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Waspie_Dwarf

Goals for NASA's 2020 Mars Rover

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Posted (edited)

Science Team Outlines Goals for NASA's 2020 Mars Rover

WASHINGTON -- The rover NASA will send to Mars in 2020 should look for signs of past life, collect samples for possible future return to Earth, and demonstrate technology for future human exploration of the Red Planet, according to a report provided to the agency.

The 154-page document was prepared by the Mars 2020 Science Definition Team, which NASA appointed in January to outline scientific objectives for the mission. The team, composed of 19 scientists and engineers from universities and research organizations, proposed a mission concept that could accomplish several high-priority planetary science goals and be a major step in meeting President Obama's challenge to send humans to Mars in the 2030s.

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Edited by Waspie_Dwarf
fixed source link.

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Proposed 2020 Mars Rover Science Goals

A team of scientists and engineers gives proposals for NASA's 2020 Mars rover mission.

Credit: NASA

Source: NASA/JPL - Videos

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Perhaps they should enable to rover to be easily converted to a driveable buggy by future Mars astronauts. This could help lower the cost of the eventual manned mission.

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Perhaps they should enable to rover to be easily converted to a driveable buggy by future Mars astronauts. This could help lower the cost of the eventual manned mission.

What? And how do you suggest they do that? It was built for a specific purpose.

Cheers,

Badeskov

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Posted (edited)

Perhaps they should enable to rover to be easily converted to a driveable buggy by future Mars astronauts. This could help lower the cost of the eventual manned mission.

Usually you are complaining because the current rovers can not do every single piece of scientific analysis known to man. Now you are proposing a modification which would involve removing virtually all the scientific capability of the next rover.

Edited by Waspie_Dwarf

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The Mars 2020 rover is based on Curiosity and so needs to be about the same weight and dimensions. To modify the Rover so that it could be driven by astronauts would require as a bare minimum the addition of seats and a manual steering system. These things have a finite weight and size. Their addition would reduce the amount of scientific equipment the rover could carry.

Then we have the harsh environment of Mars. The most optimistic estimates put a manned landing on Mars at least 2 decades away. The rover would need to survive 20 years of intense sand storms and still be safe and reliable enough to carry astronauts, that is some ask.

Finally we have the power source. The Mars 2020 rover, being derived from Curiosity, is almost certainly going to be powered the same way... by a nuclear reactor. Curiosity is designed to operate for one Martian year, but it is hoped that it may actually last a decade. However you require that it still be fully operational after 20 years.

So we send a probe to Mars which is virtually useless as it has virtually no science capacity, we cross our fingers and hope that is still working in 20 years time. What for? The very faint hope that when NASA sends astronauts to Mars they choose exactly that spot.

And you think that would be a money saving exercise?

Once again I'm glad NASA is run by people that actually know what they are doing.

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Perhaps they should enable to rover to be easily converted to a driveable buggy by future Mars astronauts. This could help lower the cost of the eventual manned mission.

Damn man, Curiosity has an entire university geology laboratory the size of a small microwave inside of it and you want to add velour bucket seats?

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Posted (edited)

Let's not forget that the top speed of these rovers is 1.5 inches per second or 0.09 MPH. Not exactly a great way to get around on the planet Mars. :tsu: Sheesh, some people's kids.

This is exciting news as I love these rovers. My son will be old enough to stay up with me and see if it makes it through the seven minutes of terror!

Edited by Merc14

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Let's not forget that the top speed of these rovers is 1.5 inches per second or 0.09 MPH. Not exactly a great way to get around on the planet Mars. :tsu: Sheesh, some people's kids.

lol, back to the drawing board NASA.

You could just imagine two Astronauts cruising along at 1.5 inches per second. Maybe one could get out and push.

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