Questions tagged [probe]

A space probe is a scientific robotic spacecraft. It explores space and/or other planetary bodies (planets, satellites, asteroids, ..). It can flyby, orbit, enter atmosphere of, land on or submerge into its target, or approach interstellar space. Pioneer 10/11 and Voyager 1/2 are examples of space probe.

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What data did Philae collect? [closed]

What did Philae find? I'm not asking for yet another summary of on-board instruments and a list which were activated. I'm asking for the actual results - either semi-raw data dumps with results of ...
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Can the Philae lander survive one orbit of 67P? [duplicate]

The Aphelion of Comet Churyumov–Gerasimenko is about 5.6829 AU. It has a orbital period of 6.44 years. If it stays on the comet for the entire period of its orbit, can it be usable when it is in the ...
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What time of events is given for probes a long way away from Earth?

Philae is to land on 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko today at 17:02 CET. The comet is currently 3.409AU away from Earth. That means signals from the lander take a little over 28 minutes to reach Earth. Does ...
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How do probes locate themselves?

There's no way for any probe that is sent to orbit/land on a distant body to get there only on precalculated flight parameters alone - minuscule errors in the beginning of flight would convert to huge ...
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Energy use of Asteroid Redirect Robotic Mission (ARRM)?

In the ARRM feasibility Study Table 4, parameters of four different options (three different launchers and different trajectories) are gathered. What would be the total energy use of a mission like ...
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How do we measure the atmospheres of Solar system planets?

How much is it possible to measure from Earth and how accurately without sending probes to the planets? I am curious about how atmospheric boundary (altitude), atmospheric pressure, scale height were ...
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Does solar wind have any influence on probes?

I know that because of the Earth's magnetosphere, we are largely isolated from the influences of the solar winds. But what happens when a probe leaves the Earth's atmosphere and travels inward through ...
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Can a single-apparition comet be used to propel a deep space probe outside of our solar system?

It seems this would be an economical way to explore anything beyond the heliopause, given that the probe would carry limited fuel.
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How long can probes function, e.g. New Horizons? Can and should we build "century probes"?

36 years after launch we still communicate with Voyager and ISEE. And contact with the Voyagers could continue for another 10 years or so. I doubt that it was designed with this in mind (but who knows ...
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Are multiple sub-probes feasible for fast flyby missions to outer Solar System objects?

The obvious drawback with a flyby mission compared with an orbiter is of course that an orbiter could make several flyby's. I wonder if the following ideas about mission design could help make flyby ...
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How could a minimal sample return only from the plumes of an ice moon, Ceres or Io be designed?

Would it be feasible and would it make sense to minimalistically design a sample-return-only mission (or class of missions) along these lines: Light weight plume collecting aerogel (like the Stardust ...
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How does NASA get information from space probes?

So I have briefly gone over answers to how things are stored as from this answer: https://space.stackexchange.com/a/2273/1247 but how is the information sent back? I'm thinking of probes like the ...
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Can electricity be generated from solar storms

If a satellite covered with a thick layer of copper, were to go straight through a solar storm in the opposing direction, would the satellite produce electricity, provided the copper(or other suitable ...
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Did Huygens probe carry any hint to help find its home planet?

Apollo XI mission carried a plaque to the Moon featuring a map of the Earth. So do the Pioneers with a plaque with symbolic indications that may help to find its origin. So, here comes the question: ...
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Could the crashed Mars Express lander be imaged by the MRO orbiter?

The Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has taken direct images of the MSL Curiosity rover, its parachute, heat shield and sky crane. Could it image, or has it even already, the failed Mars Express lander ...
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Are there any private space probes presently active?

Are there any private space probes presently active? I'm asking about instruments which have left / are leaving the Earth-Moon system. I know there is a plan for a telescope in one of the Earth - ...
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Theoretical: How might we land on a planet/moon that has an orbit going in the reverse direction of Earth?

Imagine that Mars was orbiting around the sun in the opposite direction that it is now. Assuming both Mars and Earth are now travelling in opposite directions, how might we land on Mars? More ...
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Why did NASA intentionally crash the Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) on the moon?

The Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) was intentionally crashed into the moon by NASA but why did they crash the craft instead of leaving it in orbit, or was it a part of some ...
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How would we sterilize a probe to look for life? [duplicate]

If we were to ever send a probe to check for life then it's of paramount importance that we do not contaminate the target site with Earth organisms. And if there's anything we've learned from ...
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What significance did Pioneer 10 & 11 have?

The images taken by Pioneer 10 and 11 were of much lower quality than those of later planetary probes. I wonder if this is representative also for their other instruments. For example, they don't seem ...
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What's about Nasa agreement for waking up ICE/ISEE-3? [duplicate]

The ICE/ISEE-3 spacecraft is in space since 1978. It'll return near the Earth in august 2014. can we contact it to put it in L1 Lagrange point ? Is it too old ? The decision is in the hands of Nasa.
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Why not use deep space hibernation in all missions?

If Deep Space Hibernation of a probe saves energy and power, then why isn't it implemented on long planetary missions and Interstellar missions like, New Horizons, Voyagers, Pioneers, Cassini, etc.......
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Will Voyager 1 or 2 be able to take photos?

Will Voyager 1 or Voyager 2 be able to take a photo of their current view, using their cameras and send the photo to Earth? Do they have the power to do this?
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Equipment needed to contact ICE/ISEE3 Spaceraft

A few days ago, I was reading the wikipedia entry for the International Cometary Explorer (ICE) / International Sun-Earth Explorer 3 (ISEE-3) satellite, that was launched August 12, 1978. Down near ...
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How was the Giotto spacecraft reactivated from hibernation mode?

The Wikipedia article on Giotto states that: Giotto was the first spacecraft to be re-activated from hibernation mode. How was the reactivation accomplished? Does the statement mean the ...
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Is there any way to communicate with Pioneer 11 through Voyager 1 or 2?

The position of Pioneer 11 is between Voyager 1 and 2, that means Pioneer 11 is closer to Voyager 1 and 2 than to Earth. According to the Wikipedia article on Pioneer 11 we lost communication with it ...
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Is there any way to find and track Pioneer 10, 11, and Voyager 1, 2?

The space probes Pioneer 10, Pioneer 11, Voyager 1, and Voyager 2 are the first man-made devices to have escaped from our solar system. The main problem they face is the lack of power source in them. ...
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What factors limit the lifetime of an unmanned spacecraft?

Other than fuel, what factors limit the lifetime of a spacecraft? For example, if someone wanted to send a spacecraft on a 100 year trip round the solar system and back to Earth, could it be done ...
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Cause of ISRO MOM's LAM shutdown during the 4th orbit raising manoeuvre

The 4th orbit raising manoeuvre of ISRO's Mars probe (MOM or Mars Orbiter Mission, informally called Mangalyaan) did not go as planned, as the LAM (Liquid Apogee Motor) shut down prematurely. ...
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When will New Horizons overtake Voyager 1 in distance from the Sun?

Basically, what the title asks. To my understanding, New Horizons is currently the fastest spacecraft that's moving away from the Sun, with arguably only Helios-A and Helios-B possibly faster still, ...
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How can any probe be safe at one million degree Centigrade temperature?

Even after going straight inside the sun's corona, how can Solar Probe Plus be safe at the one million degree Centigrade temperature of the sun's corona ?
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Is Cassini equipped for detection of non-water-based exobiology?

Looking at one of the latest images of Titan's north pole as taken by Cassini probe made me curious how well equipped this NASA's probe actually is to detect non-water-based exobiology?   &...
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Conjunction analysis for deep space missions

How rigorously is conjunction analysis (finding out the chances of hitting an asteroid or another known object) conducted for missions beyond Earth orbit? Due to larger computational resources ...
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Where is Giotto now?

Launched in 1985, ESA's Giotto became the first spacecraft to visit a comet. Since then it has done at least some Earth flybys/slingshots to visit other comets. This image from the Wiki article ...
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What's the public availability of data gathered by NASA probes?

The probes sent by NASA generate a lot of data for scientists to study, but how available is it to non-NASA affiliated scientists? For instance, would I (a layperson) be able to get the raw data ...
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Why is it so hard to figure out if Voyager 1 has left the solar system?

I recently noticed the comic above, and wondered what, exactly, makes it so hard to tell whether Voyager 1 has left the solar system. I can think of three reasons: Scientists can't agree on where the ...
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What is JAXA looking for on the Moon in the way of 'potential utilization'?

I was reading this article (terrible layout, sorry). This paragraph caught my eye: While Japan is hoping to send humans to the Moon sometime in the future, Keiji Tachikawa, president of the Japan ...
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Why does NASA intentionally spin space probes?

In several NASA animations of missions, I've noticed that the spacecraft is rotating while traveling in deep space. This was true of Curiosity when that video came out. Now the Juno mission ...
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Resilience to data transmission errors of the Juno spacecraft

What techniques have been employed for the Juno spacecraft to successfully transmit data packets back to Earth once she's in a polar orbit around Jupiter? Jupiter is a strong source of radio ...
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Are there any gas giant probes planned that will return images or video?

The Galileo Probe did not include any imaging equipment to return images or video as it descended into Jupiter's atmosphere. Are there missions underway or planned that will include visual data ...
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Full list of asteroids that have been optically imaged as of 2013

I know we've obtained some images of asteroids from probes. Since each of those constitutes a fairly costly and public mission, I wonder if it would be possible to get a list of all such objects that ...
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On which device data gets saved on spacecrafts? [closed]

How does it? I have a turning hard disk drive in my pc, but I think it would break if I put it on a rocket. Also, what speeds do those things have?
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Long range laser communication beam divergence angle values?

NASA has been working on demonstrations of laser communication with satellites. The motivation is simple, in that lasers see less power loss because they spread over a smaller angle. That raises the ...
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Does Juno use MPPT?

MPPT aka Maximum Power Point Tracking is an active mechanism to collect maximum power a PV cell may deliver. This is typically achieved by varying the resistive load connected to a cell. Juno will ...
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How was magnetic tape decay prevented in Voyager 1?

I had recently learned that Voyager 1 uses magnetic tape to record data. Voyager 1 has been going on more or less strongly since 1977 (before I was even born!), and the wikipedia article states that ...
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What's our limit in sending probes to distant bodies?

Currently, we're able to aim probes at various bodies in the solar system pretty well. Do we have the technology to send a probe to Alpha Centauri? If we're aiming at a star, approximately how far ...
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What was the first man made object to leave our solar system?

We have a lot of man made objects flying around the universe. Which one was the first one out of our solar system? How far away from the sun was it when it became "out of the solar system?
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Is there any stable orbit around a black hole?

Is there any stable orbit around a black hole so that the spacecraft will remain in orbit without any disturbance over a long period of time ?
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Would there be any benefit to sending a probe to a black hole?

It's perfectly safe to orbit a black hole - as long as you don't cross the event horizon, you're fine. My questions is this: is there anything we could learn by doing so? Since nothing can escape a ...
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Are there any plans to send a probe to orbit a black hole?

Since a black hole only has as much gravity as it did before it collapsed, it's perfectly safe to orbit it. Do any countries have plans to send a probe to orbit a black hole? What is the timeframe?