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NASA Slashes Features on Rover

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posted on Sep, 17 2007 @ 10:28 PM
I am not very familiar with NASA programs but I know many members are, so I am posting this article FYI:


The JPL-managed Mars Science Laboratory, the next generation of Martian rover, will experience cutbacks after a NASA review found it over budget for the third time since the project's start.

The $1.7 billion mission, which will study whether the Red Planet is capable of supporting life, was on track to be $75 million over budget by its fall 2009 launch, NASA determined.

"I have entire space missions that cost not much more," said said Alan Stern, associate administrator for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, of the overrun. "It's quite large."

I wonder which features will be jettisoned due to the cost overrides.


posted on Sep, 17 2007 @ 11:03 PM

source: Aviation week

Among changes ordered are removal of the Mars Descent Imager (MARDI) and the zoom capability on the mast camera. A rock-surface grinder will be replaced with a brushing tool, and funding was halted for the Laser-Induced Remote Sensing for Chemistry and Micro-Imaging (ChemCam) instrument.

It sucks to see them have to cut some of the features. Hopefully they don't have to cut anything else by 2009.

[edit on 17-9-2007 by jra]

posted on Sep, 17 2007 @ 11:05 PM
The removal of these items totally sucks.
They could have been very useful.

posted on Sep, 17 2007 @ 11:07 PM
Ok I see this is a new rover. I was thinking it was the ones already on the surface of mars. Maybe they can get international assistance for these extras.

[edit on 17-9-2007 by cloakndagger]

posted on Sep, 18 2007 @ 12:13 AM
I think they will end up sending over a KIA to the red planet.

Some kind of cheaper import, with a decent stereo system, and maybe some spinnas.

Seriously, if the devices for answering xenobiology questions are removed, why are we even going? Just to turn out another model-year of rover??


posted on Sep, 18 2007 @ 10:32 AM
Why wouldn't NASA lease out opportunities to the science industry or other investors, to enable the rover to be fully equipped.

In return the information would be shared to those investors, GOOGLE has put millions on the table for a private venture, couldn't they invest in this rover program?

Does NASA want the data to be kept a secret?

posted on Sep, 18 2007 @ 09:10 PM
why have google shove some money into a program that with just cover up info, might as well flush more money down the toilet.

posted on Sep, 18 2007 @ 09:18 PM
I realize that it seems disappointing to lose some options, but think about it again. You simply can't have everything, and the tools that they ARE going to send up are quite exceptional.

With the two little rovers we all ready have up there, we have learned a great deal. Way more than anticipated. The next generation of exploratory missions will give us a greater knowledge of Mars. From there we will design newer tools for future missions. One step at a time, till Mankind sets foot on our Red Neighbor.

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