27 July 2012
Posted in Science On A Sphere
The time has almost come for NASA’s Curiosity rover to land on Mars – hopefully. The 254 day journey from Earth to Mars is expected to end on Monday, August 6 at 1:31 a.m. EST should it survive the risky entry, descent and landing (EDL) typical of this sort of mission.
The difficult landing has NASA calling it “Seven Minutes of Terror” during which time, hundreds of technical events have to work together with split-second timing.
When Curiosity enters the Red Planet’s atmosphere, it will be traveling at 13,200 mph. Seven minutes later, it should be at rest on Mars’ surface. To relate, it’s like driving 65 mph down the highway and coming to a complete, controlled stop in 2.1 seconds. Not an easy feat!
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