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Latest Lander Stories

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2008-05-22 18:25:00

The Phoenix spacecraft is only two days away from entry, descent and landing on Mars "“ the most difficult and scariest phase that any robotic lander must face. But the spacecraft is healthy, right on target, and even predicted to have good landing weather, team leaders from The University of Arizona, the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory and Lockheed Martin said at a NASA headquarters news briefing in Washington, D.C., today. "The latest calculation from our navigation team shows the...

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2008-05-22 10:00:00

Beginning late on 25 May, Mars Express will execute a series of pre-programmed commands specially designed to support NASA's Phoenix lander. The ESA spacecraft will conduct a high-speed slew, enabling it to track Phoenix as it enters the Martian atmosphere.Mars Express will point its Lander Communications Antenna toward Phoenix's planned entry trajectory and record signals transmitted from the lander as it plunges toward the surface during the critical entry, descent and landing (EDL)...

2008-05-22 04:20:00

The Story The phoenix, a fabulous mythical bird the size of an eagle, symbolizes rebirth in many ancient cultures. According to the ancient Greeks, the bird lives in Arabia, nearby a cool well and sings a beautiful morning song. The phoenix lives 500 years or longer with only one phoenix existing at a time. When the bird's death approaches, it bursts into flames, and a new bird springs from the consumed pyre. Similar to its namesake, the Phoenix Mission "raises from the ashes" a spacecraft...

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2008-05-22 03:40:00

Development The Phoenix Mars Lander is currently undergoing final testing and assembly in preparation for its August 2007 launch. Spacecraft assembly is occurring at Lockheed Martin Space Systems in Littleton, Colorado. Integrating all the subsystems (e.g., thermal, electrical, mechanical, and communications) onto the lander's structure is the first step in the assembly process. Science instruments are then installed onto the lander deck and electrically integrated to the spacecraft. Software...

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2008-05-20 13:25:00

ESA's Mars Express mission control team are ready to monitor Phoenix's critical entry, descent and landing onto the Martian surface on 26 May 2008. The Mars Express mission control team have completed major preparations for supporting the entry, descent and landing (EDL) phase of NASA's Phoenix mission to the Red Planet. On 25 May, Mars Express will point towards Phoenix's planned entry trajectory and record signals broadcast from the lander as it plunges through the Martian...

2008-05-13 17:07:05

This story was updated at 1:33 p.m. EDT. WASHINGTON — With just 12 days to go until its Mars arrival, NASA's Phoenix lander is functioning well and on course to be the first mission to land in the frigid, arctic regions of the red planet, NASA officials said today. A planned maneuver to adjust Phoenix's course was canceled last Saturday because the spacecraft is on track for its May 25 landing, said Barry Goldstein, Phoenix project manager at NASA's Jet Propulsion...

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2008-05-13 11:00:00

NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander is preparing to end its long journey and begin a three-month mission to taste and sniff fistfuls of Martian soil and buried ice. The lander is scheduled to touch down on the Red Planet May 25.Phoenix will enter the top of the Martian atmosphere at almost 13,000 mph. In seven minutes, the spacecraft must complete a challenging sequence of events to slow to about 5 mph before its three legs reach the ground. Confirmation of the landing could come as early as 7:53 p.m....

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2008-05-10 08:05:00

When NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander descends to the surface of the Red Planet on May 25, few will be watching as closely as the men and women who have spent years planning, analyzing and conducting tests to prepare for the dramatic and nerve-wracking event known as EDL -- Entry, Descent and Landing. For after all their hard work, they know that landing on Mars is not a walk in the park. Less than 50 percent of all previous lander missions have made it safely to the surface. Like all missions,...

2008-01-15 12:00:12

The U.S. space agency is seeking proposals for a human landing craft to be used in future exploration of the moon. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration's Constellation Program officials said the Altair spacecraft will deliver four astronauts to the lunar surface late during the next decade. The Constellation Program calls for the establishment of an outpost on the moon through a sustainable and affordable series of lunar missions beginning no later than 2020. By soliciting...

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2008-01-08 11:47:18

NASA has approved the retargeting of the EPOXI mission for a flyby of comet Hartley 2 on Oct. 11, 2010. Hartley 2 was chosen as EPOXI's destination after the initial target, comet Boethin, could not be found. Scientists theorize comet Boethin may have broken up into pieces too small for detection. The EPOXI mission melds two compelling science investigations -- the Extrasolar Planet Observation and Characterization and the Deep Impact Extended Investigation. Both investigations will be...


Word of the Day
holluschickie
  • A 'bachelor seal'; a young male seal which is prevented from mating by its herd's older males (mated bulls defending their territory).
This comes from the Russian word for 'bachelors.'
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