Mars Exploration Rover

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Mars Exploration Rover

  1. 1. Mars Exploration Rover: Spirit & Opportunity By Ray Ludwig
  2. 2. Overview <ul><li>In this presentation you will learn about: </li></ul><ul><li>The reasons for the exploration </li></ul><ul><li>Where the exploration was conducted </li></ul><ul><li>The science behind it all </li></ul>
  3. 3. The Mission <ul><li>Determine whether life ever arose on Mars </li></ul><ul><li>Describe the climate of Mars </li></ul><ul><li>Describe the geology of Mars </li></ul><ul><li>Prepare for human exploration </li></ul>
  4. 4. Landing Sites <ul><li>Rovers would be sent to: </li></ul><ul><li>Gusev Crater, a possible former lake in a giant impact crater </li></ul><ul><li>Meridiani Planum, where mineral deposits suggest Mars previous had water </li></ul>
  5. 5. The Rovers: Spirit <ul><li>Landed on Mars on Jan. 4, 2004 </li></ul><ul><li>Landed in the Gustev Crater </li></ul><ul><li>Built to last 90 days </li></ul><ul><li>Has lasted over 1,000 days </li></ul><ul><li>Picture – Spirit’s launch patch </li></ul>
  6. 6. The Rovers: Opportunity <ul><li>Landed on Mars on Jan. 25, 2004 </li></ul><ul><li>Landed in the Meridiani Planum </li></ul><ul><li>Lasted over 1,000 days </li></ul><ul><li>Picture – Opportunity’s launch patch </li></ul>
  7. 7. Scientific Accomplishments – Spirit <ul><li>Sleepy Hallow- 30ft x 40ft lake-like crater </li></ul><ul><li>First ever mars photo </li></ul><ul><li>History's first grinding of a rock on Mars </li></ul><ul><li>Discovery of Mimi & Humphrey rocks – supposed water effected rocks </li></ul>
  8. 8. Scientific Accomplishments – Opportunity <ul><li>Heat shield rock – first ever meteor identified on another planet </li></ul><ul><li>Opportunity Ledge – Ledge at Eagle crater that seemed to be affected by water </li></ul><ul><li>To observe soil Opportunity dug the first ever Martian trench </li></ul>
  9. 9. Hurdles <ul><li>Occasionally dust covered solar panels which immobilized the rovers </li></ul><ul><li>Opportunity dug itself into a sand dune </li></ul><ul><li>Over a 2 day period scientists skillfully dug the rover out </li></ul>
  10. 10. The Science <ul><li>Panoramic Camera (Pancam): for determining the mineralogy, texture, and structure of the local terrain. </li></ul><ul><li>Miniature Thermal Emission Spectrometer (Mini-TES): for identifying promising rocks and soils for closer examination and for determining the processes that formed Martian rocks. </li></ul><ul><li>Mössbauer Spectrometer (MB): for close-up investigations of the mineralogy of iron-bearing rocks and soils. </li></ul>
  11. 11. The Science <ul><li>Alpha Particle X-Ray Spectrometer (APXS): for close-up analysis of the abundances of elements that make up rocks and soils </li></ul><ul><li>Magnets: for collecting magnetic dust particles. </li></ul><ul><li>Microscopic Imager (MI): for obtaining close-up, high-resolution images of rocks and soils. </li></ul><ul><li>Rock Abrasion Tool (RAT): for removing dusty and weathered rock surfaces and exposing fresh material for examination by instruments onboard. </li></ul>
  12. 12. The Exploration Now <ul><li>The exploration is on going </li></ul><ul><li>There is no way of telling how long the rovers will last </li></ul><ul><li>Scientists collect information everyday that help us to know more about Mars </li></ul>
  13. 13. What We Have Learned <ul><li>Although nothing is proven we can be sure that there is a good chance that Mars had a wet past </li></ul><ul><li>Some say Mars will be inhabitable in the future </li></ul><ul><li>Has helped us to learn more about space and exploration </li></ul>
  14. 14. For More Information <ul><li>The Mars Rover has its own website through NASA (see my web page) </li></ul><ul><li>Pictures and information are often released to the public for education </li></ul>

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