I am still worried about InSight's solar panels getting covered in dust: Why do InSight's solar panels have tall vertical ridges between segments - will these trap dust?

Help me to sleep better. What would a productive day's energy budget be for InSight (Watt-hours)? It doesn't have wheels which is good, but it doesn't have an RTG so it may need to self-heat electrically at night which is bad. It won't be constantly taking photos of new landscape rolling by or new rocks that fall out of the sky (or kicked up by wheels) with zillions of cameras which is good, but it's instruments require close to 24/7 operation to collect useful data (which is bad) and some even need to transmit directly from InSight to Earth to succeed (How will InSight's RISE antennas end up pointed in the right direction?) (which is bad).

On a non-busy day, when RISE won't be transmiting (which is most days, there are only a few seasonal windows planned I believe) and the electric drills aren't drilling, what will a typical one-sol energy budget be for InSight, and how does that compare to a good day's worth of charging from its solar panels sans poussière martienne?

GIF made from the two images at the NASA page For InSight, Dust Cleanings Will Yield New Science (Individual images PIA22876 and PIA23203)

enter image description here


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.