The Venera series probes were developed by the Soviet Union
between 1961 and 1984 to gather data from Venus, Venera
being the Russian name for Venus. As with some of the
Soviet Union's other planetary probes,
the later versions were launched in pairs
with a second vehicle being launched soon after
the first of the pair.
Ten probes from the Venera series successfully landed on Venus
and transmitted data from the surface, including the two
program and Venera-Halley probes. In addition, thirteen Venera
probes successfully transmitted data from the atmosphere of Venus.
Venera 13 and 14
The two descent craft landed about 950 kilometres (590 mi) apart,
just east of the eastern extension of an elevated region known as
Phoebe Region. The Venera 13 lander survived for 127 minutes, and
the Venera 14 lander for 57 minutes, where the planned design life
was only 32 minutes. The Venera 14 craft had the misfortune of
ejecting the camera lens cap directly under the surface compressibility
tester arm, and returned information for the compressibility
of the lens cap rather than the surface. The descent vehicles
transmitted data to the buses, which acted as data relays as they flew by Venus.
Leonid Ksanfomaliti of the Space
Research Institute of Russia's Academy of Sciences
published research that analyzed the photos
from the Venus mission made by a Soviet
landing probe, Venus-13, in 1982.
The photos feature several objects, which
Ksanfomaliti said, resembled "a disk," "a black
flap" and "a scorpion." All of them "emerge,
fluctuate and disappear," the scientist said,
referring to their changing location on different
photos and traces on the ground.
"What if we forget about the current theories
about the nonexistence of life on Venus, let's
boldly suggest that the objects' morphological
features would allow us to say that they are
living," Solar System Research quoted Ksanfomaliti
John Lear has been quoted as saying
efforts were to keep the public from
learning about VENUS.
A very similar planet to Earth and
its population is very similar to us, just
We learned a lot
starting with the Russian Venera 1 and
U.S. Mariner 2.
We made Venus look like a lead-melting,
volcanic surface; spewing sulfuric acid into a
pressurized atmosphere 90 times that of
Earth. And as often the case,
we over did it and we wondered why
nobody asked how a parachute survived a
descent into 800-degree air."