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Thread: Russia, Europe land probe on Mars

  1. #1
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    Russia, Europe land probe on Mars

    On Wednesday, at about 17:42 Moscow time, the Russian space agency Roscosmos, in partnership with the European Space Agency, will attempt something it has failed to do since the heyday of the Soviet space program in the 1970s: landing an unmanned probe on the surface of Mars.

    The mission, known as ExoMars, has been in the works for years. It is a two-phase cooperative project with ESA, a conglomerate of European national space agencies. Wednesday's mission is considered a demonstration run for a bolder mission slated for 2020.

    Despite being one of the most decorated space programs in history, Russia has had an especially challenging time with Mars. The last successful mission was conducted in the early 1970s, but every attempt before and after has failed. The United States, meanwhile, has seen great success there.

    The mission is likewise significant for the Europeans, who have never landed a successful probe on Mars. The last European mission, Beagle 2, landed but never deployed its solar panels, and so contact with the probe was lost before it reached the planet's surface.

    ExoMars, a 1.5 billion euro ($1.65 billion) project, was conceived as a joint European-American mission to Mars. But in 2012, U.S. President Barack Obama adjusted his space agency's course, and NASA withdrew. Roscosmos, eying an opportunity to reach Mars, stepped in to assume the burden.

    However, Russia's involvement is heavily stacked toward the later, 2020 ExoMars mission, which will feature a Russian-built landing vehicle carrying a European rover to explore the Martian surface. Russia's main contribution to this first mission is providing the rocket that launched the spacecraft in March.


    Graphic depicting Sunday's separation of Schiaparelli and TGO near Mars European Space Agency
    More: The Final Countdown: Russia and Europe To Land On Mars

    Nice to see international cooperation continuing in space, despite all the political bs back on Earth

  2. #2
    Radical Centrist BigLeRoy's Avatar
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    The Europeans may beat America to the BIG goal of being the first to discover life on Mars. I say this because the ExoMars 2020 probe will have the capability of drilling fairly deep into the Martian surface, which is where we've GOT to look for any bacterial life. None of the American probes yet sent to Mars have had that kind of capability.
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    I think the Russians may be behind in areas of aeronautics and propulsion.

    But, they have the advantage in the day to day operations while LIVING in 0-g space habitats. (And, I think, in actually getting OUT of the Earth's gravity well, cheaply and effeciently...)

    Thus the reason they are so valuable in Space Exploration. Russian gear is not always the fanciest, or most comfortable, but...it WORKS. Consistently. There is much to be said about such consistency....)
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigLeRoy View Post
    The Europeans may beat America to the BIG goal of being the first to discover life on Mars. I say this because the ExoMars 2020 probe will have the capability of drilling fairly deep into the Martian surface, which is where we've GOT to look for any bacterial life. None of the American probes yet sent to Mars have had that kind of capability.
    Quote Originally Posted by Rorschach View Post
    I think the Russians may be behind in areas of aeronautics and propulsion.

    But, they have the advantage in the day to day operations while LIVING in 0-g space habitats. (And, I think, in actually getting OUT of the Earth's gravity well, cheaply and effeciently...)

    Thus the reason they are so valuable in Space Exploration. Russian gear is not always the fanciest, or most comfortable, but...it WORKS. Consistently. There is much to be said about such consistency....)
    I think we all need to work together on this, NASA (US and Canada), ESA, Roscosmos, and the Chinese and Japanese too, all the nations with the tech, money, and know how; and private sector also, SpaceX, etc. Exploratiin of space is far more important for human life than anything else. We can't just keep ourselves stuck on this one planet forever!
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    Radical Centrist BigLeRoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Man View Post
    I think we all need to work together on this, NASA (US and Canada), ESA, Roscosmos, and the Chinese and Japanese too, all the nations with the tech, money, and know how; and private sector also, SpaceX, etc. Exploratiin of space is far more important for human life than anything else. We can't just keep ourselves stuck on this one planet forever!
    I ABSOLUTELY and TOTALLY agree with this post.
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Man View Post
    I think we all need to work together on this, NASA (US and Canada), ESA, Roscosmos, and the Chinese and Japanese too, all the nations with the tech, money, and know how; and private sector also, SpaceX, etc. Exploratiin of space is far more important for human life than anything else. We can't just keep ourselves stuck on this one planet forever!
    Yes, I agree.

    (Although, I do like the idea of a "FRIENDLY Space Race," as it pushes things. But, we will have some sort of Space Race, once Private companies get fully involved.....)

    Our BIGGEST challenge is still getting stuff into orbit, to begin with. We need a way to do that cheaply, quickly, and CLEANLY. (I still like the idea of balloons to a certain point, then "launching" gear. Also the Russian idea of making MANNED shuttles smaller, JUST for human crews, while using other, larger boosters to put gear, supplies, and equipment, into orbit. That was their idea for a shuttle, but they never went through with it....)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rorschach View Post
    Yes, I agree.

    (Although, I do like the idea of a "FRIENDLY Space Race," as it pushes things. But, we will have some sort of Space Race, once Private companies get fully involved.....)

    Our BIGGEST challenge is still getting stuff into orbit, to begin with. We need a way to do that cheaply, quickly, and CLEANLY. (I still like the idea of balloons to a certain point, then "launching" gear. Also the Russian idea of making MANNED shuttles smaller, JUST for human crews, while using other, larger boosters to put gear, supplies, and equipment, into orbit. That was their idea for a shuttle, but they never went through with it....)
    USSR did build their own Shuttle, the Buran


    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buran_(spacecraft)

    The program was abandoned after 1991. So sad...

    Now, Riscosmos wants to create some new spaceship to replace, eventually, the ageing Soyuz, and Magomed Tolboev, the legendary Dagestani aviator


    who test flew the Buran back in the day, is practically shouting at them, "Hello! Comrades! No need to invent anything! We have a ready concept already! Bring back the Buran!!!!"

    I hope the listen to him. I realky do. That would be awesome, to see the Buran fly. I never got to, in my life...
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    Evidently, the whole Shuttle idea was more expensive and dangerous than we first thought (There has to be a reason why both Russia and America abandoned the concept)

    But, these days, we are still pushing the whole "reusable" spacecraft idea, at least for some of the booster rockets.

    Again, I think we need to work on seperate concepts in regards to getting DELICATE equipment/Human beings into space, and getting mass quantities of more rugged gear, food, supplies, etc. into orbit. While an accident with the rugged gear is still an expensive loss, it is nothing like the loss of life, or, some of the more expensive delicate equipment. In fact, the major loss in that case, is typically, the rocket and booster itself. We should ALWAYS have secondary and tertiary supply boosters waiting, just in case of that....)

    A "Space Elevator" would be GRAND, but.....I do not think we have the geo-political agreements to do this, yet. It would be very expensive, we would need to find an equatorial nation, that is secure, and open to both the benefits, and intrusion such would create. And THEN, we would have to make solid safety measures, just in case the top of the "elevator cable" ever became untethered, and it fell into the Earth's gravity well....
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    Radical Centrist BigLeRoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rorschach View Post
    Evidently, the whole Shuttle idea was more expensive and dangerous than we first thought (There has to be a reason why both Russia and America abandoned the concept)

    But, these days, we are still pushing the whole "reusable" spacecraft idea, at least for some of the booster rockets.

    Again, I think we need to work on seperate concepts in regards to getting DELICATE equipment/Human beings into space, and getting mass quantities of more rugged gear, food, supplies, etc. into orbit. While an accident with the rugged gear is still an expensive loss, it is nothing like the loss of life, or, some of the more expensive delicate equipment. In fact, the major loss in that case, is typically, the rocket and booster itself. We should ALWAYS have secondary and tertiary supply boosters waiting, just in case of that....)

    A "Space Elevator" would be GRAND, but.....I do not think we have the geo-political agreements to do this, yet. It would be very expensive, we would need to find an equatorial nation, that is secure, and open to both the benefits, and intrusion such would create. And THEN, we would have to make solid safety measures, just in case the top of the "elevator cable" ever became untethered, and it fell into the Earth's gravity well....
    I, too, LOVE the idea of a space elevator, but the real problem is that we do not yet have the TECHNOLOGY to do that. A rather more serious impediment than geopolitical squabbles. In fact, I would be willing to bet that we will build a space elevator on the MOON before we build one here on Earth. The technological requirements for a lunar space elevator are FAR less stringent than for an Earth-based one. Eventually, one on Mars might be very doable, as well.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rorschach View Post
    Evidently, the whole Shuttle idea was more expensive and dangerous than we first thought (There has to be a reason why both Russia and America abandoned the concept)

    But, these days, we are still pushing the whole "reusable" spacecraft idea, at least for some of the booster rockets.

    Again, I think we need to work on seperate concepts in regards to getting DELICATE equipment/Human beings into space, and getting mass quantities of more rugged gear, food, supplies, etc. into orbit. While an accident with the rugged gear is still an expensive loss, it is nothing like the loss of life, or, some of the more expensive delicate equipment. In fact, the major loss in that case, is typically, the rocket and booster itself. We should ALWAYS have secondary and tertiary supply boosters waiting, just in case of that....)

    A "Space Elevator" would be GRAND, but.....I do not think we have the geo-political agreements to do this, yet. It would be very expensive, we would need to find an equatorial nation, that is secure, and open to both the benefits, and intrusion such would create. And THEN, we would have to make solid safety measures, just in case the top of the "elevator cable" ever became untethered, and it fell into the Earth's gravity well....
    How would a space elevator work???

    What I hope is they find an abandoned Stargate under the Arctic ice somewhere, like in the TV series lol
    Thanks from cable2

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