Author Topic: Mars 2020 Rover Will Have 23 'Eyes'  (Read 1391 times)

Offline catdlr

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Mars 2020 Rover Will Have 23 'Eyes'
« on: 10/31/2017 11:15 PM »
Quote
A Snapshot of Some Mars 2020 Cameras

Enhanced Engineering Cameras: Color, higher resolution and wider fields of view than Curiosity's engineering cameras.

Mastcam-Z: An improved version of Curiosity's MASTCAM with a 3:1 zoom lens.

SuperCam Remote Micro-Imager (RMI): The highest-resolution remote imager will have color, a change from the imager that flew with Curiosity's ChemCam.

CacheCam: Will watch as rock samples are deposited into the rover's body.

Entry, descent and landing cameras: Six cameras will record the entry, descent and landing process, providing the first video of a parachute opening on another planet.

Lander Vision System Camera: Will use computer vision to guide the landing, using a new technology called terrain relative navigation.

SkyCam: A suite of weather instruments will include a sky-facing camera for studying clouds and the atmosphere.

Source: https://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.php?feature=6987
Tony De La Rosa

Offline e of pi

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Re: Mars 2020 Rover Will Have 23 'Eyes'
« Reply #1 on: 11/14/2017 03:01 PM »
I realize this is a bit off-topic, but on the subject of cameras and navigation, has there been any news on the Mars Helicopter Scout development and if a flight copy is on track to actually accompany Mars 2020?

Offline Blackstar

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Re: Mars 2020 Rover Will Have 23 'Eyes'
« Reply #2 on: 11/16/2017 04:22 PM »
I realize this is a bit off-topic, but on the subject of cameras and navigation, has there been any news on the Mars Helicopter Scout development and if a flight copy is on track to actually accompany Mars 2020?

Last update I had was late August. They were starting to build an engineering model.


Offline e of pi

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Re: Mars 2020 Rover Will Have 23 'Eyes'
« Reply #3 on: 11/16/2017 04:35 PM »
Last update I had was late August. They were starting to build an engineering model.
Thanks, Blackstar. So it remains on the intended instrument list?

Offline Khadgars

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Re: Mars 2020 Rover Will Have 23 'Eyes'
« Reply #4 on: 11/16/2017 04:55 PM »
I realize this is a bit off-topic, but on the subject of cameras and navigation, has there been any news on the Mars Helicopter Scout development and if a flight copy is on track to actually accompany Mars 2020?

Last update I had was late August. They were starting to build an engineering model.

Just wanted to take this moment and say having your insight and comments here is such a pleasure  ;)

Online Dalhousie

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Re: Mars 2020 Rover Will Have 23 'Eyes'
« Reply #5 on: 11/16/2017 10:14 PM »
I realize this is a bit off-topic, but on the subject of cameras and navigation, has there been any news on the Mars Helicopter Scout development and if a flight copy is on track to actually accompany Mars 2020?

Last update I had was late August. They were starting to build an engineering model.

I know the source might be a bit questionable, but there may be some analogue test flights next northern summer at HMP http://www.popularmechanics.com/space/moon-mars/a13627476/nasa-heads-to-the-arctic-to-design-drones-that-can-fly-on-mars/

There was some kind of drone work this past summer at HMP Mars Institute, SETI Institute, FYBR Solutions Inc, and NASA, according to the HMP facebook page.  They weren't there for very long though (eight days I think)

"There is nobody who is a bigger fan of sending robots to Mars than me... But I believe firmly that the best, the most comprehensive, the most successful exploration will be done by humans" Steve Squyres

Offline Blackstar

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Re: Mars 2020 Rover Will Have 23 'Eyes'
« Reply #6 on: 11/19/2017 06:41 PM »
So it remains on the intended instrument list?

(try to imagine the tone of this word)

Well..........

That's a tough question. They are required to include it so long as it does not impact the primary mission. But of course it is going to impact the primary mission--any extra mass or system or operation that you add to the rover is going to impact the primary mission. The question is not yes/no but how much.

I actually think it is a really interesting idea, and I'm glad that they are working on it. However, Mars 2020 is a really important mission scientifically, and the mini-helicopter is not important scientifically. So this represents a risk to the very important mission.

Now if we had a more robust Mars Exploration Program, with some other landers in the pipeline, I'd have no qualms about adding this in. But you might want to take a look at the President's budget for the Mars Exploration Program that came out a few months ago and see what it shows... (okay, I won't be coy: there's no money to do anything at all).

Offline gosnold

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Re: Mars 2020 Rover Will Have 23 'Eyes'
« Reply #7 on: 11/19/2017 07:40 PM »
But you might want to take a look at the President's budget for the Mars Exploration Program that came out a few months ago and see what it shows... (okay, I won't be coy: there's no money to do anything at all).

Why is that? Does that signal that NASA or the scientific community is getting less interested in Mars, or is it a decision from the administration (White House/OMB)? 

Offline Blackstar

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Re: Mars 2020 Rover Will Have 23 'Eyes'
« Reply #8 on: 11/19/2017 08:09 PM »
But you might want to take a look at the President's budget for the Mars Exploration Program that came out a few months ago and see what it shows... (okay, I won't be coy: there's no money to do anything at all).

Why is that? Does that signal that NASA or the scientific community is getting less interested in Mars, or is it a decision from the administration (White House/OMB)? 

It's the latter. And it did not start with this administration. The last administration talked about Mars, but was not really interested in spending actual money on it. They cut the planetary budget overall, and Mars budget in particular.

Now as to what is going on in the current administration, that's hard to understand and explain. One of the things that is affecting many areas of policy making (not just space) is that there are a lot of unfilled positions in the government. Imagine a pyramid with the middle and parts of the top missing. The result is that even when the people at the top may want something to happen (like spend more money on something), it is not getting communicated to people at other levels because the lines of communication are busted. When no new direction comes in at the lower levels, the lower level people simply default to their previous orders, even if their previous orders are not the kind of thing that the new administration would want. Absent those missing pieces, it is occasionally difficult to figure out if the thing that is happening is by design, or by accident. So the last administration did not want to fund robotic Mars exploration by design. But the current one may be not funding it by accident. Dunno. It may take some time for things to start working again.

Offline Blackstar

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Re: Mars 2020 Rover Will Have 23 'Eyes'
« Reply #9 on: 11/20/2017 05:41 PM »
You wanted to know about the helicopter. This is from August:


Offline e of pi

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Re: Mars 2020 Rover Will Have 23 'Eyes'
« Reply #10 on: 11/21/2017 01:32 PM »
Thanks Blackstar, I appreciate the update.

I know any non-primary instrument or particularly engineering demonstrator on a rover is only on the flight plan to the extent it doesn't delay or impair the primary mission unreasonably. The reason I was curious was that I hadn't seen any discussion of it in a year or so, and was worried it had hit that point already and quietly been removed from the mission to focus on the more critical experiments. I suppose the longer form of my question was "Has the helicopter suffered issues with engineering or budget that have already scratched it from the list, or is it still on the list for now?" which I think you answered.

Do the issues with crafting and implementing coherent policy funding and planning impair only planning missions beyond 2020, or do they actually contribute to a risk that 2020 might not fly on time or at all?

Offline Blackstar

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Re: Mars 2020 Rover Will Have 23 'Eyes'
« Reply #11 on: 11/21/2017 09:10 PM »
Do the issues with crafting and implementing coherent policy funding and planning impair only planning missions beyond 2020, or do they actually contribute to a risk that 2020 might not fly on time or at all?

I think that anything that is currently in the budget, in development, is going to do okay unless it runs into trouble on its own. Mars 2020 so far seems to be doing fine. The sample collection system is more complicated than you would think at first, and it is the one new thing on the mission, so it is the one thing that can still cause problems. But so far they seem to be on track.

The policy problems that I alluded to concern stuff in the future. There's a lot less clarity than one would hope for.

Online Dalhousie

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Re: Mars 2020 Rover Will Have 23 'Eyes'
« Reply #12 on: 11/21/2017 10:27 PM »
You wanted to know about the helicopter. This is from August:

Is the full presentation available on line?
"There is nobody who is a bigger fan of sending robots to Mars than me... But I believe firmly that the best, the most comprehensive, the most successful exploration will be done by humans" Steve Squyres

Offline Blackstar

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Re: Mars 2020 Rover Will Have 23 'Eyes'
« Reply #13 on: 11/21/2017 10:47 PM »
You wanted to know about the helicopter. This is from August:

Is the full presentation available on line?

Look under the August meeting:

http://sites.nationalacademies.org/SSB/CurrentProjects/SSB_177619#presentations


Online Dalhousie

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Re: Mars 2020 Rover Will Have 23 'Eyes'
« Reply #14 on: 11/22/2017 12:03 AM »
You wanted to know about the helicopter. This is from August:

Is the full presentation available on line?

Look under the August meeting:

http://sites.nationalacademies.org/SSB/CurrentProjects/SSB_177619#presentations

Excellent!  Thank you!
"There is nobody who is a bigger fan of sending robots to Mars than me... But I believe firmly that the best, the most comprehensive, the most successful exploration will be done by humans" Steve Squyres

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