Martian Lander

What's up with the lander(s) on Mars?

I've not received a lot of info yet, but have heard something about them unpacking some kind of robot or arm or something not so long ago.
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SunBowAsked:
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Arthur_WoodCommented:
ozo>>that URL is not active.

Try this one:

http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.cfm?release=2008-109

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SunBowAuthor Commented:
So they haven't been in business that long, but are doing well in business.
I hesitate to ask, where are they, and... how about the last two, they seemed to have found some battery that kept them going on and on for long life last I heard.
LanderBrowsing.jpg
Arthur_WoodCommented:
Are you refering to the earlier landers - Spirit and Opportunity - They are still running , just fine:

check out:

http://marsrovers.nasa.gov/home/
SunBowAuthor Commented:
                                            [22/222]
Re:>"Spirit and Opportunity"

Yeah, that's them.

/quote from above link/ The twin rovers landed on Mars in January 2004, 45 months ago, on missions originally planned to last 90 days

Simply amazing! The tech industry keeps getting us more for less. Not that 'planned obsolescence' at all.

What about the geography, I mean in general, for what part of planet, for whatever. I am sure they had many good recommendations, what did we end up with? Definitely not suck much in liquid, but I thought one was like having to navigate some crater.

With all them 'stones' in the picture, not knowing the size, has there ever been talk of one earlybird build something like a road for the next one? (or something ... almost want to ask now about refueling, a place to stop to tank up before the fuel costs soar more)

Side quesiton: why Mars? For awhile it was thought we could not get much out of Mars, or as much as we could from Moons further out, such that our own moon should have more preference in the closeness, proximity, if for nothing more than having stations for launches (which would then bypass Mars).
Arthur_WoodCommented:
Actually, the two landers (Spirit and Opportunity) are on opposite sides of the planet, nowhere close to one another.

Why Mars?  Because it has the best chances for finding life elsewhere in our Solar System.  While Venus is about the same size as Earth, it has a surface tempearture of about 750 degrees F (hot enough to melt lead), and the atmosphere is so dense (about 90 times the surface pressure as Earth), and caustic (composed of Carbon Dioxide and Sulphuric Acid), that life is complete impossible ( I once did research, with Carl Sagan, while at Harvard in the late 1960's, on the atmosphere of Venus - we published two papers, together).  Mars, on the other hand, has polar ice caps (mostly composed of sold Carbon Dioxide - known as Dry Ice, but with measurable water ice as well), and has a surface that, while generally very cold, can reach 'cool' earth-like temperatures under some circumstances.

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Arthur_WoodCommented:
If you look at the web site I posted, it shows the local time at the location of both landers:

at the location of the Spirit Lander, it is 23:06 mars time (54 mars minutes before midnight)

at the location of the Opportunity Lander, it is 11:07 mars time (53 mars minutes before noon)

They are almost precisely half-way around Mars from each other.

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ozoCommented:
landing sites are shown on  page 33 of
http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/press_kits/phoenix-landing.pdf
SunBowAuthor Commented:
Better on Mars than inner planets, or any planet, whatever Pluto is. I still thought they had higher expectations fo finding 'life' on distant moons, just not so easy to get at and not based well upon carbon/hydro. [this won't turn out, I try, attempt to paste the pic - and assumption is that frontispiece to pdf is more artistic than representative of actual]
UnRotatedMap.JPG
ozoCommented:
SunBowAuthor Commented:
                                                   [222/333]
(my head hurts)

er if this one is near pole, where's all the ice?

(trying to right-size this crudely)
RotatedMap.JPG
SunBowAuthor Commented:
That many with oceans of liquid water? I don't remember that
Some-Top---ology.jpg
SunBowAuthor Commented:
[moving on]
SunBowAuthor Commented:
                                                                          Thanx
SunBowAuthor Commented:
I had closed this due to receiving a Notif from Experts-Exchange.

Maybe they'd beat me to reading that the lander found ice.
At least they declared that it was water that they found (in form of ice).
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