Space Achievements of 2021; From Touching the Sun to the historic launch of James Webb

2021 was a fruitful year for the space industry, with the deployment of astronauts and helicopters to Mars, several manned private missions, the arrival of robotic probes in the Sun’s atmosphere, and even Captain Kirk’s daring astronautics. Below we take a look at the biggest space achievements in 2021.

The percussion astronaut touched the Red Planet

On February 18, 2021, NASA’s Perseversion rover landed on the surface of the Red Planet to embark on one of the most ambitious interplanetary missions. This is the first time since 1976 that a mission to successfully search for signs of Mars’ past life has been successfully launched. Persevers sampling Martian soil. These samples will be returned to Earth for laboratory analysis.

NASA Percussion

NASA’s Mars rover

NASA’s Mars Helicopter made its maiden flight

One of the most exciting parts of the Precursor mission on April 19, 2021, was the flight of an engine robotic helicopter that landed on the surface of Mars and survived not only the extreme cold of Martian night, but also became the first helicopter to take off from the Red Planet and fly. The minutes of one of the most ambitious aerial stories.


Engine helicopter on Mars

China sent its first astronauts to the Tiangong space station

2021 was the year China’s ambitious program in space competition came to fruition. The country sent three astronauts to the Tiangong space station in low-Earth orbit. The main module of this station was sent on April 29. Then, Rei Hai-shing commander Liu Booming and Tong Hongbo system operator flew to the station on June 17 on the Shenzhou 12 spacecraft. They remained in Earth orbit for 90 days.


Tiangong, China’s manned space engineering headquarters

China is the third country to land on Mars

On May 14, China became the third country to land a spacecraft on the Red Planet and the second country to successfully launch a Mars rover on Mars. After a seven-month journey from Earth, the surface of Tianon 1 detached from its orbit module and landed on the surface of Mars in the Utopia Planetia region. The Jurong rover detached from the surface on June 1 to begin its 90-day exploration mission. This mission has lasted 210 days so far.

China lands on Mars

The conceptual design of the artist from the surface of Tianon 1

Richard Branson with VSS Unity It almost flew in space

British billionaire Richard Branson flew almost into space on July 11 as a passenger on the VSS Unity submarine flight of the Virgin Galactic spacecraft. The flight took off from the New Mexico space station in the United States. Dim McKee and Michael Musachi controlled the aircraft, and other specialists such as astronaut Beth Moses; Colin Bennett, Chief Operating Officer, and Sirisha Bandella, Deputy Chief of Operations Research and Government Affairs, participated in the flight. Although the aircraft was able to reach an altitude of 1.86 km, which the United States calls the edge of space, it failed to reach the international standard of 100 km.

Richard Branson

Richard Branson (right) and his fellow travelers

Round trip of space travelers with Blue Origin

On July 20, 2021, the New Shepherd Blu-ray missile reached its first submarine passenger flight. The company’s co-founder Jeff Bezos and his brother Mark, 82-year-old Marie Wallace and 18-year-old Oliver Damen, were among the passengers who climbed to a height of 107.05 km. The Blues continued the mission on October 15 by sending the oldest space passenger, 90-year-old William Shatner (played by Captain Kirk in the Star Trek series).


The moment of the ascent of Newshopard

SpaceX’s first completely private space mission

Another private space mission took place on September 15. On this date, the SpaceX Inspiration 4 mission with the Falcon 9 rocket from the 39A launch complex at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida was carried out by four astronauts. As a result, for the first time in history, a completely private manned mission went into space by private spacecraft.

The first all-private space mission

The first all-private manned mission on the climb

NASA spacecraft touched the sun

In 2021, spacecraft entered the solar atmosphere for the first time. NASA’s Parker Solar Probe reached 532,000 kilometers per hour after its eighth exposure to the Sun in April, 10.4 million kilometers from the Sun. Analysis of the data showed that the probe was close enough to the sun to pass through its outer atmosphere called the corona.

NASA Solar Parker Probe

Artist drawing of the Parker Solar probe facing the sun

SpaceX successfully landed its massive startup

After a series of explosive retreats, SpaceX was finally able to land its next-generation Starship missile after a submarine test flight on May 5th. Mission SN15 It reached a height of ten kilometers before reaching a horizontal position for landing and then returned to a vertical position for the final landing in Texas.


Starship SpaceX

The Juno spacecraft captured the first close-up images of Ganymede in 20 years

NASA’s Juno spacecraft set a new record after two decades by sending close-up images of Ganymede, Jupiter’s largest moon. These fascinating images were captured by JunoCam and the Stellar Reference Unit during Juno’s flight over the moon on June 7th.


Ganymede up close

The Juno spacecraft sent the first three-dimensional image of Jupiter’s atmosphere

The Juno spacecraft once again set a new record by providing the most complete color image of Jupiter’s chaotic atmosphere or the first three-dimensional image of the planet’s atmosphere.

Three-dimensional image of the customer

Customer from Juno’s point of view

OSIRIS-Rex With a large collection of samples on the ground

The OSIRIS-Rex robotic probe (Regolite probe, security, resource identification, spectral interpretation, climatic origin) is now returning to Earth after collecting samples from the planet Bennu and will reach Earth in 2.5 years.

Osiris Rex

Artist concept design from NASA OSIRIS – Rex probe

New Horizons captured the image of Voyager 1

The New Horizons probe set a new record on April 17, 2021, at a distance of 50 astronomical units from the Sun, which is 50 times the distance between the Earth and the Sun, or 5.5 billion kilometers. The New Horizons is the fifth spacecraft to land at a great distance from Earth, after the Voyager 1 and 2 and the Pioneer 10 and 11.

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The New Horizons also captured an image of Voyager 1 at a distance of 152 astronomical units. Voyager 1 is currently the farthest man-made object in the universe and the first spacecraft to enter interstellar space.

New Horizons Explorer

Voyager 1 is in the yellow circle. In this image, the two spacecraft are 18 billion kilometers apart. As you can see, you can not see Voyager 1 properly, but NASA knows its exact location thanks to radio tracking and is sure to be in the yellow circle.

Spacecraft ELSA-d For the first time, he collected orbiting space pebbles

The space will be cleaner in the future. Private company Astroscale wants to clear the space of garbage by unveiling its magnetic collection system. This year, the company’s ELSA-d satellite collected simulated pebble fragments in space.

Elsa satellite d

ELSA-d service satellite

BepiColombo And Solar Orbiter They came a short distance from Venus

The BepiColombo spacecraft reached 552 km from Venus on August 11 and crossed Venus nine times on the way to Mercury. The European Space Agency and JAXA spacecraft captured an image of Venus from a distance of 1,573 km shortly after the call.

BepiColombo probe

Venus from the point of view of BepiColombo

Colds that can contain CO2 Were discovered on the moon

In November, a new study by the Institute of Planetary Science and UCLA found that there are areas in Antarctica that contain frozen carbon dioxide, raising hopes of finding significant resources to support lunar missions.

Cold trap

Antarctic Moon

Did astronomers discover the first extrasolar planet outside the galaxy?

In October, NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory announced the observation of the first extrasolar planet. The planet, probably in the vortex galaxy M51, is a candidate for a giant extrasolar planet orbiting a black hole or neutron star 28 million light-years from Earth.

An extraterrestrial planet

The artist’s conceptual design of the discovery of the first possible extragalactic planet

The Apollo 11 ascent phase is probably still in lunar orbit

This year we saw the solution to a historical mystery: what happened to the ascent of the Eagle’s Lunar Module Apollo 11 mission, which carried Neil Armstrong and Baz Aldrin and returned them to lunar orbit at the end of their historic mission? According to new research, the ascending phase may not have hit the moon and is still in orbit.

Apollo 11 ascent stage

Apollo 11 Climbing Stage

The James Webb Space Telescope finally made its way into space

Finally, on September 25, the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) was launched after several delays, cost increases, and redesigns.

James Webb Space Telescope

Artistic concept design from the James Webb Space Telescope

The telescope was supposed to be launched in 2007, but was finally launched this year and is on its way to its final destination, the second Lagrangian point (L2). This telescope is supposed to send us unprecedented images of the universe.

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