Comments:Mars Opportunity rover passes distance milestone
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|Comments from feedback form - "I am new here. I liked it. I'l..."||2||11:43, 5 June 2011|
|Comments from feedback form - "If Opportunity has been on Mar..."||3||20:01, 4 June 2011|
|Mars probes and the way to go.||0||16:07, 4 June 2011|
I am new here. I liked it. I'll loo in from time to ttime and see whather this will be my main news source in the near future. It can't help but beat TV!!!
We're glad to have you, and remember, you're always welcome to write articles yourself, just check out the style guide before you do.
If Opportunity has been on Mars since 2004, and it's operational lifespan ended in April 2004, then did NASA really expect the rover to not last that long?
Well, they set a "prime" high priority mission for the rover to accomplish, with the optimistic intention to carry out further exploration beyond the designated lifespan. It's more technical than anything and most spacecraft function past their lifespan, such as theprobes, which continue to function after their launch in the 70's.
They asked whether I have an opinion on the Mars rovers; well, I have been a space enthusiast since my childhood (years before Sputnik!) and I really approve the probes and robot vehicles wherever they send them. The Mars jobs are proud examples of just how great the things are that can be done on shoestrings when they deserve really serious support instead of the pittances that pinheads, parasites, and politicians dribble their way when it is convenient. People could run a halfway decent space programme just on what they could save by doing something rational about scrapping the war on drugs (not that I am a drug liberal, just that the current idea never could have worked for anyone but the crooks and parasites.) You and I are paying, big time!
Another thing about the Mars programme; the idea of manned Mars missions is not the stupidest idea that I have ever run across, but that is just because the competition is so formidable; the only places for human space programmes are :
In space (a few, not very many at this time; Spacelab, in spite of its wrong-headed, wasteful, humiliating record, is to my mind justified after a fashion because we need the engineering skills we no doubt are learning from it, and we will have to get out there sometime, somehow, and those skills will not arise Athena-like from hangover headaches.)
Secondly we should be exploring our options to colonise Mercury and Venus, but those are a long way down the line, even though they are vital to our species in the long run. Maybe asteroids, comets and wandering rocks would offer rewards too, but that is something we would have to learn from robot probes.
Mars? Mars??? What does Mars (or Luna FTM) have to offer for manned missions? Nothing; less than nothing, a dead loss, a ginormous red negative on the bottom line. Huge expenditure with no hope of significant payback. The same expenditure on robot craft including probes, telescopes, monitors etc would yield huge, huge rewards throughout the Solar system and beyond the heliopause, and prepare us to go where the real rewards await us; nearer the sun and towards the rewards of the resources offered by the solar wind and the inner planets.
But meanwhile, those Mars probes done good! Think about them and what they have to tell us.