Just Too Cool: Mars rover Curiosity is 10 years old

For your amazement…

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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One Comment

  1. iamlucky13 says:

    It’s an impressive run. The primary mission was planned for 1 Martian year (1.88 earth years), although the team was definitely planning that as a bare minimum.

    I don’t know how long they hoping for, but even considering Opportunity’s entirely unexpected 14 year run relative to a 90 Earth day primary mission (there was a low expected likelihood of that mission lasting beyond 1 year due to dust accumulation on its solar panels), I’m not sure they were daring to wish for over a decade again, lest something fail by this time.

    I think it’s also worth mention Mars Insight, a stationary, solar powered lander that has been on the surface since late 2018, is nearing the end of its mission. It was planned for 2 Earth years of research, but because the location where it landed turned out not to experience the frequent dust devils that were found for Opportunity and its sister Spirit to help keep the solar panels clean, it is expected to run out of power in roughly another month. It will be a little shy of 4 years after landing.

    Curiosity, in contrast, is powered by radioactive decay. Its radioisotope thermal generator is rated for a minimum 14 year mission life.

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