Mars small

Missions to Mars launch dates

  • Russian Marsnik 1

    Russian Marsnik 1
    Marsnik 1 was to Attempt a flyby, but the craft failed to lanuch.
  • Marsnik 2

    Marsnik 2
    Marsnik 2 was to Attempt a flyby, but this craft also failed to lanuch.
  • Sputnik 22

    Sputnik 22
    Sputnik 22 was to do a flyby. The spacecraft broke up as it attempted to make Earth orbit and burn for Mars. As the broken pieces entered Earth's atmosphere, they were picked up by the US early warning system for missiles and feared to be nukes sent by Russia.
  • Mars 1

    Mars 1
    Mars 1 was to image the surface and send back radiation data. After launch it was reported that a gas valve was leaking. The spacecraft still manged to send back data of Earth's radition field before contact was lost on 21 March 1963 at a distance of 106,760,00kms from Earth.
  • Sputnik 24

    Sputnik 24
    Sputnik 24 was an attempted Mars lander. The Spacecraft broke up when it tried to burn out of Earth orbit and onto a Mars trajectory.
  • Mariner 3

    Mariner 3
    Mariner 3 was to photograph Mars. A protective shield did not eject after passing through the atmosphere. This extra weight made it impossible to reach Mars from Earth orbit.
  • Mariner 4

    Mariner 4
    Success, Mariner 4 pulled off the first successful flyby of the planet Mars and returned the first images of not just Mars but of another planet from deep space.
  • Zond 2

    Zond 2
    Zond 2 had two solar panels, unfortunalty one failed to work. Contact was lost with Zond 2 in May 1965.
  • Zond 3

    Zond 3
    Zond 3 did a Lunar flyby and was sent on a Mars trajectory as a test as Mars was no longer in a mission window.
  • Mariner 6

    Mariner 6
    Mariner 6 was part of a dual lanuch, its sister was Mariner 7. The spacecraft did a Mars flyby and imaged the surface revealing that it was not like the lunar surface as had been previously thought.
  • Mariner 7

    Mariner 7
    Mariner 7 was part of a dual lanuch, its sister was Mariner 6. These spacecraft not only imaged the surface, but took measurements of UV and IR emissions of the Martian atmosphere.
  • Mars 1969A

    Mars 1969A
    Mars 1969A exploded on the lanuch pad. Although bits of it did reach the Altai mountains.
  • Mars 1969B

    Mars 1969B
    Mars 1969B did not fair any better than Mars 1969A and exploded after take off.
  • Mariner 8

    Mariner 8
    Mariner 8 had a failed lanuch and is now currently in the Atlantic Ocean about 560km north of Pueto Rico
  • Cosmos 419

    Cosmos 419
    Cosmos 419 was to be a Mars orbiter, It successfully achived Earth orbit, but comically the ignition timer to burn towards Mars, which was suppose to be set for 1.5 hours after Earth orbit, was set for 1.5 years. The spacecraft burnt up in the Earth's atmosphere two days later.
  • Mars 2

    Mars 2
    Mars 2 and 3 were spacecraft that had an orbiter and lander together. Mars 2 did orbit the planet. The lander section crash landed onto the planet, but is still the first man made object to reach the surface of Mars.
  • Mars 3

    Mars 3
    Mars 2 and 3 were spacecraft that had an orbiter and lander together. Mars 3 did orbit the planet. Its lander successfully landed, but only worked for 20 seconds. It is belived that a dust storm on the planet affected its systems.
  • Mariner 9

    Mariner 9
    Mariner 9 was the first spacecraft to orbit another planet. It sent back data and images of Mars, these included the first detailed images of the polar caps and volcanoes.
  • Mars 4

    Mars 4
    Mars 4 was to be an orbiter. However it became a flyby mission after the retro rockets failed to fire and slow the spacecraft down. It did return some photos and radio data.
  • Mars 5

    Mars 5
    Mars 5 achieved a Mars orbit on 12 February 1974. However it only orbited 22 times before a loss of pressurization of the transmitter housing took away its ablity to send data back.
  • Mars 6

    Mars 6
    Mars 6 was a Mars lander. It reached Mars but just before it landed on the surface contact was lost. (chalk that up to a crash landing)
  • Mars 7

    Mars 7
    Mars 7 was a lander mission. Unfortunalty the lander seprated from the spacecraft 4 hours early, completely missing the planet.
  • Viking 1

    Viking 1
    Viking 1 was part of a dual mission with Viking 2. Both carried orbiters and landers. Viking 1's orbiter 1485 orbits of the planet. Its lander successfully landed and operated for 6 years and 116 days. It sent back the first clear image of the surface of the planet from the surface of the planet.
  • Viking 2

    Viking 2
    Viking 1 was part of a dual mission with Viking 2. Both carried orbiters and landers. Viking 2 successfully orbited Mars and landed on Mars. It sent back images and soil sample test to Earth
  • Phobos 1

    Phobos 1
    Phobos 1 was a orbiter and lander. It launched successfully, but a software upload deactivated its thrusters. It could no longer keep its solar panels sun facing and the batteries ran out.
  • Phobos 2

    Phobos 2
    Phobos 2 was an orbiter and lander. Phobos 2 successfully orbited the planet, but an on board computer failure ment that it did not launch its landers and contact was lost.
  • Mars Observer

    Mars Observer
    The Mars Observer was to study the geoscience and climate of Mars. However contact was lost on August 21 1993. It is thought a fuel line rupture caused the lose of contact.
  • Mars Global Surveyor

    Mars Global Surveyor
    Mars Global Surveyor successfully launched, orbited Mars and sent back images and data up untill 2 November 2006 when it failed to respond. During its mission it helped to map the surface of the planet and help other rover missions on there landing and descent.
  • Mars 96

    Mars 96
    Mars 96 failed to exit Earth orbit and re-entered Earth's atmosphere.
  • Mars Pathfinder

    Mars Pathfinder
    Mars Pathfinder consisted of an orbiter and lander. It also had a rover called Sojourner on board. The rover rolled onto the Martian surface and was to operate for a month, but lasted for three months. The Mars Pathfinder mission sent back data on the atmosphere and the soil of Mars
  • Nozomi

    Nozomi was to be a Mars orbiter, but failed to orbit Mars.
  • Mars Climate Orbiter

    Mars Climate Orbiter
    As the name suggests it was to send back data on Mar's climate, however after it reached mars and went behind the planet, contact was never regained.
  • Deep Space 2

    Deep Space 2
    This mission wanted to probe the surface of Mars and send back data on the sub-surface of the planet. unfortunately while it did manage to reach Mars, communication could not be established after it landed with the Mars Polar Lander.
  • Mars Polar Lander

    Mars Polar Lander
    The Mars Polar Lander was to send back data on weather and climate. This lander is belived to have crashed. As no more data was recived from it after the 3 December 1999, just before it entered the atmosphere.
  • 2001 Mars Odyssey

    2001 Mars Odyssey
    2001 Mars Odyssey is the longest active orbiter around another planet other than Earth. While it sends back its own data about the planet, its most important job is to act as a relay for rovers on the planet.
  • Mars Express

    Mars Express
    The Mars Express was launched by the European Space Agency.The Mars Express consisted of an orbiter and lander. The orbiters mission was a success, but the lander named the Beagle 2 was lost.
  • Spirit

    Spirit was a rover that explored the surface of Mars. It was meant to drive a distance of 600 meters, yet it drove for 7.73km. It then became stuck in soft soil, but continued to send back data up to 2010.
  • Opportunity

    Opportunity is a Mars rover that is currently exploring the surface of the planet. It had a planned mission lenght of 205 days, yet it just keeps on going.
  • Mars Reconnaisance Orbiter

    Mars Reconnaisance Orbiter
    Mars Reconnaisance Orbiter is designed to orbit Mars over the time span of a Martian year. It was sent with up to date technology and continues to orbit Mars.
  • Phoenix

    The Phoenix lander studyed the surface of Mars in the norther part of the planet. it completed its mission in August of 2008, but the signal was lost with the lander on 2 November 2008. Phoenix recorded the first data of snowfall on Mars.
  • Phobos-Grunt

    Phobos-Grunt was to land on Mars moon Phobos. It failed to burn out of Earth orbit.
  • Yinghuo-1

    Yinghuo-1 was a Mars orbiter. It failed to burn out of Earth orbit.
  • Curiosity

    Curirosity or Mars Science Laboratory is a rover with the most up to date instruments on Mars. Its main mission is to find out if Mars ever held organic life.