NASA’s MAVEN Mission is moving forward. Despite having to halt several of its projects, NASA will launch its MAVEN mission on schedule. MAVEN will serve as a communications relay for NASA’s existing Mars equipment, making sure that the agency’s current Mars assets are protected. It will also help provide information on Mars’ thinning atmosphere and the impact that change had on the Martian climate and geochemical conditions over time. The spacecraft is set to launch in November, and the mission only has a 20-day launch window. If NASA misses that time frame, the space agency will have to wait until 2016 to launch when Mars and the Earth are properly aligned again. NASA called this an emergency exception to the shutdown.
[ Read the Article: Despite Government Shutdown, MAVEN Mission Moving Forward: Interview ]