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Topic: Mars Cube One

NASA CubeSats Steer make trajectory correction for Mars

 

NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – NASA has achieved a first for the class of tiny spacecraft known as CubeSats, which are opening new access to space.

Over the past week, two CubeSats called MarCO-A and MarCO-B have been firing their propulsion systems to guide themselves toward Mars. This process, called a trajectory correction maneuver, allows a spacecraft to refine its path to Mars following launch.

Both CubeSats successfully completed this maneuver; NASA’s InSight spacecraft just completed the same process on May 22nd.

An artist's concept of one of NASA's MarCO CubeSats. The twin MarCOs are the first CubeSats to complete a trajectory correction maneuver, firing their thrusters to guide themselves toward Mars. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

An artist’s concept of one of NASA’s MarCO CubeSats. The twin MarCOs are the first CubeSats to complete a trajectory correction maneuver, firing their thrusters to guide themselves toward Mars. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

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NASA’s twin Mars Cub One CubeSats on their way to Deep Space

 

NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – NASA has received radio signals indicating that the first-ever CubeSats headed to deep space are alive and well. The first signal was received at 12:15pm PST (2:15pm CST) today; the second at 1:58pm PST (3:58pm CST). Engineers will now be performing a series of checks before both CubeSats enter their cruise to deep space.

Mars Cube One, or MarCO, is a pair of briefcase-sized spacecraft that launched along with NASA’s InSight Mars lander at 4:05am PDT (6:05am CDT) today from Vandenberg Air Force Base in Central California. InSight is a scientific mission that will probe the Red Planet’s deep interior for the first time; the name stands for Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport.

An artist's rendering of the twin Mars Cube One (MarCO) spacecraft as they fly through deep space. The MarCOs will be the first CubeSats -- a kind of modular, mini-satellite -- attempting to fly to another planet. Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

An artist’s rendering of the twin Mars Cube One (MarCO) spacecraft as they fly through deep space. The MarCOs will be the first CubeSats — a kind of modular, mini-satellite — attempting to fly to another planet. Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

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NASA to Launch InSight Mars Lander on May 5th

 

NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – NASA’s next mission to Mars, Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport (InSight), is scheduled to launch Saturday, May 5th, 2018 on a first-ever mission to study the heart of the Red Planet. Coverage of prelaunch and launch activities begins Thursday, May 3rd, on NASA Television and the agency’s website.

InSight, the first planetary mission to take off from the West Coast, is targeted to launch at 4:05am PDT (6:05am CDT) from Space Launch Complex-3 at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California aboard a United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rocket.

An artist's rendering of a rocket launching with the InSight spacecraft later this May. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

An artist’s rendering of a rocket launching with the InSight spacecraft later this May. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

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NASA’s Mars InSight Lander will study the Deep Interior of Mars

 

NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – NASA’s Mars InSight lander team is preparing to ship the spacecraft from Lockheed Martin Space in Denver, where it was built and tested, to Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, where it will become the first interplanetary mission to launch from the West Coast. The project is led by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California.

NASA has a long and successful track record at Mars. Since 1965, it has flown by, orbited, landed and roved across the surface of the Red Planet. What can InSight — planned for launch in May — do that hasn’t been done before?

An artist's rendition of the InSight lander operating on the surface of Mars. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

An artist’s rendition of the InSight lander operating on the surface of Mars. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

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