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View Full Version : Where would you drop the next lander?



JohnOwens
2004-Mar-03, 04:50 PM
The talk during the press conference yesterday about the Mars Science Laboratory to launch in 2009, and the eventual sample return mission, has me pondering something. Not that we really have a lot of input on the matter (as far as I know), but if you were picking where to send the sample return lander, would you go for somewhere near where one of the rovers has already landed, looking for something it's already found to be extremely interesting? Or would you send it to somewhere that hasn't been explored yet, to broaden the base of areas we know about? (Presumably you'd at least base it on interesting spots by correlating what we do know from the rovers with the orbital data.)
Hmm, sounds poll-ish, let's do that again. It's Super Wednesday at BABB! :wink:

Drakheim
2004-Mar-03, 04:54 PM
I would try to send one back to the pole. Now that past saturation of water has been confirmed, the next logical step to me would be the search for possible life that may still exist or recently existed near the only known point of water left on Mars.

ToSeek
2004-Mar-03, 05:32 PM
Either near one of the poles or where it looks as if there might be water seepage.

skrap1r0n
2004-Mar-03, 05:53 PM
I would try to send one back to the pole. Now that past saturation of water has been confirmed, the next logical step to me would be the search for possible life that may still exist or recently existed near the only known point of water left on Mars.

I agree, we should drop one as close to one of the poles as we can

Andromeda321
2004-Mar-03, 07:15 PM
Well if there were the same constraints on the sample return lander as there are currently on the rovers you couldn't land at the poles. They needed to land near the equator.
Even though you likely wouldn't get too much out of it (and lose your probe) I think it would be kinda cool to try to land near Valles Marineris. Think of the layers you'd get! :)

ToSeek
2004-Mar-03, 07:20 PM
Even though you likely wouldn't get too much out of it (and lose your probe) I think it would be kinda cool to try to land near Valles Marineris. Think of the layers you'd get! :)

It was considered (http://www.space4case.com/mars/mars75d.html), but they decided the terrain was rough and the winds were too high. However, they have a lot more confidence in the airbags and the overall landing system than they did before these missions, so maybe they'll get daring next time.

Mespo_Man
2004-Mar-03, 08:11 PM
I would send a lander with a good set of wrenches, batteries and duct tape to resuce the Beagle lander. It would be the politcally correct thing to do. Perhaps some hot tea to revive it's sensors?

(:raig

Kaptain K
2004-Mar-03, 08:41 PM
On Hoagland! :oops:

CrzyWeazl
2004-Mar-03, 09:33 PM
Beat me to that one!!

Manchurian Taikonaut
2004-Mar-04, 06:04 PM
The polar regions, thats where all the activity is

Kaptain K
2004-Mar-04, 07:52 PM
But, it is freeze-your-[filter-end of the cigarette]-off cold there! 8)

Maksutov
2004-Mar-05, 12:32 AM
I would very carefully set the next lander down at the southern edge of the Northern Polar Cap or the northern edge of the Southern Polar Cap.

Let's see, did I get that right?

Anyway, right where the ice stops and the water starts.

:)

Sigma_Orionis
2004-Mar-08, 06:37 PM
I would send it to Olympus Mons (or is it Nix Olympia? ;) ) After all it's not every day you get to check out the largest volcano in the solar system, even if it's a shield volcano.....

harlequin
2004-Mar-09, 01:44 AM
I would send a lander with a good set of wrenches, batteries and duct tape to resuce the Beagle lander. It would be the politcally correct thing to do. Perhaps some hot tea to revive it's sensors?

{emphasis added}

Is sending Red Green to Mars either P.C., practical, or even sensible?

Brady Yoon
2004-Mar-09, 08:00 AM
I would definitely send it toward the poles. I've been wondering, why hasn't NASA or any other space program sent a mission to Mars' poles?
:-? Weird...

ToSeek
2004-Mar-09, 03:09 PM
I would definitely send it toward the poles. I've been wondering, why hasn't NASA or any other space program sent a mission to Mars' poles?
:-? Weird...

Mars Polar Lander (http://marsprogram.jpl.nasa.gov/missions/past/polarlander.html)

Additionally, I think there are issues of terrain and of getting enough sunlight to operate a solar-powered spacecraft.

JohnOwens
2004-Mar-09, 10:59 PM
I would definitely send it toward the poles. I've been wondering, why hasn't NASA or any other space program sent a mission to Mars' poles?
:-? Weird...

Mars Polar Lander (http://marsprogram.jpl.nasa.gov/missions/past/polarlander.html)

Additionally, I think there are issues of terrain and of getting enough sunlight to operate a solar-powered spacecraft.

Wasn't Beagle 2 headed somewhere frigid as well?

ToSeek
2004-Mar-09, 11:07 PM
Wasn't Beagle 2 headed somewhere frigid as well?

No. (http://rst.gsfc.nasa.gov/Sect19/MarsRoversites.jpg)