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View Full Version : How many probes at Mars currently and how many still working?



banquo's_bumble_puppy
2006-Feb-24, 11:37 AM
How many probes at Mars currently (in orbit and on the surface) and how many still working? It kinda neat that Mars' skies are becoming so crowded....

gwiz
2006-Feb-24, 11:57 AM
Working:

Spirit and Opportunity on the surface.

ESA's Mars Express, NASA's Mars Global Surveyor and Mars Odyssey in orbit.

Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter in transit.

Successful but now defunct:

Mars Pathfinder, Viking 1 and 2 on surface.

Mariner 9 in orbit.

Mariners 4, 6 and 7 flown by.

Unsuccessfu/crashed:

Mars Climate Orbiter, Mars Polar Lander, Beagle 2

Partially successful Russian missions: Mars 2, 3 and 6 on surface or crashed, Mars 4 and 5 , Fobos 2 in orbit.

Wolverine
2006-Feb-24, 12:01 PM
Check out these pages for current missions (http://solarsystem.nasa.gov/missions/profile.cfm?Sort=Target&Target=Mars&Era=Present) and past missions (http://solarsystem.nasa.gov/missions/profile.cfm?Sort=Target&Target=Mars&Era=Past). Note that in the past section, a number of the spacecraft encountered problems, either failing, crashing or getting stuck orbiting the Sun. Others, like the earlier Mariner missions (except for Mariner 9), simply did fly-bys of Mars.

6 are presently working if you include Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, which will arrive on March 10th.

banquo's_bumble_puppy
2006-Feb-24, 12:02 PM
that's alot....any plans to retire Global Surveyor?

gwiz
2006-Feb-24, 12:07 PM
As long as it gets a budget...

Wolverine
2006-Feb-24, 12:08 PM
MGS is still in good shape, and the more eyes (so to speak) the better. As of September (http://www.nasa.gov/vision/universe/solarsystem/mgs-092005.html):


"Our prime mission ended in early 2001, but many of the most important findings have come since then, and even bigger ones might lie ahead," said Tom Thorpe, project manager for Mars Global Surveyor at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. The orbiter is healthy and may be able to continue studying Mars for five to 10 more years, he said.

I'm not sure offhand how long the mission will be funded, which is likely the determining factor. But it's still returning good science.

CJSF
2006-Feb-24, 12:31 PM
Working:

Spirit and Opportunity on the surface.

ESA's Mars Express, NASA's Mars Global Surveyor and Mars Odyssey in orbit.

Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter in transit.

Successful but now defunct:

Mars Pathfinder, Viking 1 and 2 on surface.

Mariner 9 in orbit.

Mariners 4, 6 and 7 flown by.

Unsuccessfu/crashed:

Mars Climate Orbiter, Mars Polar Lander, Beagle 2

Partially successful Russian missions: Mars 2, 3 and 6 on surface or crashed, Mars 4 and 5 , Fobos 2 in orbit.

... and the Viking 1 and 2 orbiters should be in the "succesful but now defunct" part of your list, still in orbit I think.

CJSF

Saluki
2006-Feb-24, 04:07 PM
Does anyone have a link to a map showing the landing spots of the various landers? Someone asked me the other day if it would be possible for one of the rovers to go "visit" the Vikings and/or Pathfinder. I doubt it is posible because of the slow speed of the rovers, but I have no idea how far they are from other missions.

ryanmercer
2006-Feb-24, 04:44 PM
Another life form is going to land on Mars before us... and think a cigilization of robots once lived there *nods*

Kullat Nunu
2006-Feb-24, 04:56 PM
Does anyone have a link to a map showing the landing spots of the various landers? Someone asked me the other day if it would be possible for one of the rovers to go "visit" the Vikings and/or Pathfinder. I doubt it is posible because of the slow speed of the rovers, but I have no idea how far they are from other missions.

That's impossible, they're thousands of kilometers from each other (*. Mars Pathfinder landed relatively close to Viking 1 Lander. Both MERs are near equator, Spirit is actually in the southern hemisphere. Viking 2 Lander is located at relatively high latitudes, which allowed it to image frost during winter.

Few seconds of Googling showed up this image (http://www.johnstonsarchive.net/astro/marsprobemap.html).

*) Don't forget that Mars is a planet. Although it is much smaller than the Earth, its surface area is as large as Earth's land mass combined. So there's much room for probes.

banquo's_bumble_puppy
2006-Feb-24, 05:36 PM
this begs the question- has the Mars curse been beaten?

01101001
2006-Feb-24, 05:51 PM
this begs the question- has the Mars curse been beaten?
This calls for the question: Was there a Mars curse?

ToSeek
2006-Feb-24, 07:22 PM
Does anyone have a link to a map showing the landing spots of the various landers? Someone asked me the other day if it would be possible for one of the rovers to go "visit" the Vikings and/or Pathfinder. I doubt it is posible because of the slow speed of the rovers, but I have no idea how far they are from other missions.

The least impossible journey would be for Opportunity to visit the Pathfinder landing site, but even that is on the order of a thousand kilometers. Even if Oppi could manage 220 meters a day (its record for a one-day traverse), it would take over a decade to get there.

JonClarke
2006-Feb-24, 09:28 PM
Since the question refers to "at mars", flyby missions don't count. There are a few other missions as well. The list should be amended to

Working:

Spirit and Opportunity on the surface.

Mars Express, Mars Global Surveyor and Mars Odyssey in orbit.

Successful but now defunct:

Mars Pathfinder, Viking 1 and 2 on surface.

In orbit - Mariner 9, Viking 1 & 2 orbiters, Mars 2, 3, and 5, Phobos 2 (curtailed mission).

Crashed/malunctioned on surface

Mars 3 and 6 landers, Mars Polar Lander, Deep space 2 A & B, Beagle 2

Status uncertain

Mars Climatology orbter (bits may be in orbit or on the surface) Mars 2 lander (bit may have survived an over steep entry)

Jon

Omicron Persei 8
2006-Feb-24, 11:56 PM
Anyone happen to know of a good Mars globe that also has landing sites included? I did a quick search but can't seem to find one that specifically says landing sites are included.

01101001
2006-Feb-26, 04:44 AM
Planetary Society: Space Topics: Mars (http://planetary.org/explore/topics/mars/missions.html)


Korabl 4 - Korabl 5 - Korabl 11 - Mars 1 - Korabl 13 - Mariner 3 - Mariner 4 - Zond 2 - Mariner 6 - Mariner 7 - Mars 1969A - Mars 1969B - Mariner 8 - Kosmos 419 - Mars 2 - Mars 3 - Mariner 9 - Mars 4 - Mars 5 - Mars 6 - Mars 7 - Viking 1 - Viking 2 - Phobos 1 - Phobos 2 - Mars Observer - Mars Global Surveyor - Mars 96 - Mars Pathfinder - Nozomi - Mars Climate Orbiter - Mars Polar Lander - 2001 Mars Odyssey - Mars Express - Beagle 2 - Spirit (Mars Exploration Rover A) - Opportunity (Mars Exploration Rover B) - Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter - Mars Science Laboratory - Phoenix - ExoMars

Names, dates, and results are presented.