March 20, 2014
MAVEN’s Trajectory to Mars
This movie shows the cruise trajectory of NASA’s Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) mission, which was launched on Nov. 18, 2013. It will arrive at Mars on Sept. 21, 2014, to explore the planet’s upper atmosphere, ionosphere and interactions with the sun and solar wind. The range and speed of MAVEN with respect to Earth, Mars and the sun, both in metric (kilometers) and Imperial (miles) units, is displayed along with a date and the number of days until arrival at Mars. The sun-centered trajectory of MAVEN, shown in blue, takes 308 days to transit from Earth’s orbit in green, to Mars’ orbit in red. The movie updates at a rate of twice per day and shows the MAVEN spacecraft, Earth and Mars locations.