Mission to Mars
When and Who?
On August 20, 1975, the first Mars spacecraft was launched; it was Viking 1. Viking 2 was launched two weeks later.
What are they?
Each spacecraft consists of a Lander and an Orbiter.
What was the Landers' job?
- collect samples of the Martian soil
- take 360-degree photos of Mars
- monitor climate changes
- measure wind speeds
NASA's Viking Missions to Mars 1975 - 1977
What was the Orbiters' job?
The Orbiters' job was to orbit Mars in search of a safe landing spot and send the coordinates back to earth. Also to receive the signals from earth and send them to the Landers.
- take photos of Mars inner moon Phobos
- carry the lander and to drop the lander in the right spot
What did they find?
The Viking Landers and Orbiters found:
- lava plains
- immense canyons
- cratered areas
- wind-formed features
- evidence of surface water
Viking on Mars
Viking: First U.S. Mars Landing
A day on the Planet Mars : 1977 Viking footage