Mars Curiosity Rover - Mission Progress


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Profile Bob DeWoody
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Message 1262046 - Posted: 19 Jul 2012, 0:24:24 UTC
Last modified: 19 Jul 2012, 0:24:59 UTC

At this point there isn't much anyone at JPL can do other than wait with the rest of us. On the other hand a large amplifier that can blast sound waves to put out a massive forest fire has relevance to a great number of people that could lose their lives or homes. JPL and NASA will always promote a development that has potential to do good here at home as a means to justify their annual budget.
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Message 1264242 - Posted: 25 Jul 2012, 22:38:02 UTC

Good news everyone!

NASA Mars Orbiter Repositioned to Phone Home Mars Landing


PASADENA, Calif. -- NASA's Mars Odyssey spacecraft has successfully adjusted its orbital location to be in a better position to provide prompt confirmation of the August landing of the Curiosity rover.

The Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) spacecraft carrying Curiosity can send limited information directly to Earth as it enters Mars' atmosphere. Before the landing, Earth will set below the Martian horizon from the descending spacecraft's perspective, ending that direct route of communication. Odyssey will help to speed up the indirect communication process.

NASA reported during a July 16 news conference that Odyssey, which originally was planned to provide a near-real-time communication link with Curiosity, had entered safe mode July 11. This situation would have affected communication operations, but not the rover's landing. Without a repositioning maneuver, Odyssey would have arrived over the landing area about two minutes after Curiosity landed.

A spacecraft thruster burn Tuesday lasting about six seconds has nudged Odyssey about six minutes ahead in its orbit. Odyssey now is operating normally, and confirmation of Curiosity's landing is expected to reach Earth at about 10:31 p.m. PDT Aug. 5, as originally planned.

"Information we are receiving indicates the maneuver has been completed as planned," said Gaylon McSmith, Mars Odyssey project manager at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), in Pasadena, Calif. "Odyssey has been working at Mars longer than any other spacecraft, so it is appropriate that it has a special role in supporting the newest arrival."

Two other Mars orbiters, NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) and the European Space Agency's Mars Express, also will be in position to receive radio transmissions from MSL during its descent. However, they will be recording information for later playback. Only Odyssey can relay information immediately.

Odyssey arrived at Mars in 2001. In addition to its own scientific observations, it has served as a communications relay for NASA's Spirit and Opportunity Mars rovers and the Phoenix lander. Spirit and Phoenix are no longer operational. Odyssey and MRO will provide communication relays for Curiosity during the rover's two-year prime mission.

Odyssey and MSL, with its Curiosity rover, are managed by JPL for NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington. Curiosity was designed, developed and assembled at JPL. The Odyssey spacecraft is operated by JPL and Lockheed Martin in Denver. Lockheed Martin Space Systems in Denver built Odyssey.


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Message 1264270 - Posted: 25 Jul 2012, 23:31:17 UTC

Brill news!

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Message 1264271 - Posted: 25 Jul 2012, 23:32:27 UTC

ya good news
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Message 1265519 - Posted: 29 Jul 2012, 16:41:14 UTC

Very much looking forward to this. I remember the Spirit and Opportunity landings, but for some reason don't recall the Sojourner and Phoenix landings as much. The Viking missions are etched in my memory, though. I think that is because they were pioneers, plus they didn't have to compete with a million cable channels, and the internet. It's just as exciting as it ever was, but space exploration needs a good spokesperson like Carl Sagan to keep it in the public imagination.


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Message 1265532 - Posted: 29 Jul 2012, 17:10:22 UTC - in response to Message 1265519.

Very much looking forward to this. I remember the Spirit and Opportunity landings, but for some reason don't recall the Sojourner and Phoenix landings as much. The Viking missions are etched in my memory, though. I think that is because they were pioneers, plus they didn't have to compete with a million cable channels, and the internet. It's just as exciting as it ever was, but space exploration needs a good spokesperson like Carl Sagan to keep it in the public imagination.


I remember following sojourner very closely, I remember how amazing the high resolution color images were, even in the late 90's they looked awesome.

I have been waiting for curiosity's landing for awhile, only one week left to go now. I'll be up late on the net following along.

Will there be a live feed of mission control available on the net does anyone know?

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Message 1266764 - Posted: 2 Aug 2012, 17:54:28 UTC

They say that Curiosity isn't a life detecting mission, merely looking for geological evidence that the environment was, at some point, suitable for life. I've also read that Curiosity has an instrument that can detect methane gas, and sort out its isotopes, so they can distinguish between methane released by geological processes and that which comes from living things. Also a camera that can magnify enough to see fossils, should any be present.

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Message 1266779 - Posted: 2 Aug 2012, 18:47:24 UTC - in response to Message 1265532.

Very much looking forward to this. I remember the Spirit and Opportunity landings, but for some reason don't recall the Sojourner and Phoenix landings as much. The Viking missions are etched in my memory, though. I think that is because they were pioneers, plus they didn't have to compete with a million cable channels, and the internet. It's just as exciting as it ever was, but space exploration needs a good spokesperson like Carl Sagan to keep it in the public imagination.


I remember following sojourner very closely, I remember how amazing the high resolution color images were, even in the late 90's they looked awesome.

I have been waiting for curiosity's landing for awhile, only one week left to go now. I'll be up late on the net following along.

Will there be a live feed of mission control available on the net does anyone know?

Should be on NASA TV, available here. If that's overloaded (or you keep getting the buffering thing) an alternative is here.
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Message 1267208 - Posted: 3 Aug 2012, 19:55:07 UTC

MSL Remains on Track for Weekend Landing
Thu, 02 Aug 2012 11:22:02 PM GMT

Curiosity remains in good health, with no significant issues currently in work. There are no real-time activities planned today. The Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft remains on a consistent and stable course, well within the limits required to reach its target landing ellipse. As a result, yesterday the flight team decided to cancel the build and test of a contingency version of Trajectory Correction Maneuver 5. This contingency manuever, had it been needed, would have been used in the event an emergency prevented the team from executing the nominal scheduled TCM-5 maneuver, which is planned for Friday, Aug. 3, if needed. The project also canceled a corresponding update to parameters for the autonomous software controlling events during entry, descent and landing.


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Message 1267985 - Posted: 5 Aug 2012, 16:40:16 UTC

Not much longer to go! Pretty exciting :D
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Message 1268045 - Posted: 5 Aug 2012, 18:16:07 UTC

Ya me too, i ll try to watch tonight, IF there is something presented and allowed to watch ^^
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Message 1268110 - Posted: 5 Aug 2012, 21:26:10 UTC

With Mars looming ever larger in front of it, NASA's Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft and its Curiosity rover are in the final stages of preparing for entry, descent and landing on the Red Planet at 10:31 p.m. PDT Aug. 5 (1:31 a.m. EDT Aug. 6).

Curiosity remains in good health with all systems operating as expected. Today, the flight team uplinked and confirmed commands to make minor corrections to the spacecraft's navigation reference point parameters. This afternoon, as part of the onboard sequence of autonomous activities leading to the landing, catalyst bed heaters are being turned on to prepare the eight Mars Lander Engines that are part of MSL's descent propulsion system.

As of 2:25 p.m. PDT (5:25 p.m. EDT), MSL was approximately 261,000 miles (420,039 kilometers) from Mars, closing in at a little more than 8,000 mph (about 3,600 meters per second).


Countdown



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Message 1268118 - Posted: 5 Aug 2012, 22:35:12 UTC - in response to Message 1268110.


Countdown

Very exciting! .... :)

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Message 1268119 - Posted: 5 Aug 2012, 22:36:15 UTC - in response to Message 1268118.
Last modified: 5 Aug 2012, 22:36:45 UTC

Woops! Double post, sorry.

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Message 1268212 - Posted: 6 Aug 2012, 4:29:29 UTC
Last modified: 6 Aug 2012, 4:35:25 UTC

1 hour to landing!! :)

Live coverage;
http://www.nasa.gov/ntv/

John.

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Message 1268225 - Posted: 6 Aug 2012, 5:33:15 UTC
Last modified: 6 Aug 2012, 5:34:05 UTC

Touchdown!! Save and sound in one piece!

Wooooppppeee!

John.

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Message 1268227 - Posted: 6 Aug 2012, 5:33:31 UTC
Last modified: 6 Aug 2012, 5:33:58 UTC

Landed safely....all systems working A1....magic!!!!!
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Message 1268228 - Posted: 6 Aug 2012, 5:42:13 UTC
Last modified: 6 Aug 2012, 5:50:15 UTC

First image; (Its just a tiny thumbnail test image)
http://twitter.com/NASA/status/232350219700932608/photo/1

Here is a slightly bigger picture!
http://twitter.com/MarsCuriosity/status/232352290919567361/photo/1

They will put the other images here;
http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/mars/images/first_images_mars.html

John.

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Message 1268232 - Posted: 6 Aug 2012, 5:47:32 UTC


Curiosity's shadow, wheels down, on MARS!




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Message 1268238 - Posted: 6 Aug 2012, 5:56:41 UTC - in response to Message 1268232.
Last modified: 6 Aug 2012, 6:19:52 UTC

Yippee!!!!!!!!!

Curiosity Lands on Mars
Mon, 06 Aug 2012 12:32:54 AM CST

NASA's Curiosity rover has landed on Mars! Its descent-stage retrorockets fired, guiding it to the surface. Nylon cords lowered the rover to the ground in the "sky crane" maneuver. When the spacecraft sensed touchdown, the connecting cords were severed, and the descent stage flew out of the way. The time of day at the landing site is mid-afternoon -- about 3 p.m. local Mars time at Gale Crater. The time at JPL's mission control is about 10:31 p.m. Aug. 5 PDT (early morning EDT).

Lynn

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