DAVID DUCROS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DAVID DUCROS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Venus Express departing Earth, artwork. This European Space Agency probe was launched on 9 November 2005 to suborbital level by a three-stage rocket (not seen). After separation from the rocket, this fourth (Fregat) stage was ignited to set the probe on its interplanetary trajectory for a 153-day journey to Venus. The fuels used were nitrogen peroxide and unsymmetrical dimethylhydrazine (UDMH). The solar panels (blue) were not deployed until reaching Venus. Venus Express arrived at Venus in April 2006, and has been transmitting observations of its atmosphere. Its mission has been extended to the end of 2012.
Model release not required. Property release not required.