While today may belong to the 45th anniversary of the Apollo 11 lunar landing, it’s important not to forget another important anniversary for NASA - the landing of the Viking 1 spacecraft on Mars!

On July 20th, 1976, the Viking 1 lander separated from the orbiter and touched down at Chryse Planitia, a flat lowland region in the northern hemisphere of Mars. Immediately following touchdown, the lander made history by taking and transmitting the first complete photograph taken from the surface of Mars. The image ( was of the Viking 1 lander’s foot as an indication of how far it had sunk into the Martian surface. Between itself and its companion, Viking 2, this historic photograph was just the first of more than 50,000 images taken from the Martian surface, as well as from orbit, and transmitted back to Earth.

What makes Viking 1 especially worth noting is that it was not only the first attempt by the United States at landing on Mars, but it was also the first spacecraft to successfully do so and perform its mission. While the Soviet Mars 3 mission was the first to achieve a soft landing of a spacecraft on Mars it stopped transmitting data 15 seconds after landing. During those few seconds of transmission, it sent the first partial photograph taken from the surface of Mars although nothing was identifiable in it.

During its operation on the Martian surface, Viking 1 became the record holder for longest Mars surface mission at 2307 days, until Mars Rover Opportunity took the record in 2010.

To read more about Viking 1:

Mars in the Houses

Mars in 1st house

The Mars first house placement intensifies the assertiveness of the personality type described by your Ascendant. With any Ascendant, Mars in the first house increases the vitality, and produces a somewhat more assertive, more outgoing, and more energetic individual.   Your appearance is likely to be robust and muscular and you may be stronger that other members of your family of the same sex. You are always one to be directly involved in affairs; never an idle bystander. This element produces drive and creates more ambition and the aptitude for hard work, with a competitive drive for recognition and acclaim.   This position is usually considered, by traditionalists, to be more desirable for men than for women, because it displays the assertive characteristics associated with males. Females with this placement often have the self-confidence and competitive traits to enter and succeed in male dominated professions.

Mars in 2nd house

The Mars second house placement suggests that energies are spent in the pursuit of material and financial gains, and in this regard you are very resourceful. 

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