Author Topic: NASA Announces New Rover to Close Out Decade of New Missions  (Read 65148 times)

Offline spectre9

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I've now had a look at the other 3 prospective MSL landing sites and I like Mawrth Vallis  8)

Nili Fossae has always been my favourite but I'm not sure NASA likes it.

The Mars team deserves this one with their tremendous public outreach for Curiosity. Well done to them.

I'll keep crowing about Europa and hopefully it's moved up in the 2020s.

I just stumbled on this link.

http://marsoweb.nas.nasa.gov/landingsites/

Really goes to show how big Mars is and how much there is to explore.

I hope it gets a better name than the last one  :P


What's wrong with the name Curiosity then?

Be nice if after this they moved onto getting something to Titan, that must be a pressing scientific objective beyond Mars.

Personal opinion on the name I guess. Not to my taste.

Titan is going to be eclipsed by Saturn making missions difficult. Once NASA has an ASRG spare I'm sure they will take a look at doing a Titan mare boat but it has to be very cheap under strict cost caps.

There are no real pressing objectives beyond Mars they all have a priority. It's way of bringing order to Chaos with so many tantalising targets for scientific exploration in the outer planets.

Link to the presentation here.

http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=24381.0

Offline Bubbinski

Oh, I agree the images from Curiosity have been stunning.  And if the 2020 rover flew with the exact same set I'd still be awed by the pics. 

I'd read that a zoom camera and a stereoscopic camera were originally intended for Curiosity but left out.  If they're put on this new rover there would be even more great pics.  But I do understand that there have to be tradeoffs; they only have so much space, weight, and power to work with.  If it came down to a choice, say, between life detection equipment and the zoom camera I'd go with the life detection stuff.
I'll even excitedly look forward to "flags and footprints" and suborbital missions. Just fly...somewhere.

Offline Star One

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Quote from: spectre9

Personal opinion on the name I guess. Not to my taste.

Titan is going to be eclipsed by Saturn making missions difficult. Once NASA has an ASRG spare I'm sure they will take a look at doing a Titan mare boat but it has to be very cheap under strict cost caps.

There are no real pressing objectives beyond Mars they all have a priority. It's way of bringing order to Chaos with so many tantalising targets for scientific exploration in the outer planets.

Link to the presentation here.

http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=24381.0


Thanks for the link. Made a start on reading that document.

Quote
SAN FRANCISCO — The unmanned rover that NASA plans to launch toward Mars in 2020 should gather up Red Planet rocks and dirt for delivery to Earth someday, some experts say.

"I hope and expect that its main mission will be to collect and cache a well-chosen set of samples for eventual return to Earth," Steve Squyres of Cornell University, principal investigator for NASA's Opportunity Mars rover, told SPACE.com via email.

http://www.space.com/18771-nasa-next-mars-rover-sample-caching.html
« Last Edit: 12/05/2012 02:46 PM by Star One »

Online ugordan

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Once NASA has an ASRG spare I'm sure they will take a look at doing a Titan mare boat but it has to be very cheap under strict cost caps.

By then it will be too late since Earth won't be above the horizon for the boat to maintain direct-to-Earth comms from the northern seas. Titan's seasonal shift will move the north pole axis "away" from Earth for quite a number of years. The opportunity we had with the TiME mission was thrown away.

Online ugordan

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I'd read that a zoom camera and a stereoscopic camera were originally intended for Curiosity but left out.

MSL Mastcam already is stereoscopic, but due to cost cuts you mention the focal lengths are not the same (a compromise from the original zoom capability) so 3D is not as straightforward as it was with MER since the right camera eye is effectively 3x the resolution of the left eye.

Offline Rocket Science

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I think John is a refreshing change from the typical “wooden” persons that would have his position and responsibly. The man is totally down to earth and displays a lack of ego than many “less accomplished” individuals...
"The laws of physics are unforgiving"
~Rob: Physics instructor, Aviator, Vintage auto racer

Online Robotbeat

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I think John is a refreshing change from the typical “wooden” persons that would have his position and responsibly. The man is totally down to earth and displays a lack of ego than many “less accomplished” individuals...
And seems to know what the heck he is talking about, even about only slightly related things like the GCR dose changing depending on the solar cycle.
Chris  Whoever loves correction loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.

To the maximum extent practicable, the Federal Government shall plan missions to accommodate the space transportation services capabilities of United States commercial providers. US law http://goo.gl/YZYNt0

Offline Blackstar

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I think John is a refreshing change from the typical “wooden” persons that would have his position and responsibly. The man is totally down to earth and displays a lack of ego than many “less accomplished” individuals...

One of those people who had the position was Alan Stern. You considered him "wooden"?


Offline Rocket Science

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I think John is a refreshing change from the typical “wooden” persons that would have his position and responsibly. The man is totally down to earth and displays a lack of ego than many “less accomplished” individuals...

One of those people who had the position was Alan Stern. You considered him "wooden"?



No, I just feel that John is very affable...
"The laws of physics are unforgiving"
~Rob: Physics instructor, Aviator, Vintage auto racer

Offline JohnFornaro

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The new rover may have some caching capabilities...

Put a big core drill on it.  Caching is relatively "easy".  All that's needed, conceptually, is to wrap the samples, label them, and set them down on the ground in an orderly fashion, back where the lab is expected to be landed.

The wrapper is a thin stainless steel foil, wrapped paper tube fashion around the sample; sealed at each end, and laser labled with location, orientation, and depth info at the "upper" end.  The rover brings back several dozen sample tubes back to the caching area.

This presupposes back and forth trips, and rover speed will become an issue.  I envisioned a separate caching rover, specialized for sample carry and deposition, with a low CG and much faster speed.  Perhaps it could have a rudimentary dozer blade to smooth the main road somewhat.  Perhaps it could track an informative subset of atmospheric readings, giving a detailed "weather" readout of the "river valley" over the two or more martian year course of the mission.

The samples can sit on the ground at the caching area until the lab arrives, preferably within the same launch window.

One or two launch windows later, much will be known about the samples, and which would be best for return.
Sometimes I just flat out don't get it.

Offline FOXP2

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Question 1: Will there be enough plutonium 238 for this mission? Or will they have to fly a ASRG instead of a MMRTG?

Question 2: What orbiters will still be operation for this mission. Odyssey certainly won't last, MRO probably won't last. MARVEN orbit is so high it may have limited com relaying ability, all that will be left (hopefully) is just one ESA orbiter. should there be another push to get a dedicated telecoms orbiter?     

Offline Blackstar

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1-Question 1: Will there be enough plutonium 238 for this mission? Or will they have to fly a ASRG instead of a MMRTG?

2-Question 2: What orbiters will still be operation for this mission. Odyssey certainly won't last, MRO probably won't last. MARVEN orbit is so high it may have limited com relaying ability, all that will be left (hopefully) is just one ESA orbiter. should there be another push to get a dedicated telecoms orbiter?     

1-They cannot do the mission unless there is enough Pu-238. So of course there will be enough. And they will use the MMRTG, not the ASRG.

2-Relay is not a problem. Relay is not a problem. Relay is not a problem. Repeat.

Figure that MAVEN can probably operate as a relay for ten years after reaching Mars in 2014, and TGO can operate for up to ten years after reaching Mars in 2017. They will have more than enough coverage when this rover lands in 2021.

Offline Jim

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MARVEN orbit is so high it may have limited com relaying ability,

Actually it is a better orbit, it will be in view longer, allowing for more data to be transmitted.

Offline Tea Party Space Czar

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Blackstar and Jim have pretty much cleaned up this argument - thank you.

Respectfully,
Andrew Gasser
TEA Party in Space

Offline Norm38

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We will need some orbiter type missions to replace aging missions.  Mars Odyssey is gonna need to be replaced at some point.  Even if it is just a relay comm mission.

Legit question:  How hard is it to modify the cruise stage of the EDL sequence to be able to also (aero)brake into orbit after detaching the decent stage, to then remain in orbit as a comsat?

Also:  What's the delta v to get to Mars GSO above the rover landing site, so as to remain always in view?

I'm thinking that a manned mission base requirement could well be a GSO relay, so that maintaining comms is basically no more than a home cable dish.  Any need to demonstrate the technology?  It'd be fun...

And, if the rover is caching a return sample, the GSO relay is above that site as well.  The rover isn't going to rove that far.
« Last Edit: 12/06/2012 12:02 AM by Norm38 »

Offline FOXP2

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MARVEN orbit is so high it may have limited com relaying ability,

Actually it is a better orbit, it will be in view longer, allowing for more data to be transmitted.

But what about its much greater altitude from the rover? What the maximum range of Electra and data rate at max range?

So if there is not enough PU238 for a MMRTG, but enough for a ASRG then they won't do the mission anyways?

Legit question:  How hard is it to modify the cruise stage of the EDL sequence to be able to also (aero)brake into orbit after detaching the decent stage, to then remain in orbit as a comsat?

I think that it a good idea, but it would add a lot of mass. The cruise stage would need a heat shield of its own for aerocapture (never done before), fuel for multiple year orbital mission, electra and a huge high gain antannaa, etc.

As for demonstration technologies I would like to see laser comms to and from mars. NASA going to test laser comm between earth and the moon in 2013 with the LADEE mission, if that works as laser comm package on the next NASA mars orbiter would be likely. It would increase data rates by 10 times and weigh only a few kilograms.   
« Last Edit: 12/06/2012 12:42 AM by FOXP2 »

Offline Blackstar

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I get the impression that some of you guys read one post and then ask the same questions that have been answered multiple times before in earlier posts.

Offline LegendCJS

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We will need some orbiter type missions to replace aging missions.  Mars Odyssey is gonna need to be replaced at some point.  Even if it is just a relay comm mission.
Legit question:  How hard is it to modify the cruise stage of the EDL sequence to be able to also (aero)brake into orbit after detaching the decent stage, to then remain in orbit as a comsat?
All you have to do is get rid of the parts of the mission that involve landing on Mars. 

All batteries, computers, most fuel tanks, and all communications gear are not in the cruise stage.  AND if you want the comsat ability to aid you in the ELD sequence the timing is all wrong as well.

Remember: if we want this whole space thing to work out we have to optimize for cost!

Offline FOXP2

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I get the impression that some of you guys read one post and then ask the same questions that have been answered multiple times before in earlier posts.

Well some of us don't have the time to be on this forum often or long enough to read all the posts, perhaps if you would be so kind as to quote/link the answers to those questions, can't seem to find anything via search.
 

Offline cleonard

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Trying to turn the cruise stage into an orbiter is just not going to work.  The only way is to send a separate mission or at least a second payload on a more powerful launcher.

The Electra is a capable system.  There was a Mars Telecommunication Orbiter(MTO) mission that was canceled back in 2006 or so.  It would have used the Electra UHF radio and was planned to be in a 5000km orbit.  It countered the extra path loss with a steerable high gain UHF antenna.  One of the reasons for MTO was to support MSL. 

More data is always better, but MRO can support at least 200Mbits/day.

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