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Today's Bad News? (re: Spirit)

  1. Jan 22, 2004 #1

    Labguy

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  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 22, 2004 #2
    Dammit!
     
  4. Jan 22, 2004 #3

    selfAdjoint

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    Dearly Missed

    Now if they'd had a human being there....
     
  5. Jan 22, 2004 #4

    russ_watters

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    ...he'd be dead.
     
  6. Jan 22, 2004 #5

    chroot

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    Hopefully they'd have the foresight to equip him with a space suit as well!

    - Warren
     
  7. Jan 22, 2004 #6

    Labguy

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    If he did have one, he could pull it back out of the pool of water they were looking for, dry it off and email "Eureka!!"
     
  8. Jan 22, 2004 #7
    That's certainly a possibility. On the other hand, a human present may have been able to correct a problem not anticipated. Of course since this wasn't a manned mission in the first place, it is probably pointless to wonder what difference it would have made.
     
  9. Jan 22, 2004 #8

    FZ+

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    Damn, another one. Hopefully they will repair it somehow.

    Two probes in a matter of weeks... I can imagine the alien conspiracy stories already.
     
  10. Jan 22, 2004 #9

    Integral

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    If a human were there he would still be standing staring at his broken equipment tying to contact earth to tell him what to do. There would not have been any significant amount of real analytical tools because the entire pay load would be devoted to life support systems for the TOURIST. They would totally incapable of doing any significant science because the Tourists would be more flyboys then scientists. Considering the cost of this mission for the limited payload, can you imagine the cost of a mission with a large enough capsule to support say 5 humans?

    Until we can prefect Robotic missions sending men along will only result in bodies on Mars or in Space while reducing the amount core scientific information acquired by the mission.

    Once we have perfected Robotic missions we can then start to send tourists into space.
     
  11. Jan 22, 2004 #10

    Nereid

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    Hear, hear!

    $400 million or so may seem expensive, but in any realistic analysis of cost-benefit, robotic science (outside the Earth's atmosphere) wins by many OOM ... even when you include realistic probability of failure.
     
  12. Jan 22, 2004 #11

    selfAdjoint

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    If a human were there he would still be standing staring at his broken equipment tying to contact earth to tell him what to do.

    Apollo 13.
     
  13. Jan 22, 2004 #12

    enigma

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    Did not have a communications failure, or they would have been dead.
     
  14. Jan 23, 2004 #13

    Ivan Seeking

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    ...and almost were anyway.

    As for today's news...

    I heard late last night that the rover had failed to communicate just before the Martian sunset. The hope was that after shutting down for the evening it would come back up...as happened with the Viking missions a couple of times.

    They still sound somewhat optimistic at NASA...officially...
     
  15. Jan 23, 2004 #14

    Janus

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    The last I read they had gotten a single tone reply to a request, which seemed to indicate that the rover went into safe-mode. This would mean that there is a chance that they could bring it back on line.
     
  16. Jan 23, 2004 #15

    Phobos

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  17. Jan 23, 2004 #16

    Njorl

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    It took a while for the Martians to finish building their duplicate simulated environment to put the rover in.



    Njorl
     
  18. Jan 23, 2004 #17

    Evo

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    Njorl, I love reading your posts!

    On a related (kinda) note. Looks like they confirmed the detection of water/ice on Mars? http://www.cnn.com/2004/TECH/space/01/23/mars.water.ice/index.html
     
  19. Jan 23, 2004 #18

    LURCH

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    Unfortunately, contact shows us that the Rover is trapped in an endless cycle of rebooting. It starts up, and in the course of going through its normal startup procedures it encounters an anomaly which convinces the onboard computer that it needs to reboot. Then it shuts down and repeats the process.

    It seems to me one of the main dangers of this is that the Rover is probably continuing this cycle through the night, when the solar panels are not gathering energy. If the problem is not corrected soon, it could totally drain itself of all power and go permanently dead.
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2004
  20. Jan 23, 2004 #19

    Ivan Seeking

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    that sounds like a death sentence to me...
     
  21. Jan 23, 2004 #20

    chroot

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    Uh oh.. sounds like they decided to use Microsoft software.... *kidding*

    - Warren
     
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