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Topic: NASA’s Sojourner Rover

NASA’s Mars Cube One mission breaking new ground in Deep Space Exploration

 

NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – Twenty years ago, CubeSats — a class of boxy satellites small enough to fit in a backpack — were used by universities as a teaching aid. Simpler, smaller and cheaper than traditional satellites, they’ve made space more accessible to private companies and science agencies.

This summer, NASA has been flying the first two next-generation CubeSats to deep space. They’re currently on their way to Mars, trailing thousands of miles behind the InSight spacecraft. InSight and its CubeSat tag-alongs are already more than halfway to the Red Planet.

NASA Engineer Joel Steinkraus uses sunlight to test the solar arrays on one of the Mars Cube One (MarCO) spacecraft. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

NASA Engineer Joel Steinkraus uses sunlight to test the solar arrays on one of the Mars Cube One (MarCO) spacecraft. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

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NASA’s Mars 2020 Rover to have 23 Cameras on board

 

Written by Andrew Good
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – When NASA’s Mars Pathfinder touched down in 1997, it had five cameras: two on a mast that popped up from the lander, and three on NASA’s first rover, Sojourner.

Since then, camera technology has taken a quantum leap. Photo sensors that were improved by the space program have become commercially ubiquitous. Cameras have shrunk in size, increased in quality and are now carried in every cellphone and laptop.

A selection of the 23 cameras on NASA's 2020 Mars rover. Many are improved versions of the cameras on the Curiosity rover, with a few new additions as well. (NASA/JPL-Caltech UPDATED AT 4:15 p.m. PDT to correct the number of EDL cameras shown in the image)

A selection of the 23 cameras on NASA’s 2020 Mars rover. Many are improved versions of the cameras on the Curiosity rover, with a few new additions as well. (NASA/JPL-Caltech UPDATED AT 4:15 p.m. PDT to correct the number of EDL cameras shown in the image)

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NASA’s Mars rover Opportunity to work at Matijevic Hill investigating small spherical objects found in the area

 

Written by Guy Webster
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – NASA’s Mars rover Opportunity, well into its ninth year on Mars, will work for the next several weeks or months at a site with some of the mission’s most intriguing geological features.

The site, called “Matijevic Hill,” overlooks 14-mile-wide (22-kilometer-wide) Endeavour Crater. Opportunity has begun investigating the site’s concentration of small spherical objects reminiscent of, but different from, the iron-rich spheres nicknamed “blueberries” at the rover’s landing site nearly 22 driving miles ago (35 kilometers).

Rock fins up to about 1 foot (30 centimeters) tall dominate this scene from the panoramic camera (Pancam) on NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity. (Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Cornell Univ./Arizona State Univ.)

Rock fins up to about 1 foot (30 centimeters) tall dominate this scene from the panoramic camera (Pancam) on NASA’s Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity. (Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Cornell Univ./Arizona State Univ.)

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NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity finds unusual football sized Rock to Examine

 

Written by Guy Webster and D.C. Agle
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity has driven up to a football-size rock that will be the first for the rover’s arm to examine.

Curiosity is about 8 feet (2.5 meters) from the rock. It lies about halfway from the rover’s landing site, Bradbury Landing, to a location called Glenelg. In coming days, the team plans to touch the rock with a spectrometer to determine its elemental composition and use an arm-mounted camera to take close-up photographs.

The drive by NASA's Mars rover Curiosity during the mission's 43rd Martian day, or sol, (September 19th, 2012) ended with this rock about 8 feet (2.5 meters) in front of the rover. (Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech)

The drive by NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity during the mission’s 43rd Martian day, or sol, (September 19th, 2012) ended with this rock about 8 feet (2.5 meters) in front of the rover. (Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech)

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NASA’s Mars Rover Well-Equipped for Studies

 

Written by Steven Siceloff
NASA’s John F. Kennedy Space Center

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationKennedy Space Center, FL – The Mars Science Laboratory is taking a toolbox to Mars that any researcher would be proud of. A drill, metallic brush and even a laser are part of the gear set the Mars Science Laboratory called Curiosity is taking to the red planet in the most ambitious effort yet to discern exactly what is on the surface.

The spacecraft is to launch November 26th atop a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket. Liftoff is slated for 10:02am. It will take more than eight months for Curiosity to fly the 354 million miles on its path to Mars. Landing is expected in early August 2012.

Technicians look over the MSL Curiosity during inspections at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, CA. (Photo credit: NASA)

Technicians look over the MSL Curiosity during inspections at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, CA. (Photo credit: NASA)

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