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2008-05-21 07:55:00

The Phoenix Mars Mission has a collaborative approach to space exploration. As the very first of NASA's Mars Scout class, Phoenix combines legacy and innovation in a framework of a true partnership: government, academia, and industry. Scout class missions are led by a scientist, known as a Principal Investigator (PI). Peter Smith of the University of Arizona's Lunar and Planetary Laboratory serves as Phoenix's PI and is responsible for all aspects of the mission. The Phoenix Mission has a...

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,...

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2008-04-10 20:50:41

PASADENA, Calif. -- NASA engineers have adjusted the flight path of the Phoenix Mars Lander, setting the spacecraft on course for its May 25 landing on the Red Planet. "This is our first trajectory maneuver targeting a specific location in the northern polar region of Mars," said Brian Portock, chief of the Phoenix navigation team at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. The mission's two prior trajectory maneuvers, made last August and October, adjusted the flight path of...

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2008-02-28 13:20:00

Three Mars spacecraft are adjusting their orbits to be over the right place at the right time to listen to NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander as it enters the Martian atmosphere on May 25. Every landing on Mars is difficult. Having three orbiters track Phoenix as it streaks through Mars' atmosphere will set a new standard for coverage of critical events during a robotic landing. The data stream from Phoenix will be relayed to Earth throughout the spacecraft's entry, descent and landing events. If...

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2007-09-07 16:17:34

A camera flying aboard The University of Arizona-led Phoenix Mars Lander took its first picture during cruise and sent it back to Earth on Sept. 6. The lander's Robotic Arm Camera took the photo looking into the Robotic Arm's scoop. Both instruments are encased in a protection biobarrier, to ensure no Earth organisms are carried to Mars. "It is a nice, clean picture with good sharp focus. One of these days it will be filled with Martian dirt," said Peter Smith, Phoenix principal investigator...

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2007-09-05 11:58:26

Two crucial tools for a successful landing of America's latest mission to Mars, the radar and UHF radio on NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander, have passed in-flight checkouts. The ultra-high-frequency radio won't be turned on again until landing day, May 25, 2008, when it will relay communications from Phoenix to orbiters already in service around Mars. Since launch on Aug. 4, 2007, and until the day it reaches Mars, Phoenix is communicating directly with Earth via even higher frequency X-band...

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2007-08-10 20:10:00

NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander today accomplished the first and largest of six course corrections planned during the spacecraft's flight from Earth to Mars. Phoenix left Earth Aug. 4, bound for a challenging touchdown on May 25, 2008, at a site farther north than any previous Mars landing. It will robotically dig to underground ice and run laboratory tests assessing whether the site could ever have been hospitable to microbial life. Phoenix today is traveling at about 33,180 meters per second...

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2007-08-02 18:09:34

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. -- A NASA robotic explorer equipped to dig up and analyze icy soil on Mars sits atop a 13-story tall stack of rocket engines prepared for liftoff before sunup on Saturday. A Delta II launch vehicle will carry the Phoenix Mars Lander into Earth orbit and, about 90 minutes later, give it the push needed to send it to Mars. A three-week period when planetary positions are favorable for this launch begins with an opportunity at 2:26:34 a.m. PDT (5:26:34 a.m. EDT) on Aug. 4....


Word of the Day
lunula
  • A small crescent-shaped structure or marking, especially the white area at the base of a fingernail that resembles a half-moon.
This word is a diminutive of the Latin 'luna,' moon.
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