How do you calculate cruising speed of the Perserverance spacecraft?

Feb 19, 2021
The Perserverence Rover spacecraft travelled 472 million Km over 203 days (4872 hours) to get to Mars.

If you divide this distance by the time, you get a speed of 96,880 Km/hr ... which can't be correct.

This spacecraft departed earth at a speed of 39,600 Km/hr.

Why is there such a large discrepancy between my calculation and the actual cruising speed?

Maybe someone can point out the error in my calculation.
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Reactions: sam85geo
Dec 9, 2020
Is think that travel to Mars was done in individual stages eg: x number of hours at 39,600 km/hr; then another stage for another amount of hours at a different speed, etc, etc. I suggest trying to get detailed data on the stages i.e. distances and times. Note: speeds at each stage may be available. if so you can use the Average Mean calculation to get a "guesstament" of the average speed in km/hr. Since times are involved, I suggest using the Harmonic Mean calculation to get an average speed in km/hr. Better still, just sent an e-mail to NASA and ask how they calculate average speed for the Rover's trip; (it may be posted on their web site). Sounds like a fun project, please post any results. P.S.: any statistics text will have examples and explanation of these Mean calculations.



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