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Target: Mars  
State: Planned

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Kind: Mars OrbiterLanderPenetrator

State: Launch failure

Place: Mars

Operator: Rosaviakosmos



Duration: Launch failure

Mission Ending

"Life's like a movie, write your own ending. Keep believing, keep pretending." - Jim Henson


Rocket: Proton-K/D-2

Kind: Rosaviakosmos

Mass: 6,180 kilograms (13,620 lb)

Launch Site: Baikonur 200/39


"Requesting permission for flyby." Maverick - Top Gun


Reference System: Geocentric


"The journey, not the arrival, matters; the voyage, not the landing." - Paul Theroux

Mars 96 (sometimes called Mars 8) was a failed Mars mission launched in 1996 to investigate Mars by the Russian Space Forces and not directly related to the Soviet Mars probe program of the same name. After failure of the second fourth-stage burn, the probe assembly re-entered the Earth's atmosphere, breaking up over a 200-mile long portion of the Pacific Ocean, Chile, and Bolivia. The Mars 96 spacecraft was based on the Phobos probes launched to Mars in 1988. They were of a new design at the time and both ultimately failed. For the Mars 96 mission the designers believed they had corrected the flaws of the Phobos probes, but the value of their improvements was never demonstrated due to the destruction of the probe during the launch phase. It was, however, a very ambitious mission and the heaviest interplanetary probe launched up to that time. The mission included an orbiter, surface stations and surface penetrators. The mission included a large complement of instruments provided by India, France, Germany, other European countries and the United States. Similar instruments have since been flown on Mars Express, launched in 2003. Its project scientist was Alexander Zakharov.