Mars Science Laboratory

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Mars Science Laboratory

Post by Sirius_Alpha on 24th November 2008, 6:34 pm

MSL has been united with it's descent stage and cruise stage.

image (.gif, decently large).

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Re: Mars Science Laboratory

Post by SiteAdmin on 27th November 2008, 7:30 am

Is it still scheduled to be launched on October 8, 2009?
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Re: Mars Science Laboratory

Post by Sirius_Alpha on 27th November 2008, 2:13 pm

It's supposed to. Due to the orbital motion of Earth and Mars, if MSL doesn't launch in that window, they'll have to wait another couple of years... something no one wants to do.

According to a NASA media teleconference on October 10...
All indications are that everything is on track for launching on time. MSL launch window for 2009 ends October 15, but NASA was (and might be still, I'm unsure) looking into whether the launch window could be extended some. MSL is heavily overbudget, keeping it here on the ground is going to cost more, so they want to get MSL launched on time.

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Re: Mars Science Laboratory

Post by Lazarus on 27th November 2008, 2:27 pm

Since we're talking about MSL, Alan Stern's opinion on NASA's overbudget missions is quite interesting.
And this is not the only damage being done. Our once-broad planetary program that has launched missions to the Moon, comets, asteroids and five planets since the mid-1990s has been so reduced — largely by years of Mars overrun — that all that remains in hardware development are just one lunar and one outer-planet mission. Even those two missions are endangered now by the Mars Science Laboratory’s spiraling cost.
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Re: Mars Science Laboratory

Post by Sirius_Alpha on 27th November 2008, 3:02 pm

Quite honestly, I can't blame him for being frustrated. I haven't really thought of it like that though, about the diversity of planetary missions, Stern raises a great point.


MSL candidate landing sites.
Landing sites.


The blue dots are landing sites of previous landers.
1) Phoenix
2) Viking 1
3) Mars Pathfinder
4) Opportunity rover
5) Viking 2
6) Spirit rover

The green dots are proposed MSL landing sites.
1) Mawrth Vallis (2 km deep valley; ancient water outflow channel, light-coloured clay-rich rocks).
2) Eberswalde (Partially buried impact crater, with a fossilized delta flowing into it)
3) Holden Crater (Has an outlet chanel whigh may have been created by running water).
4) Gale Crater (4.5 km tall mountain in the centre, composed of layered material that may have been laid down over 2 Gyr).



A nice picture comparing the sizes of the MER rovers, Sojourner, and MSL.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Mars_Science_Laboratory_mockup_comparison_.jpg

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Re: Mars Science Laboratory

Post by Sirius_Alpha on 4th December 2008, 8:30 pm

MSL Delayed until 2011.

http://www.universetoday.com/2008/12/04/mars-science-laboratory-mission-delayed-two-years/

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Re: Mars Science Laboratory

Post by Darkness nova on 22nd December 2008, 4:30 pm

Wonderful.

That means more overbudget nonsense, more missions getting scrapped, and less getting done.

Bravo people who screwed this all up braaaaaavo.

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Re: Mars Science Laboratory

Post by Sirius_Alpha on 22nd December 2008, 7:02 pm

Yeah I'm not happy about it either. I want MSL launched, and then no new Mars exploration projects for a decade (well, at least a while).

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Re: Mars Science Laboratory

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