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ExoMars Mars rover named after DNA pioneer Rosalind Franklin

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posted on Feb, 7 2019 @ 08:41 PM
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The honour follows a public call for suggestions that drew nearly 36,000 responses from right across Europe.

Astronaut Tim Peake unveiled the name at the Airbus factory in Stevenage where the robot is being put together.

The six-wheeled vehicle will be equipped with instruments and a drill to search for evidence of past or present life on the Red Planet.

Giving the rover a name associated with a molecule fundamental to biology seems therefore to be wholly appropriate.

Rosalind Franklin played an integral role in the discovery of the structure of deoxyribonucleic acid.

It was her X-ray images that allowed James Watson and Francis Crick to decipher its double-helix shape.




Rosalind Franklin: Mars rover named after DNA pioneer

This is a little strange. I got Spirit, Opportunity and Curiosity. They are a little cheesy but they where named by children.

I guess it makes sense though. Ships are named after people. I can't think of any other spacecraft off the top of my head that was named after a person.





edit on 7-2-2019 by LookingAtMars because: video & pic




posted on Feb, 8 2019 @ 06:10 AM
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Rosie the Rover



posted on Feb, 8 2019 @ 07:30 AM
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a reply to: LookingAtMars

It's an ambitious program for Europe, which is why I can't for the life of me understand why they are risking it on a Proton. Russia's overall history with interplanetary launches - and with Proton launches in general of late - is abysmal.



posted on Feb, 8 2019 @ 06:34 PM
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originally posted by: LookingAtMars
I can't think of any other spacecraft off the top of my head that was named after a person.

At least Cassini–Huygens, Galileo, Magellan and BepiColombo.



posted on Feb, 9 2019 @ 11:08 AM
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originally posted by: RexKramerPRT
Rosie the Rover


I read using that name is disrespectful to Rosalind Franklin.

We are not allowed to call the rover Rosie. It must be Franklin or Rosalind Franklin.



posted on Feb, 9 2019 @ 11:41 AM
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originally posted by: PhloydPhan
a reply to: LookingAtMars

It's an ambitious program for Europe, which is why I can't for the life of me understand why they are risking it on a Proton. Russia's overall history with interplanetary launches - and with Proton launches in general of late - is abysmal.


That is a good question. Why aren't they using a European rocket like Ariane? It was used for the Rosetta flyby of Mars.

It is also using a Russian landing system.



The second mission, scheduled for launch in July 2020, will have an 1800 kg Russian-built landing platform system derived from the 2016 Schiaparelli EDM lander, to place the ExoMars rover on the surface of Mars.[3][10][66] This lander platform will be built 80% by the Russian company Lavochkin, and 20% by ESA.[12] Lavochkin will produce most of the landing system's hardware, while ESA will handle elements such as the guidance, radar and navigation systems.[11] Lavochkin's current landing strategy is to use two parachutes; one will open while the module is still moving at supersonic speed, and another will deploy once the probe has been slowed down to subsonic velocity. The heat shield will eventually fall away from the entry capsule to allow the ExoMars rover, riding its retro-rocket-equipped lander, to come for a soft landing on legs or struts. The surface platform lander will then deploy ramps for the rover to drive down.[66] Critics have stated that while Russian expertise may be sufficient to provide a launch vehicle, it does not currently extend to the critical requirement of a landing system for Mars.[66][67][68]


The odds are it will either blow-up leaving Earth or Splat landing on Mars



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