Originally posted by razorbackhater
why are there so many probes that never make it to mars or something happens to them when they get there?
I would argue that sending an object into space is completely different from landing it on another planet. Mars isnt the moon either. Thats far
away...and the gravity on the surface would be completely different. Many variables would need to be considered.
That being said, I am not a NASA Scientist. All I can say is that there have been successful missions to mars before. Not all of them are failures.
So with that knowledge (that its possible), and the knowledge that it is extremely difficult, I think its foolish to make an attempt like this one.
It was expensive...even at a cut budget. So they just wasted money and time.
(The following is from that website above)
1964 U.S. launches Mariner 3, which fails after liftoff.
1964 U.S. launches Mariner 4. First successful Mars fly-by in July 1965. The craft returns the first pictures of the Martian surface.
1964 Soviets launch Zond 2. Mars fly-by. Contact lost in May 1965.
1969 U.S. launches Mariner 6 and 7. The two spacecraft fly by Mars in July and August 1969 and send back images and data.
1971 Soviets launch Mars 2. Orbiter and lander reach Mars in November 1971. Lander crashes but orbiter sends back images and data.
1971 U.S. launches Mariner 8, which fails during liftoff.
1971 U.S. launches Mariner 9. Orbiter reaches Mars in November 1971, provides global mapping of Martian surface and studies atmosphere.
1973 Soviets launch Mars 5. Orbiter reaches Mars in February 1974 and collects data.
1975 U.S. launches Viking 1 and Viking 2. The two orbiter/lander sets reach Mars in 1976. Orbiters image Martian surface. Landers send back images and
take surface samples.
1992 U.S. launches Mars Observer. Contact lost with orbiter in August 1993, three days before scheduled insertion into Martian orbit.
1996 U.S. launches Mars Global Surveyor. Orbiter reaches Mars in September 1997 and maps the planet. Still in operation.
1996 Soviets launch Mars 96, which fails after launch and falls back into Earth's atmosphere.
1996 U.S. launches Mars Pathfinder. Lander and rover arrive on Mars in July 1997, in the most-watched space event ever. Lander sends back thousands of
images, and Sojourner rover roams the surface, sending back 550 images.
1998 Japan launches Nozomi. Orbiter suffers glitch in December 1998, forcing circuitous course correction. Mission fails in 2003.
1998 U.S. launches Mars Climate Orbiter. Spacecraft destroyed while entering Martian orbit in September 1999.
1999 U.S. launches Mars Polar Lander. Contact lost with lander during descent in December 1999. Two microprobes "hitchhiking" on lander also fail.
2001 U.S. launches Mars Odyssey. Orbiter reaches Mars in October 2001 to detect water and shallow buried ice and study the environment. It can also
act as a communications relay for future Mars landers.
2003 European Space Agency launches Mars Express. Orbiter and lander to arrive at Mars in December 2003.
2003 U.S. launches Mars Expedition Rovers. Spirit and Opportunity rovers due to land on Mars in January 2004.