The next NASA rover to be sent to the surface of Mars has received twice the usual amount of proposals for carrying science and exploration technology instruments. The agency is reviewing a total of 58 submitted proposals, 17 of which came from international partners, ahead of a proposed mission in 2020. Announced at the end of 2012, the next NASA rover will be based on the Curiosity Rover that is currently exploring the surface of Mars.
Large international interest in riding with NASA’s next Mars Rover NASA Spaceflight
Opportunity’s eight years on Mars: A story of science and endurance NASA Spaceflight
Eight years ago today (January 25, 2004), the Mars Exploration Rover -B (MER -B) slammed into the Martian atmosphere and executed a successful Entry, Descent, and Landing on the Red Planet – beginning what was supposed to be 90 days of science operations on the surface of Mars. Eight years and 2,922 Earth-days later, Opportunity continues its mission of exploration of the Martian surface, unlocking the mysteries of Mars and serving as a symbol of endurance while paving the way for future human missions to the Red Planet.
China launch again ahead of Space Station and Mars drive NASA Spaceflight
China has launched another navigation satellite, with the BeiDou-2 ‘Compass-IGSO-4′ lofted into orbit by a Long March 3A (Chang Zheng-3A). The launch took place from the LC3 launch complex of the Xi Chang Satellite Launch Center, in Sichuan Province, with lift-off timed at 21:44 UTC – a T-0 slightly delayed due to poor weather in the region.
This range of satellite was developed by the China Academy of Space Technology, based on the DFH-3 satellite platform. Equipped with a phased array antenna used for navigation signals transmission and a laser retroreflector, the satellite’s Navigation Satellite System (CNSS) is China’s second-generation satellite navigation system, capable of providing continuous, real-time passive 3D geo-spatial positioning and speed measurement.