Author Topic: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)  (Read 132408 times)

Offline redliox

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #60 on: 12/23/2018 12:37 am »
Ah so wonderful seeing it on the surface after years of waiting for a work seismometer...  :D

Although there's wind interference for the moment, should it be able to begin hearing Mars now?
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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #61 on: 12/23/2018 03:19 pm »
Some new images:

Offline redliox

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #62 on: 12/23/2018 11:49 pm »
How much protection does a power cable need on Mars?  Obviously the images are inspecting its condition.
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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #63 on: 12/24/2018 01:15 pm »
How much protection does a power cable need on Mars?  Obviously the images are inspecting its condition.

That's an interesting question. There's going to be thermal cycling every day. But is dust an abrasive threat? Probably not for many years. Would the low wind pressure move the cable creating stress points on it? I doubt that this requires extensive engineering, but it requires some thought. I assume they've tried to account for things like flexing and how that may impact the sensor readings.

Offline Nomadd

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #64 on: 12/24/2018 01:20 pm »
How much protection does a power cable need on Mars?  Obviously the images are inspecting its condition.

That's an interesting question. There's going to be thermal cycling every day. But is dust an abrasive threat? Probably not for many years. Would the low wind pressure move the cable creating stress points on it? I doubt that this requires extensive engineering, but it requires some thought. I assume they've tried to account for things like flexing and how that may impact the sensor readings.
UV
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Offline webdan

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #65 on: 12/24/2018 01:53 pm »
Not sure if already posted, but plenty of good info on SEIS here:

https://www.seis-insight.eu/en/public-2/seis-instrument/tether


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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #66 on: 12/24/2018 09:33 pm »
UV

Is UV more important than other forms of radiation that it is exposed to on the surface?

Offline hop

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #67 on: 12/24/2018 10:56 pm »
How much protection does a power cable need on Mars?  Obviously the images are inspecting its condition.
Worth noting that most previous missions had external cabling on vehicle decks, arms, masts, etc. So there's a fair bit of experience even if it wasn't as out in the open as this.

Emily Lakdawalla's post at http://www.planetary.org/blogs/emily-lakdawalla/2018/insight-update-sols-1-25.html has a great description of operation related to the tether. There's a lot of work to ensure it doesn't transmit vibration to SEIS, including the possibility they will use the arm to adjust tension on it.

Offline niwax

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #68 on: 12/25/2018 12:25 am »
UV

Is UV more important than other forms of radiation that it is exposed to on the surface?

It's the one that can seriously degrade plastics. If it can kick atoms out of human DNA, it can kick atoms from carbon chains. Plastic cables need a certain mix of long chains and softeners to stay strong but flexible and those can be disturbed. On one extreme end, bare carbon fiber structures can lose up to 80% of their strength under sunlight on earth in a fairly short time period.
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Offline Nomadd

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #69 on: 12/25/2018 02:37 am »
UV

Is UV more important than other forms of radiation that it is exposed to on the surface?
Not familiar with other types. I have quite a few years taking care of outdoor cables though. I doubt if it will be a problem for years, but if this things lasts almost forever, as so many Mars missions seem to, I'm not surprised they'd want to monitor the cable over time.
 Or, it could just be positional monitoring. This guy is so incredibly sensitive maybe they want to be sure a tiny cable shift from wind or aging didn't cause some false signals.
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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #70 on: 12/25/2018 05:13 pm »
Ah so wonderful seeing it on the surface after years of waiting for a work seismometer...  :D

I'm not going to say that this was a very tough call on NASA's part, but it required some real deliberation. They had to ask themselves if the extra money spent on the delay was something they could afford. I know that sunk cost is a fallacy, blah blah blah, but I actually think that sunk cost is something you have to take into consideration, particularly in government-run programs, because there is a non-dollar cost to canceling a program in terms of credibility, relationships, prestige, etc.

I also have an upcoming article about how NASA learned from MPL's failure, then learned from Phoenix's success, and now has a proven reliable Mars lander that they can consider for future missions.

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #71 on: 12/25/2018 05:15 pm »

Offline deruch

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #72 on: 12/26/2018 05:30 pm »
Ah so wonderful seeing it on the surface after years of waiting for a work seismometer...  :D

I'm not going to say that this was a very tough call on NASA's part, but it required some real deliberation. They had to ask themselves if the extra money spent on the delay was something they could afford. I know that sunk cost is a fallacy, blah blah blah, but I actually think that sunk cost is something you have to take into consideration, particularly in government-run programs, because there is a non-dollar cost to canceling a program in terms of credibility, relationships, prestige, etc.

The problem is what to do when you know and understand that "sunk cost" is a fallacy but the people who are evaluating your programs and setting your budgets either don't understand it or sometimes behave as if they didn't.  (but that's a topic for another thread)

Quote
I also have an upcoming article about how NASA learned from MPL's failure, then learned from Phoenix's success, and now has a proven reliable Mars lander that they can consider for future missions.
Do you think they would build more of them?  I thought the whole point of this one was that they already had it "laying around" so repurposing it and making it flight-worthy was seen as a low cost option.
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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #73 on: 12/26/2018 06:05 pm »
1-The problem is what to do when you know and understand that "sunk cost" is a fallacy but the people who are evaluating your programs and setting your budgets either don't understand it or sometimes behave as if they didn't.  (but that's a topic for another thread)

2-Do you think they would build more of them?  I thought the whole point of this one was that they already had it "laying around" so repurposing it and making it flight-worthy was seen as a low cost option.

1-Yeah, a topic for another thread, but I don't actually believe that sunk cost is a "fallacy." I think that arguments that about the "sunk cost fallacy" miss some important points about how projects are approved and how human psychology works. If you assume that something is important enough to do, then the sunk cost is a measure of how much it may cost you to do it in the future if you cancel it now and choose to start again. But that's a longer discussion.

2-I think it is entirely possible they will build more of them. And InSight was new. Phoenix was already-built hardware, but InSight was new. My article will actually go into how using already-built hardware for Phoenix did not save much money, but it did reduce a lot of risk. And that's always going to be true: using flight spares will rarely save much money, because most of the cost is in integration and testing and NOT hardware. But using something that has been previously tested, and may have already flown, gives you much greater confidence in the design. You've removed all the obvious risks and now you can focus on the remaining risks when you fly again.

With the current Discovery competition gearing up (see the other thread), you could easily see somebody proposing using this basic lander design again for a new Mars mission. We know that it works. It's on the small end and it doesn't rove, but there may be science missions that are perfectly suited to it.

Online ccdengr

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #74 on: 12/26/2018 06:44 pm »
I also have an upcoming article about how NASA learned from MPL's failure...
I'll be very curious to see what your conclusion is.  As far as I know, MPL would have worked if there had been a one-line code change in the flight software that managed the landing leg switch debounce.  Of course there were lots of other potential issues found, but I suspect that all successful missions have lots of potential issues that never end up being looked for.

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #75 on: 12/26/2018 09:06 pm »
I also have an upcoming article about how NASA learned from MPL's failure...
I'll be very curious to see what your conclusion is.  As far as I know, MPL would have worked if there had been a one-line code change in the flight software that managed the landing leg switch debounce.  Of course there were lots of other potential issues found, but I suspect that all successful missions have lots of potential issues that never end up being looked for.

It might have worked. But there were other hidden vulnerabilities embedded in the design that should have been removed. For instance, the shutoff command relied upon a single sensor reading. That's very thin margin, because if the sensor doesn't work, or works wrong, you lose the spacecraft. And in fact the deployment springs had been made overly strong because they were worried about non-deployment. I don't know if they later compensated for that, but it was unusual. Also, I talked to one of the investigators and he said that there was a 2% chance that the parachute could have landed on top of the lander. They fixed that with Phoenix. They fixed other things as well.

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #76 on: 12/26/2018 09:45 pm »
They fixed that with Phoenix. They fixed other things as well.
They fixed a lot of things, hundreds of millions of dollars of things by some accounts.  Whether they were things that needed to be fixed is another, largely unanswerable question -- that's all I'm saying.

I worked on MPL, the 2001 lander that became PHX, and PHX, for what that's worth.

Offline vjkane

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #77 on: 12/27/2018 04:46 pm »
With the current Discovery competition gearing up (see the other thread), you could easily see somebody proposing using this basic lander design again for a new Mars mission. We know that it works. It's on the small end and it doesn't rove, but there may be science missions that are perfectly suited to it.
The IceBreaker mission proposed for the last Discovery competition would have used a near copy of the Phoenix lander.

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #78 on: 12/27/2018 05:30 pm »
With the current Discovery competition gearing up (see the other thread), you could easily see somebody proposing using this basic lander design again for a new Mars mission. We know that it works. It's on the small end and it doesn't rove, but there may be science missions that are perfectly suited to it.
The IceBreaker mission proposed for the last Discovery competition would have used a near copy of the Phoenix lander.

Yes, so would (cough) the Mars One precursor mission. But I don't know if Chris McKay is proposing IceBreaker again.
« Last Edit: 12/28/2018 01:59 am by Blackstar »

Offline Yeknom-Ecaps

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #79 on: 01/01/2019 05:25 pm »
The raw images show the arm extending out to SEIS on days after putting it on the surface - is it actually grabbing/moving it or just positioning to get various pictures of the workspace?

See Sol 24 (Dec 21) at ~13:08 p.m.
and Sol 25 (Dec 22) at ~11:30 a.m.
« Last Edit: 01/01/2019 05:31 pm by Yeknom-Ecaps »

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