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NASA's Mars rover Curiosity sidelined again after experiencing new problem
foxnews ^ | March 18, 2013

Posted on 03/19/2013 9:08:18 AM PDT by BenLurkin

After recovering from a computer problem, the Mars rover Curiosity is sidelined again, further delaying the restart of science experiments.

The latest complication occurred over the weekend when the six-wheel rover entered safe mode after experiencing a software file error.

'We would definitely like to get over this and get back to doing something.'

- Project manager Richard Cook

Curiosity remained in contact with ground controllers, but it can't zap rocks, snap pictures or roam around until the problem is fixed. Rover team members had expected to resume activities Monday, but they now have to wait a bit longer — perhaps until the end of the week.

"We would definitely like to get over this and get back to doing something," said project manager Richard Cook of the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, which operates the $2.5 billion mission.

Studies at the Gale Crater landing site have been on hold since the beginning of March after engineers discovered a problem with Curiosity's computer memory, possibly caused by space radiation

(Excerpt) Read more at foxnews.com ...


TOPICS: Astronomy; Science
KEYWORDS: curiosityrover; mars
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possibly caused by space radiation???
1 posted on 03/19/2013 9:08:18 AM PDT by BenLurkin
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To: BenLurkin

There is a lot more radiation that makes it to the surface of Mars than here, due to our atmosphere and stronger magnetic field.


2 posted on 03/19/2013 9:10:45 AM PDT by Secret Agent Man (I can neither confirm or deny that; even if I could, I couldn't - it's classified.)
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To: Secret Agent Man

need more tin foil


3 posted on 03/19/2013 9:12:30 AM PDT by al baby (Hi Mom)
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To: Secret Agent Man

Hard to understand how the shielding could have been inadequate, along with strategies to recover from memory errors.


4 posted on 03/19/2013 9:13:26 AM PDT by steve86 (Acerbic by Nature, not NurtureĀ™)
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To: BenLurkin

Did anyone check the measurement units to see if the calculations reflected USEngineering or metric?


5 posted on 03/19/2013 9:14:02 AM PDT by Cletus.D.Yokel (*Catastrophic Anthropogenic Climate Alteration: The acronym explains the science.)
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To: Secret Agent Man

Turns out that the amount of radiation reaching the surface is considerably less than they expected. One of the earliest findings from this rover was that the radiation at surface level was comparable to what our astronauts experience on the space station.

I’m assuming the damage was likely done in transit.


6 posted on 03/19/2013 9:14:47 AM PDT by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
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To: al baby

The Martians disabled it so we would have to go fix it. Their idea if a practical joke...; )


7 posted on 03/19/2013 9:15:52 AM PDT by jsanders2001
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To: BenLurkin

I know. ‘Space radiation’. Space radiates, you know. Gotta love journalism.

The engineers KNEW they were going to a planet that had no magnetosphere. Moreover, you can test for this. You can actually create a lab environment where the vehicle has to perform under these conditions, and for extended lengths of time.

I’ve been studying the correlation between planetoids with magnetic fields and the observation of lightning on the planetoids.


8 posted on 03/19/2013 9:18:07 AM PDT by RinaseaofDs
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To: cripplecreek

Interesting. I do know they have special shielded closet they get into when a bad solar flare(s) are detected.


9 posted on 03/19/2013 9:21:00 AM PDT by Secret Agent Man (I can neither confirm or deny that; even if I could, I couldn't - it's classified.)
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To: jsanders2001
"OK,now get it to fire that laser thing again."


10 posted on 03/19/2013 9:21:58 AM PDT by UCANSEE2 (The monsters are due on Maple Street)
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To: Secret Agent Man

It sucks that mars is so far away. It would be technically much easier to colonize on mars than the moon but the amount of time spent in open space makes it more dangerous to get there.

A martian day is comparable to earth. There is at least some atmosphere so suits and habitats could be built for minimum pressurization. Daytime temperatures can be warm enough to require minimal heating.


11 posted on 03/19/2013 9:28:08 AM PDT by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
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To: RinaseaofDs

“Space radiation” is the correct term, though sometimes you see “space weather”, to describe the particle environment.

A program used to estimate rad effects is called SpaceRad, after Space Radiation.


12 posted on 03/19/2013 9:36:25 AM PDT by DBrow
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To: UCANSEE2
 photo Martianssmall.jpg
13 posted on 03/19/2013 9:48:21 AM PDT by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
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To: DBrow

This is the sort of dumbing down that made thermodynamics harder than it had to be. The word ‘heat’ should never be used in the context of thermo, but because it is, it gets confusing - specific heat, etc. ‘Thermal energy’ is the correct term, and once you get into that practice, thermo is easy.

Space radiation is a term not unlike what 18th century scientists used the term ‘ether’ for. ‘The ether’ was a scientific term for a very long time until we got specific about what ‘the ether’ meant.

Bodies emitting thermal energy also emit EM radiation. The sun puts out UV radiation. Hydrogen and helium nuclei emit nutrinos. The Van Allen belts emit radiation. Then there are cosmic rays, which is another ‘ether’ like term, since their sources are myriad. At least cosmic rays are understood to originate outside the solar system.

Most of the radiation occuring on Mars is due to the Sun. As such, they could have designed around it sufficiently, but they apparently didn’t.


14 posted on 03/19/2013 9:52:00 AM PDT by RinaseaofDs
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To: cripplecreek

15 posted on 03/19/2013 9:52:51 AM PDT by COBOL2Java (Fighting Obama without Boehner & McConnell is like going deer hunting without your accordion)
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To: cripplecreek
"It sucks that mars is so far away."

Mars is probably "so far away" for a reason. If it were significantly closer, gravitational interactions with Earth and the other inner planets could result in a chaotic orbit that would result in an eventual collision with the Earth, ruining a lot of people's weekends.

Also, Mars' inner moon, Phobos, is inside its Roche limits, so that it eventually will be torn apart and crash into Mars (sometime in the next 100 million years). The collision would result in a large amount of debris ejected into space, some of which will collide with Earth. If closer to Mars, Earth would just catch more Martian flak, again ruining a lot of weekend plans.

16 posted on 03/19/2013 9:57:02 AM PDT by Carl Vehse
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To: cripplecreek

It ain’t the kind of place to raise your kids.


17 posted on 03/19/2013 9:57:55 AM PDT by dfwgator
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To: UCANSEE2

LOL my typa humor...: )


18 posted on 03/19/2013 9:58:46 AM PDT by jsanders2001
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To: RinaseaofDs
Most of the radiation occuring on Mars is due to the Sun. As such, they could have designed around it sufficiently,

I don't believe that they know the 'problem' came from 'space radiation'. They know they have the problem, and are fixing it. All else is speculation. It's not like they have a 'space radiation damage' detector onboard.

19 posted on 03/19/2013 10:09:41 AM PDT by UCANSEE2 (The monsters are due on Maple Street)
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To: cripplecreek; Secret Agent Man
I’m assuming the damage was likely done in transit.

Next time use FED-EX.

20 posted on 03/19/2013 10:11:33 AM PDT by UCANSEE2 (The monsters are due on Maple Street)
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