This 1961 photo shows Dr. William H. Pickering, (center) JPL Director, presenting a Mariner spacecraft model to President John F. Kennedy, (right). NASA Administrator James Webb is standing directly behind the Mariner model.
Mariner 2 launched 50 years ago on Aug. 27, 1962. The Mariner 2 probe flew by Venus in 1962, sending back data on its atmosphere, mass, and weather patterns. It stopped transmitting in 1963 after delivering a wealth of scientific information.