Thursday, June 10, 2010

Space Day

I spent most of today in windowless cells conference rooms.

For this privilege, I had to get up early in order to drive through downtown traffic to get to JPL on time. There were so many visitors there today, they directed me to park out in Timbuktu (aka the annex parking lot). Then it took .forever. to get badged in this morning (vs. a normal day).

But, guess what I saw as soon as I stepped on campus?


Three generations of Mars rover explorers!  This is a full scale model of Curiosity, the one set to launch next year.


Watch this animation of the landing sequence.

Before I left to go home, our meeting hosts took us to the observation platform where we could see the real Curiosity being assembled. You can tell this is the real thing because it's sitting in a clean room; that's why the people are in all white suits.

Here's the outer shell that you saw first in the video.
 This is the thruster assembly.
This is the rover body.  The blue light shows that it is turned on.
The six wheels will be attached to these legs.

2 comments:

  1. Yikes, the invader from Terra comes armed with a deathray. I hope the Martians don't misinterpret our intentions.

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  2. NEAT! That looked worth the hassle of getting there. :-)

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