Rover's on Mars

Reply Fri 7 Dec, 2018 11:05 am
Curiosity heading toward active dunes. (Photo:NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS) #ILoveMars #MarsNOW #Mars

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Reply Fri 7 Dec, 2018 08:50 pm

China has launched a rover to the far side of the moon in an ambitious bid to become the world's first to explore the lunar "dark side".

The Chang'e-4 lunar probe mission blasted off on a Long March 3B rocket from Xichang Satellite Launch Center in southwest China in the pre-dawn hours on Saturday, according to the official Xinhua news agency.

The rover is expected to land around the New Year to carry out experiments and explore the untrodden terrain.

The probe is carrying six experiments from China and four from abroad. They include low-frequency radio astronomical studies - aiming to take advantage of the lack of interference on the far side - mineral tests, and experiments planting potato and other seeds, local Chinese media reported.

'Dark side'
Unlike the near side of the moon that is "tidally locked" and always faces the earth, and offers many flat areas to touch down on, the far side is mountainous and rugged.

It was not until 1959 that the Soviet Union captured the first images of the heavily cratered surface, uncloaking some of the mystery of the moon's "dark side".

No lander or rover has ever touched the surface there, positioning China as the first nation to explore the terrain.

The biggest challenge will be establishing communication with the far side of the moon, which is unreachable by direct signal and invisible from Earth, said professor Ouyang Ziyuan of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, the chief scientist of the China Lunar Exploration Plan.

"We will be like deaf and blind," he said.

As a solution, China in May blasted the Queqiao ("Magpie Bridge") satellite into the moon's orbit, positioning it so that it can relay data and commands between the lander and earth.

China's ambitions
Beijing is pouring billions into its military-run space programme, with hopes of having a crewed space station by 2022, and of eventually sending humans to the moon.

Chang'e-4 will be the second Chinese probe to land on the moon, following the Yutu ("Jade Rabbit") rover mission in 2013.

#BREAKING: China launches Chang'e-4 lunar probe in the early hours of Saturday. It's expected to make first-ever soft landing on far side of the moon

Once on the moon's surface, the rover faces an array of extreme challenges.

During the lunar night - which lasts 14 earth days - temperatures will drop as low as minus 173C, while during the lunar day, also lasting 14 earth days, temperatures rocket as high as 127C.

Instruments must withstand those fluctuations and generate enough energy to sustain it during the long night.

Yutu conquered those challenges and, after initial setbacks, ultimately surveyed the moon's surface for 31 months. Its success provided a major boost to China's space programme.

Beijing is planning to send another lunar lander, Chang'e-5, next year to collect samples and bring them back to earth.

It is among a slew of ambitious Chinese targets, which include a reusable launcher by 2021, a super-powerful rocket capable of delivering payloads heavier than those NASA and private rocket firm SpaceX can handle, a moon base, a permanently crewed space station, and a Mars rover.


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Reply Sun 9 Dec, 2018 08:33 am
Chang'e 4
Rover on the way to the dark side of the moon
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Reply Tue 11 Dec, 2018 11:13 am
Curiosity's first sampling on Mount Sharp (Photo: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS) #ILoveMars #MarsNOW #Mars

Reply Tue 11 Dec, 2018 11:23 am
there was some really neat hydrology in a crater at nili fossae. One can se the water course busting through the crater edge and describing a small delta deposit
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Reply Tue 11 Dec, 2018 11:49 am
Even with the primitive telescopes of the day, Giovanni Schiaparelli saw hydrological features that he called channels. The Italian word for channels is canali, so, of course, journalists, the bottom feeders of the literaryj world, started shouting "Canals on Mars!" Even Percival Lowell, an otherwise careful observer, got sucked in, and published a book about canals on Mars. Oh dear . . .
Reply Tue 11 Dec, 2018 12:31 pm
what JPL had done, besides just seeing these features. By their cross sections, depositional prisms, and scaled dimensions, they were able to develop a"rational formula" thats unique to mars, where, Q (discharge in cu m/hectares) = [1.44] W ^1.22^ (where W is the stream cross sectional dimension in m sq. Other feeder streams can be seen converging into the crater basin. Unique feature of the entire nili fossae is that this is a downdropped plane that resulted from a large fault system called a half graben. (Similar to the Newark /Gettysburg/Culpepper basins in Eastern US and the Sechstein Basin in S Germany

Course, the timing of the stream dynamics is approximately 3.8 Billion years ago.

This was published in a paper at the ongoing AGU annual conference.

Reply Tue 11 Dec, 2018 12:51 pm
There's an increasingly popular thesis to the effect that Mars was hit by a pretty large planetesimal, which accounts for the consistently lower elevations of much of the northern hemisphere (10,000 to 15,000 feet lower, in a band above 30 degrees north); and for the lack of volatiles in the Martian atmosphere and on the surface. Originally, a gentleman from JPL and another gentleman from Cornell came up with the hypothesis, and that was almost 30 years ago. It is only recently that other scientists have taken up the hypothesis, and they've largely buggered it up. Between about 30 degrees north and 70 degrees north, the planet's elevation is drastically lower than in the southern hemisphere. The original hypothesis of almost 30 years ago saw the planetesimal scraping along for almost one entire circuit--there is a peninsula that connects the higher parts of the northern hemisphere to the northern polar "island," which is also at the elevation of the rest of the planet.

Now a modified version of the hypothesis has become fashionable, but it doesn't go as far as the original. In the original narrative, the "sideswipe" impact accounts for the presence of Martian rocks on earth, and the volatile inventory being blown away was offered as the explanation of the rings of Saturn, which are largely water ice. By the earlier hypothesis, the so-called asteroid belt is formed from the wreckage of the planetesimala and the ejecta from Mars.

The figure of 3.8 billion yeras would put a much more precise date to the impact--originally hypothesized to have taken place three and a half to four and a half billion years ago.
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Reply Thu 13 Dec, 2018 08:38 am
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Reply Sat 22 Dec, 2018 07:55 pm
Sound of Martian wind
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Reply Wed 26 Dec, 2018 09:00 pm
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Reply Thu 27 Dec, 2018 01:26 pm

Bottom line is that space is not empty, and the energy which lies within it can be used. This was experimentally confirmed when the Casimir Effect illustrated zero point or vacuum state energy, which predicts that two metal plates close together attract each other due to an imbalance in the quantum fluctuations(source)(source).

The propellant-less thruster is called the Cannae Drive, invented by Guido Fetta, and was tested by NASA over an eight day testing campaign that took place in August of 2013. It’s also known as the EM drive. It showed that a small amount of thrust was achieved inside a container, again, without the use of any fuel. The results were then presented at the 50th Joint Propulsion Conference in Cleveland, Ohio in July the next year.

You can access the paper (titled “Numerical and Experimental Results for a Novel Propulsion Technology Requiring no On-Board Propellant”) that was presented at the conference here and inventor Guido Fetta’s paper here.

Now, it’s about to be launched into spacee, and, according to many, like ScienceAlert.com, the EM “is as controversial as it gets, because while certain experiments have suggested that such an engine could work, it also goes against one of the most fundamental laws of physics we have.

It’s a law that Issac Newton derived, called the law of conservation of momentum, which states that an equal and opposite reaction must stem from an action. In order for something to gain momentum it must expel some kind of propellent in the opposite direction, but not the EM drive, this invention taps into the ‘zero-point’ field of energy/electromagnetic waves, creating thrust by microwave photons bouncing around inside a cone shaped metal cavity. The cone shaped mental cavity is what accelerates it into the opposite direction.

This is exciting, because it basically proves that we have a limitless resource of energy to tap into and utilize for space travel. This is currently the biggest barrier for modern day space travel and exploration.

Science needs to be careful and stray far from getting caught up in the grip of scientific dogma. History has constantly shown us, especially within the realms of science, that what we accept as real always changes at another point in time. Our understanding and knowledge regarding the nature of our reality is constantly changing.

“There is nothing new to be discovered in physics now. All that remains is more and more precise measurement.” This statement (worldview statement) was made by Lord Kelvin in 1900, which was shattered five years later when Einstein published his paper on special relativity. This one great, out of many.

Today, engineers are inventing power generators that utilize these concepts, like Paramahamsa Tewari. These laws need to be refined to account for the fact that space is not empty, what we currently accept as fact is going to have to change, and developments like the EM drive, or electrical generators that used these concepts, are going to have to be acknowledged soon. Throughout history, new developments in fields such as energy have always taken their time to find it into the market place.

In today’s world, there’s always a lot of Red Tape you’re going to have to go through, unfortunately.
cicerone imposter
Reply Thu 27 Dec, 2018 02:44 pm
Amazing what scientists are finding.
Reply Thu 27 Dec, 2018 03:47 pm
@cicerone imposter,
Caimir-Lifschitz effects can provide fuel from the thermo effect causing dissociation of ice in space and on planets. Where atmospheres are at about 10-7 N/m ^3 or lower water can dissociate and ionize for production of free H2 as fuel. (if a suitable gradient can be maintained by the plates spacing)

We were talking about this as a potential free energy source for MArs expedition
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Reply Thu 27 Dec, 2018 05:22 pm
I’ll be shocked if they can make that thing move without propellant.
Reply Thu 27 Dec, 2018 05:24 pm
I know next to nothing.
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Reply Tue 1 Jan, 2019 09:20 am

A NASA spacecraft has flown past the most distant world ever studied by humanity, Ultima Thule, a tiny frozen relic of the early solar system that could reveal how planets formed.

The US space agency rang in the New Year on Tuesday with the landmark flyby of the cosmic body located 6.4 billion kilometres from the Earth.

"Go New Horizons!" said lead scientist Alan Stern as a crowd cheered at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory in Maryland to mark the moment at 12:33 am (05.33 GMT) when the New Horizons spacecraft aimed its cameras at the space rock.

NASA marks Apollo 8's first flight to moon 50 years later
Offering scientists the first up-close look at an ancient building block of planets, the flyby took place more than a billion kilometres beyond Pluto, which was until now the most faraway world ever visited up-close by a spacecraft.

The flyby comes three-and-a-half years after New Horizons swung past Pluto and yielded the first close-ups of the dwarf planet.

View image on Twitter
View image on Twitter


RIGHT NOW, ~1 billion miles past Pluto, @NASANewHorizons is performing the most distant spacecraft flyby ever as it zooms past #UltimaThule, an icy, ancient rock in the Kuiper Belt. Watch live coverage: https://www.nasa.gov/nasalive

11:34 PM - Dec 31, 2018
2,457 people are talking about this
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Real-time video of the actual flyby was impossible, since it takes more than six hours for a signal sent from Earth to reach the spaceship, and another six hours for the response to arrive.

The first signal back to Earth should come about 10 hours after the flyby, around 9:45 am (14:45 GMT), letting NASA know if New Horizons survived the risky, high-speed encounter.

Hurtling through space at a speed of 51,200km an hour, the spacecraft aimed to make its closest approach within 3,520km of the surface of Ultima Thule.

"This is a night none of us are going to forget," said Queen guitarist Brian May, who also holds an advanced degree in astrophysics and who recorded a solo track to honour the spacecraft and its spirit of exploration.

Stern said Ultima Thule is unique because it is a relic from the early days of the solar system and could provide answers about the origins of other planets.

"The object is in such a deep freeze that it is perfectly preserved from its original formation," he said.

"Everything we are going to learn about Ultima - from its composition to its geology to how it was originally assembled, whether it has satellites and an atmosphere and those kinds of things - are going to teach us about the original formation conditions of objects in the solar system."

What does it look like?
Scientists are not sure what Ultima Thule looks like, whether it is cratered or smooth, or even if it is a single object or a cluster.

It was discovered in 2014 with the help of the Hubble Space Telescope, and is believed to be 19-32km in size.

Why finding new Earth-like planets is important
Lucianne Walkowicz
by Lucianne Walkowicz
A blurred and pixelated image released on Monday, taken from 1,920,000km away, has intrigued scientists because it appears to show an elongated blob, not a round space rock.

The spaceship was to collect 900 images over the course of a few seconds as it shaved by. Even clearer images should arrive over the next three days.

"Now it is just a matter of time to see the data coming down," said deputy project scientist John Spencer of the Southwest Research Institute.

Scientists decided to study Ultima Thule with New Horizons after the spaceship, which was launched in 2006, completed its main mission of flying by Pluto in 2015, returning the most detailed images ever taken of the dwarf planet.

Stern said the goal is to take images of Ultima that are three times the resolution the team had for Pluto.
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Reply Sun 27 Jan, 2019 05:35 pm
NASA makes last ditch attempt to revive dormant Mars rover Opportunity

uriosity isn’t NASA’s only rover currently on Mars: Opportunity has been on the red planet since 2004. But last year the rover dropped out of communications when an enormous dust storm wracked the planet, and it hasn’t been heard from since. Can NASA save it?

The Opportunity rover is solar-powered, and last summer’s Martian storm kicked up so much dust that the sun’s rays were blocked from reaching the planet’s surface and recharging the rover’s batteries. It hasn’t responded to contact from Earth, and over the last seven months has ignored over 600 calls, leading the NASA team to believe that it may no longer be able to continue its mission.

…a strategy called “sweep and beep”

Scientists hoped that as the storm cleared, the wind would blow away the dust which covered the rover’s solar panels so the rover could recharge. But this has not happened, and the rover remains silent. NASA has been attempting to contact the rover through a strategy called “sweep and beep,” where rather than just listening for responses from Opportunity, they send commands to the rover to respond with a beep, but they have been unsuccessful so far.
Now NASA scientists are trying a last ditch attempt to contact the rover based on three unlikely but possible scenarios: that the rover’s primary X-band radio has failed, that both the primary and secondary X-band radios have failed, or that the rover’s internal clock has become offset. The team is commanding the rover to switch to its backup X-band radio and to reset its clock to counteract these possibilities.

“While we have not heard back from the rover and the probability that we ever will is decreasing each day, we plan to continue to pursue every logical solution that could put us back in touch,” John Callas, project manager for Opportunity at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab, said in a statement.

These strategies are becoming urgent due to the seasonal changes on Mars. The season of high winds that could clear the dust from Opportunity’s solar panels is coming to an end, and soon southern winter will arrive, which means very low temperatures that are likely to cause irreparable damage to the rover’s systems. NASA will try sending the new commands for several weeks, but if Opportunity doesn’t respond this time, then it’s likely that the mission will have to be abandoned … truly, a lost Opportunity.
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Reply Wed 13 Feb, 2019 01:14 pm
I think they are giving up on Opportunity.


Both rovers more than exceeded expectations. But nothing lasts forever. Maybe someday a human will walk up to it and brush off the solar panels and it'll start up again.
Region Philbis
Reply Wed 13 Feb, 2019 03:00 pm
some dude on facebook wrote:
For sale: 2003 Rover. Battery is dead.
Ran great, been sitting.
Buyer responsible for tow.
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