Luna E-8-5 No. 405

Luna E-8-5 No.405, also known as Luna Ye-8-5 No.405, and sometimes identified by NASA as Luna 1970A,[1] was a Soviet spacecraft which was lost in a launch failure in 1970. It was a 5,600-kilogram (12,300 lb) Luna E-8-5 spacecraft, the fifth of eight to be launched.[2][3] It was intended to perform a soft landing on the Moon, collect a sample of lunar soil, and return it to the Earth.[2]

E-8-5 No.405
A Luna E-8-5 spacecraft
Mission typeLunar lander
Sample return
Mission durationFailed to orbit
Spacecraft properties
Spacecraft typeE-8-5
ManufacturerNPO Lavochkin
Launch mass5,600 kilograms (12,300 lb)
Start of mission
Launch date6 February 1970, 04:16:06 (1970-02-06UTC04:16:06Z) UTC
RocketProton-K/D s/n 247-01
Launch siteBaikonur 81/23


Luna E-8-5 No.405 was launched at 04:16:06 UTC on 6 February 1970 atop a Proton-K 8K78K carrier rocket with a Blok-D upper stage, flying from Site 81/23 at the Baikonur Cosmodrome.[4] A defective pressure sensor caused the first stage to shut down 128 seconds after launch. The booster crashed downrange.[5] Prior to the release of information about its mission, NASA correctly identified that it had been an attempted sample return mission.[1]


  1. Williams, David R. (6 January 2005). "Tentatively Identified Missions and Launch Failures". NASA NSSDC. Retrieved 30 July 2010.
  2. Wade, Mark. "Luna Ye-8-5". Encyclopedia Astronautica. Retrieved 27 July 2010.
  3. Krebs, Gunter. "Luna E-8-5". Gunter's Space Page. Retrieved 27 July 2010.
  4. McDowell, Jonathan. "Launch Log". Jonathan's Space Page. Retrieved 27 July 2010.
  5. Wade, Mark. "Proton". Encyclopedia Astronautica. Retrieved 27 July 2010.

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