Here's to Opportunity

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Well-Known Member
Jan 27, 2003
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<saxophone raises his glass> Here's to Opportunity, only the 5th successful
landing on Mars.
hear hear!!!

last night I took the kids to the Mars museum at Ames. I thought it would be better to watch the NASA TV on the really big screen there, than on my little computer. The museum was packed with people, everyone was really enthusiastic. definitely better!

my daughter wants to be on the EDL team now. they sure make it look easy!!

... now I am seriously thinking about level 2 rockets, altimeters, air bags, powder charges .... hmmm....
Originally posted by saxophone
<saxophone raises his glass> Here's to Opportunity, only the 5th successful
landing on Mars.

Opportunity is the 6th successful landing. Even though it died just seconds after starting to transmit data, the Mars-3 lander touched down safely in '71. So you've got Mars-3, Viking-1, Viking-2, Pathfinder/Sojourner (best July 4 ever ;)), Spirit and Opportunity.

That's not to say the accomplishment is any less. Opportunity is a member of a very elite club, and in good company! I raise my glass to NASA, JPL, and anyone else involved! Well done!

They're already getting interesting data from Opportunity. It managed to land in a place with exposed bedrock. Nobody's ever seen Martian bedrock before. It would be very, VERY cool if Opportunity could maneuver over to it and examine it.

I really, really hope Opportunity doesn't fall to whatever's affecting Spirit, and for that matter, I hope Spirit can be fixed. [fingers crossed]
Some very interesting pics coming back from the opportunity site :)

Also, Spirit's future is looking a bit brighter...its been upgraded from critical to serious. They believe the problem is in its flash memory, or the hardware that accesses the flash. JPL thinks they can work around this problem by putting everything into RAM, and downloading as much data as possible before putting the rover to sleep at night.
They think that Opportunity has landed in a small shallow crater. Approximately 20m across, and 2 or 3m deep.


And, it looks like a much larger and very interesting crater is within 1/2 a mile of Opportunity. This is way to cool! :D

Yup, from what I've read, Opportunity touched down in what is believed to be the flattest area on Mars. Even non-planetary geologist types like myself can look at the photos and see that it is completely different than all the photos other landers have returned. Very exciting - and even though they are robots, Spirit and Opportunity seem to have captured the imagination of the citizenry. Bravo!