SPUTNIK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SPUTNIK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Luna 16 spacecraft. Engineer working on Luna 16's retrieving rocket. Luna 16, also known as Lunnik 16, was the first unmanned space mission that sent out a robotic probe to land on the Moon and collect a sample from it. Luna 16 was launched on 12 September 1970 and landed on the Moon on 20 September. After using a drill to collect a soil sample, Luna 16 left the moon on 21 September and was back on Earth on 24 September 1970.
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