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5

You seem to have confused some of the events from your research so let's start by setting the record straight (elaborating on the useful insights from @Armadillo's answer): MER (Spirit & Opportunity) Launch (first link): Launched on a Delta II rocket that required a third stage Payload Assist Module (PAM-D), a Star 48 solid rocket motor (basically). The ...


3

Spinning a spacecraft prior to a kick stage burn is performed to stabilize the spacecraft during the rocket firing. This can require the spacecraft to be "spun up" to a high rpm. During the outbound cruise to Mars spinning the spacecraft at a constant low rate (~2 rpm) provides some added stability for the combined lander and cruise stage stack. In ...


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