Social Media Sidebar

Announcement

Please sign up, comment on articles and bring your friends!

Current poll

PlanetTech is asking:

What do you think about our new web site?

Love it, indeed
Really good solution
Same as old one
The old one was better
This is a new option

Quote of the day

'By far the greatest danger of Artificial Intelligence is that people conclude too early that they understand it'

 

Eliezer Yudkowsky

NASA books nuclear-certified Atlas 5 rocket for Mars 2020 rover launch

RATE THIS! +21
Posted in Science on 26th Jul, 2016 04:43 PM by AlexMuller

NASA’s next Mars rover, a $2.1 billion nuclear-powered vehicle to search for evidence of life, will be launched in 2020 on an Atlas 5. Jim Green, planetary science division director, revealed the selection of the United Launch Alliance vehicle at the NASA Advisory Council.

 
“It will be the Atlas 5 carrying Mars 2020 to Mars,” Green said.
 
ULA’s Atlas 5 and Delta 4-Heavy and SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy were studied as possible launch vehicles for the intermediate-to-heavy classed payload. It was not immediately known if SpaceX submitted a bid for this launch contract.
 
But, currently, Atlas 5 is the only launch vehicle that holds a NASA certification for launching the nuclear batteries made of plutonium that will power the 2,000-pound rover.
 
The six-wheeled robot will use by a Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator, enabling surface operations day and night by converting heat into electricity.
 
Atlas 5 has successfully performed the only launches of nuclear-equipped spacecraft for NASA in recent history: New Horizons to Pluto in 2006 and the Mars Science Laboratory’s Curiosity rover in 2011.
 
The Mars 2020 mission will search for indications of past Martian life, building upon the ongoing field geology work by the Curiosity rover that shows the planet’s early history had conditions suitable for life.
 
“The central scientific objective is seeking the signs of life,” said Ken Farley, the Mars 2020 project scientist.
 
“Did life evolve there? Did it thrive there? Now, this life almost certainly disappeared because the climate changed about 3.5 billion years ago…So we are going to focus our exploration on the distant past.”
 
The new mission now under development will send a Curiosity-like vehicle to an area of Mars likely to have once been habitable, exploring for a full Martian year, nearly 700 days, and collecting a cache of soil and rock samples for a future return to Earth.
 
“(We will be) preparing a very compelling set of scientific samples and leave them on the surface of Mars for a possible future mission to go and get them,” Farley said.

Tags: MarsspaceNASArocketMars Roverhardwarerobot

Read original article » Back to category

Comments



 

Recent headlines

  • Posted in Business on 2017-03-26 19:56:28
    The U.S. will be hit worse by job automation than other.....read more
    Posted in Business on 2017-03-26 19:49:51
    Elon Musk says Tesla will start taking orders for Solar.....read more
    Posted in Science on 2017-03-26 19:39:27
    Impact crater linked to Martian tsunamis..read more
    Posted in Software on 2017-03-25 14:13:38
    Google Develops A Deep Learning Machine That Could Learn.....read more
    Posted in Medicine on 2017-03-25 14:26:25
    Google’s Calico partners with new biotech firm to.....read more
Posted in Business on 2013-10-10 01:33
China is working towards a manned lunar mission in about.....read more
Posted in Business on 2013-10-20 07:17
Spacex says China is their main competitor for commercial.....read more
Posted in Software on 2013-10-20 06:43
Pirate Bay Browser Clocks 1,000,000 Downloads..read more
Posted in Medicine on 2013-10-10 02:10
Google reportedly investing hundreds of millions into new.....read more
Posted in Medicine on 2013-10-14 03:13
Endothelial Cells Can Repair and Regenerate Organs,.....read more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Spacex says China is their main competitor for commercial.....read more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Staring at Your Phone Could Be Making You Short Sighted..read more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Oculus Rift virtual reality headset coming to mobile, but.....read more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
China is working towards a manned lunar mission in about.....read more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Delivering drugs via nanoparticles to target mitochondria..read more

Recent Blog Posts

  • Posted by AlexMuller
    Intensive medical treatment can reverse type 2 diabetes..read more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Daily consumption of tea protects the elderly from cognitive.....read more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    New analysis method of metabolites accurately predicts whether.....read more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Unproven stem cell 'therapy' blinds three patients at Florida.....read more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Indigenous South American group has healthiest arteries of all.....read more

Login to your Account

Login to your PlanetTech Account here

Username:
Password:
Remember me
or

Create a New Account

You just need username and password

The following errors occured:
Username:
Email:
Password:
Verify password:
Remember me