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viernes, 25 de diciembre de 2015

NASA : NASA Suspends 2016 Launch of InSight Mission to Mars .- NASA suspende 2016 Lanzamiento de InSight Misión a Marte

Hola amigos: A VUELO DE UN QUINDE EL BLOG., Después de un examen a fondo, los administradores de la NASA han decidido suspender el planeado lanzamiento en marzo del  2016  de la misión:  The Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations Geodesy and Heat Transport (InSight) misión.  La decisión se produce tras los intentos fallidos para reparar una fuga en una sección del instrumento primordial en la carga útil científica.
More information..............

Artist's Concept of InSight Lander on Mars - Annotated
This artist's concept from August 2015 depicts NASA's InSight Mars lander fully deployed for studying the deep interior of Mars. The mission will launch during the period March 4 to March 30, 2016, and land on Mars Sept. 28, 2016.
Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech

After thorough examination, NASA managers have decided to suspend the planned March 2016 launch of the Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations Geodesy and Heat Transport (InSight) mission. The decision follows unsuccessful attempts to repair a leak in a section of the prime instrument in the science payload.

“Learning about the interior structure of Mars has been a high priority objective for planetary scientists since the Viking era,” said John Grunsfeld, associate administrator for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington. “We push the boundaries of space technology with our missions to enable science, but space exploration is unforgiving, and the bottom line is that we’re not ready to launch in the 2016 window. A decision on a path forward will be made in the coming months, but one thing is clear: NASA remains fully committed to the scientific discovery and exploration of Mars.”

The instrument involved is the Seismic Experiment for Interior Structure (SEIS), a seismometer provided by France’s Centre National d'Études Spatiales (CNES). Designed to measure ground movements as small as the diameter of an atom, the instrument requires a vacuum seal around its three main sensors to withstand the harsh conditions of the Martian environment. 

“InSight's investigation of the Red Planet's interior is designed to increase understanding of how all rocky planets, including Earth, formed and evolved,” said Bruce Banerdt, InSight Principal Investigator at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), Pasadena, California. “Mars retains evidence about the rocky planets' early development that has been erased on Earth by internal churning Mars lacks. Gaining information about the core, mantle and crust of Mars is a high priority for planetary science, and InSight was built to accomplish this."
A leak earlier this year that previously had prevented the seismometer from retaining vacuum conditions was repaired, and the mission team was hopeful the most recent fix also would be successful. However, during testing on Monday in extreme cold temperature (-49 degrees Fahrenheit/-45 degrees Celsius) the instrument again failed to hold a vacuum.

NASA officials determined there is insufficient time to resolve another leak, and complete the work and thorough testing required to ensure a successful mission.

“It’s the first time ever that such a sensitive instrument has been built. We were very close to succeeding, but an anomaly has occurred, which requires further investigation. Our teams will find a solution to fix it, but it won’t be solved in time for a launch in 2016,” said Marc Pircher, Director of CNES’s Toulouse Space Centre.

The spacecraft, built by Lockheed Martin, was delivered to Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, on Dec. 16. With the 2016 launch canceled, the spacecraft will be returned from Vandenberg to Lockheed’s facility in Denver.

The relative positions of the planets are most favorable for launching missions from Earth to Mars for only a few weeks every 26 months. For InSight, that 2016 launch window existed from March 4 to March 30.

“In 2008, we made a difficult, but correct decision to postpone the launch of the Mars Science Laboratory mission for two years to better ensure mission success,” said Jim Green, director, Planetary Science Division, in Washington. “The successes of that mission's rover, Curiosity, have vastly outweighed any disappointment about that delay."

NASA is on an ambitious journey to Mars that includes sending humans to the Red Planet, and that work remains on track despite Tuesday’s decision. Robotic spacecraft are leading the way for NASA’s Mars Exploration Program, with the upcoming Mars 2020 rover being designed and built, the Opportunity and Curiosity rovers exploring the Martian surface, the Odyssey and Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft currently orbiting the planet, along with the MAVEN orbiter, which recently helped scientists understand what happened to the Martian atmosphere.

NASA and CNES also are participating in the European Space Agency's (ESA’s) Mars Express mission currently operating at Mars and plans to participate on ESA’s 2016 and 2018 ExoMars missions, including providing telecommunication radios for ESA's 2016 orbiter and a critical element of a key astrobiology instrument on the 2018 ExoMars rover.

“The JPL and CNES teams and their partners have made a heroic effort to prepare the InSight instrument, but have run out of time given the celestial mechanics of a launch to Mars,” said JPL Director Charles Elachi. “It is more important to do it right than take an unacceptable risk.”

InSight’s science payload includes two key instruments: SEIS, provided by CNES, and the Heat Flow and Physical Properties Package (HP3), provided by the German Aerospace Center (DLR).

SEIS was built with the participation of the Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris (IPGP) and the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH), with support from the Swiss Space Office and the European Space Agency PRODEX program; the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research (MPS), supported by DLR; Imperial College, supported by the United Kingdom Space Agency; and JPL.
NASA will hold a media teleconference at 3:30 p.m. EST today to provide details on the agency’s decision. Briefing participants are:

  • John Grunsfeld, associate administrator of the Science Mission Directorate at NASA Headquarters in Washington
  • Jim Green, director of the Planetary Science Division at NASA Headquarters
  • Marc Pircher, CNES director
  • Philippe Laudet, CNES project manager for SEIS
  • Bruce Banerdt, InSight principal investigator, JPL

To participate in the teleconference by phone, media must email their name, media affiliation and phone number to Karen Northon at karen.northon@nasa.gov by 3:30 p.m.
NASA will audio stream the teleconference live at:


For more information about NASA's Mars programs visit:


-end-
Dwayne Brown / Laurie Cantillo
Headquarters, Washington                                                                     
202-358-1726 / 202-358-1077
dwayne.c.brown@nasa.gov / laura.l.cantillo@nasa.gov

Guy Webster
Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.
818-354-6278
guy.w.webster@jpl.nasa.gov

Julien WATELET
Media Manager du CNES
Tel. 01 44 76 78 37 / port. 06 88 06 11 48
julien.watelet@cnes.fr
Last Updated: Dec. 23, 2015
Editor: Karen Northon

Artist's Concept of InSight Lander on Mars


This artist's concept depicts NASA's InSight Mars lander fully deployed for studying the deep interior of Mars
This artist's concept from August 2015 depicts NASA's InSight Mars lander fully deployed for studying the deep interior of Mars.  The mission will launch during the period March 4 to March 30, 2016, and land on Mars Sept. 28, 2016.

InSight, short for Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport, will investigate processes that formed and shaped Mars. Its findings will improve understanding about the evolution of our inner solar system's rocky planets, including Earth.

The lander will be the first mission to permanently deploy instruments directly onto Martian ground using a robotic arm. The two instruments to be placed into a work area in front of the lander are a seismometer (contributed by the French space agency Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales, or CNES) to measure the microscopic ground motions from distant marsquakes providing information about the interior structure of Mars, and a heat-flow probe (contributed by the German Aerospace Center, or DLR) designed to hammer itself 3 to 5 meters (about 16 feet) deep and monitor heat coming from the planet's interior. The mission will also track the lander's radio to measure wobbles in the planet's rotation that relate to the size of its core and a suite of environmental sensors to monitor the weather and variations in the magnetic field. Two cameras will aid in instrument deployment and monitoring the local environment.

Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver, is building and testing the spacecraft.
InSight is part of NASA's Discovery Program of competitively selected solar system exploration missions with highly focused scientific goals. NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, manages the Discovery Program for the agency's Science Mission Directorate in Washington. NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, manages InSight for the NASA Science Mission Directorate. For more information about InSight, visit:
Additional information on the Discovery Program is available at:

Image Credit:  NASA/JPL-Caltech

Last Updated: Aug. 18, 2015
Editor: Tony Greicius
NASA
Guillermo Gonzalo Sánchez Achutegui
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