Mission Information
MISSION_NAME PHOBOS 2
MISSION_ALIAS PHOBOS
MISSION_START_DATE 1988-07-07T12:00:00.000Z
MISSION_STOP_DATE 1989-03-27T12:00:00.000Z
MISSION_DESCRIPTION
Mission Overview
      ================
      The spacecraft Phobos 1 and 2 were launched on 7 and 12 July 1988.
      The mission was to have three stages: investigations of Sun and
      interplanetary space during the flight from Earth to Mars; studies
      of both Mars and Phobos during the orbit of the spacecraft around
      Mars; and studies of Phobos as the spacecraft approached to within
      50 m of its surface.  Contact with Phobos 1 was lost on 1
      September 1988 during the cruise phase; contact was lost with
      Phobos 2 just before the third stage of the mission. However,
      valuable data on Mars and Phobos were acquired prior to loss of
      contact.
 
      Mission Phase Information
      =========================
 
      Phase 1 - Cruise
      ----------------
        Start Time: 1988-07-07
        Stop Time:  1989-01-29
 
        Phobos 2 was launched on July 12, 1988.  The first correction of
        the trajectory was made on July 21, 1988.  On January 29, 1989,
        a retarding impulse was applied and Phobos 2 was transferred
        from Earth-to-Mars trajectory to the elliptical equatorial orbit
        of a martian artificial satellite.
 
      Phase 2 - Mars Orbit
      --------------------
        Start Time: 1989-01-29
        Stop Time:  1989-03-27
 
        On January 29, 1989, a retarding impulse was applied and Phobos
        2 was transferred from Earth-to-Mars trajectory to the
        elliptical equatorial orbit of a martian artificial satellite.
        The spacecraft's orbits were corrected several more times in
        February, in order to achieve a circular orbit, almost the same
        as that of Phobos, although somewhat higher.  In March, several
        intermediate corrections transferred the spacecraft into a
        quasi-synchronous orbit with Phobos.  Eventually, the craft was
        transferred to an orbit closer to Phobos, and then guided closer
        to Phobos itself.  On March 27, 1989, after television imaging
        of Phobos during which Phobos 2 changed its orientation so that
        its field of view pointed at Phobos, radio contact was lost.
MISSION_OBJECTIVES_SUMMARY
Mission Objectives Overview
      ===========================
      The Phobos spacecraft was to have come as close as ~50 m to Phobos
      which would have made it possible to obtain high-resolution
      television images of the surface of Phobos, to study the elemental
      and mineralogical composition of the regolith, the internal
      structure of Phobos, and to put landers on the moon's surface.
      Besides studies of Phobos, and the martian surface, atmosphere and
      plasma environment of Mars, both of the Phobos spacecraft were to
      make observations of the Sun and interplanetary space during the
      flight from Earth to Mars.
REFERENCE_DESCRIPTION Planetary and Space Sciences, Special issues on Phobos, Volume 39, Issues 1-2, January-February 1991.

Sagdeev, R. Z., and Zakharov, A. V., Brief History of the Phobos Mission. Nature, Vol. 341, October 19. 1989. p. 581-584