Getting to Mars

  • Emily Lakdawalla
Chapter
Part of the Springer Praxis Books book series (PRAXIS)

Abstract

Mars launch opportunities happen about every 26 months, as Earth begins to approach Mars from behind on its faster inside track around the Sun. The earliest MSL could launch was November 25, 2011; any earlier, and it would arrive at Mars with too much speed for the entry, descent, and landing system to dissipate. The latest it could launch was December 18; any later, and the Atlas V 541 rocket wouldn’t have enough thrust to deliver the spacecraft to its rendezvous point with Mars.

REFERENCES

  1. Abilleira F (2013) 2011 Mars Science Laboratory trajectory reconstruction and performance from launch through landing. Paper presented to the 23rd AAS/AIAA Spaceflight Mechanics Meeting, 10–14 Feb 2013, Kauai, Hawaii, USAGoogle Scholar
  2. Abilleira F and Shidner J (2012) Entry, descent, and landing communications for the 2011 Mars Science Laboratory. Paper presented to the AIAA Guidance, Navigation, and Control Conference, 13–16 Aug 2012, Minneapolis, Minnesota, USAGoogle Scholar
  3. Baker R et al (2014) Mars Science Laboratory Descent-Stage Integrated Propulsion Subsystem: Development and flight performance. Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets 51:4, DOI: 10.2514/1.A32788Google Scholar
  4. Beck R et al (2010) The evolution of the Mars Science Laboratory heatshield (part III). Presentation to the 7th International Planetary Probe Workshop, Barcelona, Spain, 16 Jun 2010.Google Scholar
  5. Bhandari P et al (2011) Mars Science Laboratory Launch Pad Thermal Control. Paper presented to the 41st International Conference on Environmental Systems, 17–21 Jul 2011, Portland, Oregon, USAGoogle Scholar
  6. Bose D et al (2013) Initial assessment of Mars Science Laboratory heatshield instrumentation and flight data. Paper presented to the 51st AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting, 7–10 Jan 2013, Grapevine, Texas, USA, DOI: 10.2514/6.2013-908, DOI: 10.2514/6.2013-908Google Scholar
  7. Bose D et al (2014) Reconstruction of aerothermal environment and heat shield response of Mars Science Laboratory. Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets 51:4, DOI: 10.2514/1.A32783Google Scholar
  8. Chang K (2012) Simulated Space ‘Terror’ Offers NASA an Online Following. The New York Times 11 Jul 2012, p. A14Google Scholar
  9. Chen A et al (2014) Reconstruction of atmospheric properties from Mars Science Laboratory entry, descent, and landing. Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets 51:4, DOI: 10.2514/1.A32708Google Scholar
  10. Chen C and Pollard B (2014) Radar terminal descent sensor performance during Mars Science Laboratory landing. Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets 51:4, DOI: 10.2514/1.A32641Google Scholar
  11. Cruz J et al (2014) Reconstruction of the Mars Science Laboratory Parachute Performance. Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets 51:4, DOI: 10.2514/1.A32816Google Scholar
  12. Edquist K et al (2009) Aerothermodynamic design of the Mars Science Laboratory heatshield. Paper presented to the 41st AIAA Thermophysics Conference, 22–25 Jun 2009, San Antonio, Texas, USA, DOI: 10.2514/6.2009-4075Google Scholar
  13. Edquist K et al (2009) Aerothermodynamic design of the Mars Science Laboratory backshell and parachute cone. Paper presented to the 41st AIAA Thermophysics Conference, 22–25 Jun 2009, San Antonio, Texas, USA, DOI: 10.2514/6.2009-4078Google Scholar
  14. Gallon J (2012) Verification and validation testing of the Bridle and Umbilical Device for Mars Science Laboratory. Paper presented to the 2012 IEEE Aerospace conference, 3–10 Mar 2012, Big Sky, Montana, USA, DOI: 10.1109/AERO.2012.6187289Google Scholar
  15. Hoffman P et al (2007) Preliminary design of the Cruise, Entry, Descent, and Landing Mechanical Subsystem for MSL. Paper presented at the 2007 IEEE Aerospace Conference, 3–10 Mar 2007, Big Sky, Montana, USA, DOI: 10.1109/AERO.2007.352826Google Scholar
  16. Jordan E (2012) Mars Science Laboratory differential restraint: The devil is in the details. Paper presented at the 41st Aerospace Mechanisms Symposium, May 16–18, 2012, Pasadena, California, USAGoogle Scholar
  17. JPL (2012a) Spacecraft Computer Issue Resolved. http://mars.jpl.nasa.gov/news/whatsnew/index.cfm?FuseAction=ShowNews&NewsID=1206. Status report dated 9 Feb 2012, accessed 7 Jan 2015
  18. JPL (2012b) Mars-Bound NASA Craft Adjusts Path, Tests Instruments. http://mars.nasa.gov/msl/news/whatsnew/index.cfm?FuseAction=ShowNews&NewsID=1211. Status report dated 26 Mar 2012, accessed 11 Feb 2016
  19. Karlgaard C et al (2014) Mars Science Laboratory Entry Atmospheric Data System Trajectory and Atmosphere Reconstruction. Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets 51:4, DOI: 10.2514/1.A32770Google Scholar
  20. Kornfeld R et al (2014) Verification and validation of the Mars Science Laboratory/Curiosity rover entry, descent, and landing system. Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets 51:4, DOI: 10.2514/1.A32680Google Scholar
  21. Little A et al (2013) The Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Entry, Descent, and Landing Instrumentation (MEDLI): hardware performance and data reconstruction. Paper presented to the 36th AAS Guidance and Control Conference, 1–6 Feb 2013; Breckenridge, CO, USAGoogle Scholar
  22. Manning R and Simon W (2014) Mars Rover Curiosity. Smithsonian Books, Washington, DCGoogle Scholar
  23. Martin-Mur T et al (2012) Mars Science Laboratory Navigation Results. Paper presented at the 23rd International Symposium on Space Flight Dynamics, 29 Oct–2 Nov 2012, Pasadena, CA, USAGoogle Scholar
  24. Martin-Mur T et al (2014) Mars Science Laboratory interplanetary navigation. Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets 51:4, DOI: 10.2514/1.A32631Google Scholar
  25. McEwen A (2012) Impacts from MSL tungsten blocks and cruise stage. http://www.uahirise.org/ESP_029245_1755, image caption dated 5 Dec 2012, accessed 7 Jan 2015
  26. Mendeck G and Craig McGrew L (2014) Entry guidance design and postflight performance for 2011 Mars Science Laboratory mission. Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets 51:4, DOI: 10.2514/1.A32737Google Scholar
  27. NASA (2011a) Mars Science Laboratory Launch. Press kit dated Nov 2011Google Scholar
  28. NASA (2011b) NASA Ready for November Launch of Car-Size Mars Rover. Press release dated 19 Nov 2011Google Scholar
  29. NASA (2011c) NASA Mars-Bound Rover Begins Research In Space. Press release dated 13 Dec 2011Google Scholar
  30. NASA (2012a) Mars Science Laboratory Landing. Press kit dated Jul 2012Google Scholar
  31. NASA (2012b) First words of safe landing on Mars - Tango Delta Nominal. http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/msl/news/msl20120821f.html posted 21 Aug 2012, accessed 23 Feb 2016
  32. Novak K et al (2016) Thermal response of the Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft during entry, descent, and landing. Paper presented to the 46th International Conference on Environmental Systems, 10–14 Jul 2016, Vienna, AustriaGoogle Scholar
  33. Pearlman R (2017) From space plane to sky crane: How part of a space shuttle landed a rover on Mars. http://www.planetary.org/blogs/guest-blogs/2017/0804-from-space-plane-to-sky-crane.html article dated 5 Aug 2017, accessed 27 Oct 2017.
  34. Pollard B (2012) Radar Terminal Descent Sensor (TDS). Presentation given to the JPL Section 334 Forum, 3 Aug 2012, Pasadena, CA, USAGoogle Scholar
  35. Schratz B et al (2014) Telecommunications performance during entry, descent, and landing of the Mars Science Laboratory. Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets 51:4, DOI: 10.2514/1.A32790Google Scholar
  36. Sell S et al (2014) Powered flight design and performance summary for the Mars Science Laboratory mission. Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets 51:4, DOI: 10.2514/1.A32682Google Scholar
  37. Steltzner A et al (2010) Mars Science Laboratory entry, descent, and landing system overview. Revised version of Steltzner A et al (2006) Mars Science Laboratory entry, descent, and landing system. Paper presented at the 2006 IEEE Aerospace Conference, 4–11 Mar 2006, Big Sky, Montana, USAGoogle Scholar
  38. United Launch Alliance (2011) Atlas V MSL Mission Overview. Press kit.Google Scholar
  39. Wallace M (2012) Curiosity: The Next Mars Rover. Presentation to the Royal Aeronautical Society, Applied Aerodynamics Group Conference, 17–19 Jul 2012, London, UKGoogle Scholar
  40. Way D et al (2013) Assessment of the Mars Science Laboratory entry, descent, and landing simulation. Paper presented at 23rd AAS/AIAA Space Flight Mechanics Meeting, 10–14 Feb 2013, Kauai, Hawaii, USAGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Emily Lakdawalla
    • 1
  1. 1.The Planetary SocietyPasadenaUSA

Personalised recommendations