Author Topic: Mars Science Lab Wheels  (Read 5910 times)

Offline toddbronco2

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Mars Science Lab Wheels
« on: 05/19/2008 06:41 PM »
I know most of you guys seem to care mostly about manned spaceflight, but I had a question about the Mars Science Laboratory.  2 weeks ago at the JPL open house they were showing off these rover wheels (this pic is from their webpage).  What's the purpose of the gaping holes in the wheels?  Is it really as simple as I think; to let soil pour out once per revolution?

Offline Jim

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Re: Mars Science Lab Wheels
« Reply #1 on: 05/19/2008 08:00 PM »
to reduce weight?

Offline renclod

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RE: Mars Science Lab Wheels
« Reply #2 on: 05/19/2008 08:32 PM »
Quote
toddbronco2 - 19/5/2008  9:41 PM

What's the purpose of the gaping holes in the wheels?  

Not enough funds for material ?!  :laugh:


Offline jmjawors

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Re: Mars Science Lab Wheels
« Reply #3 on: 05/19/2008 08:40 PM »
I am constantly amazed whenever I see either those wheels or a picture of "the scarecrow."  That's what it's called, right?  Anyway... huge!
.:: Matt ::.

Offline Blackstar

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RE: Mars Science Lab Wheels
« Reply #4 on: 05/19/2008 09:03 PM »
Took these at a drop test of the Scarecrow last year.

Offline eeergo

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Re: Mars Science Lab Wheels
« Reply #5 on: 05/19/2008 09:20 PM »
A suggestion: there's a MSL Q&A thread in the Q&A section, so why not include this thread in there? It may come in handy to have these great pictures and commentaries when MSL launches and there's a sizeable background section available in the forum, rather than have those buried and fragmented among tons of general stuff.

Just a thought :)
-DaviD-

Offline meiza

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Re: Mars Science Lab Wheels
« Reply #6 on: 05/19/2008 09:34 PM »
I thought the holes were actually for locking the wheels in the travel configuration.

Offline toddbronco2

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RE: Mars Science Lab Wheels
« Reply #7 on: 05/19/2008 10:19 PM »
Quote
Blackstar - 19/5/2008  5:03 PM

Took these at a drop test of the Scarecrow last year.

Dude! They actually dropped that thing??  They had that blue chassis on display at the JPL open house, but I wouldn't have guessed that it was strong enough to drop like that!  (Shows how little structures intuition I know)  That "scarecrow" is really surprisingly large.  They had it slowly driving over some small rocks in JPL's front courtyard and it was amazing to see how the wheels were slowly demolishing the concrete right there as we watched.

Offline Jim

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RE: Mars Science Lab Wheels
« Reply #8 on: 05/19/2008 10:22 PM »
Quote
toddbronco2 - 19/5/2008  6:19 PM

Quote
Blackstar - 19/5/2008  5:03 PM

Took these at a drop test of the Scarecrow last year.

Dude! They actually dropped that thing??  They had that blue chassis on display at the JPL open house, but I wouldn't have guessed that it was strong enough to drop like that!  (Shows how little structures intuition I know)  That "scarecrow" is really surprisingly large.  They had it slowly driving over some small rocks in JPL's front courtyard and it was amazing to see how the wheels were slowly demolishing the concrete right there as we watched.

It isn't dropped, it is lowered at different speeds.  Drop test is just the name of the test

Offline toddbronco2

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Re: Mars Science Lab Wheels
« Reply #9 on: 05/19/2008 10:24 PM »
Oh...Now I'm kinda disappointed

Offline Blackstar

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Re: Mars Science Lab Wheels
« Reply #10 on: 05/19/2008 11:44 PM »
Yeah, it wasn't a fast drop.  No more than a meter per second, possibly slower.  Remember that MSL is to be lowered from its Skycrane, and they were testing how the wheel bogies responded to different ground conditions.  Not really a shock test.  I'm sure that it takes more short duration shocks during liftoff, and of course more gees during liftoff and landing.

Offline Jim

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RE: Mars Science Lab Wheels
« Reply #11 on: 05/20/2008 01:41 AM »
Quote
toddbronco2 - 19/5/2008  2:41 PM

I know most of you guys seem to care mostly about manned spaceflight, but I had a question about the Mars Science Laboratory.  2 weeks ago at the JPL open house they were showing off these rover wheels (this pic is from their webpage).  What's the purpose of the gaping holes in the wheels?  Is it really as simple as I think; to let soil pour out once per revolution?

I will talk to my MSL contacts and  find out

Offline simonbp

RE: Mars Science Lab Wheels
« Reply #12 on: 05/20/2008 02:27 AM »
I got to watch the scarecrow in action last summer in the Mars Yard, and one the issues seemed to be sand getting stuck inside the wheels (see below). So, presumably, the reason is to let the sand drain out of the wheels. MSL moves very fast, by the way, so sand can accumulate pretty quickly...

Simon ;)

Offline cordor

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Re: Mars Science Lab Wheels
« Reply #13 on: 08/06/2012 07:49 AM »
I know most of you guys seem to care mostly about manned spaceflight, but I had a question about the Mars Science Laboratory.  2 weeks ago at the JPL open house they were showing off these rover wheels (this pic is from their webpage).  What's the purpose of the gaping holes in the wheels?  Is it really as simple as I think; to let soil pour out once per revolution?

Tread pattern allows estimation of the distance to imprint. The pattern is Morse code for "JPL", one center that worked on MSL


Offline spectre9

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Re: Mars Science Lab Wheels
« Reply #14 on: 08/06/2012 08:17 AM »
Thumbs up to the last post.

So now the question is what does it look like laid out and what pattern is how much distance when we're looking at pictures of the rover tracks on Mars?

Offline mikes

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Re: Mars Science Lab Wheels
« Reply #15 on: 08/06/2012 08:40 AM »
what pattern is how much distance when we're looking at pictures of the rover tracks on Mars?

Wheel diameter is 0.5m so the pattern will repeat on the ground every 1.57m (about 5ft 3in)

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