Planning For Steps on Mars
Teaching Hand-Eye Coordination
NASA – Building Curiosity: Engineers give the rover lessons in hand-eye coordination. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech
Moviemaker with Mars Rover ‘Stunt Double’
A group watching motions of an engineering model of the camera mast for NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity on March 5, 2010, includes moviemaker James Cameron (right). Cameron is a member of the camera team for the mission. Others present in the In Situ Instrument Laboratory of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., are, from left, JPL Director Charles Elachi; Mars Science Laboratory Project Scientist John Grotzinger; Mars Science Laboratory Project Manager Pete Theisinger; and Michael Ravine of Malin Space Science Systems, the San Diego company providing the Mast Camera and two other science instruments for the mission.
Ramp Drive Test for Curiosity Mars Rover
NASA’s next Mars rover, Curiosity, drives up a ramp during a test at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., on Sept. 10, 2010. The rover, like its smaller predecessors already on Mars, uses a rocker bogie suspension system to drive over uneven ground. Technicians and engineers in clean room garb watch the test drive carefully inside JPL’s Spacecraft Assembly Facility.
The wheels on Curiosity are half a meter (20 inches) in diameter, twice the height of the wheels on earlier Mars rovers Spirit and Opportunity.
NASA’s Next Mars Rover on a Test Drive
The suspension system on NASA Mars rover Curiosity easily accommodates rolling over a ramp in this Sept. 10, 2010, test drive inside the Spacecraft Assembly Facility at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.
The rover, like its smaller predecessors already on Mars, uses a rocker bogie suspension system to drive over uneven ground.
The Spacecraft Assembly Facility at JPL has been the birthplace of many interplanetary spacecraft, including NASA’s two Voyagers, Galileo, Cassini and the Mars rovers Spirit and Opportunity.
NASA’s Mars Science Laboratory Project will launch Curiosity in late 2011 for arrival at Mars in August 2012. The mission will study whether an intriguing area of Mars has offered environmental conditions favorable for supporting microbial life and for preserving evidence of whether life existed there.