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Mars 2020 Mission, Perseverance Rover Launch

Chuq

Active Member
Jan 1, 2015
4,218
5,478
Hobart, Tas, Aus
This one is using the same landing system as was used with Curiosity in 2012? With the sky crane? I remember following that one and being absolutely surprised and amazed that it worked flawlessly. Hopefully they can make it 2 from 2! But I guess we still have several months to wait for that part!
 

Patrick W

Active Member
Mar 17, 2015
1,510
933
SLC, UT
Not a SpaceX mission, but I'm sure folks here will be following the launch.

Launch

Launch: July 30 at 4:50 a.m. PDT (7:50 a.m. EDT)
Launch Period: July 30 - Aug. 15, 2020
Landing: Feb. 18, 2021
Launch Vehicle: Atlas V-541
Launch Location: Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida


For those who might want to "literally" follow the mission, JPL-Horizons provides coordinates for those with the proper equipment to follow the craft for the first day or so after leaving Earth. Note that the spacecraft will be way too faint to be seen with naked eye or even binoculars. But with a modest sized telescope (25 to 35cm) and an imager made for taking astro-images it's not that hard to get pictures (I imaged the previous two Mars-bound launches and plan on working this one as well).

HORIZONS Web-Interface
 
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e-FTW

New electron smell
Aug 23, 2015
3,355
3,255
San Francisco, CA
On the sample return mission:
Ars said:
NASA and the European Space Agency are talking about jointly developing different elements of this mission, possibly for a launch as early as 2026. While there is some limited funding in NASA's budget for a new Mars orbiter, at present the complex plan to retrieve and bring the samples home seems more aspirational than real—we are hopeful that it comes to pass, but not expectant.
Something-something Starship something-something...
 

ecarfan

Well-Known Member
Moderator
Very happy that the launch was nominal and Perseverance is now on the way to Mars.

Interesting that the RUAG 5.4m fairing for the Atlas V completely encloses the Centaur upper stage. Seems counterintuitive to design it that way since it adds additional weight but apparently that is necessary to achieve that diameter, which is needed for this particular payload.
 

mongo

Well-Known Member
May 3, 2017
16,624
62,468
Michigan
Very happy that the launch was nominal and Perseverance is now on the way to Mars.

Interesting that the RUAG 5.4m fairing for the Atlas V completely encloses the Centaur upper stage. Seems counterintuitive to design it that way since it adds additional weight but apparently that is necessary to achieve that diameter, which is needed for this particular payload.
The 5m fairing takes some of the load off of the upper stage.
See tweet from Tory:
Twitter
 

bxr140

Active Member
Nov 18, 2014
3,325
5,666
Bay Area
Yeah, its basically a rigged solution kinda like how many auto manufactures still cram batteries into their existing ICE chassis to make new EVs. Obviously Ariane has been flying the 5m Ruag fairing for decades in a "normal" configuration, and Vulcan is also going to adopt the "normal" configuration.

Atlas 5 was designed around a 4m fairing (the 4m A5 fairing is basically the same as A2 and A3), and the centaur upper stage is about as old as dirt--wrapping the upper stage in the fairing was about the only thing they could do to keep atlas 5 relevant in the 5m space. The only other option would have been to pin all American 5m hopes and dreams on the gold plated Delta4...or...well...I guess that's it, short of designing a new rocket (like they're doing-ish with Vulcan).
 

Grendal

SpaceX Moderator
Moderator
Jan 31, 2012
6,891
9,772
Santa Fe, New Mexico
Nicely done. ULA is learning from SpaceX and had some nice live visuals from the rocket. The fairing deploy was pretty intense with that extra large fairing. Too bad they didn't have a forward camera on the Centaur stage. It was interesting to see the difference between the Centaur (hydrolox) and the Merlin second stage burns. You can barely tell that the engine is even running.

We've got quite a while before the big landing on Mars event. Go Perseverance.
 
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