Mars 2020 Mission

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PostPosted: July 10, 2013 9:56 PM

Some interesting reading in there...

The press conference releasing the report


Posts: 344

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PostPosted: July 11, 2013 12:19 AM 

Ostensibly, the mission concept is to look for past life, not present life. This drew criticism from some of the reporters. Indeed, some of the contributors here have suggested (and I agree) that it might well be easier to find current life than past life. Yes, surface life on Mars is likely to be extremely sparse but our technology should be up to that challenge. It is also very difficult to confidently identify signs of ancient microbial life even on Earth.

On the plus side, they are inviting proposals for a microscope with sub-micron resolution. It was also said that they would be open to a proposal to detect microbes from Earth contamination of the spacecraft, which might have the side consequence () of detecting indigenous life.

The instruments for the mission have not been selected yet and anyone is open to make a proposal.

The mission also has a mandated task to collect a cache of samples for a future undefined sample return mission. I have mixed feelings about this. On the one hand, it seems like a waste of precious resources. On the other hand it might present a tempting target for an X-prize type of competition.

r lewis

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PostPosted: July 16, 2013 4:38 PM 

They could easily include some or all of the science payload from the beagle. Or just re-run an updated version of Gil Levin's labeled release experiment to confirm findings from Viking. But of course they wont do either of those things because they have there heads stuck somewhere unmentionable.

John Henry Dough

Posts: xxx

Reply: 3

PostPosted: July 20, 2013 9:44 PM 

I was unable to connect to the link in your first post,Dana
That doesn't surprise me,,,Remember this mission
is still in the planning stage and must be passed by congress and the president.

NASA is NOT one of o'Buma's interest or priorities,,,,OTOH,,,the bum will be out of office by 2020 and hopefully,we might get a
more space friendly president.
Or not.
The USA has the tech and a success ratio to prove it,,we CAN land a craft on another planet,,,when I look at the European 'Next
Robot to Mars',,,and see that the landing is provided by Russia,,,I cant help but shudder.

One thing I have said for years,,,Technology
will contuie to become better,,,regardless of Polotics.We have some beautiful,new,young,curious minds scattered around the globe...theirs will be the future of mankind in space.


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PostPosted: August 4, 2013 12:31 PM 

i think and hope at some stage the politicians will see sense and start putting money back into the space program. The technoloical advances from the space program are immense and they do drift into the economy.
The private sector, spacex is paving the way and lets not forget the chinese are taking space very seriously.
From a societal point of view a manned joerney to mars starting in the next few years would do massive things for political life back on earth. Not to sound corny but a man standing on another planet might just be the catylst for us to cop on as a race!

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