Curiosity Landing on Mars

To land a spacecraft on Mars is not new for the U.S. space agency (NASA). Throughout the history of NASA, they have six spacecraft landed on that red planet. But Curiosity landing is an experience that is completely new.

The engineer or NASA officials had created tension for seven minutes, waiting for the nuclear-powered robotic explorers really dug the wheels on the surface of Mars.

The success of the spacecraft traveling from Earth to Mars as far as 566,489,088 kilometers that lasted eight and a half months, is determined landing for seven minutes.
Curiosity landing infographic. (Picture from: http://www.theregister.co.uk/)
In the first phase of friction Curiosity must pass a thin atmosphere of Mars since the altitude of 125 kilometers with just a metal as a protective shield. At an altitude of 11 kilometers, the parachute was developed to slow the fall of the robot. After slowing in the pace of 125 meters per second at an altitude of 8 kilometers, the shield is released.

At an altitude of 1.6 kilometers, turn the parachute is released. At this stage the robot slows down to a speed of 80 meters per second. Holding a set of rockets falling robot. At a height of 20 meters, the robot is separated from the shell to be derived from sky crane cables. Curiosity Mars after touching the ground, sky crane landing away from the robot.

Curiosity finally landed smoothly on Sunday (August 5. 2012), 1:31 EDT or Monday (August 6, 2012), 12:32 WIB in Gale Crater. Despite a smooth landing, the robot explorers that have three times the maneuver to escape the gravity of Mars.

Occurs very smooth landing. Robot lowered at a speed of 60 centimeters per second and just swinging by 4 centimeters per second.

"The landing has been confirmed," said Allen Chen, the engineer who oversees the Curiosity. "We safely on Mars."
Curiosity Rover (Mars Science Lab). (Picture from: http://www.mindtalk.com/)
With a budget of U.S. $ 2.5 billion, Curiosity is the most expensive spacecraft today. But scientists expect that kind of money commensurate with the remarkable discovery as well.

"We're back on Mars," said NASA Administrator Charles Bolden through a press release. "It's really great."
One of the first images from Mars taken by the Curiosity rover. (Picture from: http://teknologi.news.viva.co.id/)
A few minutes after landing confirmation received on Earth. The robot explorer rover, instantly transmit images in black and white image of its wheels and image of it running on the surface of Mars.

The successful landing of Curiosity cheering NASA engineers in the control room in Pasadena. Robotic rover is assigned to look for life on the Red Planet as well as gathering data in preparation for human missions to the planet. Curiosity is a running laboratory that roam the surface of Mars. NASA had sent three vehicles similar to the Mars study, the Sojourner, Spirit and Opportunity. If the previously-sized robot no bigger than a wheelbarrow, Curiosity-sized family wagon, making it the largest explorers robot ever sent to Mars.
Detail of Curiosity Rover (Mars Science Lab). (Picture from: http://www.mindtalk.com/)
The robot weighs 900 kilograms has a variety of tools to investigate the climate, geology, and traces of life. Rock samples were collected using a robotic arm and its contents analyzed. Geological analysis of this equipment is the most comprehensive such as chromatographs, mass spectrometers, a laser spectrometer, up to X-ray diffraction. All data sent to the relay station called Odyssey in Gale Crater to be sent to the station on Earth.

Curiosity advantages compared to other robotic explorers are located in the fuel tank. This robot is no longer using solar energy as fuel but nuclear energy. The heat from plutonium-238 provides power of 110 watts and can be used at least one Martian year is equivalent to 687 Earth days. *** [NASA | AP | ANTON WILLIAM | KORAN TEMPO 3963]
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