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Thread: NASA Mars Curiosity Rover Lands

  1. #31
    Flashaholic*
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    Default Re: NASA Mars Curiosity Rover Lands

    "Anyway... the problem is not that we're spending money on space, but that we're doing so unambitiously. We keep sending these stripped-down probes that don't have a fraction of the scientific capability of the Viking landers of 40 years ago -- and as a result,

    ***though space buffs (including me) don't like to admit it, we haven't actually learned much new.***

    What we need is a manned mission. A geologist with a pick axe could discover more new, totally unexpected things in 15 minutes than all of these probes combined."


    Exactly! Thank you flashflood! I see by some of the responses here that you would like to infer that I insinuated that the entire space program is, and always has been, a waste. No, man's trek towards the stars (yes, Trekkie here) has been quite a profitable one at times. However, you gotta use just a little common sense when tossing about billions and billions of OTHER PEOPLE'S MONEY (i.e. "The Tax Payers"). If you're going to blow a few $1,000,000,000...might as well make it counts.

    Some missions are worth it (like the Apollo missions) and many others are mainly designed to transfer massive sums of $$$ from hard working tax payers into other people's pockets. It doesn't take a Hubble to spot that from here. I pay alot of taxes, like many of you, and no one has asked me yet how I deem it fit to spend. No one even wants to open a conversation on spending less of it but everyone has their greedy hands extended whenever the next asshole comes along offering it....but I digress.

    Anyway, the money is spent so I might as well enjoy the show!
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  2. #32
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    Default Re: NASA Mars Curiosity Rover Lands

    I am really enjoying seeeing the first photos coming our way. Read this morning in a JPL note that the clarity of the photos we are seeing is only 1/8 of what is possible with Curiosity's camera. Wonder if we will ever do that one-way ticket thing with humans to the Mars surface?

  3. #33
    Flashaholic* orbital's Avatar
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    Default Re: NASA Mars Curiosity Rover Lands

    +

    Sadly, there still are people who would be surprised/alarmed if life, on any level, was proven on Mars.
    We have zero adaptations to Mars environment,, we don't need to 'try' and be there.


    **We need to focus our most brilliant minds on preserving Earth**

  4. #34

    Default Re: NASA Mars Curiosity Rover Lands

    As much as I've always been a space buff I've never been much of a fan of manned space flight when it comes to competing for finite economic resources (Apollo era excluded). Unmanned missions have a vastly higher ratio of scientific returns compared to unmanned missions which only return a trickle of spin-off technology. The resources should be spent on finding a better propulsion system rather than finding a better space toilet, IMHO.

    A manned round trip to mars is still a bit outside the envelope of technological possibility and way outside economic possibility. A one way trip is certainly more plausible, but a bit of a downer if you know what I mean.

  5. #35
    *Flashaholic* PhotonWrangler's Avatar
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    Default Re: NASA Mars Curiosity Rover Lands

    I would like to see them someday bring back a shovel full of martian topsoil as well as a couple of core drills worth. Not only for it's value in terms of understanding the planet's history and resources, but to be able to see a dollop of martian dirt in a museum. I think it would make it that much more tangible for current and future generations - something to whet the appetite of young scientists.

  6. #36
    Flashaholic* Steve K's Avatar
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    Default Re: NASA Mars Curiosity Rover Lands

    Quote Originally Posted by PhotonWrangler View Post
    I would like to see them someday bring back a shovel full of martian topsoil as well as a couple of core drills worth. .....
    I think I've heard talk of this. The idea was similar to what the Russians did with their lunar probe. The probe dug up some soil, packed it into a mortar shell, and shot it back to earth (presumably with some sort of parachute or locator device). Not incredibly complicated, but probably easier to do from the moon than from Mars. It would be an interesting compliment to the current method of having a mobile soil lab exploring a variety of different soils, but with limited analysis capabilities.

    Steve K.

  7. #37
    *Flashaholic* StarHalo's Avatar
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    Default Re: NASA Mars Curiosity Rover Lands

    Bits of Mars are delivered to Earth from time to time in the form of meteorites; you can buy a piece of one here.

  8. #38
    Flashaholic* EZO's Avatar
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    Default Re: NASA Mars Curiosity Rover Lands

    I especially enjoyed learning about "Coolest thing #3"......... the wheels of the Curiosity Rover are designed to leave a pattern in the soil that spells out JPL in Morse Code.


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