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Thread: Mars Opportunity rover is in danger of dying from a dust storm

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    Administrator Aragorn's Avatar
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    Mars Opportunity rover is in danger of dying from a dust storm

    The little fellow has been roaming around up there for 15 years already now. Let's hope it survives.





    Source: Engadget





    Engineers are balancing low power levels with the need for heaters.


    The Mars Opportunity rover is caught in a dust storm, and the craft is hunkered down doing its best to survive the intensifying weather. The storm was first detected on Friday June 1st by the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, at which point the rover's team was notified because of the weather event's proximity to Opportunity. The rover uses solar panels, so a dust storm could have an extremely negative impact on Opportunity's power levels and its batteries.

    By Wednesday June 6th, Opportunity was in minimal operations mode because of sharply decreasing power levels. The brave little rover is continuing to weather the storm; it sent a transmission back to Earth Sunday morning, which is a good sign. It means there's still enough charge left in the batteries to communicate with home, despite the fact that the storm is continuing to worsen. The blue dot below is where NASA thinks Opportunity is located in the storm.




    The main concern here isn't the dust storm itself. It's the need to keep the rover's heaters operational while maintaining a minimal power level in the batteries. This isn't the first storm that Opportunity has weathered, but it is the worst. According to NASA, the weather event the rover faced in 2007 had an opacity level around 5.5. The estimate for this current storm is somewhere around 10.8.

    Opportunity is a hardy little rover, though, and it has continually defied our expectations over the last 15 years. The rover was only designed to last for a 90-day mission, and yet it's still going. Here's hoping that Oppy will continue its trek across the Martian surface for many, many days to come.


    Source: Engadget
    = DEATH BEFORE DISHONOR =

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    Senior Member NotAPretender's Avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Aragorn View Post
    The little fellow has been roaming around up there for 15 years already now. Let's hope it survives.





    Source: Engadget





    Engineers are balancing low power levels with the need for heaters.


    The Mars Opportunity rover is caught in a dust storm, and the craft is hunkered down doing its best to survive the intensifying weather. The storm was first detected on Friday June 1st by the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, at which point the rover's team was notified because of the weather event's proximity to Opportunity. The rover uses solar panels, so a dust storm could have an extremely negative impact on Opportunity's power levels and its batteries.

    By Wednesday June 6th, Opportunity was in minimal operations mode because of sharply decreasing power levels. The brave little rover is continuing to weather the storm; it sent a transmission back to Earth Sunday morning, which is a good sign. It means there's still enough charge left in the batteries to communicate with home, despite the fact that the storm is continuing to worsen. The blue dot below is where NASA thinks Opportunity is located in the storm.




    The main concern here isn't the dust storm itself. It's the need to keep the rover's heaters operational while maintaining a minimal power level in the batteries. This isn't the first storm that Opportunity has weathered, but it is the worst. According to NASA, the weather event the rover faced in 2007 had an opacity level around 5.5. The estimate for this current storm is somewhere around 10.8.

    Opportunity is a hardy little rover, though, and it has continually defied our expectations over the last 15 years. The rover was only designed to last for a 90-day mission, and yet it's still going. Here's hoping that Oppy will continue its trek across the Martian surface for many, many days to come.


    Source: Engadget
    wow...I watched a documentary on youtube last night about the Apollo 17 mission...it was kind of inspiring actually.

    I'm not sure why EB is so averse to a space program. I feel that if one cannot feel a sense of destiny in man's efforts then a large part of human nature is being ignored. It is what humanity does. The one thing that I found striking in the documentary was that Apollo 17 was the first mission that humankind took a picture of a full earth. That picture was coined 'The Big Blue Marble' and was largely responsible for the ecology movement, not to mention the resurrection of 'Gaia Worship'. In the modern era, of course...it was an integral part of the nature of indigenous man...it was the sum of their spiritual scope. Ain't nothing wrong with that, as long as we acknowledge the nature of man to move forward, enlighten himself, and join hands in the effort of 'preserving and extending the human heritage'.

    I can post it if anyone cares...
    "We are one thought away from changing the world!"

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    Administrator Aragorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by NotAPretender View Post
    wow...I watched a documentary on youtube last night about the Apollo 17 mission...it was kind of inspiring actually.

    [...]

    I can post it if anyone cares...
    Please feel free to park it under the Science Documentaries category.
    = DEATH BEFORE DISHONOR =

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    Super Moderator United States Dreamtimer's Avatar
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    I'd be interested.

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