Would they bring the Rovers back from Mars?

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bobblebob

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Eventually in the future we will send a man to Mars. Would Nasa think about trying to locate and bring home MER's and any other things we might send to Mars between now and then? Id love to see them find Beagle 2, just to find out what actually happened to it. <br /><br />If they did bring them back, they would be able to examine first hand what effects the mars environment had on them
 
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MeteorWayne

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Yes they could, if and when we get to the landing locations.<br /><br />Whether that would be a good use of return mass in early missions is a tougher question.<br />I think it's more likely that this would be a good mission for a commercial flight to Mars, assuming they can address the ownership issue with the launching agencies. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#000080"><em><font color="#000000">But the Krell forgot one thing John. Monsters. Monsters from the Id.</font></em> </font></p><p><font color="#000080">I really, really, really, really miss the "first unread post" function</font><font color="#000080"> </font></p> </div>
 
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willpittenger

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So we borrow a page from the Apollo 12 mission checklist: Bring home just a piece. Note: Beagle 2 and MPL might not have much left other than pieces. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <hr style="margin-top:0.5em;margin-bottom:0.5em" />Will Pittenger<hr style="margin-top:0.5em;margin-bottom:0.5em" />Add this user box to your Wikipedia User Page to show your support for the SDC forums: <div style="margin-left:1em">{{User:Will Pittenger/User Boxes/Space.com Account}}</div> </div>
 
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brellis

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<font color="yellow">So we borrow a page from the Apollo 12 mission checklist: Bring home just a piece. </font><br /><br />That's a good idea <img src="/images/icons/smile.gif" /> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font size="2" color="#ff0000"><em><strong>I'm a recovering optimist - things could be better.</strong></em></font> </p> </div>
 
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willpittenger

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One problem with bringing the MERs or even part of them back would be that they might still be active. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <hr style="margin-top:0.5em;margin-bottom:0.5em" />Will Pittenger<hr style="margin-top:0.5em;margin-bottom:0.5em" />Add this user box to your Wikipedia User Page to show your support for the SDC forums: <div style="margin-left:1em">{{User:Will Pittenger/User Boxes/Space.com Account}}</div> </div>
 
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billslugg

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will<br />If they actually got to the rovers, they would put new batteries in them, dust off the solar panels, change out some instruments, cut the dead leg off of Spirit, check the air in the tires, and bring back enough samples to do studies of long term radiation effects, etc. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p> </p><p> </p> </div>
 
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Huntster

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As pretty as the MERs are now, by the time we managed to get a crew to Mars, the rovers would be severely outdated, and there would be little need to refurbish and send them on their way again as there will certainly be newer and better vehicles roving around. More likely, if they were to be recovered, they would be returned and placed in the Smithsonian, where they could be even more appreciated by the general public than they are now ("Look mum, that was actually on Mars in the 2000s!"). <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> </div>
 
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vogon13

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You might want to ask the Martians before you remove anything from their planet . . . . <br /><br /><br /> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#ff0000"><strong>TPTB went to Dallas and all I got was Plucked !!</strong></font></p><p><font color="#339966"><strong>So many people, so few recipes !!</strong></font></p><p><font color="#0000ff"><strong>Let's clean up this stinkhole !!</strong></font> </p> </div>
 
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usn_skwerl

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maybe on the next gen of solar powered MER's, we'll design a foxtail or small whisk broom into the system. <img src="/images/icons/wink.gif" /> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> </div>
 
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Huntster

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Personally, I'm not too keen on trying to get permission from something the size of a microbe. Even less keen on obtaining permission from a microbe that probably hitched a ride from Earth in the first place <img src="/images/icons/wink.gif" /> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> </div>
 
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Boris_Badenov

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AAAARRRRGGG!!! No pic approval!!! I've got the perfect one for this. <img src="/images/icons/mad.gif" /> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <font color="#993300"><span class="body"><font size="2" color="#3366ff"><div align="center">. </div><div align="center">Never roll in the mud with a pig. You'll both get dirty & the pig likes it.</div></font></span></font> </div>
 
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anthmartian

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I would hope that one day the area of exploration of both Rovers would be "protected" with the rover's in place where they finished their missions ( i won't say "died" that's too painful a thought! ) , a kind of historic monument if you like.<br /><br />I would not like to see them removed from their new home, at any time in the future.<br /><br />Didnt that happen in Kim Stanley Robinson's "Red Mars" books with Mars landers?<br /><br />There was a novel where somebody picked up Sojourner to bring home. It was either in Ben Bova's Mars novels, or Gregory Benford's novel, Martian race ( i must re read them, armed with all the images given to me by the rovers to fuel my imagination. <img src="/images/icons/smile.gif" /> ). <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#000080"><em>"Traveling through hyperspace ain't like dusting crops, boy! Without precise calculations we could fly right through a star, or bounce too close to a supernova and that'd end your trip real quick, wouldn't it?"</em></font></p><p><font color="#33cccc"><strong>Han Solo - 1977 - A long time ago in a galaxy far far away....</strong></font></p><p><br /><br />Click Here And jump over to my site.<br /></p> </div>
 
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willpittenger

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Would the radiation damage the electronics such that they would have to be replaced?<br /><br /><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr /><p>check the air in the tires<p><hr /></p></p></blockquote><br />The tires have no pressurized air in them. They are just some carefully machined pieces of metal. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <hr style="margin-top:0.5em;margin-bottom:0.5em" />Will Pittenger<hr style="margin-top:0.5em;margin-bottom:0.5em" />Add this user box to your Wikipedia User Page to show your support for the SDC forums: <div style="margin-left:1em">{{User:Will Pittenger/User Boxes/Space.com Account}}</div> </div>
 
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willpittenger

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Actually, the next generation won't have solar power. MSL will be equipped with a RTG like what power the probes we send into the outer solar system. We won't need your broom. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <hr style="margin-top:0.5em;margin-bottom:0.5em" />Will Pittenger<hr style="margin-top:0.5em;margin-bottom:0.5em" />Add this user box to your Wikipedia User Page to show your support for the SDC forums: <div style="margin-left:1em">{{User:Will Pittenger/User Boxes/Space.com Account}}</div> </div>
 
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Huntster

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I would partially agree with that idea, in that one should be left at a Martian monument, and one should be brought back as something the people of Earth can actually access and appreciate. You have to realise, most people simply can't grasp the idea of things they can't see with their own eyes, thus the importance of museums and exhibits. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> </div>
 
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willpittenger

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Which Martians? The ones from <i>Mars Attacks!</i> or the ones from a Ray Bradbury novel? (I remember seeing a Bradbury short story that was converted into a TV show. The first men on Mars were tricked into thinking they were on Earth. So they took off their suits and died.) <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <hr style="margin-top:0.5em;margin-bottom:0.5em" />Will Pittenger<hr style="margin-top:0.5em;margin-bottom:0.5em" />Add this user box to your Wikipedia User Page to show your support for the SDC forums: <div style="margin-left:1em">{{User:Will Pittenger/User Boxes/Space.com Account}}</div> </div>
 
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usn_skwerl

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careful, dont let the general public know nuclear stuff is above our heads!! some might freak out. (they didnt know voyager et al had radioactive stuff aboard, either.-shh) <img src="/images/icons/wink.gif" /> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> </div>
 
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willpittenger

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Actually, there were protests and even lawsuits when Galileo and Cassini were launched and later made flybys of Earth. They already know.<br /><br />What most people don't know is that during the Cold War, both sides put full-fledged nuclear reactors into space. We are <font color="yellow">not</font>talking about RTGs here. The designs launched by the West are probably a good design with few risks and were launched into a fairly high orbit. However, the Soviets probably used one of their lousy designs. I also remember hearing that they were in a low orbit that will decay soon. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <hr style="margin-top:0.5em;margin-bottom:0.5em" />Will Pittenger<hr style="margin-top:0.5em;margin-bottom:0.5em" />Add this user box to your Wikipedia User Page to show your support for the SDC forums: <div style="margin-left:1em">{{User:Will Pittenger/User Boxes/Space.com Account}}</div> </div>
 
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JonClarke

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<i>Actually, the next generation won't have solar power. MSL will be equipped with a RTG like what power the probes we send into the outer solar system. </i><br /><br />ExoMars, another of the next generation of rovers, will have solar panels. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><em>Whether we become a multi-planet species with unlimited horizons, or are forever confined to Earth will be decided in the twenty-first century amid the vast plains, rugged canyons and lofty mountains of Mars</em>  Arthur Clarke</p> </div>
 
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j05h

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<i>> during the Cold War, both sides put full-fledged nuclear reactors into space. We are not talking about RTGs here. The designs launched by the West are probably a good design with few risks and were launched into a fairly high orbit. However, the Soviets probably used one of their lousy designs.</i><br /><br />Good guess! When "disposed" of, the Soviet RORSAT's reactors leaked radioactive sodium-potassium coolant throughout LEO. The main belt of radioactive droplets is between 530 and 620 miles altitude, roughly 360 pounds total split into over 100,000 droplets. With Argon-39 for extra rems.<br /><br />http://www.space.com/news/mystery_monday_040329.html<br /><br />At the end of the article is a list of other sources of debris. What this means to me is that some form of direct remediation will be needed. Also, spacecraft will have to become hardier. <br /><br />Tangentially this is related to the topic. If NASA tried to retrieve Hubble, for instance, the craft would have to be scrubbed before any display. The MER would need to be de-peroxided as well. <br /> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <div align="center"><em>We need a first generation of pioneers.</em><br /></div> </div>
 
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j05h

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<i>> ExoMars, another of the next generation of rovers, will have solar panels.</i><br /><br />What's the latest word on ExoMars? Last I'd read, the CSA refused to fund the anticipated Canadian contribution so MDA backed out. Has ESA found a new manufacturer?<br /><br />Josh <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <div align="center"><em>We need a first generation of pioneers.</em><br /></div> </div>
 
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JonClarke

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Still on track for 2013.<br /><br />http://www.marsdaily.com/reports/Euopean_Rover_ExoMars_On_Target_For_2013_Launch_999.html<br /><br />MDA is still involved http://www.marsdaily.com/reports/MDA_Secures_Role_On_Preparations_For_European_Mars_Rover_Mission_999.html.<br /><br />A test chassis called Bridget was unveiled at Farnborough air show http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/5186596.stm <br />and has undergone field trials on Tenerife http://www.eads.com/1024/en/eadsuk/What/EADS_Astrium/From_Mars_to_Earth_Event/bridget.html<br /><br />Jon<br /><br /> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><em>Whether we become a multi-planet species with unlimited horizons, or are forever confined to Earth will be decided in the twenty-first century amid the vast plains, rugged canyons and lofty mountains of Mars</em>  Arthur Clarke</p> </div>
 
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JonClarke

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<i>Actually, there were protests and even lawsuits when Galileo and Cassini were launched and later made flybys of Earth. They already know.</i><br /><br />But not for New Horizons.<br /><br /><i>The designs launched by the West are probably a good design with few risks and were launched into a fairly high orbit. However, the Soviets probably used one of their lousy designs</i><br /><br />The US only launched one reactor, SNAP 10. The USSR launched 33. There was nothing technically lousy about the Russian reactors which worked very well, the issues associated with the USA series of satellites were mostly associated with their disposal.<br /><br />Jon<br /> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><em>Whether we become a multi-planet species with unlimited horizons, or are forever confined to Earth will be decided in the twenty-first century amid the vast plains, rugged canyons and lofty mountains of Mars</em>  Arthur Clarke</p> </div>
 
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