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  #31  
Old January 16th, 2013, 10:02 AM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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We've an update on the area the NAASA team have chosen for drilling. They figure a billion years since water was there!




NAASA-Caltech: Site chosen for drilling, "John Klein", after a rover engineer who died in 2011


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  #32  
Old January 16th, 2013, 10:46 AM
Jerome Marot Jerome Marot is offline
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This looks indeed surprisingly similar to a dry riverbed on earth.
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  #33  
Old January 16th, 2013, 01:09 PM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerome Marot View Post
This looks indeed surprisingly similar to a dry riverbed on earth.

Jerome,

If we just look at your previously posted picture of the sky, and then consider that M31 is reported to hold 1 trillion stars. Now imagine how many "earth-like river beds" there are to explore! Pretty damn humbling, if you ask me. One of the greatest movements in human understanding was that the planets and our sun did not, in fact, revolve around earth! One of the greatest barrier's to understanding is to ponder puzzles just from our one personal vantage point!
One the positive side, one unique aspect of Mars is that it might be feasible to colonize the planet!

At the very least, it should force us to respect global climate cycles on planet Earth and our impact on sustainability of life here, itself. Right now, at least in the USA, this is considered by too many to be a "liberal belief" and fraud, almost anti-bliblical!


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  #34  
Old January 16th, 2013, 01:28 PM
Jerome Marot Jerome Marot is offline
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Originally Posted by Asher Kelman View Post
One the positive side, one unique aspect of Mars is that it might be feasible to colonize the planet!
We are not even able to stop the desertification of Sahel (the south of the Sahara desert), while all that is needed is to move part of the Niger stream to its previous bed.
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  #35  
Old January 16th, 2013, 05:09 PM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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Originally Posted by Jerome Marot View Post
We are not even able to stop the desertification of Sahel (the south of the Sahara desert), while all that is needed is to move part of the Niger stream to its previous bed.

At the moment, they're just trying to work out who's in charge there! It's very difficult to make progress when there are limited resources and infrastructure for even measuring where the water comes from, what are the transit losses and who consumes it. We do know that at least the beginnings of collecting needed information has started by the world Hydrological Observation System. In their pilot program, obstacles were a lack of an operating manual for their software and hard ware operating systems, lack of motivation or implementation by the authorities in the various component territories. Nevertheless, despite these monumental confounding issues, a considerable body of information has been assembled. Read this "WORLD HYDROLOGICAL CYCLE OBSERVING SYSTEM" here.

Now in terraforming Mars, the work processes that are the fabric and spine of NAASA's space exploration approaches, has prepared us. We're in a far better position to devise practical plans for Mars settlement. Our skills have already been already demonstrated and developed in the trips to the moon, assembly and operating of the Space Stations, Telescopes, navigation and military satellites. These, have, of necessity produced the experience we need for the next tentative steps to colonize Mars. We have established the kind of research, documentation, command and control and even contingency systems) needed for such long range ambitious engineering projects. What's still missing, (besides funding and design), is the cultural order that would apply in such a colony! Would there be places of worship? I guess it would be modeled on the cultural values, brotherhood, command and social structure of the International space Station. (However, once enough colonists are there, what of social justice, and criminal behavior? So besides engineering and finance there's a lot more work to do! I expect it would be akin to living on a battleship; not much room for dissent!)

Yes, there have been missteps such as the mistake in mixing mm with fractions of an inch in the Hubble telescope, later corrected, but we've learned a lot. I've no doubt that industry and government will make baby steps in exploring Mars. One simple gesture would be to bring some of that soil back and simply plant seeds in it! That would be very exciting!

In any case, what we are seeing, the river bed soil of Mars, is very exciting. The results of this work will be the basis of entirely new civilizations, as different from mother earth as Brazil is to Portugal, the USA is to the U.K. or Cameroons is to France!

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  #36  
Old February 9th, 2013, 07:54 PM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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Default Curiosity Rover on Mars: First Interplanetry Mineral Drilling Operation by Man!

It's taken six months of painstaking preparation. The first rock drilled by control of man on another world has been achieved by the Curiosity rover.





Material from the second hole will be sifted for size, part will be used to scrub the instrument of any brought along earth particles and then this will be entered into the robots chemistry analysis chambers. This work is a magnificent achievement. Essentially, once the analysis is done, it would have proven that we can do interplanetary exploration to the level of actually drilling into rocks, a task we once thought required human presence.

This experiment, I believe paves the way for ambitious commercial exploration and even harvesting of minerals from the moon, asteroids or other planets and their moons.

Meanwhile, enjoy this animated image of the drill in action on Mars!

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  #37  
Old February 9th, 2013, 08:07 PM
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Default The Official NASA Press Release

RELEASE : 13-044


NASA Curiosity Rover Collects First Martian Bedrock Sample


PASADENA, Calif. -- NASA's Curiosity rover has, for the first time, used a drill carried at the end of its robotic arm to bore into a flat, veiny rock on Mars and collect a sample from its interior. This is the first time any robot has drilled into a rock to collect a sample on Mars. The fresh hole, about 0.63 inch (1.6 centimeters) wide and 2.5 inches (6.4 centimeters) deep in a patch of fine-grained sedimentary bedrock, can be seen in images and other data Curiosity beamed to Earth Saturday. The rock is believed to hold evidence about long-gone wet environments. In pursuit of that evidence, the rover will use its laboratory instruments to analyze rock powder collected by the drill. "The most advanced planetary robot ever designed now is a fully operating analytical laboratory on Mars," said John Grunsfeld, NASA associate administrator for the agency's Science Mission Directorate. "This is the biggest milestone accomplishment for the Curiosity team since the sky-crane landing last August, another proud day for America." For the next several days, ground controllers will command the rover's arm to carry out a series of steps to process the sample, ultimately delivering portions to the instruments inside. "We commanded the first full-depth drilling, and we believe we have collected sufficient material from the rock to meet our objectives of hardware cleaning and sample drop-off," said Avi Okon, drill cognizant engineer at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), Pasadena. Rock powder generated during drilling travels up flutes on the bit. The bit assembly has chambers to hold the powder until it can be transferred to the sample-handling mechanisms of the rover's Collection and Handling for In-Situ Martian Rock Analysis (CHIMRA) device. Before the rock powder is analyzed, some will be used to scour traces of material that may have been deposited onto the hardware while the rover still was on Earth, despite thorough cleaning before launch.

"We'll take the powder we acquired and swish it around to scrub the internal surfaces of the drill bit assembly," said JPL's Scott McCloskey, drill systems engineer. "Then we'll use the arm to transfer the powder out of the drill into the scoop, which will be our first chance to see the acquired sample." "Building a tool to interact forcefully with unpredictable rocks on Mars required an ambitious development and testing program," said JPL's Louise Jandura, chief engineer for Curiosity's sample system."To get to the point of making this hole in a rock on Mars, we made eight drills and bored more than 1,200 holes in 20 types of rock on Earth." Inside the sample-handling device, the powder will be vibrated once or twice over a sieve that screens out any particles larger than six-thousandths of an inch (150 microns) across. Small portions of the sieved sample will fall through ports on the rover deck into the Chemistry and Mineralogy (CheMin) instrument and the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument. These instruments then will begin the much-anticipated detailed analysis.

The rock Curiosity drilled is called "John Klein" in memory of a Mars Science Laboratory deputy project manager who died in 2011. Drilling for a sample is the last new activity for NASA's Mars Science Laboratory Project, which is using the car-size Curiosity rover to investigate whether an area within Mars' Gale Crater has ever offered an environment favorable for life. JPL manages the project for NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington.
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  #38  
Old February 9th, 2013, 08:09 PM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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Default Larger Image of first extraterrestrial drilling operation by man!



Curiosity's First Sample Drilling

At the center of this image from NASA's Curiosity rover is the hole in a rock called "John Klein" where the rover conducted its first sample drilling on Mars. The drilling took place on Feb. 8, 2013, or Sol 182, Curiosity's 182nd Martian day of operations. Several preparatory activities with the drill preceded this operation, including a test that produced the shallower hole on the right two days earlier, but the deeper hole resulted from the first use of the drill for rock sample collection. NASA
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