Mariner 9 was an unmanned NASA space probe that contributed greatly to the exploration of Mars and was part of the Mariner program. After months of dust storms it managed to send clear pictures of the surface. Mariner 9 returned 7329 images over the course of its mission, an infrared radiometer was included to detect heat sources in search of evidence of volcanic activity. It was to study changes in the Martian atmosphere and surface. Mars two moons were to be analyzed, Mariner 9 more than met its objectives. NASA still held out hope that another Mariner probe and Atlas-Centaur could be readied before the 1971 Mars launch window closed, Convair had an available Centaur stage on hand and could have an Atlas readied in time, but the idea was ultimately abandoned for lack of funding. Mariner 9 was mated to Atlas-Centaur AC-23 on May 9 with investigation into Mariner 8s failure ongoing, all testing came back negative and on May 22, a tested and verified rate gyro package arrived from Convair and was installed in the Centaur.
Liftoff took place on May 30 at 5,23 PM EST, all launch vehicle systems performed normally and the Mariner separated from the Centaur at 13 minutes and 18 seconds after launch. Mariner 9 was the first spacecraft to orbit another planet, when Mariner 9 arrived at Mars on November 14,1971, planetary scientists were surprised to find the atmosphere was thick with a planet-wide robe of dust, the largest storm ever observed. Mariner 9s computer was reprogrammed from Earth to delay imaging of the surface for a couple of months until the dust settled. The main surface imaging did not get underway until mid-January 1972 and this unexpected situation made a strong case for the desirability of studying a planet from orbit rather than merely flying past. It highlighted the importance of flexible mission software, the images revealed river beds, massive extinct volcanoes, evidence of wind and water erosion and deposition, weather fronts and more. Mars small moons and Deimos, were photographed, the findings from the Mariner 9 mission underpinned the Viking program.
The enormous Valles Marineris canyon system is named after Mariner 9 in honor of its achievements, after depleting its supply of attitude control gas, the spacecraft was turned off on October 27,1972. The ultraviolet spectrometer aboard Mariner 9 was constructed by the Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics at the University of Colorado, the ultraviolet spectrometer team was led by Professor Charles Barth. The Infrared Interferometer Spectrometer team was led by Dr. Rudolf A. Hanel from NASA Goddard Spaceflight Center, the IRIS instrument was built by Texas Instruments, Texas. The Infrared Radiometer team was led by Professor Gerald Neugebauer from the California Institute of Technology, to control for errors in the reception of the grayscale image data sent by Mariner 9, the data had to be encoded before transmission using a so-called error-correcting code. Each image pixel was represented as a 6-bit binary value, which had 64 possible grayscale levels, because of limitations of the transmitter, the maximum useful data length was about 30 bits
During the interplanetary cruise phase, communication with the spacecraft was lost on August 21,1993,3 days prior to orbital insertion. Attempts to re-establish communication with the spacecraft were unsuccessful, in 1984, a high priority mission to Mars was set forth by the Solar System Exploration Committee. Then titled the Mars Geoscience/Climatology Orbiter, the Martian orbiter was planned to expand on the vast information already gathered by the Viking program, Mars Observer was originally planned to be launched in 1990 by a Space Shuttle Orbiter. The possibility for a rocket to be used was suggested. On March 12,1987, the mission was rescheduled for launch in 1992, along with a launch delay, budget overruns necessitated the elimination of two instruments to meet the 1992 planned launch. As the development matured, the science objectives were finalized as. Define globally the topography and gravitational field, establish the nature of the Martian magnetic field. Determine the temporal and spatial distribution, abundance and sinks of volatiles, explore the structure and circulation of the atmosphere.
The programs total cost is estimated at $813 million, the Mars Observer spacecraft had a mass of 1,018 kilograms, its bus measured 1.1 meters tall,2.2 meters wide, and 1.6 meters deep. The spacecraft was based on previous designs, originally intended and developed to orbit Earth. The RCA Satcom Ku-band satellite design was used extensively for the bus, thermal protection. Other elements such as the bipropellant components and high-gain antenna were designed specifically for the mission, the spacecraft was three-axis stabilized with four reaction wheels and twenty-four thrusters with 1346-kilograms of propellant. Of the hydrazine thrusters, eight provide 4.5 newtons to control orbit trim maneuvers, another eight provide 0.9 newtons for offsetting, or desaturating, the reaction wheels. To determine the orientation of the spacecraft, a sensor, a 6-slit star scanner. When broadcasting to the Deep Space Network, a maximum of 10.66 kilobytes/second could be achieved while the spacecraft could receive commands at a maximum bandwidth of 62. 5-bytes/second.
Power was supplied to the spacecraft through a six panel solar array, measuring 7.0 meters wide and 3.7 meters tall, and would provide an average of 1147 watts when in orbit. To power the spacecraft while occluded from the Sun, two 42 A·h nickel-cadmium batteries were included, the batteries would recharge as the solar array received sunlight, the computing system on the spacecraft was a retooling of the system used on the TIROS and DMSP satellites. To record data, redundant digital tape recorders were included and each capable of storing up to 187.5 megabytes, on August 25,1992, particulate contamination was found within the spacecraft
Malin Space Science Systems
Malin Space Science Systems is a San Diego, California company that designs and operates instruments to fly on unmanned spacecraft. MSSS is headed by chief scientist and CEO Michael C, founded in 1990, their first mission was the failed 1993 Mars Observer for which they developed and operated the Mars Observer Camera Ground Data System. After this mission they were selected to provide the main camera for Mars Global Surveyor and they developed the cameras that were carried on Mars Polar Lander, Mars Climate Orbiter,2001 Mars Odyssey, Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter and Phoenix lander. One of the most successful of their instruments to date was the Mars Observer Camera, from that date until November 2006, the MOC took more than 243,000 images of Mars, some at very high resolution. Among the MOCs notable successes was the imaging of the sites of the two Mars Exploration Rovers. Even before they landed, images from the MOC were very useful in picking the destinations of the two rovers. After more than nine years of duty, the Mars Global Surveyor ceased sending data back to Earth and it is now lost along with all its instruments.
The Mars Science Laboratory was launched in 2011 and it carries three MSSS cameras, the MastCam is the main camera on board taking still and motion images of the surroundings. The HandLens Imager is on the instrument arm and provides close up images of martian soil, finally the Mars Descent Imager provided high resolution images of the ground during descent. In December 2004, MSSS was selected to provide three cameras for the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter mission, under contract to Northwestern University, The MSSS has developed JunoCam for the Juno Jupiter Mission, which launched in 2011. In July 2014, NASA announced the selection of the Mastcam-Z proposal for the upcoming Mars 2020 rover mission and it is an improved zoom version of the original MastCam. In June 2000, evidence for water currently under the surface of Mars was discovered in the form of flood-like gullies, the question that was immediately asked was, is this an ongoing process or is this ancient and simply well preserved evidence of water/liquid flow.
Most scientists agree that it is likely that water did flow on Mars in the distant past. On December 6,2006, MSSS announced that it had discovered evidence that water had likely flowed on Mars within the past five years. At a press conference, NASA showed images taken by the Mars Global Surveyor that suggested that water flows on the surface of Mars. The images did not actually show flowing water, they showed changes in craters and sediment deposits, providing the strongest evidence yet that water coursed through them as recently as several years ago, and is perhaps doing so even now. The findings were published in the December 8,2006 issue of the journal Science, malin Systems published several documents which describe what they found, New Gully Deposit in a Crater in Terra Sirenum, Evidence That Water Flowed on Mars in This Decade. They said other materials such as sand or dust can flow like a liquid, at this stage, the flowing water hypothesis looks strong, however more evidence is needed
Mars Geyser Hopper
The power technology that MGH proposed to use was the ASRG. NASA finished the ASRG design and made one test unit of the device, neither InSight nor any of the next Discoverys semi-finalists use the ASRG or an RTG due to high demand and limited supply of the type of plutonium it relies on. One of the first unmanned spacecraft to do a hop was Surveyor 6 lunar lander. Another possibly for a mission may be Saturns moon Enceladus. Hoppers are noted for their ability to visit different landing sites. Another hopper-type mission was the Comet Hopper, which won a Discovery semi-finalist award to study a hopping mission to the Comet 46P/Wirtanen, there was some speculation in 2012 that the Geyser Hopper mission could be flown after the InSight Mars lander. The mission was projected to cost $350 million USD and to meet a cost cap of no more than $425 million USD and it must have a March 1,2016 launch date requirement to land during the Mars southern summer. Martian geysers are unlike any terrestrial geological phenomenon, all current geophysical models assume some sort of geyser-like activity.
Their characteristics and formation process are still a matter of debate and this process is rapid, observed happening in the space of a few days, weeks or months, a growth rate rather unusual in geology – especially for Mars. The primary mission duration, starting from launch, is 30 months, the spacecraft will enter the atmosphere, and make a rocket-powered soft landing in a region of the south pole where geysers are known to form. This landing will take place during the summer, when the surface is free of ice. The predicted landing ellipse is 20 by 50 kilometres and hence the landing will be targeted to a region, during the first post-landing phase, it will conduct science operations to characterize the landing site, to understand the surface geology of the area during the ice-free summer period. The spacecraft will stow its science instruments and re-ignite the engines for a first hop of a distance of up to 2 kilometers. This hop is designed to place the lander in a location where it can directly probe the geyser region, once again, the spacecraft will stow its instruments and activate the engines for a second hop, a distance of ~100 meters.
The spacecraft will characterize the area during the remaining sunlight. The lander will continue to transmit engineering data and meteorological reports during the winter. On the arrival of spring, the lander will study the geyser phenomenon from the location selected for optimum viewing. This triggers high-speed, high-resolution imagery, including LIDAR characterization of particle motion, the science instruments will do chemical analysis of any fallout particles spewed onto the surface of the lander
ExoMars is a two-part Martian astrobiology project to search for evidence of life on Mars, a joint mission of the European Space Agency and the Russian space agency Roscosmos. The first part, launched in 2016, placed a trace gas research and communication satellite into Mars orbit and released a stationary experimental lander. The second part is planned to launch in 2020, and to land a rover on the surface, the mission will search for biosignatures of Martian life, past or present, employing several spacecraft elements to be sent to Mars on two launches. The ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter and a test stationary lander called Schiaparelli were launched on 14 March 2016, the Schiaparelli experimental lander separated from TGO on 16 October and was maneuvered to land in Meridiani Planum. As of 19 October 2016, ESA had not received a signal that the landing was successful, on 21 October 2016, NASA released a Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter image showing what appears to be the lander crash site. The landing was designed to test new key technologies to deliver the 2020 rover mission.
The TGO features four instruments and will act as a communications relay satellite. In 2020, a Roscosmos-built lander is to deliver the ESA-built ExoMars Rover to the Martian surface, the rover will include some Roscosmos built instruments. The second mission operations and communications will be led by ALTECs Rover Control Centre in Italy, the ExoMars concept consisted of a large robotic rover being part of ESAs Aurora Programme as a Flagship mission and was approved by the European Space Agency ministers in December 2005. Originally conceived as a rover with a ground station, ExoMars was planned to launch in 2011 aboard a Russian Soyuz Fregat rocket. ExoMars was begun in 2001 as part of the ESA Aurora program for the exploration of Mars. That initial vision called for rover in 2009 and a return mission. Another mission intended to support the Aurora program is a Phobos sample return mission, in December 2005, the different nations composing the ESA gave approval to the Aurora program and to ExoMars.
Aurora is a program and each state is allowed to decide which part of the program they want to be involved in. Was selected for a contract with EADS Astrium of Britain to design. Astrium was contracted to design the final rover and it was proposed to include a second rover, the MAX-C. Specifically, ESA secured a Russian Proton rocket as a launcher for the ExoMars rover. One suggestion was that the new vehicle would be built in Europe and carry a mix of European, NASA would provide the rocket to deliver it to Mars and provide the sky crane landing system
Mars 96 was a failed Mars mission launched in 1996 to investigate Mars by the Russian Space Forces and not directly related to the Soviet Mars probe program of the same name. After failure of the second burn, the probe assembly re-entered the Earths atmosphere, breaking up over a 200-mile long portion of the Pacific Ocean, Chile. The Mars 96 spacecraft was based on the Phobos probes launched to Mars in 1988 and they were of a new design at the time and both ultimately failed. It was, however, an ambitious mission and the heaviest interplanetary probe launched up to that time. The mission included an orbiter, surface stations and surface penetrators, the mission included a large complement of instruments provided by France, other European countries and the United States. Similar instruments have since flown on Mars Express, launched in 2003. Its project scientist was Alexander Zakharov, Mars 96 was intended to solve several problems concerning our understanding of Mars. The scientific goal of the mission was to analyze the planets history of its surface, atmosphere.
Other studies during cruise, such as astrophysical studies were to be made and they can be broken down into several categories. Studies of the Martian surface were to include a topographical survey, mineralogical mapping, soil composition. Astrophysical studies were to place during interplanetary cruise. They included studies of cosmic gamma-bursts and the study of oscillations of the Sun, the Mars 96 orbiter was a 3-axis sun/star stabilized spacecraft which was based on the design of the Phobos orbiters. It had a high and medium gain antennae. Two large solar panels were attached to either side of the spacecraft and it had a jettisonable propulsion unit to be separated sometime after Mars orbit insertion. Two Surface Stations were attached on top of the spacecraft, two Penetrators were attached to the propulsion unit. It had a MORION system which was the interface, microprocessor. The orbiter had a mass, with fuel, of 6,180 kg. It had a dry mass of 3,159 kg, each Surface Station was contained in an aeroshell about 1 meter high and about 1 meter in diameter
Mars Orbiter Mission
The Mars Orbiter Mission, called Mangalyaan, is a space probe orbiting Mars since 24 September 2014. It was launched on 5 November 2013 by the Indian Space Research Organisation and it is Indias first interplanetary mission and ISRO has become the fourth space agency to reach Mars, after the Soviet space program, NASA, and the European Space Agency. It is the first Asian nation to reach Mars orbit, the Mars Orbiter Mission probe lifted-off from the First Launch Pad at Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Andhra Pradesh, using a Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle rocket C25 at 09,08 UTC on 5 November 2013. The launch window was approximately 20 days long and started on 28 October 2013, the MOM probe spent about a month in Earth orbit, where it made a series of seven apogee-raising orbital manoeuvres before trans-Mars injection on 30 November 2013. After a 298-day transit to Mars, it was inserted into Mars orbit on 24 September 2014. The mission is a demonstrator project to develop the technologies for designing, management.
It carries five instruments that will help advance knowledge about Mars to achieve its secondary, on 23 November 2008, the first public acknowledgement of an unmanned mission to Mars was announced by then-ISRO chairman G. Madhavan Nair. The MOM mission concept began with a feasibility study in 2010 by the Indian Institute of Space Science, the government of India approved the project on 3 August 2012, after the Indian Space Research Organisation completed ₹125 crore of required studies for the orbiter. The total project cost may be up to ₹454 crore, the satellite costs ₹153 crore and the rest of the budget has been attributed to ground stations and relay upgrades that will be used for other ISRO projects. Launch opportunities for a fuel-saving Hohmann transfer orbit occur every 26 months, assembly of the PSLV-XL launch vehicle, designated C25, started on 5 August 2013. The satellites development was fast-tracked and completed in a record 15 months, despite the US federal government shutdown, NASA reaffirmed on 5 October 2013 it would provide communications and navigation support to the mission.
During a meeting on 30 September 2014, NASA and ISRO officials signed an agreement to establish a pathway for future joint missions to explore Mars. One of the groups objectives will be to explore potential coordinated observations. The total cost of the mission was approximately ₹450 Crore, making it the least-expensive Mars mission to date. The low cost of the mission was ascribed by K. Radhakrishnan, bBCs Jonathan Amos mentioned lower worker costs, home-grown technologies, simpler design, and significantly less complicated payload than NASAs MAVEN. The primary objective of the mission is to develop the technologies required for designing, management, the secondary objective is to explore Mars surface features, morphology and Martian atmosphere using indigenous scientific instruments. Mass, The lift-off mass was 1,337.2 kg, the satellite structure is constructed of an aluminium and composite fibre reinforced plastic sandwich construction. Power, Electric power is generated by three solar panels of 1.8 m ×1.4 m each, for a maximum of 840 watts of power generation in Mars orbit
Mars Polar Lander
It formed part of the Mars Surveyor 98 mission. On December 3,1999, after the descent phase was expected to be complete, as part of the Mars Surveyor 98 mission, a lander was sought as a way to gather climate data from the ground in conjunction with an orbiter. NASA suspected that a quantity of frozen water may exist under a thin layer of dust at the south pole. In planning the Mars Polar Lander, the water content in the Martian south pole was the strongest determining factor for choosing a landing location. The Mars Polar Lander carried two small, identical impactor probes known as Deep Space 2 A and B. The probes were intended to strike the surface with a velocity at approximately 73°S 210°W, to penetrate the Martian soil. However, after entering the Martian atmosphere, attempts to contact the probes failed, the spacecraft measured 3.6 meters wide and 1.06 meters tall with the legs and solar arrays fully deployed. The base was constructed with an aluminum honeycomb deck, composite graphite epoxy sheets forming the edge.
During landing, the legs were to deploy from stowed position with compression springs and absorb the force of the landing with crushable, each of these components included redundant units in the event that one may fail. Orientation of the spacecraft was performed using redundant Sun sensors, star trackers, during descent, the lander used three clusters of pulse modulated engines, each containing four 266-newton hydrazine monopropellant thrusters. The lander was launched with two tanks containing 64 kilograms of propellant and pressurized using helium. Each spherical tank was located at the underside of the lander and provided propellant during the cruise, during the cruise stage, communications with the spacecraft were conducted over the X band using a medium-gain, horn-shaped antenna and redundant solid state power amplifiers. For contingency measures, a low-gain omni-directional antenna was included, the lander was originally intended to communicate data through the failed Mars Climate Orbiter via the UHF antenna.
Alternatively, Mars Global Surveyor could be used as a using the UHF antenna at multiple times each Martian day. However the Deep Space Network could only receive data from, and not send commands to, the direct-to-Earth medium-gain antenna provided a 12. 6-kbit/s return channel, and the UHF relay path provided a 128-kbit/s return channel. Communications with the spacecraft would be limited to events, constrained by heat-buildup that would occur in the amplifiers. The number of events would be constrained by power limitations. The cruise stage included two gallium arsenide solar arrays to power the system and maintain power to the batteries in the lander
Mars Climate Orbiter
The spacecraft encountered Mars on a trajectory that brought it too close to the planet, causing it to pass through the upper atmosphere and disintegrate. In 1994, the Panel on Small Spacecraft Technology was established to set guidelines for future miniature spacecraft, the panel determined that the new line of miniature spacecraft should be under 1000 kilograms with highly focused instrumentation. In 1995, a new Mars Surveyor program began as a set of missions designed with limited objectives, low costs, the first mission in the new program was Mars Global Surveyor, launched in 1996 to map Mars and provide geologic data using instruments intended for Mars Observer. Following Mars Global Surveyor, Mars Climate Orbiter carried two instruments, one intended for Mars Observer, to study the climate and weather of Mars. The Mars Climate Orbiter bus measured 2.1 meters tall,1.6 meters wide and 2 meters deep, the internal structure was largely constructed with graphite composite/aluminum honeycomb supports, a design found in many commercial airplanes.
With the exception of the instruments and main engine. The spacecraft was 3-axis stabilized and included eight hydrazine monopropellant thrusters, orientation of the spacecraft was determined by a star tracker, two Sun sensors and two inertial measurement units. Orientation was controlled by firing the thrusters or using three reaction wheels, to perform the Mars orbital insertion maneuver, the spacecraft included a LEROS 1B main engine rocket, providing 640N of thrust by burning hydrazine fuel with nitrogen tetroxide oxidizer. The spacecraft included a 1. 3-meter high-gain antenna to transceive data with the Deep Space Network over the x-band, the radio transponder designed for the Cassini–Huygens mission was used as a cost-saving measure. It included a two-way UHF radio frequency system to relay communications with Mars Polar Lander upon a landing on December 3,1999. The space probe was powered with a 3-panel solar array, providing an average of 500 W at Mars, the solar array measured 5.5 meters in length.
Power was stored in 12-cell, 16-amp-hour Nickel hydrogen batteries, the batteries were intended to be recharged when the solar array received sunlight and power the spacecraft as it passed into the shadow of Mars. When entering into orbit around Mars, the array was to be utilized in the aerobraking maneuver. The design was adapted from guidelines from the Small Spacecraft Technology Initiative outlined in the book. Data storage was to be maintained on 128MB of random-access memory, the flash memory was intended to be used for highly important data, including triplicate copies of the flight system software. Its principal investigator was Daniel McCleese at JPL/CALTECH, similar objectives were achieved with Mars Climate Sounder on board Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. Its objectives, Map the three-dimensional and time-varying thermal structure of the atmosphere from the surface to 80 km altitude, Map the atmospheric dust loading and its global and temporal variation. Map the seasonal and spatial variation of the distribution of atmospheric water vapor to an altitude of at least 35 km
Mars Science Laboratory
Mars Science Laboratory is a robotic space probe mission to Mars launched by NASA on November 26,2011, which successfully landed Curiosity, a Mars rover, in Gale Crater on August 6,2012. The overall objectives include investigating Mars habitability, studying its climate and geology, the rover carries a variety of scientific instruments designed by an international team. MSL successfully carried out the most accurate Martian landing of any spacecraft, hitting a small target landing ellipse of only 7 by 20 km. In the event, MSL achieved a landing 2.4 km east and 400 m north of the center of the target and this location is near the mountain Aeolis Mons. The rover mission is set to explore for at least 687 Earth days over a range of 5 by 20 km, the total cost of the MSL project is about US$2.5 billion. Mars rovers include Sojourner from the Mars Pathfinder mission and the Mars Exploration Rovers Spirit, Curiosity is about twice as long and five times as heavy as Spirit and Opportunity, and carries over ten times the mass of scientific instruments.
The MSL mission has four scientific goals, Determine the landing sites habitability including the role of water, the study of the climate and it is useful preparation for a future manned mission to Mars. This data would be important for a manned mission. The MSL spacecraft includes spaceflight-specific instruments, in addition to utilizing one of the rover instruments—Radiation assessment detector —during the spaceflight transit to Mars. MSL EDL Instrument, The MEDLI projects main objective is to measure aerothermal environments, sub-surface heat shield material response, vehicle orientation, the MEDLI instrumentation suite was installed in the heatshield of the MSL entry vehicle. The acquired data will support future Mars missions by providing measured atmospheric data to validate Mars atmosphere models, MEDLI instrumentation consists of three main subsystems, MEDLI Integrated Sensor Plugs, Mars Entry Atmospheric Data System and the Sensor Support Electronics. Each computers memory includes 256 KB of EEPROM,256 MB of DRAM and this compares to 3 MB of EEPROM,128 MB of DRAM, and 256 MB of flash memory used in the Mars Exploration Rovers.
The RCE computers use the RAD750 CPU operating at 200 MHz, the RAD750 CPU is capable of up to 400 MIPS, while the RAD6000 CPU is capable of up to 35 MIPS. Of the two computers, one is configured as backup, and will take over in the event of problems with the main computer. The rover has an Inertial Measurement Unit that provides 3-axis information on its position, the rovers computers are constantly self-monitoring to keep the rover operational, such as by regulating the rovers temperature. Activities such as taking pictures and operating the instruments are performed in a sequence that is sent from the flight team to the rover. The rovers computers function on VxWorks, an operating system from Wind River Systems. Once landed, the applications were replaced with software for driving on the surface, Curiosity is equipped with several means of communication, for redundancy