Following launch using a Titan/Centaur launch vehicle on August 20, 1975, and a 11-month cruise to Mars, the orbiter began returning global images of Mars about 5 days before orbit insertion. The Viking 1 Orbiter was inserted into Mars orbit on June 19, 1976, and trimmed to a 1513 x 33,000 km, 24. 66 h site certification orbit on June 21. Landing on Mars was planned for July 4, 1976, the United States Bicentennial, but imaging of the primary landing site showed it was too rough for a safe landing. The landing was delayed until a safer site was found, and took place instead on July 20, the seventh anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon landing. The lander separated from the orbiter at 08:51 UTC and landed at Chryse Planitia at 11:53:06 UTC. It was the first attempt by the United States at landing on Mars.