Well, they certainly did the testing/simulations, but it is very complicated sequence of operations, almost seems Rube Goldberg or overly ambitious science fiction. Lots of individual probabilities for failures and those are multiplicative.
One is tempted to say they should have gone simple. But then the Russians, who have an excellent reputation for straightforward, no-frills engineering in air force applications, have a very poor record on Mars missions.
So I guess we’ll just have to wait and see whether NASA can pull it off. It will be a real kick if they do and another national deflator if they don’t.
Personally, if it were up to me, I probably would have gone with about three small and simple rovers in a single payload which would separate and land independently (using airbags, etc.). But I hope the NASA approach succeeds.
Hi - I certainly agree with your sentiments.
But doesn’t it feel great to see American Exceptionalism at work?
USA! USA! USA!
I think this mission somehow managed to “fly under the radar” of those who run things these days. Or they would surely have shut it down.