Author Topic: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)  (Read 26990 times)

Offline chetan_chpd

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #120 on: 02/13/2019 02:00 pm »
Is there a real footage of insight landing? Like the one for curiosity...

Offline whitelancer64

Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #121 on: 02/13/2019 06:04 pm »
Is there a real footage of insight landing? Like the one for curiosity...

No, it did not have a descent camera.
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Offline ncb1397

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #122 on: 02/19/2019 09:42 pm »
Quote
No matter how cold your winter has been, it's probably not as chilly as Mars. Check for yourself: Starting today, the public can get a daily weather report from NASA's InSight lander.

This public tool includes stats on temperature, wind and air pressure recorded by InSight. Sunday's weather was typical for the lander's location during late northern winter: a high of 2 degrees Fahrenheit (-17 degrees Celsius) and low of -138 degrees Fahrenheit (-95 degrees Celsius), with a top wind speed of 37.8 mph (16.9 m/s) in a southwest direction. The tool was developed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, with partners at Cornell University and Spain's Centro de Astrobiología. JPL leads the InSight mission.
https://www.nasa.gov/feature/jpl/insight-is-the-newest-mars-weather-service

Offline eeergo

Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #123 on: 02/20/2019 01:52 pm »
Quote
No matter how cold your winter has been, it's probably not as chilly as Mars. Check for yourself: Starting today, the public can get a daily weather report from NASA's InSight lander.

This public tool includes stats on temperature, wind and air pressure recorded by InSight. Sunday's weather was typical for the lander's location during late northern winter: a high of 2 degrees Fahrenheit (-17 degrees Celsius) and low of -138 degrees Fahrenheit (-95 degrees Celsius), with a top wind speed of 37.8 mph (16.9 m/s) in a southwest direction. The tool was developed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, with partners at Cornell University and Spain's Centro de Astrobiología. JPL leads the InSight mission.
https://www.nasa.gov/feature/jpl/insight-is-the-newest-mars-weather-service

Related: https://twitter.com/arstechnica/status/1098211678997614594

Quote
[...] found something of a mystery in the pressure data [...] at around local 7am and 7pm, there are hiccups in what otherwise should be a smooth rise and fall in surface pressures
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Offline redliox

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #124 on: 02/20/2019 03:54 pm »
The mole aka HP3 is finally freed from the arm.
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Offline eeergo

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Offline eeergo

Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #126 on: 02/20/2019 08:08 pm »
Something that they have not done, but should be possible, is a full panoramic sweep of the entire terrain. It has probably zero scientific value, but there is public relations value do photographs. It would not surprise me if they do something like that once they've achieved their initial scientific results--after all, you wouldn't want to break the arm if it is necessary to re-position something on the surface.

In fact, this appears to be exactly the next objective for the lander: http://www.planetary.org/blogs/emily-lakdawalla/2019/insight-update-sols-43-83.html
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Offline Nomadd

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #127 on: 02/21/2019 04:39 am »
 Do they expect to be able to catch any echoes from the mole hammering?
Those who danced were thought to be quite insane by those who couldn't hear the music.

Offline Phil Stooke

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #128 on: 02/21/2019 06:30 am »
about 80 percent of the full panorama was taken on sol 14.  The geomorphology is important to help understand the local geology and inferences about local stratigraphy, so there is lots of science in it.  Here's a version of it - original was by Damia Bouic. 

Offline eeergo

Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #129 on: 02/22/2019 02:44 pm »
That's some dusty place, look at the amount deposited in a few months!

https://twitter.com/landru79/status/1098946024876531714
-DaviD-

Offline Journeyman

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #130 on: 02/22/2019 11:18 pm »
Is it possible for Insight's robot arm to sweep off the dust from the solar panels when power levels start to get too low? Is that something they considered when designing it?

Might be worth a try at the end of primary mission when the reward is worth the risk involved in using the robot arm to clean the solar panel. It might damage the cells but if they don't try Insight will stop working anyway.


Offline Journeyman

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #131 on: 02/23/2019 01:49 am »
That's true for the primary mission duration. But no matter how large the panels are, eventually they will accumulate to much dust and the mission will be over.

There is always more to discover if you can extend the mission. So the question is if the robot arm can be used in any way to clean the panels? Hopefully there will be cleaning events by the Martian winds as was the case for Spirit & Opportunity. But as a latch ditch effort to extend the mission it would be interesting to test if the arm can be used to clean the panels.

« Last Edit: 02/23/2019 01:49 am by Journeyman »

Offline Hungry4info3

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #132 on: 02/23/2019 03:05 am »
Allow me to be so bold as to suggest that the people who designed the spacecraft know what they're doing.
With a mindset like that, we would never get to enjoy literally dozens of unproductive pages about all sorts of ridiculous ways to cost-overrun missions with brushes, compressed air sprays, carry-on drones with Windex spray jets, etc.  ;)

Offline Journeyman

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #133 on: 02/23/2019 02:23 pm »
But as a latch ditch effort to extend the mission it would be interesting to test if the arm can be used to clean the panels.

No. There ain't no brush or vacuum cleaner. They're not going to scrape the claw across the solar panels.

Allow me to be so bold as to suggest that the people who designed the spacecraft know what they're doing.

I have no doubt that the people that design and build these space probes know what they are doing. It is not the purpose of this post to even suggest that.

But history has shown how engineers managed to salvage a mission in situations that normally would have ended it. Like Hayabusa, SOHO, Kepler and so on. I'm just curious if there is any scenarios where the arm could be used to clean the panels.

The risk of damaging the panels will be acceptable once you get close to the end. You have nothing to lose by trying, and even if you don't succeed it will give valuable engineering data.

As i see it, the best chance to clean the panels would come from using the bucket at the end of the arm. Info about the bucket at this URL:

https://www.seis-insight.eu/en/public-2/the-insight-mission/the-ida-robotic-arm

"Besides the gripper, InSight's robotic arm also has a bucket with a capacity of roughly 500 g of soil. However, this bucket is not intended for massive excavation works; its main role is to prepare the ground as well as possible before setting the instruments down. It allows engineers to shift a stone that is in the way, flatten a little mound in an otherwise optimal deployment sector, or simply check the nature of the ground."

They will have time to test this on the engineering model on Earth before attempting the same maneuver at Mars. Then starting on a small area of the panel to see how much damage it will do to the solar cells if any. You never know until you try.

We can talk about how effective a vacuum cleaner would be on Mars another time ;-)


Offline ugordan

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #134 on: 02/23/2019 02:29 pm »
As i see it, the best chance to clean the panels would come from using the bucket at the end of the arm.

Actually, the best chance to clean up the panels would be one of those wind "cleaning events" that helped sustain Spirit and Opportunity for as long as they have lasted.

Offline Journeyman

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #135 on: 02/23/2019 02:35 pm »
As i see it, the best chance to clean the panels would come from using the bucket at the end of the arm.

Actually, the best chance to clean up the panels would be one of those wind "cleaning events" that helped sustain Spirit and Opportunity for as long as they have lasted.

Yes I agree 100%. That's the best natural solution. This question only becomes an issue if we don't see these natural wind cleaning events as often as we want. The best artificial solution might be using the bucket?

I'm sure the engineers must have had this thought in their mind and either reached the conclusion "its to dangerous don't even think about it". Or that its a possibility that might be worth a try if we ever come to that.


Offline eeergo

Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #136 on: 02/23/2019 03:29 pm »

Have you ever tried sweeping fine talcum powder from a flat hard surface (stonework floor or a glass table) with a metal scoop? Not a very successful enterprise, unless you can press quite hard against the surface and the edge of the scoop is extremely smooth. Which brings us...


Have you looked at what the edge of Insight's scoop is like? See below why even if scraping hard against the panels was an option, results wouldn't bring us very far towards cleaner panels.

As pointed out before, the scoop wasn't "designed" for specialized uses in Insight: it was just an opportunity to repurpose a component that wasn't really needed after the grapple was added to the arm, but which could turn out handy for objectives of opportunity and didn't either penalize the probe for carrying it. Turned out useful to pull on the SEIS cable, would have assisted in instrument placement had the terrain been more irregular, can dig around to learn more about the site's geology or meteorology (pile up some sand, see how long it takes to get eroded by the wind). All "scoopy" things, not "broomy".
-DaviD-

Offline Journeyman

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #137 on: 02/23/2019 03:53 pm »

Have you ever tried sweeping fine talcum powder from a flat hard surface (stonework floor or a glass table) with a metal scoop? Not a very successful enterprise, unless you can press quite hard against the surface and the edge of the scoop is extremely smooth. Which brings us...


Have you looked at what the edge of Insight's scoop is like? See below why even if scraping hard against the panels was an option, results wouldn't bring us very far towards cleaner panels.

As pointed out before, the scoop wasn't "designed" for specialized uses in Insight: it was just an opportunity to repurpose a component that wasn't really needed after the grapple was added to the arm, but which could turn out handy for objectives of opportunity and didn't either penalize the probe for carrying it. Turned out useful to pull on the SEIS cable, would have assisted in instrument placement had the terrain been more irregular, can dig around to learn more about the site's geology or meteorology (pile up some sand, see how long it takes to get eroded by the wind). All "scoopy" things, not "broomy".

Great arguments! So this makes it very unlikely they would try using the scoop to attempt cleaning the panels.

Might be interesting to test it on a tiny area of the panel at the very end of the mission to observe the dynamics of fine Martian dust on flat solar panel surface. And to evaluate the extent of damage it will result in. Might be useful data for future landers / rovers if they want to explore the possibility of adding a "brush" on robotic arms that can be effective in removing dust.

Seems like very little added weight vs the added value of extending the life of the mission. Opportunity lasted 14 years just with the help of wind cleaning events. With the ability to brush off dust from the panels, both Spirit and Opportunity "might" still be roving around.


Offline eeergo

Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #138 on: 02/23/2019 04:41 pm »
Might be interesting to test it on a tiny area of the panel at the very end of the mission to observe the dynamics of fine Martian dust on flat solar panel surface. And to evaluate the extent of damage it will result in.

As the image I attached shows, the scoop's edge has an opening and, more importantly, is slightly curved. It would just scrape just two lines on the dust, not an extended area.

Such an exercise wouldn't be useful for dust cleaning techniques. Concurrently, arm damage to solar cells would best be tested on ground spares, which isn't needed anyway since the scoop doesn't have any business scraping the cells in the first place.

The day a mission is expected to need solar panel cleaning capabilities to meet its objectives, they will include a proper brush, or blower, or array drives allowing excess dust to fall, or something more ingenuous we aren't thinking of - not a claw awkwardly screeching its robotic nails on a solar chalkboard.

Meanwhile we have a beautiful fully-functional lander with literal intricate clockwork machinery doing science with four instruments (Mars' first really useful seismometer, first penetrator probe, most precise weather station and great geology-oriented radio beacon) and the extra joy and opportunity of a free robotic arm with a scoop. Isn't that more discussion-worthy?
-DaviD-

Offline Journeyman

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Re: InSight Mission Updates (Post Landing)
« Reply #139 on: 02/23/2019 05:08 pm »
Might be interesting to test it on a tiny area of the panel at the very end of the mission to observe the dynamics of fine Martian dust on flat solar panel surface. And to evaluate the extent of damage it will result in.

As the image I attached shows, the scoop's edge has an opening and, more importantly, is slightly curved. It would just scrape just two lines on the dust, not an extended area.

Such an exercise wouldn't be useful for dust cleaning techniques. Concurrently, arm damage to solar cells would best be tested on ground spares, which isn't needed anyway since the scoop doesn't have any business scraping the cells in the first place.

The day a mission is expected to need solar panel cleaning capabilities to meet its objectives, they will include a proper brush, or blower, or array drives allowing excess dust to fall, or something more ingenuous we aren't thinking of - not a claw awkwardly screeching its robotic nails on a solar chalkboard.

Meanwhile we have a beautiful fully-functional lander with literal intricate clockwork machinery doing science with four instruments (Mars' first really useful seismometer, first penetrator probe, most precise weather station and great geology-oriented radio beacon) and the extra joy and opportunity of a free robotic arm with a scoop. Isn't that more discussion-worthy?

I see what you mean about the curved scoop.

Its fun to consider "what if" scenarios. Knowing that there probably are technical reasons why they won't work. But still its interesting to learn why they won't work.

And Now, Back to Our Regularly Scheduled Programming about Insight operations at Mars :)

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