Skip to comments.Mars 2020 Rover Assembled and Tested Ahead of Launch Next Year
Posted on 04/20/2019 4:11:34 PM PDT by BenLurkin
NASA's next Mars mission is slowly coming together in a "clean room" in California. Technicians at the agency's Jet Propulsion Laboratory assembled the capsule that will keep the Mars 2020 rover secure for its wild ride to the Red Planet's surface.
After leaving Earth next summer, Mars 2020 will spend about seven months flying towards the Red Planet before a spectacular entry at its destination, including a repeat of the famous "7 minutes of terror" sequence that brought NASA's Curiosity rover to the planet's surface in 2012. (The Mars 2020 rover and Curiosity have similar body frames, although they carry different instruments.) So, all the parts need to be secured in the Mars 2020's entry capsule in a process called "stacking."
"Stacking is an important milestone in mission development, because as good as our computer models are, we still need to put it together to show that the bolt holes line up and everything fits together," David Gruel, assembly, test and launch operations manager for Mars 2020 at JPL, said in a statement. "It is a great feeling for the entire project when we see the stack sitting there waiting to go for the next part of its journey, which will eventually lead to a launch pad at the Cape Canaveral in July of next year."
(Excerpt) Read more at space.com ...
Just make sure somebody else doesn't "borrow" the bolts without telling anybody.
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