NASA preparing Ingenuity helicopter for flight on Mars after finding airfield
The helicopter, nicknamed Ingenuity, arrived on the Red Planet on Feb. 18, hitching along for the ride with NASA’s Mars Perseverance rover. During a media briefing Tuesday, Ingenuity and Perseverance team members revealed they are targeting around April 8 for the first flight. [MORE COVERAGE: NASA rover gets rolling on Mars from its landing spot named for late author Octavia Butler | Mars rover sends back grinding, squealing sounds of driving]NASA's Ingenuity helicopter airfield on Mars within the Jezero Crater. (Image: NASA JPL) (WKMG 2021)“We really scoured this area. The Mars Helicopter Delivery System holds the Ingenuity Mars Helicopter to the underside of Perseverance.
Mars rover sends back grinding, squealing sounds of driving
7, 2021 photo provided by NASA shows tire tracks left by the Mars Perseverance rover. The rover has sent back the first-ever sounds of driving on the red planet. “If I heard these sounds driving my car, I’d pull over and call for a tow,” Dave Gruel, an engineer on the rover team, said in a written NASA statement. This second mike didn't pick up any sounds of the rover's arrival at Mars, but managed to record the first test drive March 4. The driving audio contains a unexpected high-pitched scratching noise, according to NASA.
NASA rover gets rolling on Mars from its landing spot named for late author Octavia Butler
This image was captured while NASA’s Perseverance rover drove on Mars for the first time on March 4, 2021. (Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech)NASA’s Perseverance Mars rover is now wheeling around on the red planet and stretching its robotic limbs, the rover’s team said in the most recent update just two weeks after landing. Already the space agency released the first ever sound recorded on Mars taken by Percy and the first photos taken from the rover’s jetpack as it landed. Since then there have been many more firsts for the six-wheeled robot.. Two weeks into the mission, Percy has already sent back about 7,000 images. “Butler’s protagonists embodies determination and inventiveness, making her a perfect fit for the Perseverance rover mission, and its theme of overcoming challenges.”The spot where @NASAPersevere began its journey on Mars now bears the name “Octavia E. Butler Landing."
China’s Mars craft enters parking orbit before landing rover
China says its Tianwen-1 spacecraft has entered a temporary parking orbit around Mars in anticipation of landing a rover on the red planet in the coming months. (AP Photo/Andy Wong)BEIJING – China says its Tianwen-1 spacecraft has entered a temporary parking orbit around Mars in anticipation of landing a rover on the red planet in the coming months. A successful bid to land Tianwen-1 would make China only the second country after the U.S. to place a spacecraft on Mars. AdTianwen, the title of an ancient poem, means “Quest for Heavenly Truth.”Landing a spacecraft on Mars is notoriously tricky. In 2011, a Mars-bound Chinese orbiter that was part of a Russian mission didn’t make it out of Earth orbit.
LISTEN: NASA rover sends back first sounds ever recorded on Mars
Gentle wind and a robotic hum might not sound like much to celebrate but those were the first sounds ever recorded on Mars taken by NASA’s Perseverance rover after landing on another world. NASA released the first few recordings taken by the rover that landed on the red planet Thursday following a 300-million-mile journey. “We can sit here now and actually tell you that we have recorded sound from the surface of Mars,” Gruel said after playing one of those recordings. “We actually have gotten requests from instrument teams wanting to turn on the microphone to observe their instrument functioning,” Maki said. Similar to hearing something wrong with mechanics on Earth, NASA teams could do the same on mars.
Photos show NASA’s Mars rover coming in for landing
Following the touchdown on Mars Thursday NASA’s Mars 2020 Perseverance rover team are already getting back images taken during the entry, descent and landing also known as “seven minutes of terror” that happened about 300 million miles away from Earth. [NASA is expected to share more images, including video the Mars landing during a news briefing at 2 p.m. Monday. This image captured by a spacecraft shows NASA's Perseverance rover midair, floating over Mars while hanging from its parachute during the final moments before landing. The first color image from NASA's Perseverance rover taken right after landing on Mars Feb. 18, 2021. The rover is equipped with microphones designed to capture the landing and then the sounds on the ground from Mars.
Mars 2020 landing timeline: From 12,500 mph to wheels down
NASA’s Mars rover Perseverance is set to complete its most dangerous part of the mission Thursday as it barrels through the Martian atmosphere and plops down on the red planet. But as NASA Mars 2020 entry, descent and landing lead Allen Chen explained on Jan. 27, “the parachute alone isn’t enough to slow down Perseverance for landing. Ad3:53 p.m. Terrain Relative Navigation begins and landing selectionThis animation depicts the Terrain-Relative Navigation technique incorporated into entry, descent, and landing for the Mars 2020 rover. 3:54:48 p.m. Rover separationAdHow NASA rover Perseverance will try to land on MarsThe rover drops from the descent stage and is lowered using 20-foot cables. Follow updates on News 6 and ClickOrlando.com/space on Feb. 18 as NASA lands the Perseverance rover on the red planet.
Breaking down the dangers NASA’s rover must survive to land on Mars
[MORE: NASA is about to land the first tiny helicopter on Mars]With so much money flowing into the new Perseverance rover you can’t help but wonder, could the mission fail? The rover’s landing has been dubbed “seven minutes of terror.”“Entry, Descent landing is the most critical and most dangerous part of the mission success is never assured. And that’s especially true when we’re trying to land the biggest heaviest and most complicated rover we’ve ever built,” Mars 2020 entry, descent and landing lead Allen Chen said. During the descent, NASA teams will be in the dark, hence the scariest seven minutes of the mission. “We certainly don’t want to land on that,” Erisa Stilley, Perseverance entry, descent and landing engineer said when referring to the cliff.
Bosnia village with link to Mars enthralled by rover landing
An aerial photograph shows the village of Jezero, Bosnia, Tuesday, Feb. 16, 2021. It will be a historic day for the 1,000 villagers, who hope that the landing of the Perseverance rover in a crater on Mars will also bring them some earthly rewards. It will be a historic day for the 1,000 villagers, who hope that the landing of the Perseverance rover in Mars' Jezero crater will also bring them some earthly rewards. The rover named Perseverance is headed Thursday for a compact 5-mile-by-4-mile (8-kilometer-by-6.4-kilometer) patch on the edge of an ancient river delta. It seems that hardly anyone has anything bad to say about NASA’s mission to scour the dried-out Jezero crater for evidence of life.
Listen for these NASA engineers to call out Mars Perseverance rover landing events
While NASA’s Mars rover is coming in for landing Thursday, there are two engineers’ voices you’ll want to listen out for as the spacecraft carrying the rover completes a series of maneuvers to safely land on the red planet. During NASA’s last rover landing in 2012, livestream listeners would have heard Al Chen, who leads the entry, descent and landing into the Martian atmosphere, making the calls as the spacecraft barreled down through the Martian atmosphere. The GN&C system acts as the “eyes and ears” of the spacecraft, bringing the rover down to the ground, according to NASA. When asked Tuesday during a media briefing ahead of Thursday’s Mars arrival, Perseverance deputy project manager Jennifer Trosper explained Mohan is who everyone will want to listen out for during the seven-minute landing sequence. Ad“Entry, descent and landing is the most critical and most dangerous part of the mission.
Mars landing is just the beginning of a decade-long sample-return mission
This NASA illustration shows a concept for a Mars Ascent Vehicle (left) releasing a sample container (right) high above the Martian surface. It requires three rocket launches, another rover, a Mars lander, a Mars ascent vehicle and an orbiter spacecraft, most of which will be designed and managed by the ESA. AdThis NASA illustration of a Mars sample return mission concept shows a lander carrying a fetch rover as it touches down on the surface of Mars. (Image: NASA) (NASA 2021)Here’s how the sample collection will play out: NASA will deliver another Mars lander near Jezero Crater where Perseverance will have collected rock and soil samples. ESA's rendering of how the agency plans to collect samples from NASA's mars rover.
NASA is about to land the first tiny helicopter on Mars
Members of the NASA Mars Helicopter team inspect Ingenuity, inside the Space Simulator, a 25-foot-wide vacuum chamber at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, on Feb. 1, 2019. Nicknamed Ingenuity, the 4-pound tiny chopper is actually a test mission for NASA. Following the 300-million-mile journey and frightful landing on Mars, Ingenuity will be released from the rover’s under carriage for a short term-mission unrelated to its ride Perseverance. The Mars Helicopter Delivery System holds the Ingenuity Mars Helicopter to the underside of Perseverance. “The Ingenuity Mars helicopter has been fully tested, as much as we can on Earth, we have test flown it and we have tested for environment and next is time to demonstrate proof and learn how it operates at Mars,” NASA JPL Ingenuity project manager MiMi Aung said.
NASA to offer Mars rover landing coverage in Spanish for the first time
NASA will host its first-ever Spanish-language show for a planetary landing, marking another milestone for its Mars 2020 mission. ORLANDO, Fla. – There’s a lot of firsts when it comes to NASA’s Mars 2020 rover mission, including its first-ever Spanish-language show for a planetary landing. As NASA’s Perseverance rover prepares to attempt the riskiest part of its mission, landing on the red planet, NASA will host “Junto perseveramos,” together we persevere. The Spanish-language show will give viewers an overview of the Mars mission and introduce the role Hispanic NASA professionals have had in it. She will also offer live English-to-Spanish translation and commentary during the rover’s entry, descent and landing on Mars.
United Arab Emirates publishes first photo from Mars probe
This Feb. 10, 2021 image taken by the United Arab Emirates' "Amal," or "Hope," probe was released Sunday, Feb. 14, 2021, shows Mars . The Hope space probe now circles the red planet. (Mohammed bin Rashid Space Center/UAE Space Agency, via AP)DUBAI – The United Arab Emirates on Sunday published the first image for its Mars probe now circling the red planet. It shows Mars' north pole, as well as Mars' largest volcano, Olympus Mons. The probe swung into orbit around Mars on Tuesday in a triumph for the Arab world’s first interplanetary mission.
UAE successfully puts spacecraft in Mars orbit on first try
Hope is designed to orbit Mars and study the Martian atmosphere using three scientific instruments on board the spacecraft. [RELATED: 3 spacecraft arriving in quick succession to Mars | NASA Mars rover coming in for landing during ‘most dangerous’ part of mission]AdThe UAE Space Agency offered a livestream of the spacecraft’s arrival. ET nearly half of the spacecraft’s fuel was spent to slow it down enough to capture Mars’ orbit. Just before 11 a.m. the UAE Space Agency confirmed the spacecraft had survived and was beginning it’s high orbit of the red planet. The Mars Orbit Insertion is now complete.#ArabsToMars — Hope Mars Mission (@HopeMarsMission) February 9, 2021The UAE hopes to inspire a new generation of scientists and space explorers with the $200 million mission.
Next stop Mars: 3 spacecraft arriving in quick succession
China’s first Mars mission, a joint effort with Russia in 2011, never made it past Earth’s orbit. The U.S. rover Perseverance, by contrast, will dive in straight away for a harrowing sky-crane touchdown similar to the Curiosity rover’s grand Martian entrance in 2012. Smashed Russian and European spacecraft litter the Martian landscape, meanwhile, along with NASA’s failed Mars Polar Lander from 1999. It even kept the European and Russian space agencies' joint Mars mission grounded until the next launch window in 2022. AdPerseverance's deputy project manager Matt Wallace, who’s working his fifth Mars rover mission, said the pandemic won’t dampen the mood come landing day.
What’s for dinner on Mars? NASA needs help creating a Martian menu
The U.S. space agency is looking for ideas to improve food production on the red planet that meet several important requirements. These technologies must require minimal resources and produce minimal waste while also providing astronauts the nutrients they need for long-duration missions. AdTo help find solutions to this problem, NASA launched the Deep Space Food Challenge where the potential winner could earn up to $500,000. Similar to other technologies developed for purposes in space, they often can be used to improve life on Earth, too. The NASA competition is only open to U.S. residents but Canada and other international partners are also looking for ideas.
NASA Mars rover coming in for landing during ‘most dangerous’ part of its mission
NASA is preparing to land the Perseverance Rover, along with the first small helicopter, on the red planet next month. Perseverance will be the fifth rover that NASA has attempted to land on Mars. While NASA has a successful record with landing its last few rovers on Mars, Matt Wallace, Mars 2020 deputy project manager, said this one is different. NASA Mars 2020 entry, descent and landing lead Allen Chen described this part of the mission as the “most critical and most dangerous” saying “mission success is never assured.”AdThere is a reason NASA engineers refer to minutes leading up to landing on Mars as “seven minutes of terror.” The spacecraft carrying Mars 2020 will hit the Martian atmosphere traveling at over 12,000 mph using its thrusters to steer toward its landing target. One is on Mars 2020′s SuperCam, the head of the rover, and another that will record the entry, descent and landing.
RIP: Mars digger bites the dust after 2 years on red planet
On Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021, NASA declared the craft dead after failing to burrow deep into the red planet to take its temperature. (NASA via AP)CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. – NASA declared the Mars digger dead Thursday after failing to burrow deep into the red planet to take its temperature. But the 16-inch-long (40-centimeter) device that is part of NASA's InSight lander couldn’t gain enough friction in the red dirt. On Tuesday, the high was 17 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 8 degrees Celsius) and the low was minus 56 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 49 degrees Celsius) at Mars' Elysium Planitia, an equatorial plain. It will be joined by NASA's newest rover, Perseverance, which will attempt a touchdown on Feb. 18.
Space milestones, events to look forward to in 2021
Let’s take a look at just a few space milestones to be excited about in 2021. James Webb Space Telescope launchIn this photo from April 2015, NASA technicians lifted the James Webb Space Telescope using a crane and moved it inside a clean room at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. The James Webb Space Telescope is led by NASA with its partners, the European Space Agency and Canadian Space Agency. Artemis-1 launch from Kennedy Space CenterNASA¹s Space Launch System rocket will launch with Orion atop it from Launch Complex 39B at NASA's modernized spaceport at Kennedy Space Center in Florida. (NASA)NASA is in the final stages of testing its mega rocket known as the Space Launch System with the Orion spacecraft, now classified under the Artemis moon program.
There’s more than 1 way to send a spacecraft to Venus
AdIt used to be -- in the U.S.-- NASA was the only way to fund and send a robotic mission to another world, but not anymore. The company wants to send the first robotic mission to Venus in 2023. (Image credit: Rocket Lab) (Rocket Lab)Meanwhile, NASA is considering funding its own missions to the planet considered Earth’s twin. Currently there are two Venus missions under consideration and two more equally fascinating missions, one designed to study Jupiter’s moon Io and another to Neptune’s moon Triton. AdHere’s what launching a robotic mission to another planet looks like, in a nutshell, according to Wagner:“This is what a typical NASA mission is.
Hubble Space Telescope is a gift of science that keeps giving
Some of the new Caldwell images include celestial gems that can be spotted with a telescope, binoculars or the naked eye. Originally, the space telescope was designed to last 15 years in orbit. This Hubble image captures Caldwell 78 (or NGC 6541), a globular star cluster roughly 22,000 light-years from Earth. When Hubble first began returning science data, astronomers did not see the clear images expected but fuzzy stars. The space agency is building another even more powerful telescope called the James Webb Space Telescope that will ultimately replace Hubble.
UCF science getting more time in zero-G with Virgin Galactic --and soon Virgin Orbit
Colwell and UCF planetary scientist Addie Dove are co-investigators on the project that has previously flown twice with Virgin Galactic. Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipTwo will be carried by plane or “mothership” called VMS Eve taking off from New Mexico’s spaceport. Virgin Orbit, a sister Virgin company, is set to launch its first operational mission which includes science selected by NASA, including UCF’s Q-PACE small satellite. Q-PACE is another small payload with mighty research goals: to help scientists understand how planets formed. Virgin Orbit is targeting launch before the end of the year.
The curious tale of searching for signs of life on Venus
You can read her piece, “Promising sign of life on Venus might not exist after all”, at NationalGeographic.com. Listen to the full episode of Space Curious below to learn about the fascinating discovery and the process of fact-checking science. Next time on Space Curious: the possibilities and perils of sending robots to Venus. Space Curious is a podcast from WKMG and Graham Media that answers your intergalactic questions. Hosted by WKMG space reporter Emilee Speck, each episode is designed to inspire everyone, from the space curious to the space fanatics.
Lunar mission is latest milestone in China’s space ambitions
(AP Photo/Ng Han Guan, File)WENCHANG – China’s latest trip to the moon is another milestone in the Asian powerhouse’s slow but steady ascent to the stars. Future ambitions include a permanent space station and putting people back on the moon more than 50 years after the U.S. did. But even before the latest lunar mission lifted off before dawn Tuesday, a top program official maintained that China isn't competing with anyone. China's space program has at times been seen as recreating achievements attained years ago by others, primarily the U.S. and the former Soviet Union. Subscribe to a weekly newsletter to receive the latest in space news directly to your inbox here.
Mic check: Listen to NASA’s Mars rover traveling through space
More than halfway to the red planet after launching from Florida in July NASA’s Mars rover Perseverance is coming in hot -- on the microphone. Perseverance, also known as Mars 2020, launched from Cape Canaveral on a ULA Altas V rocket this July. The robot may look like NASA’s well-known rover, Curiosity, currently roving around on Mars but this bot has a whole new suite of instruments, cameras and two microphones on board. One mic is designed to listen to the pew-pew sounds from the rover’s laser on the SuperCam instrument, another will listen to the Mars atmosphere entry, descent down to the surface and touchdown. It will be a surprise come landing day what the mic picks up because it wasn’t originally designed for space travel.
How scientists know we’re not going to get squashed by an asteroid
In a recent episode of the podcast “Space Curious,” planetary scientists helped us understand why this is. They also explained how we know where asteroids are, and why we’re not all going to get squashed by one anytime soon. “The main reason we go to Bennu is because it is the most potentially hazardous asteroid,” Campins said. “It’s a primitive asteroid,” Campins said. Campins said when someone reads about an asteroid headed for Earth, it’s a good idea to do some fact checking.
UCF scientists working on NASA asteroid sample mission share experience with students
ORLANDO, Fla. – A member of NASA’s first asteroid sample collection mission team and UCF planetary scientist is teaching a class about asteroids and comets just hours before the mission he has been working on for a decade is set to collect a sample of the asteroid Bennu. [LIVE UPDATES: Follow along as NASA’s spacecraft picks up a piece of asteroid]“I just want them to be excited,” he said. And so this is very relevant.”Campins isn’t the only UCF faculty on the OSIRIS-REx team, Associate Prof. Kerri Donaldson Hanna also serves as a a participating scientist on the mission. A photo of the asteroid Bennu, taken by NASA's OSIRIS-REx spacecraft from 85 miles away. If all goes well, the spacecraft will drop the capsule with the sample back on Earth in 2023 completing its mission to Bennu and back.
NASA spacecraft successfully ‘kisses’ asteroid to bring back sample to Earth
ORLANDO, Fla. – A NASA spacecraft briefly smooched the surface of a potentially hazardous asteroid more than 200 million miles away on Tuesday successfully conducting the first U.S. asteroid sample attempt but it will be a few days before we know how much it picked up. [RECAP: History made as NASA successfully tags asteroid Bennu to collect sample]“This mission has almost been like clockwork,” spacecraft science team member and UCF Associate Prof. Kerri Donaldson Hanna said. Donaldson Hanna is one of two University of Central Florida faculty serving on the NASA mission, including UCF planetary scientist Humberto Campins. This Aug. 11, 2020 photo shows the sampling arm of the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft during a rehearsal for an approach to the "Nightingale" sample site on the surface of the asteroid Bennu. Studying the asteroid in space up close and when the asteroid sample is dropped on Earth in 2023 will help scientists learn how to deflect a potentially hazardous asteroid like it.
RECAP: History made as NASA successfully tags asteroid Bennu to collect sample
Here is a full list of activities leading up to the asteroid “tag” and after to learn how it went. See a recap of the events leading up to the asteroid “tag” and for reaction from OSIRIS-REx team members after the main event. 🌍 pic.twitter.com/fP7xdOEeOs — NASA's OSIRIS-REx (@OSIRISREx) October 20, 20206:11 p.m. OSIRIS-REx ‘go’ to TAG asteroid, sampling happening nowTouchdown is happening and the sampling is in progress, per NASA. “This is history,” an emotional Principal Investigator Dante Dante Lauretta said. “Whatever has happened has already happened,” OSIRIS-REx Principal Investigator Dante Dante Lauretta said.
NASA spacecraft will swoop in, collect chunk of asteroid to bring home this week
The spacecraft name stands for Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security, Regolith Explorer, a true mouthful even for a NASA acronym. The 500-meter-wide asteroid was chosen for several reasons, including that it could one day-- in a very long time-- hit our home planet. Beyond OSIRIS-REx NASA is only ramping up its study of asteroids. NASA’s Double Asteroid Re-direction Test mission, or DART, is designed to test technology to prevent an impact of a hazardous asteroid. Another spacecraft nicknamed Lucy, is slated to launch in October 2021, will be bound for the Trojan Asteroids.
Shoe box-size moon rover arrives at Kennedy Space Center for testing
KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. – The most recent NASA Mars rover is about the weight of a compact car and jam-packed with science instruments and cameras. Astrobotic Technology, a Pittsburgh-based company, recently sent one of its CubeRovers to NASA’s Kennedy Space Center to test out how the little wheeled-robot does on simulated lunar soil. A CubeRover, similar to a CubeSat or tiny satellite, is an affordable option for researchers to send mobile science payloads to the moon. When CubeRover is operational companies, governments and researchers can buy the space they need at $4.5 million per kilogram. Additionally, Astrobotic was awarded a $79.5 million CLPS contract from NASA to deliver 14 payloads to the moon on its Peregrine lunar lander in July 2021.
Salty ‘ponds’ discovered on Mars
Researchers say they have found evidence of salty ponds under the surface of Mars. They published their results in the journal Nature Astronomy this week. According to the study, Italian scientists searched the subsurface of the red planet with an instrument on the European space agency’s Mars Express spacecraft. The ponds are different sizes and strips of dry land separate them from the main lake. The scientists believe this once again raises the possibility there may be life on Mars.
New discovery adds to excitement for Rocket Lab’s mission to Venus
Private space company, Rocket Lab has had plans in the works to launch a spacecraft to Venus on its Electron rocket as soon as 2023. The announcement this week added to the excitement of a mission to the second planet from the sun coming up in the near future. So from a from a climate perspective, I think we have a lot to learn from Venus,” Beck said. “Don’t get me wrong, I like Mars to just not as much as Venus,” Beck said. Rocket Lab is known for its quirky mission names but Beck says they have still not decided to on a name for the mission to Venus.
No, the moon and Mars will not be the same size in the sky, tonight -- or ever
Every 26 months Mars and Earth are on the same side of the Sun, which is known as Mars opposition, making the Red Planet closer to our home planet. What doesn’t happen during opposition, even if your Facebook friends say it does, is make Mars appear just as big as the moon in the night sky to the naked eye. That opposition year Mars appeared bigger and brighter in the night sky but still not the same size as the moon, that’s just not possible. “Somehow, things got mixed up a bit to claim that Mars would look as big as the moon,” Fienberg said. An illustration of the relative 'tilt' in the orbits of Earth and Mars during opposition.
'On our way to Mars': NASA rover will look for signs of life
NASAs Perseverance rode a mighty Atlas V rocket into a clear morning sky in the worlds third and final Mars launch of the summer. the mission will yield lessons that could pave the way for the arrival of astronauts as early as the 2030s. Because going to Mars is hard, NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said just before liftoff. The rover will store half-ounce (15-gram) rock samples in dozens of super-sterilized titanium tubes. Samples taken straight from Mars, not drawn from meteorites discovered on Earth, have long been considered the Holy Grail of Mars science, according to NASAs now-retired Mars czar, Scott Hubbard.
Live updates: NASAs Mars rover set for launch from Cape Canaveral
NASA and United Launch Alliance are in the final hours before launching a rover and helicopter to Mars from Floridas coast. The liftoff is scheduled for 7:50 a.m. Thursday from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station where ULA will launch its Atlas V rocket with the rover named Perseverance and the chopper nicknamed Ingenuity on their journey to the red planet. Follow updates below throughout the countdown and liftoff:3 p.m. Live views of the launch padA camera at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station is showing live views of Atlas standing tall on the launch pad ready for Thursdays morning liftoff. Wondering when and where you may see the #AtlasV launch of Mars 2020? Launch is scheduled for tomorrow morning at 7:50amEDT from Cape Canaveral.
(Almost) Everything to know about NASAs new mission to Mars
The mission known as Mars 2020 is comprised of a rover nicknamed Perseverance and a small helicopter nicknamed Ingenuity. There is a lot of information to unpack for Mars 2020 from the technology to the science. Souped-up scienceThe other difference between Curiosity and Mars 2020 is that technology tested on this mission will serve as a proving ground for human missions, according to Art Thompson, deputy manager of assembly, test and launch operations for Mars 2020. Recording the sounds of Mars for the first timeTwo microphones are onboard the Mars 2020 rover. Sample return: An interplanetary treasure huntESA's rendering of how the agency plans to collect samples from NASA's mars rover.
Students who named NASA Mars rover, helicopter arrive at KSC to view launch
Mather, who is 13 years old and a seventh-grader at Lake Braddock Secondary School in Burke, Virginia, named the Mars Perseverance rover that will fly to space Thursday morning. [MORE SPACE: NASAs next Mars rover is brawniest and brainiest one yet | Space roundup: List of launches, landings and out-of-this world announcements]Weather is currently 80% "go" for the two-hour launch window. "This is an amazing place with amazing people doing amazing things and there's nowhere else I'd rather be." Mars missions do take a lot of perseverance," Mather said. If given the opportunity, Mather would love to go to space and to Mars, fulfilling a life-long dream of his.
NASA’s next Mars rover is brawniest and brainiest one yet
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. – With eight successful Mars landings, NASA is upping the ante with its newest rover. The spacecraft Perseverance — set for liftoff this week — is NASA’s brawniest and brainiest Martian rover yet. It sports the latest landing tech, plus the most cameras and microphones ever assembled to capture the sights and sounds of Mars. CURIOSITY:The six-wheeled, car-sized Perseverance is a copycat of NASA’s Curiosity rover, prowling Mars since 2012, but with more upgrades and bulk. HUMAN BENEFITS:Besides the helicopter, Perseverance carries other experiments that could directly benefit astronauts at Mars.
NASAs adorable video explains the Mars 2020 mission perfectly
NASA has been working on the robotic mission for years, readying the new Mars rover nicknamed Perseverance for perhaps the most elaborate Martian mission yet. The space agency has partnered with the United Launch Alliance to launch Perseverance on top of an Atlas V rocket. The space chopper will test the first powered flight on Mars, another way how this Martian mission is boasting the best tech for space exploration. NASA explains it all in just one minute using an adorable trailer introducing you Perseverance and its big mission ahead. From lift-off to landing, see whats in store for the Mars 2020 rover before we say bon voyage in the video below.
Launch of NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope delayed again by virus, other issues
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. – The launch of NASA’s successor to the Hubble Space Telescope faces seven more months of delay, this time because of the pandemic and technical issues. Officials announced Thursday that the James Webb Space Telescope — the space agency's top science priority — is now scheduled to launch on Oct. 31, 2021. Budget reserves set aside two years ago during the last major assessment will cover any additional expenses, said Thomas Zurbuchen, the space agency's science mission chief. The sun shield is needed to keep the infrared telescope cold once in space. NASA plans to ship Webb next summer to its European launch site in French Guiana — Europe's contribution to the mission.
Martian summer: US, UAE and China all launching missions to Mars this month
UAEs first Mars missionA UAE Space Agency mission will be the first Mars launch of the summer. (graphic provided by the UAE Space Agency) (WKMG 2020)Hope is designed to orbit Mars and study the Martian atmosphere using three scientific instruments on board of the spacecraft. According to the space agency, Hope will improve understanding of circulation and weather in the Martian lower and middle atmosphere. Recently, the UAE Space Agency partnered with comedian and actor Kevin Hart to promote an international competition surrounding the launch. NASA says it has until Aug. 15 to launch the mission within the Mars launch window.
NASA Mars rover launch shifts again to end of July
United Launch Alliance was scheduled to launch the rover, named Perseverance, on an Atlas V rocket sometime in July. The last launch date was pushed to July 22 now NASA says it is targeting no earlier than July 30. NASA officials said they experienced rocket processing delays preparing to mount the spacecraft to the rocket that will carry the rover to Mars leading to the first launch time change. NASA said flight analysis teams have expended this year’s Mars launch window by five additional days to August 15 and are looking into whether that could push further into August. After launch, the Perseverance rover will land in the Mars Jezero creator in late February where it will seek signs of ancient life and collect samples to return to Earth on another mission.
Its asteroid day: 5 facts to know about these fascinating space rocks
Asteroids are fossils of our solar systemA NASA composite image of all the planets photographed by spacecraft or observatories. According to NASA, our solar system is made up of the Sun, eight planets, 146 moons, comets, asteroids and space rocks, ice and dwarf planets, including Pluto. The thought behind asteroid mining is that once off-planet fueling stations could be set up using asteroids for deep space exploration. Central Florida is home to leading asteroid experts at the University of Central Florida and Florida Space Institute. Bonus fact: Eight planetary scientists at UCF and the Florida Space Institute have asteroids named after them to recognize their work in planetary science research.
NASA pushes Mars rover launch to July 22 from Cape Canaveral
KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. NASAs Mars rover Perseverance will have to wait another two days next month before it starts the months-long journey to the red planet. The rover is at NASAs Kennedy Space Center where its preparing to launch from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in July on a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket. The launch was scheduled for July 20 but NASA announced Wednesday it was pushed to July 22. The Mars launch window extends to August 11, meaning they have some time to get the robot off Earth. The new two-hour launch window opens at 9:35 a.m. on July 22.
NASA selects Pittsburgh’s Astrobotic to deliver water-hunting moon rover
NASA announced Thursday that private space company Astrobotic will deliver the agency’s moon rover, VIPER, to the moon’s south pole by end of 2023. Under this initiative, NASA will pay private companies to deliver payloads to the moon to establish a lasting presence on the lunar surface. Prior to landing VIPER on the moon, Astrobotic will land its own lunar lander, Peregrine, as early as next year, under a NASA CLPS contract. The Griffin lunar lander is capable of delivering up to 500 kilograms of mass to the lunar surface, according to a news release. After landing, VIPER will come down from Griffin’s ramp onto the lunar surface and will begin mapping lunar water ice.
SpaceX Dragon spacecraft will shuttle supplies to moon space station for NASA
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. – SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft will deliver supplies to NASA’s spacecraft orbiting the moon part of the U.S. space agency’s goal to return astronauts to the lunar surface by 2024. NASA announced Friday it had awarded a firm-fixed-price indefinite contract to SpaceX for a maximum of $7 billion for at least two missions to NASA’s lunar Gateway. The SpaceX cargo Dragon spacecraft already delivers supplies to the International Space Station and a Crew Dragon spacecraft will soon begin launching astronauts to the ISS as soon as mid-May. While SpaceX is the first contractor selected to make supply runs to Gateway NASA plans to accept additional bids from other service providers. Prior to any visits from a Dragon spacecraft, NASA must assemble the Gateway in space.
Perseverance: NASA reveals name of Mars robot selected by student
It’s about time NASA’s Mars rover got a real name before it launches from Cape Canaveral this summer. https://t.co/7w3rbvbyoL#Mars2020 — NASA's Perseverance Mars Rover (@NASAPersevere) March 5, 2020After that trip, “Mather became a bona fide space enthusiast, checking NASA.gov daily, consuming astronaut autobiographies and even 3D-printing flyable model rockets,” NASA said in a news release. John McNamee, project manager of the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover mission at JPL, said the name is fitting for the team that built and designed the rover. Although Mars 2020 looks very similar to Curiosity, the new rover is equipped with a whole new set of science instruments. Mars 2020 has the ability to collect samples from the red planet and has a microphone that will capture the first sounds of Mars.
Special delivery: NASA Mars rover journeys to KSC ahead of July launch
KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. – NASA’s next Mars rover traveled from California to Kennedy Space Center Wednesday in preparation for a July launch to the red planet. The rover’s heat shield and backshell arrived at the space center in January, according to NASA. Ahead of the launch, NASA plans to officially name the roving robot with the help of K-12 students. When the rover lands on Mars, it will begin its investigation of the red planet in the Jezero Crater. Mars 2020 will follow in the tracks of its predecessor, NASA’s Mars Curiosity rover.
5 things to know about the Solar Orbiter mission to the sun
The European Space Agency’s Solar Orbiter will join NASA’s Parker Solar Probe that was launched in 2018. “The two spacecraft will work together: As Parker samples solar particles up close, Solar Orbiter will capture imagery from farther away, contextualizing the observations. What is the Solar Orbiter? For this mission, Solar Orbiter will study the sun at a tilt in orbit letting it view the sun’s poles more directly. At its fastest, the Solar Orbiter will travel almost as fast as the sun’s rotation which will allow it to study how a single solar feature, such as a solar flare, evolves over time.