The Russian feat is considered to put them well ahead of the Americans whose own spacecraft designed for a soft landing on the moon -- Surveyor - is still in the laboratory.
The Russian feat is considered to put them well ahead of the Americans whose own spacecraft designed for a soft landing on the moon -- Surveyor - is still in the laboratory. It's due to be launched later this year. And this week it was taken by balloon to a height of fifteen hundred feet and released. Because of the earth's atmosphere the Americans were able to control its descent by parachute. But on the moon there is no atmosphere and parachutes are useless. The landing of Russia's Luna 9 yesterday had to be controlled by retro-rockets, slowing the capsule down from a speed of six thousand miles an hour to six miles an hour on impact.
The Director of Jordell Bank, Sir Bernard Lovell, says Russia's next space spectacular might be the landing on the moon of a remotely controlled vehicle which would move about collecting data.
And the Russian cosmonaut Gherman Titov said today that dogs may be sent to the moon.
BBC-1 is relaying a news conference on Luna 9 direct from Moscow at 2.25. this afternoon.
We have just received the first close up picture ever taken on the moon's surface. It was picked up from the Russian Luna-Nine at Jodrell Bank, using a 'Daily Express' wire-photo machine. Here it is.
We hope to show more pictures from Luna-Nine in our next news bulletin at ten to nine.