July 20, 09:53 PM GMT
15,000 - 20,000 USD
MAPC-3 (“Mars-3”) Soviet Automatic Interplanetary Probe Project Presentation Model, NPO Lavochkin, ca 1987
Large, approx. 1:18 scale custom handmade model, 22 1/2 by 26 by 15 inches, in metal, resin, and composite materials, complete with cone antennae, large dish antenna, and fully deploying solar panels. Mounted onto 12 by 12 by 1 1/2 inch base with metal plaque reading: "Mars-3 Soviet Interplanetary Probe Project, NPO Lavochkin, 1971." Very fine.
Mars-3 was an unmanned space probe of the Soviet Mars program, which spanned from 1960-1973. Developed by the Lavochkin Design Bureau in Khimki, it was designed to study the surface of Mars both from orbit and on the lander, and was launched by a Proton-K rocket on 28 May 1971. After 6 months, on 2 December 1971, the probe became the first spacecraft to soft-land on the martian surface. The data transmission to Earth lasted only 14.5 seconds before communications halted for reasons unknown.