Twenty-five years ago today — March 6, 1986 — the Soviet spacecraft Vega-1 made its flyby of Comet Halley.
(Illustration of Vega-1 mission profile. NASA image.)
Vega-1 had been launched on December 15, 1984, from the Baikonur Cosmodrome, and first dropped probes onto Venus in June 1985 before continuing to its cometary intercept. Its sister craft, Vega-2, launched six days later and encountered Comet Halley on March 9, 1986.by