Questions tagged [mars]

Questions about the science or exploration of the planet Mars. See wiki for related tags.

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2 votes
1 answer
49 views

Rover wheel placement

Why are the center wheels of the Curiosity rover not in line with the chassis? I understand when turning, one side is in line with an arc it will make. Would the other side's wheels not be on the same ...
1 vote
1 answer
39 views

What is the difference between a Trans-Mars Injection and a Mars Transfer Orbit?

So I'm using this transfer orbit calculator and when simulating a transfer from LEO to Mars, in the delta-v breakdown, appear two different values: TMI (Trans-Mars Injection), at around 3000 m/s, and ...
4 votes
2 answers
245 views

Would it be practical to fly a probe to Mars using gravitational assistance from Venus?

I decided to fly to Mars in KSP using a slingshot of Venus to see if I could save fuel. Since Venus is closer to Earth, you need less fuel to get there. When I tested it I used less fuel, but the ...
3 votes
2 answers
189 views

Could there be caves on Mars in the areas inside Jezero crater and the watershed west and north of it where the Mg carbonates are detected?

Both images above are screenshots from Fig. 1 of the article Formation of Magnesium Carbonates on Earth and Implications for Mars The green coloured regions indicate where Mg carbonates were detected, ...
6 votes
1 answer
892 views

Will Roadster ever encounter Mars?

During it first closest approach to Mars, it was a mere 5 million miles away from the red planet. According to observer.com, it's ultimate fate will be to crash into the Earth or Venus. However, since ...
4 votes
2 answers
229 views

What is the right way to get Mars' sol?

Among the following two methods what is the right way to get the Mars sol date? Using this equation from Timekpeeing on Mars Wikipedia page MSD = (Julian Date using International Atomic Time - ...
3 votes
1 answer
593 views

What are the regularly spaced spots on this piece of material on the surface of Mars?

This image is a part of the Image of the week, a photo acquired by the Perseverance rover's Mastcam-Z camera and selected by public vote. To me it seems like a piece of styrofoam and with a closer ...
3 votes
2 answers
116 views

How much solar radiation hits a spacecraft in transit to Mars?

How can I solve for the amount of radiation that hits a Mars transit vehicle, in transit? What formulas should I use? I am mostly focused on solar radiation.
9 votes
1 answer
305 views

What CPU does China's Zhurong rover use?

The Curiosity and Perseverance rovers, and the InSight lander, all use the BAE RAD750 processor. The Ingenuity helicopter uses a Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 processor. The only other active spacecraft on ...
8 votes
1 answer
3k views

Why did NASA's Soujourner Mars rover die at the same time as Pathfinder?

The Soujourner rover operated with the Pathfinder lander, but when pathfinder's mission was declared to be completed, the rover's was too. Why?
12 votes
1 answer
13k views

If Mars had a denser atmosphere, how warm would it be?

Looking at Venus, Earth and Mars, the closer you are to the Sun the warmer you are. At the same time the warmer planets also have thicker atmospheres. Planet Minimum Maximum Venus 870 °F (465 °C) ...
2 votes
1 answer
1k views

How much fuel is needed for the motor landing and taking off on Mars?

For example, for the Apollo lunar modules, for landing on the Moon the weight of fuel was approximately 60% of the total weight (on Wiki 8 tons of the 15 tons). For departure from the surface, the ...
4 votes
1 answer
190 views

Graph of spaceport latitude vs Mars transfer orbit weight?

I am wondering how much do we lose when launching farther from Earth's equator in the context of reaching Mars? Strict metric might be latitude vs weight on mars transfer orbit for some generic rocket ...
5 votes
1 answer
252 views

Is unpurified Martian ice/water safe for irrigation?

There are large amounts of ice underground on Mars. Some are closer to the surface then others. Assuming this ice has been mined and is not safe for human consumption without purification, is it ...
3 votes
1 answer
89 views

How (if possible) can we assess the isotope variations on Martian soils?

I'm personally interested in the biological implications of different isotope variations on biology. This can be tested on Earth by separating them and just observing, but determining the isotope ...
12 votes
1 answer
7k views

How much iron is on the surface of Mars?

It's (relatively) common knowledge that Mars is known as the "Red Planet" because of an abundance of iron oxide, AKA rust, on its surface. At first glance, that looks like "iron, iron, everywhere." ...
4 votes
0 answers
90 views

Are there any past or present plans or proposals to explore Martian lava tubes?

Lava tubes on Mars are the prime target for human or robotic missions. They provide protection from radiation, surface conditions, and are thought to have stable internal temperatures. Lava tubes are ...
3 votes
0 answers
99 views

Fate of human-made objects on Mars

Now that Opportunity is dead, and since there are ideas for future human missions to Mars, I wonder if there is a project to collect all our rovers and landers or at least label as historical sites ...
5 votes
1 answer
7k views

Would you age slower on Mars?

As far as I know, time dilation has little effect on Mars compared to Earth, and I'm not asking with that in mind. I'm rather asking if the low surface gravity (38% of Earth's) could allow humans to ...
13 votes
1 answer
573 views

Are there any possible methods for keeping surface water on Mars?

I've been reading this wikipedia article on terraforming Mars. One of the major issues with terraforming Mars is essential molecules and elements escaping the planet. There have been several ...
0 votes
0 answers
114 views

Would not the Mars sample return mission get much more scientific value by equipping the fetch rover with an ExoMars drill unit?

According to this Wikipedia article the NASA-ESA plan includes a sample retrieval mission with a fetch rover landing in 2029 on Mars to collect the samples left behind by the Perseverance rover at ...
23 votes
5 answers
5k views

Is wind-power a viable backup power source for Mars One?

A question related to What power source options provide reliable and sustainable power generation for a Martian Colony, particularly the answer that solar and nuclear based energy sources being the ...
39 votes
4 answers
6k views

What uses would the Aldrin-Cycler have?

An Aldrin-Cycler is a vessel on an orbit on which it passes both Earth and Mars every few years without expending much fuel. At first glance this seems like a great thing for a permanent ...
4 votes
1 answer
389 views

Download all Perseverance Raw Images

I want to make an archive of all the Raw Images Percy will make during her mission. I would love to have separate folders for each Sol. The plan is to run a script which then grabs the images from the ...
4 votes
0 answers
53 views

I'm trying to create a trajectory to Mars for a low thrust ion thruster engine using astrogator

I'm trying to create an optimize a trajectory to Mars for a number of low thrust high specific impulse engines. I am having trouble with the initial set up. I created a LEO exit spiral using a ...
4 votes
0 answers
81 views

Landing a 3-ton payload on the surface of Mars

I'm working on a university project about the construction of sustainable exploration camps on Mars. I want to land a 3-ton structure that will be used as a basis to build a shelter on the surface of ...
3 votes
0 answers
19 views

How to obtain 3d data from MER Spirit "Planetary Data System" products/files?

TL;DR Given products available in this page, how can I get a 3d model, or at least a point cloud, or as a last chance just a suitable depth map for depth map viewer, for this image? What I tried I ...
5 votes
3 answers
946 views

What could be the cause of the extraordinary high Fe counts from the PIXL instrument onboard the Perseverance rover?

In this answer a table is showed with all the elements that were detected by the PIXL instrument on 2 occasions, namely sol 140 and sol 167. As could be expected, X-ray counts were high for Si (...
9 votes
2 answers
230 views

What could Perseverance listening to Ingenuity reveal?

On 2021 May 7, the science lead for Perseverance's SuperCam Mars microphone said about that microphone's recording of a flight of the Ingenuity helicopter: We had carried out tests and simulations ...
9 votes
1 answer
1k views

Is there any independent evaluation/report on the feasibility of SpaceX going to Mars by 2024?

According to Independent report concludes 2033 human Mars mission is not feasible An independent report concluded that NASA has no chance of sending humans to Mars by 2033, with the earliest such a ...
1 vote
1 answer
169 views

After one year exploring Jezero's crater floor, has there been any investigation into the presence of trace elements with PIXL?

PIXL instrument chart sample Credit:NASA/JPL-CALTECH Of course PIXL has been used already in Jezero crater, but as far as I know only to identify mineral compositions and textures, as described in ...
8 votes
2 answers
2k views

Can a machine process and run on $CO_2$ and $H_2O$ for an $O_2$ by product?

On Mars studies have shown that carbon dioxide solidifies to dry ice at the poles. During the winter months can electrolysis be applied to collected and then contained liquid $CO_2$ to replenish ...
4 votes
2 answers
2k views

Could Perseverance survive if Ingenuity failed?

They both landed successfully and ingenuity was deployed. Perseverance drove away, and then Ingenuity failed. Could Perseverance survive on its own?
9 votes
1 answer
2k views

Could Ingenuity survive if Perseverance failed?

They both landed successfully and Ingenuity was deployed. Perseverance drove away, and then failed. Could Ingenuity survive on its own?
3 votes
0 answers
64 views

How will InSight's hardware be damaged if the heaters fail?

InSight is scheduled to "die" due to the Dust on the solar arrays. From what I understand, once the power goes out, there won't be a way to keep the computers and batteries warm at night, so ...
27 votes
5 answers
11k views

Could a helicopter fly on Mars?

Helicopter drones are awesome fun down here on Earth, but what if... we took one to Mars? This sounds like a good question for Randall Munroe. But I read about a proposal to send a helicopter drone (...
10 votes
2 answers
2k views

For how long could the Mars helicopter Ingenuity keep up with the Perseverance rover if it wanted to?

Wikipedia's Mars Helicopter Ingenuity says: It could potentially cover a distance of up to 300 metres (980 ft) per flight. Perseverance is somewhat similar to Curiosity which drove about 22970 ...
2 votes
1 answer
151 views

What if Perseverance had experienced a fault after dropping Ingenuity?

When Ingenuity was released on the Martian surface in April 2021, Perseverance had to drive away to let the helicopter recharge its batteries with its solar panel. Was there a concern that the rover ...
7 votes
1 answer
193 views

Is there any chance that Opportunity survived, but NASA kept pinging it at the wrong time?

In 2018, NASA's beloved little Opportunity (oppy) was declared dead after a dust storm "killed" it. It may still be OK, but when NASA began recovery effort, they pinged oppy when it was ...
22 votes
4 answers
10k views

How can Mars have dust storms with such a thin atmosphere?

Mars, as I understand, has a very thin atmosphere. However, it still has weather like this: What causes the thin atmosphere to move fast enough to cause such a monster wave of dust?
6 votes
1 answer
431 views

How much land does a colony on Mars need to start off?

Assume that we need just the following Martian resources for our colony: O2 N2 H2O Regolith for radiation shielding Regolith for construction Regolith for printing tools Martian compounds for rocket ...
15 votes
3 answers
4k views

How does the Curiosity rover survive dust storms on Mars?

According to the answers to this question, a dust storm on Mars can last for many days. Dust is a serious problem for mechanical joints if they use lubrication, because it may stick to the lubricant ...
29 votes
3 answers
2k views

What happens to defunct lunar and Mars rovers? What technological barriers prevent humanity from creating a perpetual rover?

What happens to defunct lunar and Mars rovers? What technological barriers prevent humanity from creating a perpetual rover with sun batteries or nuclear portable reactors for use on Mars, the Moon, ...
7 votes
3 answers
443 views

Are there "rover-friendly region maps" for Mars?

Rover missions are hard - you need to put them down somewhere where they can safely drive around and measure (hopefully a variety of) interesting things. Future rovers may have legs as discussed in ...
7 votes
1 answer
223 views

Is the Beagle fixable?

We have since learned that Beagle 2 failed to operate successfully, potentially because its solar panels didn't open properly. Now, a collaboration between De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) and ...
6 votes
3 answers
121 views

Is crater counting accurate for relative dating between celestial bodies?

This Planetary Society article explains how crater density per unit area on the lunar surface helps identify what regions are older/younger than others. It also mentions that this chronology can be ...
9 votes
1 answer
590 views

What, if any, reduction in radiation exposure does the atmosphere of Mars provide?

In the book "The Case for Mars", cited in this answer, there is a study cited that states that 20-50 REM radiation occurs due to cosmic rays in deep space. It seems likely that the atmosphere of Mars ...
12 votes
2 answers
2k views

Could a Mars rover go to Phobos or Deimos instead?

Could a Mars rover go to Phobos or Deimos instead of going to Mars? The choice is made after launch, and no further modifications can be made to the rover. Could it land safely? Up to what point could ...
13 votes
3 answers
3k views

How are the Mars Rovers maintained?

I am really curious in finding out how the Mars Rovers are maintained. The communications with the software could be done as long as there are no connection malfunctions, and I suppose they have a ...
8 votes
3 answers
3k views

Why are there no video transmissions from the Moon and Mars?

There is one new project, like Google Maps, which would be an online video transmission of the Earth's surface from a satellite: http://www.urthecast.com/ Another good one is a web cam situated on the ...

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