by theutomaticstation In the summar

Thetation landed before sunrise over this area. The sun rose onecemberoursinutes Moscow time. Since the landing region was located close to the equator, the sun rose to an almost vertical position with respect to the line of the horizon, and its height increasedegree*each hour. Before the sun passed through the zenith, that is, before local lunarthe shadows of objects, running from east to west (afterwest tohanged their direction very slightly. Consequently it was possible to orient the fragments of the panorama on the basis of directions of sunlight. The photograph published shows the lunar landscape in the direction to the south of the station. It was obtained during the third picture transmission session. At the moment of transmission of the first pictures of the area, the elevation of the sun was six degrees. During the second transmission session

it wasegrees and, finally, the published fragment of the panorama was obtained when the sun was at an elevation of approximatelyegrees above the horizon. The visibility of parts of the lunardependsreat extent on conditions of illumination. This characteristic of the reflective ability of the lunar surface has long been known from observations made on earth. The greatest amount of light is scattered by the lunar soil in the direction of the sun. Hence, the lower the sun the more sharply pronounced will be this property. That is, the brightness of the landscape increases sharply if observations are made from the direction of the sun.right halo appears around the shadow of the station in the panorama transmitted during the second session.

Preliminary analysis of photographs shows that the structure of the soil In the landing area ofs very similar to that of the landing zones of thetation and the American Surveyor-1whichoft landing in the summer of this year in theof the crater Flamstead. Upon closer examination the surface appears to be heavily pitted, with individual grainsize of several millimeters. Again the absenceayer of dust on the moon has been verified.

In the area surrounding the station may beumber of crater-like formations as wellonsiderable number of rocks several centimeters and more intudy of the arrangement of these formations verifies the conclusion that the rocks fell on the surface at low velocity. Their origin could beolcanicor .the formationrimary crateresulteteorite impact. Moreover, the trajectory of their fall was ratherlanting trajectory) there would have remained tracks on the surface directed toward the source of ejection of the rocks.the mineralogical composition of the rocks is analogous to that of the soil. It is certain that they are not meteorites: theat which meteorites collide with the lunar surface cannot be lessilometers per second, which would unavoidably lead to an explosion with the formationrater-like depression in the surface.

In the published photograph one may easilyroup of rocks (In the upper left-hand corner) formed apparently by the fallonolithic fragment. In the bottom left part of the photographong shadow castockemarkably flat shape, as if it protrudes from the surface. In addition, parts of the station which were discarded in landing may be seen In theareful investigation of the photograph willong time.

In orderarry out the program of scientific Investigations, the following Instruments were Installed on theutomatic station:

measuring punch-penetrometer for determining theof the very outer layer of lunar matter (within limits of several centimeters);

dynamograph for recording the duration and magnitude of the dynamic overload pulse developed in the landing of the station on tha lunar surface;

adiation densimeter for determining the spociflc gravity (density) of lunar matter.

Tho combined measurements taken with the aid of thesemade it possible toariety of data on tho physlco-mechanical properties of the lunar surface at the point of landing.

Tho station was also equipped with an instrument for recording cosmic radiation which was intended to continue investigations of radiation conditions at the surface of the moon begun with thetation.

The punch-penetrometeronical point made of titanium. Tho point was connectedmall, solid-propellant thruster which devolopod,eriod of oneorco on tho order of seven kilograms,esult of which the punch was implanted in tho soil surface.

The dynamograph consisted of piezoelectric load sensors and an electronic circuit for storing the duration and amplitude values of the acceleration pulse produced during landing.

On the basis of these parameters an evaluation was made of the mechanical properties of the lunar surface in the landing zone,hort load pulse of high amplitude correspondsonger pulseorrespondingly smaller amplitude correspondsoft surface.

A preliminary comparison of the received acceleration pulse with results of modeling experiments made under oarth conditionsthe basis for assuming that the mechanical properties of the moon's surface layerepthontimeters are close to the properties of earth soil of average density.

Together with measurements of the mechanical properties of lunar matter interest was also devoted to data on its density (specific gravity). It is known that the average specific gravity of lunar matter (for the moonetermined from data of astronomicalis less than the average specific gravity of matter on earthrams per cubic centimeter1 grams per cubic

centimeter for earth). Until now the density of the outer layer of the moon has been studied also only by astronomical methods; the first direct measurements of the specific gravity of the surface layer were made with the aid of thetation.

The device for measuring the density of lunarontains:

small source of gamma radiation;

gas discharge counter units for measuring gamma


screen for shielding the gas discharge counters against gamme radiation from the source.

As the densimeter comes into contact with the lunar surface, the latter is exposed to photons from the source and scatters them in allertain part of the scattered photons reaches the gas discharge counters, which measure the intensity of the scattered flow. It is known that this intensity is proportional to the density (specific gravity) of lunar matter. According to preliminary data, the intensity of gamma quanta scattered by the moon'scorrespondsensity not exceeding one gram per cubicthat is, considerably less than the density of earth soils and the average density of the moon. The measured value is close to the density of porous or granular loosely-bonded rock.

The instrument Installed on thetation forcorpuscular radiation consisted of gasoincidence circuit. This instrument, unlike theon thetation, recorded not gamma radiation but onlyparticles contained in cosmic radiation; this made itdetermine the reflectivity (albedo) of the lunar surface forIt was determined that the lunar surfaceercent of the particles falling on it from outer space. for the reason that there are particles comprising cosmicwhich have considerable energy. As such particles passmatter secondary particles are formed which receive part ofof the primary particles. Some of these secondaryin directionsoticeable angle with the direction ofparticles. Thus, under the effect of cosmic rays theradiating particlesignificant amount ofmeasurements have shown that the total intensity ofparticles on the moonuiet sun is not great. on thetation verifies the conclusionlow level of radioactivity on the lunar surface which was made byinstrument on thetation

ew Success of SovietASS Report, Moscow, Krasnaya Zvezda,.

Original document.

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