Seven Minutes of Terror

Although recent US probes to Mars have been very successful there have certainly been a lot of failures in both US and Russian attempts in the past.

However, we all have our fingers crossed for the Curiosity probe which will attempt the landing of a rover on Mars in early August. But the landing itself will be very stressful. There are just so many problems to overcome – not the least  the 15 minutes radio messages take to get from Mars to Earth – one way.

I don’t know what odds to bookies place on a successful landing – but after watching this video I don’t think it can be very high.

Challenges of Getting to Mars: Curiosity’s Seven Minutes of Terror – YouTube.

Still, a lot of people are hoping for success and no doubt we will be able to share the tension, excitement and (hopefully) joys of the NASA engineers involved in real-time on the internet and via Twitter.

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6 responses to “Seven Minutes of Terror

  1. Awesome science for the win!

    Though, it feels like they’ve overcomplicated things just a tad. Was a rocket powered vertical descent ending in a steady hover and cable winch seriously the only way they could come up with to land accurately?

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  2. Yes, seems complicated. I understand it’s because this is the biggest thing so far attempted to land on Mars

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  3. I remember watching a movie about the moon landings and how they developed the design for the moon lander module.
    Started off with a gorgeous concept design and then got nitpicked and sliced to death by real-world practicalities. That showing of the process of re-design was great fun. As a non-engineer type, I’d like to see more of that kind of thing.

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  4. Wow. Good thing the moon doesn’t have any dust on it or the moon lander would have gotten covered in a huge dust cloud that mighta damaged instruments too.

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  5. Pingback: Going for gold – on Mars | Open Parachute

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