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tv   NASAJPL - Exploring Mars  CSPAN  March 1, 2019 1:20pm-2:35pm EST

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>> best and worst chief executives provides insight into the lives of the 44 american presidents through stories gathered by interviews with noted presidential historians. explore the life events that shaped our leaders, challenges they faced, and the legacies they have left behind. published by public affairs, c-span's "the presidents" will be on shelves april 23rd, but you can preorder your copy today as cspan.org/thepresidents or wherever books are sold. >> up next on c-span3, nasa scientists providing an update on the latest mars missions and kis cover ris from the jet propulsion laboratory in pasadena, california. >> nasa's jet propulsion
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laboratory presents a series of talks by scientists and engineers who are exploring our solar system and all that lies beyond. ♪ hello, and welcome. good evening. [ applause ] >> thanks. welcome to nasa's jet propulsion laboratory here in pasadena, california. welcome to our monthly lecture series. our two speakers will tell you about the activities of our mars rovers on the red planet including the next rover planned to launch in 2020. and the latest arrival on the red planet, nasa's insight lander. our first speakerer is dr. abigail fraeman. she's a research scientist
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working here at jpl and her work focuses on understanding the rocky bodies in the solar system. she was the campaign lead during the curiosity rover's exploration. she received her ph.d. at washington university in st. louis and completed a post doc at caltech. please welcome dr. freaman. >> thank you so much and i'm so excited to see you guys all here today. what a good crowd. awesome. so, all right, let's get into it. i'll be doing the first half of this talk about our red planet rofrs a ro rovers and insights.
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to start, i'm going to take you back about six months ago from today. it was a monday morning and for the opportunity rover we came in in the morning and we were starting our regular planning as we do every morning for both rovers that are operating on mars. we were parked at this interesting area and we were investigating it with our instruments on the end of the rover arm. and if you take a look at the report, this is a report we have that we've done every single day, we've planned this mission, you can see it reads that opportunity is at the tan bedrock target and the apxs, that's one of our instruments is down. however, a dust storm is our next challenge. a measure of dust level that we call tal has jumped. why did we report this? why do we care about what the dust level in the atmosphere is?
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here's a picture of the rover and as i'm sure most of you in the audience know, the vehicle is powered by solar energy. we have solar panels on top of the rover that give us our power to charge our battery and do our science. when you have dust in the atmosphere, it makes it harder to get power to do science. that monday when we had a dust level of one, the sun looked something like this. so we were interested -- the sun was dimmer than it usually is but we were approaching summer and sometimes we get dust storms in the summer and sometimes their kind of big, sometimes we get researchal level dust storms so we thought this was a regional level storm but we're going to manage our power smartly. we've survived storms before and so this is something tor weary of but not something that we think is horrible. the next day on tuesday when we
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got the reading of what the dust measurement, it had jumped even further. the dust level was up to about three and the sun was slightly fainter. by friday we had realized that this was a pretty massive storm and it was probably going to be pretty bad and probably one of the worst we've ever seen. we got data -- we couldn't even tell how dark the sky was. when we tried to take a picture of the sun, we couldn't see it. but we think the dust level value was something around six. this is what a simulation of what the sun would look like when it's a five. this is friday. we could see from the data that the dust storm was expanding, it was continuing to grew. we knew it was likely to become global. so all we could do was do our best to manage power over the weekend and wait. we were very careful, we canceled some of the down links in an attempt to save power and we sat and waited. so we're waiting the down link
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on sunday, that's when it was supposed to come in. this is what a sun would look like if a level was seven. this is what it would look like if the level was nine. this is what we saw when we got the down link on sunday. we had a level that was above 10.5. so the sun probably looked something like this to the vehicle. this is the highest we've ever measured on the surface of mars for how dark the sky got. we honestly that we were from the vehicle at all. we knew we were probably going to lose contact with the vehicle. and the only thing we could do was to sit, hunker down and wait it out and see what happened. but let's go back a little bit and let's talk about what opportunity was doing before this all happened and the really interesting science that we were doing, why was our arm down on that particular rock? opportunity is our robot field
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geologist on the surface of mars. the payload are instruments that are designed to act like a geologist in the field. we have a tool that we can grind rocks, we have a microscope, we can look up really close to the rock and we have other instruments that we can use to measure the chemistry of the rocks. so we can use all of these tools to tell us about the geology of the environment and to understand the past and the past processes that formed these rocks and shaped these rocks. throughout its traverse, opportunity has started up here and we've creator hopped through the plains. we started in endurance, we traveled to eagle crater. then we traveled to victoria crater and then in 2010, we got to the rim of this giant crater called endeavor crater. and this crater is an exciting
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place for us to study because we know the rocks exposed in the rim of this crater are a lot older than the plains rocks that we has been driving across. so they represent a period of time in mars' history hafs a lot longer ago. so we got to see different environments, different kind of processes, all of their significan signatures were in the rocks. this is also the first time we've been able to investigate the rim of such a large crater on any planet anywhere and that's really important because impact processes, the formation of craters, a universal process across planets in the solar system, so the opportunity to investigate one on another planet is important not only for understanding mars and its history but also how does this process operate across the entire solar system? for the past year, we've been exploring this feature which is about the size of a football field. and this is an area on the rim
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of the crater. the north arrow is pointed to the side. this is to show what it looks like, we're driving down the valley into the inside of the crater and what's really neat is from orbit, this valley looks quite interesting. we see these channels, almost these flow features, so the question we were really interested in answering is what were the processes that formed this particular valley. now we had three kind of ideas that we thought of before we went into the valley, the first was that it formed by a dry avalanche. you had a bunch of rocks that rolled down the hill and carved this out. we didn't think that was likely. the second idea was a debris flow which you can have on slopes and in this case it would be a slurry of mud and rocks or the third option, maybe this is an ancient river channel. so we went down there and we used our instruments to check this out see if we could figure it out. this is what the valley looks like at the top looking down and you guys might look at that and
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say where is it? i don't see it. and it turns out, it's really subtle. this is a subtle feature that gets really well emphasized when we see it from orbit. this is a beautiful view. you can see a shadow, that's our mast right there. but when we got in the valley we did notice something really interesting and we started looking at the rocks. and we found evidence that there's these linear faults that were running up and down the valley. so there's a process here that's happening the faulting these linear faultings along the crater rim and then we took a closure look at the rocks and we could see they were sculpted. there's these more resistant little pebbles sticking up and coming off of these pebbles are these flow lines. so you go, maybe this is evidence here's our river. but when you look carefully at the direction, they're pointed
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uphill. and water doesn't flow uphill. so this isn't water that's shaping these, at least modern day surfaces. this is wind. this is the result of wind erosion in the modern day surface of mars. integrating all of these things we found, we came up with a new hypothesis to consider. maybe it's carved by wind erosion. maybe wind is taking advantage of these pre-existing faults and carving it out. but if they were partially a debris flow or river we might expect to find all of these deposits that would be carried by these events, they'll be at the bottom of the valley. so we have to wait until we get to the bottom before we can say for sure. so we're still exploring. another awesome thing that it exposed that was unexpected were some really interesting rocks. and the rocks that it turned up are unlike any of the rocks that
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we've seen before in the entire 14 years of the mission. it was something completely new. here's a picture of some of these rocks that this big valley was digging up. they have pits in them. we're wondering if this is a weathering. it could be from trapped gasses that were in the rocks. we're not sure. and so we were investigating the chemistry of these rocks. and that outcrop, that was one of the rocks that was nearby to these rocks and what we were trying to do, is how do the composition of these rocks differ from the rocks that were surrounding it. was there some sort of relationship in terms of one melted from another or not. so we were trying to piece together this whole story and that's why we were there, and that's what we were doing when this day in june happened and we lost contact with the vehicle. we did something else really fun in the valley and that was we hit sol 5000 of the mission.
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we wanted to celebrate it. and so we did a first time activity that we had never done for 14 years and that was take a selfie. you've probably seen the selfies from curiosity and curiosity takes those by taking the camera and they look really good and we are kind of jealous. we said the focus is not quite the same, if we take a selfie it will be blurry, but we can do it. and some very smart people put their heads together. they planned this and i think it came out beautifully. and so this was awesome because this is the first time human eyes had seen this size of opportunity since it left earth in 2003. i'm so glad we got this observation and it's really special to commemorate sol 5000. how long is five thousand sols? here is my personal career, plotted along opportunity's traverse. and opportunity does a very special river to me because when
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i was in high school, i actually got to come out to jpl at an outreach program and be here the night that opportunity landed. i got to be in this room, with the science team and that total totally blew my mind. and so i took that night and i said this is great, this mission will last three months, maybe six, and there will hopefully be more stuff going on. but i managed to graduate from high school, went to undergrad. my graduate adviser is on the opportunity science team. so i started doing tactical shifts. i was a dock mentarian. i started a postdock. came here. this mission has been doing a really, really long time.
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[ applause ] >> we do know we haven't heard from opportunity. it's been exactly six months to today. because june 10th was the last time we heard from it and it's january 10th. we do know it's still there. this is a picture we captured from or bit and we could still see the surface. can you see the rover? there she is. so we can see from orbit she hasn't blown away. what we're doing now at jpl is we're trying to do these recovery efforts for the vehicle. we think the temperatures haven't gotten cold enough, we're in summertime, so that's helpful. what we're trying to do is two things, we're going to always be listening for the vehicle. if everything kind of -- if she wakes up, whatever dust has settled on her colsolar panels blows away, we'll hear from her.
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if she can wake up but she doesn't have enough power to call him, what we're doing is sweep and beeps where we're sweeping the frequency ranges that we know she's listening and we're telling her beep if you hear us. we've been doing that campaign for a few months now. we're waiting that there will be a beautiful gust of wind that will clean the panels off and we'll hear from her. this is what the dust storm looked like from orbit. there is another guy on the planet, curiosity. that's our other rover. and this event was so big, it encircled the planet and curiosity saw it as well. this is june 11th. that's what the storm looked like. here's one of those selfies that we took with curiosity. it was a great week for curiosity that week. we used our drill again, we collect add drill sample. we got our drill up, we got this
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drill sample. but you can see in the selfie, there's this dust cloud on the horizon as this global dust storm is approaching. and this is an series of images we took in the wall. we can watch as the mountains on the wall and the crater get harder and harder to see. it's kind of like a smoggy day in l.a. that's what we're seeing here. so the dust storm was really bad for opportunity, but it's a great chance for curiosity for the first time since vicking in the '70s, we were able to make observation on the ground of the dust storm and the affects it has on mars. it's important because it helps us understand more about how these processes start and the affects they have on the surface. curiosity is fortunately equipped not only with the cameras, but we have a weather station on curiosity. so we can make measurements of how the dust storm affected the
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temperature, the pressure, relative humidity, all of these wonderful things that we can put into our models and better understand how these events happen and evolve. this is one of my favorite pictures. this is that drill hole. this is what it looks like on a normal day. you can see, here's the rock, here's some sand nearby. this is what it looked like at the height of the duststorm. it has this kind of unearthly reddish hue. the exposure for this picture is a lot longer. it's really, really dork. we had to expose the photos for curiosity and we had to build that into the margins for our planning. but everything kind of looked really cool weird red color. be but we got a lot of good observations about the environment and what was happening. in september, the storms can take weeks to subtle out of the atmosphere. it turned out there was a lot of
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dust that settled on the vehicle. this is a picture of one of our calibration targets. we have a penny for scale on the rover and that's what the penny looked like. this is in september. right when the dust storm had finished, it seltsed, and curiosity wut pretty settled, but the crater is a windy place. and by december, it's totally clean. the just the regular winds have cleaned off curiosity. what does this mean for opportunity? it's hard to say. it's like trying to predict the weather in london if you're in new zealand. but it's a pretty cool effect of just how mobile this dust is in this modern day martian environment. here's what curiosity looks like and if opportunity is our mobile geologist, curiosity is a mobile chemist and part of the reason that curiosity is such an exciting mission is because it
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has two very special instruments inside the rover that can make advanced measurements. and we need to get samples of rocks that we've drilled inside the rover. we've spent the last about year or so exploring this ridge that's part of this mountain that we're climbing, this mount sharp. we can see kind of climbing up, we're on the side of the picture. but you can see, it's this ridge and this feature we've named vera ruben ridge. she's a remarkable woman and her most well known discovery was that she was the one who made the observations that led to the discovery and she discovered dark matter. this mysterious force that is in everything and we don't know what it is and she was the one who made the very precise measurements of galaxies. on this mission we name major
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features after scientists. we have the dunes and to me personally it was exciting to be able to choose a really predominant female scientist to name this after. and i'm really happy that we're on the ridge and i'm happy with this name. she has several children who are all scientists as well and one of her sons, david, is actually a member of the curiosity science team. so that's -- it was easy to find the family to contact to get their permission because one of their family members was on our team. this is what the ridge looks like from orbit. you can think of the ridge, it's kind of this tanner looking feature. this white line is curiosity's traverse and you can see the biggest thing in this picture, the ridge looks different from the rocks below. we were really curious, we knew these rocks were lake bed deposits. what were the rocks in the ridge?
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and also from orbit we've mapped this mineral called hematite. and the reaction that forms hematite can be favorable to life. we saw this from orbit and we saw it light up along the ridge. and so we were interested in what was causing this. and i'll say on a personal note, one of the chapters on my ph.d. thesis was the discovery and mapping of this mineral. i'm excited to get to this ridge to see what we can find and it's also a little bit scary, because it's what you predict can be tested. my fingers crossed that we find this mineral that i said we would find and hopefully figure it out. we get there. we drive around. we drive to the spot where we have the strongest signature. this is where we need to go. and crossed my fingers, we got our drill sample, i wanted to
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see what was in it, we picked the rock -- excuse me, this is what the rocks in the ridge look like. we found first of all that they were layered rocks. they're these beautiful, beautiful layered rocks and we decided that these rocks are very similar to the rocks below. and these were probably also formed in a lake similar to the rocks below. but getting back to the story of the drill. i'm really excited. i had been waiting five years to know if this mineral was there. we went to drill and that's what happened. and what happened was the rock was too hard. and the vehicle sensed that the rate that the drill was making progress was basically zero and we stopped drilling because we couldn't get through the rocks. i guess this makes sense, we're sitting on this ridge, it's a ridge because it's harder than the rocks around it, and the rocks are really hard. so it was a little disappointing but we're engineers, we're scientists, let's try again.
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and so we did. and this rock was too hard and it turns out a lot of the rocks were just so hard. so mars threw a challenge at us and it was disappointing because in particular, this was the drill sample of all the drill samples in the mission, i wanted to see what was in this drill sample. it's a challenge. we put on our engineering hats, we put on our geologist hats, and i think this was a cool part of the mission where we really worked together to solve this problem. so the engineers went and they looked at what can we do to make the drill more powerful? and then orientatin the geology said what can we do to find a rock that might be a little bit softer. how do you know if this is going to be drillable versus those other rocks. and we came up with three things to look for. let's look for the broad scale
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topography. we looked at the way the rock was weathering with respect to these white veins that are cutting through. if the veins were standing up with respect to the rest of the rock, maybe the rock was soft. if the veins were recessed, maybe it was hard. and also we have a brush. if you look real closely at where you can brush, sometimes you can see scratches in the rocks. but the rocks we see scratches on we see there may be a little bit more easier to drill. we put on our geology hats. we looked at a lot of pictures. we picked this rock, we feel pretty good about this one. we crossed our fingers. we waited for the data and then we got a full drill hole. so this is my favorite drill. we have 19 drill holes with curiosity right now. this one is my favorite hands down. because i didn't know if we were going to get it and i was so
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excited to get it. it turned out, the mineral, hematite, it's there. not a huge amount, but the orbital detection is correct and we're looking at the bigger picture to see what does this mean about the crater. we've gotten two more holes on the ridge. we've got this interesting gray one and this one we got right before christmas and this is what we're doing right now. we're sitting in front of this drill sample and we're analyzing it to figure out what it's made of. we found some school stuff. we have one very happy person on the -- many very happy people on the team. but i'm very happy and it's been a great campaign. but what's next? so next we're going to keep slimi climbing up this mountain. the rocks are beautiful to look at. i love the ridge, but i'm
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excited to go to new places. these rocks we see from orbit have a signature of clay minerals and they have the potential to preserve organic molecules. and we see all these color changes, different rocks, different environments that we're going to get to explore as we drive up through time up this mountain. i'll leave you talking about the last rover which is this rover that we're launching in 2020 which is named mars 2020. it will get a new name. mars 2020 is our little collection rover. and really the big science of this rover is going to do, it's going to drive around and collect little rock samples and collects these cores and bring them back to earth so we can annu
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analyze them in a laboratory. we just announced, we picked a landing site. we're looking forward to landing in this place. we're going to land somewhere in this yellow circle and the crater, this is the rim of the crater, it's exciting because leading into it, we see this feature which is actually an ancient delta. so we know there was a river coming into this crater. this crater was filled with a lake. and there was a delta that was feeding into these calm waters forming this shape. we can see the minerals in this delta are what you would expect to form in this environment and a really exciting environment if you're looking for a place that may have preserved signs of past life. so stay tuned for more from that. and i'll leave you with really the latest and greatest. these are pictures that we took just in a building down the road at jpl at the current state of build for this rover. these were taken a week or two ago. this is what the clean room
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looks like. we build everything in a clean room to make sure we don't get gunk and particles to clog the electronics. this guy back there in the corner, that's going to be the sky crane. those are going to be the thrusters that's going to help the vehicle land. and i think most excitingly, that box that's all wrapped up back there, that's the chassie for the vehicle. we're starting construction on this and really looking forward to launching and get our samples and bringing them back to earth. that's all i have for you guys talking about rovers. and i think our next speaker will talk to you about our most recent neighborhood and and a l. [ applause ] >> pretty cool stuff. thank you so much.
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it's time for some insight from our next speaker. we have a science systems engineer working on the mars insight mission. in this role she coordinates with theteam, to accomplish the mission's goals. dr. barrett received a masters of engineering from cornell university, taught english in post-war bosnia for 18 months, and then returned to school to receive a ph.d. in astronomy from the university of hawaii. after that, she worked for eight years as a flight controller for the international space station, before joining jpl and the insight mission in 2015, please welcome dr. barrett. >> thank you guys for coming. so as abigail mentioned, insight is our newest addition to mars, and the biggest difference you can see, no wheels. so we're a lander. we stay in one place.
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insight is very different from the other missions. the other missions are investigating the surface of mars. they are doing a great job analyzing the surface of mars, insight is looking at the interior of mars. so inside is a geo physical station. we will suuse sisemology and he and the wobble of mars as it rotates to determine the interior structure of mars. what does the core look like? what is the crust. what does the mantle look like? we have been able to do that for earth of course and able to do that for the moon but we've never been able to do it for the other rocky planets so we're very much looking forward to mars as a intermediary between the size of the earth and the size of the moon, to show us the different types of terrestrial planet evolution. where the insight began. it launched on cinco de mayo, from vandenburg air force base on the west coast. first interplanetary launch from the west coast. launched 4:05 a.m. and beautiful launch. as long as you were not at the public viewing site. if you were there, you saw
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something kind of like that. it was very dense fog. a lot of people had described it as the best launch they ever heard. but at least we launched. after that, we began a six month journey to mars. it took us six months to get there with about six trajectory correction maneuvers along the way to make sure we landed at the exact right spot on mars. and then on cyber monday, that's the 26th of november, right after thanksgiving, we got this great thanksgiving pleresent an just before noon insight successfully landed on mars and we were all very excited, you can see even in the engineers in the control room, our project managers celebrating. i was lucky enough to be able to spend that time with the scientists and the instrument engineers. and as soon as that first picture came down from mars, they immediately crowded around and were looking at where they could put the instruments on surface and how many rocks they could see and immediately getting into work in the room while we're still watching the
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landing. and then of course no story of insight's landing on mars is complete without thanking our marco companions, we had two little cube satellites that went to mars with us. it was a technology demonstration for the first cube sets interplanetary, they were able to provide relay data during the landing so we didn't have to hold our breath during the landing and wait to see if we got a beep from the surface of mars. instead, with replaying the telemetry to earth for us, we could breathe a little bit better. so marco is now continuing and on its way around the sun and they were very helpful in getting us to mars. so okay, where did we land? well, we landed on mars. good start. if you land on the wrong planet, it looks really bad. we're about 375 miles or about 600 kilometers north of curiosity. that's the big rover that abigail was able to talk about. so we're sharing that same general area but we're in a
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slightly different location. we zoom in, a little bit on that landing site, this is our landing ellipse where we spended to land and those navigators and landing team people can do their job pretty will because we landed right there in the ellipse. you zoom in a little closer and mars reconnaissance orbiters used their high rise instrument to get detailed images of where insikt has landed. the big images are a pre-landing image to show you the relative location and the heat shield landed up north by that big crater, the parachute and back shell landed down south and if you look closely at the parachute image, you can see the deflated parachute lying on the surface of mars. and then the lander, was right there, in the center, and you can see that we even created a little blast zone around us as our thrusters came down for blowing, blowing off that loose dusty material from the surface of mars. well, what did we do after landing? well, actually 30 minutes after landing, we had to deploy our
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solar array so we could depend rate power to continue with the mission. we did about 30 minutes after landing but unfortunately due to the way the missions worked we couldn't get confirmation of that deployment until about five hours after landing so that first landing day was a little bit sense until we heard those solar rays were successfully deployed and we could all bo to happy hour and celebrate a little bit. we have great solar panels. i think they look a little bit like mooky mouse ears. we checked out the ins meants. attached. a good start. we powered them on for 15 minutes to make sure they're okay and you have never seen happier scientists for the first 15 minutes of data, they analyzed it for day, those 15 minutes of data. after that, we did a lot of surveying of the workspace in front of us, so if you see the public images coming from insight, a long stretch of time
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taking pictures of dirt, we were taking pictures of our workspace and what it looked like in front of lander and very few rocks. we couldn't have been happier. we had to decide where to deploy our instruments and the purple bluish outline shows where we could put the instruments, the reach of the arm trying to deploy those instruments out. and even more fun, this little area right here, you zoom in, and there's a little bitty rock there, and that as we came down for landing you can see the divots along the ground and it seems to have rolled along the ground with the thrusters pushing it and scientisting called it rolling rock because rolling stone is taken. and one what are the instruments. one is sise mometer. it is going to listen to the seismic waves to investigate the interior of mars, house are those seismic waves generated. mars quake, not earthquakes. and meteorites striking the
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surface and it is so sensitive, it can detect a deflection and can detect movement smaller than the radius of a hydrogen atom a very sensitive ins meant. wts is the thermal shield to protect it from the environment and protect it from the thermal variations, and protect it from the wind, because the sise mometer is so sensitive, you want to protect it from the wind rattling it. another instrument we have is hpq, our heat flow measurement probe. it has a self penetrating mold trkts looks like a little nail, that buries itself under the ground, five meters or 16 feet deep. it contains the tether, the tether contains temperature sensors that can measure the heat flow coming out of mars. it also has a raid om ter that is attached to the back of insight on the deck and can be used to measure the temperature of the ground using the raid om ter so this one is going to detect heat coming out of the
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planet. we also have another set of instruments that were designed, particularly to help our sise mometer to understand the noise that it is seeing but also could be used to do stealth science. so we have an environmental sensor suite. we call it the auxiliary payload sensor suite. or apss for short. one of them is the pressure sensor. and you can see the little inlet for the pressure sensor here orn the deck. the sensor is buried in the depth of the lander. and we have twins, which measure wind speed, direction, and temperature. and they look like little fingers sticking out in the wind either way. and then you have ifg, which is our magnetometer, measuring the magnetic field in particular to make sure we understand magnetic fields generated by the land and how it could affect the sise mometer but also measure the local magnetic field of which mars has very little but we are still going to measure. >> and then we have another sheermts that we can do that doesn't take its own instrument because it will use the medium antenna that we already have to talk to earth.
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the two little cones on either side. and by measuring the change in the little signals as mars is rotating around, we can actually track accurately up to ten centimeters the location of insight and how it's wobbling around. and thus how mars is wobbling as it rotates and just like you spin an egg, a hard boiled egg spins different than a nonhard boiled egg, that's what it will help us measure to help determine what is inside of mars. we also have something called larry which is on the backside of the deck, it's near our calibration target and it is a laser retro reflector, so you can shoot a laser at it from a satellite orbiting in orbit, and it can get the reflection back to help accurately determine the location of insight. that's an italian space agency contribution, and then of course, for everybody who submitted their names to go to mar, we've got the chips with all your names on it also on the deck of the lander. so that's great. where instruments are on the deck, and twins, you can see on either side, they're bolted to
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the deck, they stay there and the other instruments located on the deck, but surface deployment is the key for insight. and the quality of a seismic station is directly related to the quality of installation, and what does that mean? well, in viking one, in 1976, we actually had a sise mometer on the mission. and you can see it there on the deck. and not on the ground. so on the deck. above legs that were dampened, and in a vehicle that could shake in the wind. so as a sise mometer, it wasn't measures the best data. instead, the principle investigator for this mission says one of his big contributions, i have an idea, put the sise mometer on the ground and maybe we can get better data so that's what insight wants to do. additionally, hv cube is on the deck when we land where it is supposed to be but you don't want it there when you start hammering because the engineers assure us that's not going to be a good idea so you want to put
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that on the ground as well. after we traveled all the way to mar, the instruments are still a meter away from the ground. we need to get them on the ground. how do we do that? we want to get sites on the ground and we use a robotic arm or instrument deployment arm to do that. and it has a little grapple hanging off of it, that we use, so basically, we're playing an interplanetary game, those little carnival claw games you can do, and in this case, unfortunately, if you mess up or miss it, you can't put in a few more quarters and try again so you got to go nice and slow to get it right the first time. to make it easier, we do provide a camera here called the deployment camera on the arm to look down the arm and another one underneath the lander that looks out in front of the lander, the context camera, it is not completely blind. well, here, what have we done lately? at the end of the year, in december, we actually deployed sites to the surface of mars. so now, that was so cool, you bot to watch it again.
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there it goes. flying through the air. and it's safely on the surface of mars. you notice the tether is still attached to the vehicle. and if kind of flutters in the wind a little bit. that's going to mess up our measurements of the sise mometer so the next thing we do is we drop the tether to the ground. if you missed it one more time, we let the tether go and it falls to the ground. that lets the tether slack out and then we do a few more weeks of commissioning before we are going to move on. so what does the rest of deployment look like? well, this is a simulation that was created before insight landed. it's very accurate. except we have fewer rocks in our area that we're deploying instruments so we're even better off. here you can see we're deploying sites to the surface of mars just like we did in december. once it is on the ground, as we said, several weeks of checkouts to make sure it is level and the instruments are pfrping correct and as low as possible and isolated the sise mometer as completely as possible from the
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landing before we move on. after that, we go back to pick up the wts, that's the wind and thermal shield again, and we are going to put that directly on top of the sise mometer. so once we deploy wts, we cannot physically interact with the sise mometer anymore, that's why we take our time before going to the next step. wts deployment is expected in mid january, so it is coming up soon. you can see where we pick it up, it drops a little skirt. that allows it to have better contact with the ground when we put it over sise, to protect sise better from the environment. once wts is on the ground and we confirm will is mo problems with sise underneath, then we are going to move on and go back to get hb cubed and deploy it to the surface. this simulation actually shows the instruments pretty losely to where we're deploying them on the surface of mars. sise will go to one side and hb cubed to the other. they want to be approximately a meter apart at the grapples so they don't interfere with one another in a negative way. that way the wtf shadow does not
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interfere with hb cube measurement and the hammering does not trouble sise, even though we will use it for some cool measurements because we're generating a seismic signal. once hb cubed is safely on the grund, we make sure it is in a good location and release the mole to the surface so it can begin the penetration phase. what does it look like? the mole hammering peck nix, it is like a long nail with a hammer inside of it, which saves time. so there is a motor here what is going to spin a weight and lift it up, and as it lifts the weight, it is actually compressing a spring above it, and then the spring pushes that weight down really rapidly, and hits the tip, and moves it slightly into the ground with every strike. so it is slowly hammering its way in. and there is actually a spring at the top that absorbs some of the recoil so it doesn't just bounce in place. as we go down, we will go about 50 centimeters at a time and pause and let the soil cool off for a pew days and do a thefrmle conductivity measurement. and then move on.
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because once we've left one depth, we cannot come back to it, it stays in the surface. we go all the way down to three to five meters, up to 16 feet beneath the ground taking measurements as we go. once we're there, we stay in that configuration for the rest of the mission. that is for one mars year or two earth years and measure the heat flow coming out of the planet use using the temperature sensors scattered along the science tether that we've dragged behind the mole for the rest of the mission, figuring out the heat coming out of mars, and therefore providing a constraint on the various models. this is where insight is right now. we're looking forward very much to seeing wts deployment coming up soon. middle of the month. we expect hb cubed deployment end of jan recollection early february, if everything goals smoothly and moving on to the hammering phase and we're looking very much for the exciting science to come. so please follow insight as you can, as we go forward on mars. thank you.
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>> okay. thanks so much, liz. we're going to get set to take your questions now. if you'll come down to the microphone in the center aisle for your questions, and while we're getting set up, i would like to show you a cool new online tool for getting to know more about the insight mission. it is called experience insight. and it's a 3d interactive model of the insight lander. you can rotate it in 3d. you can deploy the solar arrays and instruments yourself. you can take control of the robotic arm. to get a feel for how it works. and you can click around on the different spacecraft components to learn more about what they do. experience insight works on your computer as well as on your mobile devices. so check it out at eyes.national.gov/insight. and so with abbey and liz, will join me back up here, we'll get set for your questions. and it looks like we do have
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one. okay. >> testing. all right. great. i had a question about the mars 2020 rover. you mentioned that one of the exciting things about it is that is going to be taking rock samples, and bringing them back to earth. how is the return process going to happen? >> yes, that's a great question. and we're still kind of talking through details. we have a lot of options for possible ways to do it. broadly, the architecture is probably going to look something like we are going to send another rover, a fetch rover, that's going to collect the samples, we're going to launch them, a mars ascent vehicle, or mav, to launch them back in orbit and some details about how it will orbit mars and pick it up or send it directly back to earth. but it will be a multi-step process. >> thank you. >> sure. >> a couple of questions. first of all, for the drilling problems you were having, is there a percussive element with the rotational element, and there is a hammer drill effect that you've used and has that
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worked out or what's the status with that? >> yes, so the question is about the curiosity drill and so the curiosity drill, yes, it is a percussive drill, a rotary percussive drill, so that means it spins and percusses both. we attempted to do a couple of drills that i didn't show using rotary only and didn't get very far. but those drills that we tried with the rock was still too hard, that was rotary and percussive kind of at our maximum percussion level. the drill has several percussion levels and it has a smart sensor on it and it can figure out when to up the rotation or up the percussion so we maxed it out at the level five and we still found we weren't making any progress. >> is there a way to use the actuators in the arm to assist in the percussion element, so you could have the arm pushing at alternating frequencies to aid the effectiveness of the percussion effect? >> so yes, i'm not sure, the arm
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itself, so how the drill used to work, it had these kind of prongs that would put down on the surface and then we had a feed mechanism that would extend and the arm would be completely stationary. the feed mechanism is no longer operating. so the engineers actually did some really amazing work figuring out how to operate the drill without the feed mechanism so fully extended so think about how you would use a drill how you would use it anyway, pushing straight down and we have the weight of the arm being a gravity vector, i don't think we could percuss the arm as fast as we can percuss the drill. >> i wouldn't recommend it. >> and hazards associated with that. and something to occur to, and i will brick it up to find out why it wasn't done with the solar panels everybody's thought of some sort of like a windshield wiper type effect and i have even heard of artificial muscles that could be used to have the action with very little energy requirement. or you could turn them on angle
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and shake them or use air jets. surely, you must have come close to trying something. what did you think of, and why didn't you do do it? >> i remember when i came, i actually asked that question, why don't we have windshield wiper that can just occasionally go across, and the answer is, as an engineering thing, that's another motor, you have to heat, you've got to make sure it can work, there is a lot of items there where we know if you size the solar rays big enough and if you get these occasional dust cleaning events that we tend to be okay as we are now. so it just hasn't been a requirement at this point. >> and just a reminder, the requirement for the spirit and opportunity was 90 sols and it was easier to build bigger solar panels that would get you to 90 sols hen it would be to try to find one of these devices that would add complexity and it has been a gift that they lasted so long and it has been a gift that we've had these cleaning events. >> with 2020 hindsight which of course is very suspect, would you say after six months, that maybe it might have been a good idea to try one of those
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mechanisms? >> absolutely not. i think the way they're designed was perfect. and beautiful. and i think that they've far exceeded what they were designed to do. >> okay. >> thanks for the question. >> hi, thanks for the presentation. could you explain in a little more detail the mechanism behind the hp 3 moles. specifically you've got a nail there, i don't know what that is, eight, ten, 12 inches something like that? >> maybe 30 inches. sorry, 12 inches. >> okay, so i guess that. and then whatever material is attaching it to the ins meant on the surface, must be a softer malleable material because it presumably is coiled up somehow inside the instrument? >> it doesn't actually rotate, it just percusses its way down. it won't actually rotate. it pulls out the tether and the teth ser stored in the portion
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on the surface and gets pulled out as it gets deeper. >> you have a tether that is softer material that is attached to the mail, and so how are you able to, how is it able to transmit the force, as you get deeper and deeper into the ground, through that softer material. that device that, is able to do that? >> the device is in the nail itself. >> oh, okay. >> it hammers itself deeper and pulls the tether behind it so it doesn't need to transfer anything to the tether, the teth ser flexible and thin and it couldn't transfer any force to it. >> we would all like to be able to get self drilling nails for home improvement projects. >> hello. is there ever a situation where a rover would be planned that would assist a previous rover? is there anything that you could think of that would make that an opportunity that you would go for? >> yeah, i think it would be totally cool if we could go send a rover and nudge another one. right now, where the rovers have
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landed, there are thousands of kilometers apart, and so you know, our current rover, to get from one to another, would take a mars record world record amounts of driving to do it. in the future, we are thinking about ways we might want to design groups of rovers that might go to a single site and how might that enable explanation a, exploration and what is an ideal number and things we think about for future exploration. >> you helped to select the landing site for 2020, right? >> i was part of the science community who provided input, yes. >> so one of the sites that was being considered was gail crater, right? >> yes so one of the sites was guestav crater, one 69 areas we, one of the areas was the crater where the spirit rover landed and spirit discovered interesting features that we thought maybe was a sign of past life but maybe they weren't a
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sign of past life and mars is a big planet with lots to explore so in the end the science rationale, it is much more compelling to go to jessrel, and there is interesting stuff at the sites we've been to so don't rule out a mission to go back there. >> last one. how hard rock does the hp 3 hammer be able to dig down? have you been able to sort through something like granite? >> it actually can't go through rock at all. so if we hit a rock dead-on, then we will be stopped by the rock. it can't go through it. however, if we hit a rock a little bit edge-on, it can actually kind of start going a little bit sideways and we can actually measure the tilt of the history p cubed so we can see how deep it is, even if it is going a little bit sideways so it may be able to slip around a rock completely or go off sideways and keep going. if we hit a flat rock essentially dead-on,
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unfortunately, we couldn't get through that. >> thank you. >> i want to ask about the solar energy versus nuclear. we started the first landing on mars with solar. and then we went into nuclear. and went back to solar. and now, if solar had the problems that you have to clean, why didn't you use nuclear? and i see bill here, who is the one who can answer that question, too. >> well, i will say for insight we didn't need nuclear, solar was going to work just fine. we landed within four degrees of the equator, so we're very close to the equator. and luckily, we just happened to be slightly tilted south, which is the perfect tilt for us. we oversized our solar array so we could make sure we could survive one full martian year including through the winter. and the good thing is, if you can survive one martian year, there's nothing that says you can't survive the next martian year. so there's always opportunities for the future.
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but we didn't need to go to nuclear to make the mission work. so we were able to do it with solar. >> yeah, but what about the dust? >> there's the dust that we will always keep an eye on, if there is a dust event, and we know we will get dust from the array, but we oversized them knowing it would likely to happen. >> and dust cleaning events. >> and are you going to go again with nuclear. >> it goes back to what is the requirement of the mission. what science do we need to do. and that, it drives how long does it need to last and how much power do we need. so nuclear is going a be a lot more expensive, more complicated, and it will get you more power, though, so for spirit and opportunity, we used solar panels, because in terms of the power and how long we thought we needed to do the science, to do, that was sufficient. for curiosity, and for mars 2020, we're using nuclear because those vehicles just require so much more power, it would be impossible to size a solar array that would be big enough. so what's the mission that you want to do? how much power do you need? how long does it need to last, that will tell you which power source you want to use.
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and remember it is all tradeoffs in terms of cost complex ty. >> okay. thank you. >> >> well, i'll give folks another chance, if anybody else has a question. i'll ask you guys if you want to get a little science-y about that heat probe measurement. what do you learn from taking the temperature of mars at these different levels? i mean why do you want to know the temperature at multiple levels? what does it tell you about mars. >> one of the things we want to measure is actually, as the seasons come about on mar, it heats the ground and you actually have a heat pulse that goes into the ground, and you want to see how deep that heat pulse can go and also you immediate to be able to remove that from the total calculations of how much heat is floating out of mars so you want the measurements at lots of different points. also, we don't know how deep we will actually make it into the surface of mars. so we would hate to have the heat probe sensor be at the very end of the tether and that be the one sensor sticking out at the top of the surface and the rest of the probe be underneath and that would just be terrible so you want sensors along the
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way to make sure as you go down you get some sensors into the ground. >> and i can just add from a geo physics perspective, when all rocky planets form, they have some residual heat on their core and that heat is from just the energy from the planet forming and acreting and also any radio active elements that maybe trapped down there are going to decay and warm up and that heat on earth, that's what drives the convection, that's what drives plate tectonics, that's why we have earthquakes and volcanos, so the question, a planet as maul as mars, how much heat did it have, how did much did it cool over time and how much heat producing and you need that number for models to backtrack over time. >> you can do models for different variations but this various will help the models to be considered at least feasible. >> i know in december last year, there was a beautiful picture release of this ice crater on mars that was discovered. i'm not sure if that was by jpl
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or not but what are the scientific implications of that discovery, according to you guys? >> i missed that story when it went by. >> i don't know a ton about it. i saw a little bit of a muse story. >> the mars expression, i think, right? >> we know there is water on mars. there's water at the poles of mars so it actually have ice caps that are permanent and also that freeze the atmosphere on the ice caps. think of earth in the winter time if our atmosphere actually froze the ice at the poles which would be really unique, that actually happens on mars, so we know there is water ice and co 2 ice on mars. the fact that in a crater that perhaps is shadowed a lot of the year, you could still have some sort of ice permanently there or for some point of the year there. it doesn't surprise me. i don't know where on mars that crater was so i don't know exactly how surprised to be. >> gotcha. thank you. >> hi there. so you said with curiosity, the rocks that you kept trying to
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drill into were too hard. isn't finding a softer rock change what you're going to find once you drill into it? >> maybe. >> okay. >> yeah, but getting any rock samples, is better than getting none. and we can do things, we can measure the chemistry and kind of the properties and you can see the chemistry is kind of in the family with what we've been looking at. does that mean that the minerals are the same? does it mean that the little bits in there are the same? we'll never know. but getting one sample is better than no samples. >> thanks. >> hir, you can go a little bit more into the details about what we can expect to learn from the wobble of mars? are we looking at different densities and trying to find a density gradient through the planet or what exactly are we looking at? >> particularly the size of the car, with a hard boiled egg, if you spin a hard boiled egg versus one that hasn't been, it will wobble slightly different. we are looking at how mars
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wobbles over time and sense tivity from the experiment, we can see not only the big wobbles but the tinily little wobbles on top of that. so we have measurements of the big wobble from 20 years ago from previous missions and even 20 years before that, when we go all the way back to things like viking. you can go back far enough that we have a few data points. insight will give us another data point and then in particular high resolution of the itty-bitty wobbles on top of it. from that, you can constrain the models that say how much mars should wobble depending on how big its core is and a little bit what it is made out of on the inside. >> are you hoping to see any kind of evolution in the measures that we've taken in the last 20 years or is too small of a geological time scale. >> we will be able to see the big procession of the mars' spin axis but in terms of the little things, insight is the only thing that would have the fidelity to do that, but we wouldn't be able to compare that with previous missions, but the longer time span of 40 years
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gives us enough time to look at a maul change. >>, a small change. >> thank you. >> with insight, are you going to be able to compare mars to earth, in terms of whether or not it has a molten core or how large it is and what other features of comparison like the magnetic poles and things like that? >> yeah, that's actually the goal of the insight is to understand better this terrestrial evolution of planets. we've got the data for earth. we've got the data for the moon. which is formed a little bit differently. and it's small enough that it didn't have the same exact processes. we really want to see this data from mars to see the intermediate mix of a planet that never had plate tectonics, so actually, we think its current structure locks in what it looked like when it finished forming four billion years ago. we want to understand, does it have a solid core, or not. how big is that core? we have about, a big various in it, we want to get it down about
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a factor of four better than we know right now, how big is that core exactly. and how thick is the krufrt. how does that vary. all of those answers are what insight is trying to look at, is that interior structure that we can't see from the surface. >> you already know that it has a molten core? >> we think it does but it's still uncertain. so that's what insight is actually trying to look at. >> okay. and given some theories that the moon was actually crashed into the earth, and then separated into two bodies, do we think anything like that ever happened at mars? >> we know mars has had some really big impact. of course, we can see the craters on the surface of mars. mars' moons we don't think formed as the say way as erg's moon. they look small captured asteroid type things but mars of course has had impacts over the life of its formation. whether it had a big one early in its formation, that is a little bit harder to tell.
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>> so i love mars' moons because they're super weird and we super don't know how they're there. and there's really, there's two schools of thought. the asteroids, they really, from a distance, they look just like asteroids, but then it turns out dynamically, it is hard to get asteroids and capture them and get them into the orbit that we see mars moons in and it is a lot easier if you have a big impact and jaxa is sending a big mission to one of the moons of mars and there is a u.s. instrument on there that will land and pick up a sample and bring it back and hopefully those analyses will tell us, is it chunko mars, and impact from mars and like the meteorites, we see, it might be an asteroid so we could solve one of these big solar system questions about what is the deal with mars' moons. >> thank you. >> hi. for the insight craft, we talk about the sise mometer and the mole. there are other ins meants on
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that vehicle, could you talk about some of the science that you're planning for those instruments or are they for support? >> it's a combination. they are both supportive and they can do their own science. we call it stealth science. so there is a pressure sense ter, the atmospheric pressure. we have the twins, that measures the wind and the temperature of the atmosphere, and between those, we're looking at things how does the atmosphere behave, we can do very high precision measurements of the atmosphere and what the little local eddies look like, if there are dust devils coming through, how often do they happen, we have the magnetometer looking at what is the inherent magnetic field at mars which is very, very weak but we're trying to look for that. so we've bgot those three since instrument supporting the sise mometer and heat probe as well. >> thank you. and are there any cameras that you are going to be using for science or just support? >> we do use some of the cameras for science. so we had to do a lot of the camera work for our workspace
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imaging but the geologists love looking at the dirt and the rocks close up and of course we wilt do more pan rammas looking around the lander to see more of the geology around the area watching actually one of the things we are trying to do is watch a little pile of dirt that happened when we dropped the tether to the ground and we want to see the particles and how fast based on the wind that is blowing in the air. >> thank you. >> hi, just a couple of questions, actually, it seemed as though in one of the slides for the upcoming mission in 2020 that in lowering the lander there seemed to be another craft, if you will with boosters to help, help it land softly. what is the objective with that other craft, if you will, fly away or is there hope if possible to utilize that craft later on? >> yes, so that craft is called the sky crane. and that is actually the same
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landing system that we used for curiosity. so how it is going to work, it will be coming intellectual the atmosphere and we will do the parachute and slow it down and deploy the back shell and lower it, and lower it on the bridle from the sky rain. what happens is the thrusters on the sky crane will slow it down enough that we can touch very gently on the ground. you can't put thrusters on a rover because you need wheels, where are you going to put the thrusters so we will deploy it but then after ha we will cut the tether and send the sky crane as far away as possible because you don't want it to land on the vehicle. and in fact, a fun story from curiosity's landing is one of the first pictures we took, there is like a little smudge off in the distance and it could be dirt on the lens, but it's kind of pointed in the direction the sky crane went. and we know there was a lot of extra hydrosene on the sky crane so it might be a bit of an explosion from when it landed but we want to get it as far away as fast as possible from the vehicle, because the vehicle is the main important thing. >> i guess i was wondering if you guys wanted to utilize it
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later on, to maybe collect those rock samples, if possible, to get mother thing. but the second question is, what makes a team decide to land a rover in an area that seems to might have water in the past, versus going somewhere closer to where you feel is the water or the ice caps or somewhere close to the ice cap, things like that. >> that's a really good question. and it's a bit of a complicated answer but there's kind of two main drivers. the first thing is even though the 2020 rover will be nuclear powered, there still are restrictions on how far north or south you can go, because as you go closer to the pole, the temperature variations become very grate and you need to so much energy heating the rover that it makes it hard. so you're restricted to a latitude range. and then you are also starting to get into interesting questions about planetary protection, which is a phrase we use a lot, and it means both kind of protecting our planet, from samples we bring back, in case there is any killer bugs,
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but also, protecting the planet we land on from any forward contamination, and it turns out requirements near areas where you might have liquid water are really, really strict, so it makes it difficult to land there. you want to make sure your mission is really, really clean. and we think there is a lot of really good science to do in the sights that we picked and the idea is if mars had life in the past, maybe the old rocks would be a great place to look. >> thank you. a chemistry question for you. so you mentioned that curiosity is the chemist that analyzes for certain organic compounds in the soil. i'm just wondering how does it determine the structure of these compounds? does it use mass speck industry or nmr or something similar. >> it has an instrument called sam, sample and mars and it is a gas chromatograph and mass spectrometer and we take the sample and bake it in oven which
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is part of the reason it is so energy intensive, we heat the sample up to hundreds of degrees centigrade and measure the masses of the gases coming off. >> thank you. >> i have a pretty simple thing about the dust storm, but the question about the sky crane prompted me to want to share just a personal observation. watching that landing, and having read about it in the lead-up to it, and then watching it, watching you all in the, you know, in the control room, and your reaction, and everything, was so exciting, i mean to the point where in the career that i was in, i was a lawyer, and i watched this and thought, first of all, the whole rue goldberg, whoever came up with the idea, to pull off that landing, blew my mind. but then to do it successfully, and to see the joy and the satisfaction and the accomplishment in the room, i
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looked at it and i said there was nothing that was ever going to happen in my career that would ever give me that kind of satisfaction and joy and i left that career. and i'm much happier. so thank you. the question is, what causes a dust storm of that magnitude? you know, a planet-wide dust storm on mars where the atmosphere is relatively thin, compared to earth, and what would precipitate it specifically to happen at that time? is this something that is connected to solar wind? or just the at fevatmosphere on mars it several? other processes. do we know? >> if he know just let us know. no. >> so there are meteors that study the process on mars and it starts in summer time with warmer ground and you start to have the differences in temperatures and you have what start to become active lifting centers of dust and not one big
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giant dust storm and you have a couple of active lifting centers that start to lift and for the most recent one, we saw them pop up kind of around acidalia and why it was so bad for opportunity, it was one of the active centers that was right next door to opportunity rather than part way around the planet and you have them start to lift. and if you have enough of them, and they become big enough, they interact with stuff in the southern hemisphere and that's when it starts to get bad and really big, and it sits in a basin, with a giant impact and you start interacting with each other and picking up the dust that is sitting down there, that is when things cycle in on itself and it becomes this huge planetary circ cling event and this is a known phenomenon. we know dust storms have been going on every couple of mars dust years, we get global tuft storms. it is not a surprise. but it is an interesting phenomenon. and some of the instruments
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curiosity found, we found that the seasonal differences dropped by tens of degree, i don't urnle differences where the nights were warmer and the days were cooler and we could measure how it affected the relative humidity, we could look at how it affects the pressure with different temperatures your pressure is going to change, and all these neat interlocking systems that happened that we were able to get a good measure ott on from the ground. >> and year to year, we know when dust storm system is and be able to say if a dust storm is going to happen, that's not where we're quite at yet. >> one of the mysteries of mars. >> any other questions tonight? if not, i guess we'll stop there. thanks to all of our speakers. [ applause ] >> and thank you very much to awful you for being here and for watching us. join us for next mon's show when we will focus on the world of
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skri scientific ballooning. so we'll see you then. good night. . washington state governor jay inslee today released a video announcing he will run for president and plans to focus his campaign on climate change. >> hi, governor. what do you have to say about climate change. >> a lot. we have got to stop global warming. >> everyone in this country knows. >> climate is changing. >> reduce carbon pollution. >> new energy futures. >> climate change. >> climate change. >> we should be dealing with climate change. >> climate change. >> we need to defeat clichlt change. >> that's what i believe. >> we're the first generation to feel the sting of climate change. and we're the last that can do something about it. we went to the

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