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Dragonfly - Rotocraft Mission to Saturn's Moon Titan [merged & updated]


Waspie_Dwarf

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NASA Instrument Bound for Titan Could Reveal Chemistry Leading to Life

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A new NASA mission to Saturn’s giant moon, Titan, is due to launch in 2027. When it arrives in the mid-2030s, it will begin a journey of discovery that could bring about a new understanding of the development of life in the universe. This mission, called Dragonfly, will carry an instrument called the Dragonfly Mass Spectrometer (DraMS), designed to help scientists hone in on the chemistry at work on Titan. It may also shed light on the kinds of chemical steps that occurred on Earth that ultimately led to the formation of life, called prebiotic chemistry.

Read More: NASA

 

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NASA’s Dragonfly Team Soars through Major Design Review

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Before it can fly its revolutionary rotorcraft over the organic dunes of Saturn’s moon Titan, NASA’s Dragonfly mission team needs to navigate a series of independent reviews to demonstrate the flight project is on track.  

Led by the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) in Laurel, Maryland, the team recently crossed a major milestone on that path, successfully passing all the technical requirements and standards of the weeklong Preliminary Design Review (PDR) that wrapped up on March 3. 

Read More: NASA

 

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Dragonfly mission studying effects of potential budget cut

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A proposed cut of nearly 20% in the budget for NASA’s Dragonfly mission to Saturn’s moon Titan in 2024 could force changes to the mission or its schedule, a top project official said May 3.

NASA’s fiscal year 2024 budget proposal requested $327.7 million for Dragonfly, a rotorcraft that would land on Titan and then fly through the moon’s dense atmosphere, going to various locations to study the building blocks of life. Dragonfly is scheduled for launch in 2027, landing on Titan in 2034.

Read More: SpaceNews

 

 

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NASA’s Dragonfly Tunnel Visions

Dragonfly Team Utilizes Unique NASA Facilities to Shape Its Innovative Titan-bound Rotorcraft 

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With its dense atmosphere and low gravity, Saturn’s moon Titan is a great place to fly. 

But well before NASA’s Dragonfly rotorcraft lander soars through Titan’s skies, researchers on Earth – led by the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) in Laurel, Maryland – are making sure their designs and models for the nuclear-powered, car-sized drone will work in a truly unique environment.

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Artist’s impression of the Dragonfly rotorcraft lander on the surface of Titan, Saturn’s largest moon and a major target in NASA’s quest to assess habitability and search for potential signs of life beyond Earth on worlds across the solar system.
NASA/Johns Hopkins APL/Steve Gribben

Read More: ➡️ NASA

 

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As far as we know now, Titan is the only planetairy body in our solar system, apart from Earth, that has seas, mountains, continents and an atmosphere.

The 'only' difference: its extreme cold, a cold cold enough to create seas of hydrocarbons, which on our planet are gasses.

There are those who assume some form of life may have developed there, but I seriously doubt it because of the extreme low temperatures.

However, if they ever land on Titan, and use that drone to fly over this moon, I'll stay awake for as long as it takes.

👍

 

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On Saturn’s Moon Titan, Living Cells May Be Very Different From Ours

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/air-space-magazine/saturns-moon-titan-living-cells-may-be-very-different-ours-180974104/

 

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In a new paper published in Science Advances, Hilda Sandström and Martin Rahm from Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg, Sweden, consider the possibility of life on Titan—and, more specifically, whether living creatures would need cell membranes to survive.

Screenshot_20231024-195637_Firefox.jpg.f5df0fe176da9d1518a3776faaf97882.jpg

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NASA’s Dragonfly to Proceed with Final Mission Design Work

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Artist’s Impression: Dragonfly Departs and heads off toward its next landing spot on Titan.
Image credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins APL/Steve Gribben
 
NASA’s Dragonfly mission has been authorized to proceed with work on final mission design and fabrication – known as Phase C – during fiscal year (FY) 2024. The agency is postponing formal confirmation of the mission (including its total cost and schedule) until mid-2024, following the release of the FY 2025 President’s Budget Request.

Earlier this year, Dragonfly – a mission to send a rotorcraft to explore Saturn’s moon Titan – passed all the success criteria of its Preliminary Design Review. The Dragonfly team conducted a re-plan of the mission based on expected funding available in FY 2024 and estimate a revised launch readiness date of July 2028. The Agency will officially assess the mission’s launch readiness date in mid-2024 at the Agency Program Management Council.

Read More: ➡️ NASA

 

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NASA’s Dragonfly mission is progressing to build a nuclear-powered drone for Saturn’s moon Titan, targeting a 2028 launch. The mission, involving extensive collaboration and technical advancements, aims to explore Titan’s organic materials and their potential link to life. NASA’s Dragonfly mission team is moving on to the next stage of development on the revolutionary, car-sized nuclear-powered drone it plans to fly over and land on the organic-rich sands of Saturn’s large moon Titan. NASA has authorized Dragonfly to proceed with work on final mission design and fabrication, known as Phase C. Earlier this year, Dragonfly passed all the success criteria of its Preliminary Design Review. The team also was asked to conduct a replan of the mission based on funding levels in the fiscal year 2024 president’s budget request. That replan has been completed and reviewed with NASA, with a revised launch readiness date of July 2028. NASA will officially assess the mission’s launch readiness date in mid-2024 at the Agency Program Management Council.

https://scitechdaily.com/nuclear-powered-leap-to-titan-nasas-2028-dragonfly-drone-mission/

 

 

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  • The title was changed to Dragonfly - Rotocraft Mission to Saturn's Moon Titan [merged & updated]

NASA’s Dragonfly Rotorcraft Mission to Saturn’s Moon Titan Confirmed

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NASA has confirmed its Dragonfly rotorcraft mission to Saturn’s organic-rich moon Titan. The decision allows the mission to progress to completion of final design, followed by the construction and testing of the entire spacecraft and science instruments.

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Artist’s concept of Dragonfly soaring over the dunes of Saturn’s moon Titan.
NASA/Johns Hopkins APL/Steve Gribben

“Dragonfly is a spectacular science mission with broad community interest, and we are excited to take the next steps on this mission," said Nicky Fox, associate administrator, Science Mission Directorate at NASA Headquarters in Washington. "Exploring Titan will push the boundaries of what we can do with rotorcraft outside of Earth.”

Read More: ➡️ NASA

 

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