Sample records for earth moon mars

  1. Landslides on Earth, Mars, Moon and Mercury (United States)

    Brunetti, Maria Teresa; Xiao, Zhiyong; Komatsu, Goro; Peruccacci, Silvia; Fiorucci, Federica; Cardinali, Mauro; Santangelo, Michele; Guzzetti, Fausto


    Landslides play an important role in the evolution of landscapes on Earth and on other solid planets of the Solar System. On Earth, landslides have been recognized in all continents, and in subaerial and submarine environments. The spatial and temporal range of the observed slope failures is extremely large on Earth. Surface gravity is the main factor driving landslides in solid planets. Comparison of landslide characteristics, e.g. the landslide types and sizes (area, volume, fall height, length) on various planetary bodies may help in understanding the effect of surface gravity on failure initiation and propagation. In the last decades, planetary exploration missions have delivered an increasing amount of high-resolution imagery, which enables to resolve and identify morphologic structures on planetary surfaces in great detail. Here, we present three geomorphological inventories of extraterrestrial landslides on Mars, Moon and Mercury. To recognize and map the landslides on the three Solar System bodies, we adopt the same visual criteria commonly used by geomorphologists to identify terrestrial slope failures in aerial photographs or satellite images. Landslides are classified based on the morphological similarity with terrestrial ones. In particular, we focus on rock slides mapped in Valles Marineris, Mars, and along the internal walls of impact craters on the Moon and Mercury. We exploit the three inventories to study the statistical distributions of the failure sizes (e.g., area, volume, fall height, length), and we compare the results with similar distributions obtained for terrestrial landslides. We obtain indications on the effect of the different surface gravity on landslides on Earth and Mars through the relationship between the landslide area and volume on the two planets. From the analysis of the area, we hypothesize that the lack of medium size landslides on Mars is due to the absence of erosive processes, which are induced on Earth chiefly by water

  2. Earthlike planets: Surfaces of Mercury, Venus, earth, moon, Mars (United States)

    Murray, B.; Malin, M. C.; Greeley, R.


    The surfaces of the earth and the other terrestrial planets of the inner solar system are reviewed in light of the results of recent planetary explorations. Past and current views of the origin of the earth, moon, Mercury, Venus and Mars are discussed, and the surface features characteristic of the moon, Mercury, Mars and Venus are outlined. Mechanisms for the modification of planetary surfaces by external factors and from within the planet are examined, including surface cycles, meteoritic impact, gravity, wind, plate tectonics, volcanism and crustal deformation. The origin and evolution of the moon are discussed on the basis of the Apollo results, and current knowledge of Mercury and Mars is examined in detail. Finally, the middle periods in the history of the terrestrial planets are compared, and future prospects for the exploration of the inner planets as well as other rocky bodies in the solar system are discussed.

  3. Stochastic late accretion to Earth, the Moon, and Mars. (United States)

    Bottke, William F; Walker, Richard J; Day, James M D; Nesvorny, David; Elkins-Tanton, Linda


    Core formation should have stripped the terrestrial, lunar, and martian mantles of highly siderophile elements (HSEs). Instead, each world has disparate, yet elevated HSE abundances. Late accretion may offer a solution, provided that ≥0.5% Earth masses of broadly chondritic planetesimals reach Earth's mantle and that ~10 and ~1200 times less mass goes to Mars and the Moon, respectively. We show that leftover planetesimal populations dominated by massive projectiles can explain these additions, with our inferred size distribution matching those derived from the inner asteroid belt, ancient martian impact basins, and planetary accretion models. The largest late terrestrial impactors, at 2500 to 3000 kilometers in diameter, potentially modified Earth's obliquity by ~10°, whereas those for the Moon, at ~250 to 300 kilometers, may have delivered water to its mantle.

  4. Earth-Mars transfers through Moon Distant Retrograde Orbits (United States)

    Conte, Davide; Di Carlo, Marilena; Ho, Koki; Spencer, David B.; Vasile, Massimiliano


    This paper focuses on the trajectory design which is relevant for missions that would exploit the use of asteroid mining in stable cis-lunar orbits to facilitate deep space missions, specifically human Mars exploration. Assuming that a refueling "gas station" is present at a given lunar Distant Retrograde Orbit (DRO), ways of departing from the Earth to Mars via that DRO are analyzed. Thus, the analysis and results presented in this paper add a new cis-lunar departure orbit for Earth-Mars missions. Porkchop plots depicting the required C3 at launch, v∞ at arrival, Time of Flight (TOF), and total Δ V for various DRO departure and Mars arrival dates are created and compared with results obtained for low Δ V Low Earth Orbit (LEO) to Mars trajectories. The results show that propellant-optimal trajectories from LEO to Mars through a DRO have higher overall mission Δ V due to the additional stop at the DRO. However, they have lower Initial Mass in LEO (IMLEO) and thus lower gear ratio as well as lower TOF than direct LEO to Mars transfers. This results in a lower overall spacecraft dry mass that needs to be launched into space from Earth's surface.

  5. The composition of Solar system asteroids and Earth/Mars moons, and the Earth-Moon composition similarity


    Mastrobuono-Battisti, Alessandra; Perets, Hagai B.


    [abridged] In the typical giant-impact scenario for the Moon formation most of the Moon's material originates from the impactor. Any Earth-impactor composition difference should, therefore, correspond to a comparable Earth-Moon composition difference. Analysis of Moon rocks shows a close Earth-Moon composition similarity, posing a challenge for the giant-impact scenario, given that impactors were thought to significantly differ in composition from the planets they impact. Here we use a large ...

  6. Properties of the moon, Mars, Martian satellites, and near-earth asteroids (United States)

    Taylor, Jeffrey G.

    Environments and surface properties of the moon, Mars, Martian satellites, and near-earth asteroids are discussed. Topics include gravity, atmospheres, surface properties, surface compositions, seismicity, radiation environment, degradation, use of robotics, and environmental impacts. Gravity fields vary from large fractions of the earth's field such as 1/3 on Mars and 1/6 on the moon to smaller fractions of 0.0004 g on an asteroid 1 km in diameter. Spectral data and the analogy with meteor compositions suggest that near-earth asteroids may contain many resources such as water-rich carbonaceous materials and iron-rich metallic bodies. It is concluded that future mining and materials processing operations from extraterrestrial bodies require an investment now in both (1) missions to the moon, Mars, Phobos, Deimos, and near-earth asteroids and (2) earth-based laboratory research in materials and processing.

  7. The energetics of cycling on Earth, Moon and Mars. (United States)

    Lazzer, Stefano; Plaino, Luca; Antonutto, Guglielmo


    From 1885, technological improvements, such as the use of special metal alloys and the application of aerodynamics principles, have transformed the bicycle from a human powered heavy transport system to an efficient, often expensive, object used to move not only in our crowded cities, but also in leisure activities and in sports. In this paper, the concepts of mechanical work and efficiency of cycling together with the corresponding metabolic expenditure are discussed. The effects of altitude and aerodynamic improvements on sports performances are also analysed. A section is dedicated to the analysis of the maximal cycling performances. Finally, since during the next decades the return of Man on the Moon and, why not, a mission to Mars can be realistically hypothesised, a section is dedicated to cycling-based facilities, such as man powered short radius centrifuges, to be used to prevent cardiovascular and skeletal muscle deconditioning otherwise occurring during long-term exposure to microgravity.

  8. The Earth and Moon As Seen by 2001 Mars Odyssey's Thermal Emission Imaging System (United States)


    2001 Mars Odyssey's Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) took this portrait of the Earth and its companion Moon, using the infrared camera, one of two cameras in the instrument. It was taken at a distance of 3,563,735 kilometers (more than 2 million miles) on April 19, 2001 as the 2001 Mars Odyssey spacecraft left the Earth. From this distance and perspective the camera was able to acquire an image that directly shows the true distance from the Earth to the Moon. The Earth's diameter is about 12,750 km, and the distance from the Earth to the Moon is about 385,000 km, corresponding to 30 Earth diameters. The dark region seen on Earth in the infrared temperature image is the cold south pole, with a temperature of minus 50 degrees Celsius (minus 58 degrees Fahrenheit). The small bright region above it is warm Australia. This image was acquired using the 9.1 um infrared filter, one of nine filters that the instrument will use to map the mineral composition and temperature of the martian surface. From this great distance, each picture element (pixel) in the image corresponds to a region 900 by 900 kilometers or greater in size or about size of the state of Texas. Once Odyssey reaches Mars orbit each infrared pixel will cover a region only 100 by 100 meters on the surface, about the size of a major league baseball field.

  9. Simulation of Earth-Moon-Mars Environments for the Assessment of Organ Doses (United States)

    Kim, Myung-Hee; Schwadron, Nathan; Townsend, Lawrence W.; Cucinotta, Francis A.


    Space radiation environments for historically large solar particle events (SPE) and galactic cosmic rays (GCR) at solar minimum and solar maximum are simulated in order to characterize exposures to radio-sensitive organs for missions to low-Earth orbit (LEO), moon, and Mars. Primary and secondary particles for SPE and GCR are transported through the respective atmosphere of Earth or Mars, space vehicle, and astronaut s body tissues using the HZETRN/QMSFRG computer code. In LEO, exposures are reduced compared to deep space because particles are deflected by the Earth s magnetic field and absorbed by the solid body of the Earth. Geomagnetic transmission function as a function of altitude was applied for the particle flux of charged particles, and the shift or the organ exposures to higher velocity or lower stopping powers compared to those in deep space were analyzed. In the transport through Mars atmosphere, a vertical distribution of atmospheric thickness was calculated from the temperature and pressure data of Mars Global Surveyor, and the directional cosine distribution was implemented to describe the spherically distributed atmospheric distance along the slant path at each altitude. The resultant directional shielding by Mars atmosphere at solar minimum and solar maximum was used for the particle flux simulation at various altitudes on the Martian surface. Finally, atmospheric shielding was coupled with vehicle and body shielding for organ dose estimates. We made predictions of radiation dose equivalents and evaluated acute symptoms at LEO, moon, and Mars at solar minimum and solar maximum.

  10. Simulated Stand Tests on Earth, Moon, and Mars and Centrifuge Parameters to Prevent Cardiovascular Deconditioning During Spaceflight (United States)

    Coats, Brandon W.; Sharp, M. Keith


    Postflight Orthostatic Intolerance (POI) results from cardiovascular adaptation to spaceflight and affects a significant fraction of astronauts returning to earth after missions that are merely a couple of weeks in duration and may be even more prevalent after longer missions, such as those to the moon and Mars. To prevent cardiovascular deconditioning a centrifuge may be utilized to induce gravity-like stresses within the body. The current investigation allows insight into the mechanisms of POI by simulating stand tests on Earth, the moon, and Mars while predicting centrifuge spin rates that sufficiently mimic each constant gravity reference. It was found that the modeled nonfinishing male & female astronaut would become presyncopal in about 4&7min, 32&56min, 104&182min while losing 160&280mL, 512&896mL, 692&1211mL of blood volume (BV) at the onset of presyncope in each case for Earth, Mars, and the moon, respectively. The modeled finishing male astronaut endured the length of the stand test in every case, but lost only 100mL, 320, and 432mL BV by the end of each stand test. Centrifuge speeds for equivalent times to presyncope for female and finishing & nonfinishing male astronauts loaded the body with G loads at heart level for Earth, Mars, and the moon cases consistently less than the constant gravity reference level for both the NASA short & long arm centrifuges.

  11. Moon-Mars Initiative (United States)


    On 27 May, the AGU Council unanimously adopted a position statement on NASA's strategic plan released in February 2005:: "A New Age of Exploration: NASA's Direction for 2005 and Beyond". This strategy incorporates U.S. President Bush's vision for manned space flight to Moon and Mars as described in "A Renewed Spirit of Discovery: The President's Vision for U.S. Space Exploration" announced in January 2004. The statement was drafted by a panel chaired by Eric Barron of Penn State University. AGU calls for the U.S. Administration, Congress, and NASA to continue their commitment to innovative Earth and space science programs. This commitment has placed the U.S. in an international leadership position. It enables environmental stewardship, promotes economic vitality, engages the next generation of scientists and engineers, protects life and property, and fosters exploration. It is, however, threatened by new financial demands placed on NASA by the return to human space flight using the space shuttle, finishing the space station, and launching the Moon-Mars initiative.

  12. Modeling the effectiveness of shielding in the earth-moon-mars radiation environment using PREDICCS: five solar events in 2012 (United States)

    Quinn, Philip R.; Schwadron, Nathan A.; Townsend, Larry W.; Wimmer-Schweingruber, Robert F.; Case, Anthony W.; Spence, Harlan E.; Wilson, Jody K.; Joyce, Colin J.


    Radiation in the form of solar energetic particles (SEPs) presents a severe risk to the short-term health of astronauts and the success of human exploration missions beyond Earth's protective shielding. Modeling how shielding mitigates the dose accumulated by astronauts is an essential step toward reducing these risks. PREDICCS (Predictions of radiation from REleASE, EMMREM, and Data Incorporating the CRaTER, COSTEP, and other SEP measurements) is an online tool for the near real-time prediction of radiation exposure at Earth, the Moon, and Mars behind various levels of shielding. We compare shielded dose rates from PREDICCS with dose rates from the Cosmic Ray Telescope for the Effects of Radiation (CRaTER) onboard the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) at the Moon and from the Radiation Assessment Detector (RAD) on the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) during its cruise phase to Mars for five solar events in 2012 when Earth, MSL, and Mars were magnetically well connected. Calculations of the accumulated dose demonstrate a reasonable agreement between PREDICCS and RAD ranging from as little as 2% difference to 54%. We determine mathematical relationships between shielding levels and accumulated dose. Lastly, the gradient of accumulated dose between Earth and Mars shows that for the largest of the five solar events, lunar missions require aluminum shielding between 1.0 g cm-2 and 5.0 g cm-2 to prevent radiation exposure from exceeding the 30-day limits for lens and skin. The limits were not exceeded near Mars.

  13. Human Exploration Mission Capabilities to the Moon, Mars, and Near Earth Asteroids Using ''Bimodal'' NTR Propulsion

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stanley K. Borowski; Leonard A. Dudzinski; Melissa L. McGuire


    The nuclear thermal rocket (NTR) is one of the leading propulsion options for future human exploration missions because of its high specific impulse (Isp ∼ 850 to 1000 s) and attractive engine thrust-to-weight ratio (∼ 3 to 10). Because only a minuscule amount of enriched 235 U fuel is consumed in an NRT during the primary propulsion maneuvers of a typical Mars mission, engines configured both for propulsive thrust and modest power generation (referred to as 'bimodal' operation) provide the basis for a robust, power-rich stage with efficient propulsive capture capability at the moon and near-earth asteroids (NEAs), where aerobraking cannot be utilized. A family of modular bimodal NTR (BNTR) space transfer vehicles utilize a common core stage powered by three ∼15-klb f engines that produce 50 kW(electric) of total electrical power for crew life support, high data rate communications with Earth, and an active refrigeration system for long-term, zero-boiloff liquid hydrogen (LH 2 ) storage. This paper describes details of BNTR engines and designs of vehicles using them for various missions


    Sato, Tatsuhiko; Nagamatsu, Aiko; Ueno, Haruka; Kataoka, Ryuho; Miyake, Shoko; Takeda, Kazuo; Niita, Koji


    Estimation of cosmic-ray doses is of great importance not only in aircrew and astronaut dosimetry but also in evaluation of background radiation exposure to public. We therefore calculated the cosmic-ray doses on Earth, Moon and Mars as well as inside spacecraft, using Particle and Heavy Ion Transport code System PHITS. The same cosmic-ray models and dose conversion coefficients were employed in the calculation to properly compare between the simulation results for different environments. It is quantitatively confirmed that the thickness of physical shielding including the atmosphere and soil of the planets is the most important parameter to determine the cosmic-ray doses and their dominant contributors. The comparison also suggests that higher solar activity significantly reduces the astronaut doses particularly for the interplanetary missions. The information obtained from this study is useful in the designs of the future space missions as well as accelerator-based experiments dedicated to cosmic-ray research. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email:

  15. Nuclear technologies for Moon and Mars exploration

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Buden, D.


    Nuclear technologies are essential to successful Moon and Mars exploration and settlements. Applications can take the form of nuclear propulsion for transport of crews and cargo to Mars and the Moon; surface power for habitats and base power; power for human spacecraft to Mars; shielding and life science understanding for protection against natural solar and cosmic radiations; radioisotopes for sterilization, medicine, testing, and power; and resources for the benefits of Earth. 5 refs., 9 figs., 3 tabs

  16. Nuclear technologies for Moon and Mars exploration

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Buden, D.


    Nuclear technologies are essential to successful Moon and Mars exploration and settlements. Applications can take the form of nuclear propulsion for transport of crews and cargo to Mars and the Moon; surface power for habitats and base power; power for human spacecraft to Mars; shielding and life science understanding for protection against natural solar and cosmic radiations; radioisotopes for sterilization, medicine, testing, and power; and resources for the benefits of Earth. 5 refs., 9 figs., 3 tabs.

  17. Modeling the effectiveness of shielding in the earth-moon-mars radiation environment using PREDICCS: five solar events in 2012

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Quinn Philip R.


    Full Text Available Radiation in the form of solar energetic particles (SEPs presents a severe risk to the short-term health of astronauts and the success of human exploration missions beyond Earth’s protective shielding. Modeling how shielding mitigates the dose accumulated by astronauts is an essential step toward reducing these risks. PREDICCS (Predictions of radiation from REleASE, EMMREM, and Data Incorporating the CRaTER, COSTEP, and other SEP measurements is an online tool for the near real-time prediction of radiation exposure at Earth, the Moon, and Mars behind various levels of shielding. We compare shielded dose rates from PREDICCS with dose rates from the Cosmic Ray Telescope for the Effects of Radiation (CRaTER onboard the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO at the Moon and from the Radiation Assessment Detector (RAD on the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL during its cruise phase to Mars for five solar events in 2012 when Earth, MSL, and Mars were magnetically well connected. Calculations of the accumulated dose demonstrate a reasonable agreement between PREDICCS and RAD ranging from as little as 2% difference to 54%. We determine mathematical relationships between shielding levels and accumulated dose. Lastly, the gradient of accumulated dose between Earth and Mars shows that for the largest of the five solar events, lunar missions require aluminum shielding between 1.0 g cm−2 and 5.0 g cm−2 to prevent radiation exposure from exceeding the 30-day limits for lens and skin. The limits were not exceeded near Mars.

  18. Yield strengths of flows on the earth, Mars, and moon. [application of Bingham plastic model to lava flows (United States)

    Moore, H. J.; Arthur, D. W. G.; Schaber, G. G.


    Dimensions of flows on the earth, Mars, and moon and their topographic gradients obtained from remote measurements are used to calculate yield strengths with a view to explore the validity of the Bingham plastic model and determine whether there is a relation between yield strengths and silica contents. Other factors are considered such as the vagaries of natural phenomena that might contribute to erroneous interpretations and measurements. Comparison of yield strengths of Martian and lunar flows with terrestrial flows suggests that the Martian and lunar flows are more akin to terrestrial basalts than they are to terrestrial andesites, trachytes, and rhyolites.

  19. Astrobiology field research in Moon/Mars Analogue

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Foing, B.H.; Stoker, C.; Ehrenfreund, P.


    Extreme environments on Earth often provide similar terrain conditions to landing/operation sites on Moon and Mars. Several field campaigns (EuroGeoMars2009 and DOMMEX/ILEWG EuroMoonMars from November 2009 to March 2010) were conducted at the Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS) in Utah. Some of the

  20. Hypervelocity Impact Testing of Materials for Additive Construction: Applications on Earth, the Moon, and Mars (United States)

    Ordonez, Erick; Edmunson, Jennifer; Fiske, Michael; Christiansen, Eric; Miller, Josh; Davis, Bruce Alan; Read, Jon; Johnston, Mallory; Fikes, John


    Additive Construction is the process of building infrastructure such as habitats, garages, roads, berms, etcetera layer by layer (3D printing). The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) are pursuing additive construction to build structures using resources available in-situ. Using materials available in-situ reduces the cost of planetary missions and operations in theater. The NASA team is investigating multiple binders that can be produced on planetary surfaces, including the magnesium oxide-based Sorel cement; the components required to make Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC), the common cement used on Earth, have been found on Mars. The availability of OPC-based concrete on Earth drove the USACE to pursue additive construction for base housing and barriers for military operations. Planetary and military base structures must be capable of resisting micrometeoroid impacts with velocities ranging from 11 to 72km/s for particle sizes 200 micrometers or more (depending on protection requirements) as well as bullets and shrapnel with a velocity of 1.036km/s with projectiles 5.66mm diameter and 57.40mm in length, respectively.

  1. Crescent Earth and Moon (United States)


    This picture of a crescent-shaped Earth and Moon -- the first of its kind ever taken by a spacecraft -- was recorded Sept. 18, 1977, by NASA's Voyager 1 when it was 7.25 million miles (11.66 million kilometers) from Earth. The Moon is at the top of the picture and beyond the Earth as viewed by Voyager. In the picture are eastern Asia, the western Pacific Ocean and part of the Arctic. Voyager 1 was directly above Mt. Everest (on the night side of the planet at 25 degrees north latitude) when the picture was taken. The photo was made from three images taken through color filters, then processed by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory's Image Processing Lab. Because the Earth is many times brighter than the Moon, the Moon was artificially brightened by a factor of three relative to the Earth by computer enhancement so that both bodies would show clearly in the print. Voyager 2 was launched Aug. 20, 1977, followed by Voyager 1 on Sept. 5, 1977, en route to encounters at Jupiter in 1979 and Saturn in 1980 and 1981. JPL manages the Voyager mission for NASA's Office of Space Science.

  2. Particle Radiation Sources, Propagation and Interactions in Deep Space, at Earth, the Moon, Mars, and Beyond: Examples of Radiation Interactions and Effects (United States)

    Schwadron, Nathan A.; Cooper, John F.; Desai, Mihir; Downs, Cooper; Gorby, Matt; Jordan, Andrew P.; Joyce, Colin J.; Kozarev, Kamen; Linker, Jon A.; Mikíc, Zoran; Riley, Pete; Spence, Harlan E.; Török, Tibor; Townsend, Lawrence W.; Wilson, Jody K.; Zeitlin, Cary


    Particle radiation has significant effects for astronauts, satellites and planetary bodies throughout the Solar System. Acute space radiation hazards pose risks to human and robotic exploration. This radiation also naturally weathers the exposed surface regolith of the Moon, the two moons of Mars, and other airless bodies, and contributes to chemical evolution of planetary atmospheres at Earth, Mars, Venus, Titan, and Pluto. We provide a select review of recent areas of research covering the origin of SEPs from coronal mass ejections low in the corona, propagation of events through the solar system during the anomalously weak solar cycle 24 and important examples of radiation interactions for Earth, other planets and airless bodies such as the Moon.

  3. A Comparative Analysis of the Magnetic Field Signals over Impact Structures on the Earth, Mars and the Moon (United States)

    Isac, Anca; Mandea, Mioara; Purucker, Michael; Langlais, Benoit


    An improved description of magnetic fields of terrestrial bodies has been obtained from recent space missions, leading to a better characterization of the internal fields including those of crustal origin. One of the striking differences in their crustal magnetic field is the signature of large impact craters. A comparative analysis of the magnetic characteristics of these structures can shed light on the history of their respective planetary-scale magnetic dynamos. This has motivated us to identify impact craters and basins, first by their quasi-circular features from the most recent and detailed topographic maps and then from available global magnetic field maps. We have examined the magnetic field observed above 27 complex craters on the Earth, 34 impact basins on Mars and 37 impact basins on the Moon. For the first time, systematic trends in the amplitude and frequency of the magnetic patterns, inside and outside of these structures are observed for all three bodies. The demagnetization effects due to the impact shock wave and excavation processes have been evaluated applying the Equivalent Source Dipole forward modeling approach. The main characteristics of the selected impact craters are shown. The trends in their magnetic signatures are indicated, which are related to the presence or absence of a planetary-scale dynamo at the time of their formation and to impact processes. The low magnetic field intensity at center can be accepted as the prime characteristic of a hypervelocity impact and strongly associated with the mechanics of impact crater formation. In the presence of an active internal field, the process of demagnetization due to the shock impact is associated with post-impact remagnetization processes, generating a more complex magnetic signature.

  4. Mars, the Moon, and the Ends of the Earth: Autonomy for Small Reactor Power Systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wood, Richard Thomas


    In recent years, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has been considering deep space missions that utilize a small-reactor power system (SRPS) to provide energy for propulsion and spacecraft power. Additionally, application of SRPS modules as a planetary power source is being investigated to enable a continuous human presence for nonpolar lunar sites and on Mars. A SRPS can supply high-sustained power for space and surface applications that is both reliable and mass efficient. The use of small nuclear reactors for deep space or planetary missions presents some unique challenges regarding the operations and control of the power system. Current-generation terrestrial nuclear reactors employ varying degrees of human control and decision-making for operations and benefit from periodic human interaction for maintenance. In contrast, the control system of a SRPS employed for deep space missions must be able to accommodate unattended operations due to communications delays and periods of planetary occlusion while adapting to evolving or degraded conditions with no opportunity for repair or refurbishment. While surface power systems for planetary outposts face less extreme delays and periods of isolation and may benefit from limited maintenance capabilities, considerations such as human safety, resource limitations and usage priorities, and economics favor minimizing direct, continuous human interaction with the SRPS for online, dedicated power system management. Thus, a SRPS control system for space or planetary missions must provide capabilities for operational autonomy. For terrestrial reactors, large-scale power plants remain the preferred near-term option for nuclear power generation. However, the desire to reduce reliance on carbon-emitting power sources in developing countries may lead to increased consideration of SRPS modules for local power generation in remote regions that are characterized by emerging, less established infrastructures

  5. The earth and the moon

    CERN Document Server

    Elkins-Tanton, Linda T


    The moon is the only body in the solar system outside of the Earth that has been visited by humans. More than 440 pounds of lunar material are brought by NASA and Soviet space missions to Earth for study. The information gleaned about the moon from this relatively small pile of rocks is mind-boggling and stands as the greatest proof that Martian planetary science would be greatly enhanced by returning samples to Earth. Compositional studies of lunar rocks show that the moon and the Earth are made of similar material, and because lunar material has not been reworked through erosion and plate te

  6. Water System Architectures for Moon and Mars Bases (United States)

    Jones, Harry W.; Hodgson, Edward W.; Kliss, Mark H.


    Water systems for human bases on the moon and Mars will recycle multiple sources of wastewater. Systems for both the moon and Mars will also store water to support and backup the recycling system. Most water system requirements, such as number of crew, quantity and quality of water supply, presence of gravity, and surface mission duration of 6 or 18 months, will be similar for the moon and Mars. If the water system fails, a crew on the moon can quickly receive spare parts and supplies or return to Earth, but a crew on Mars cannot. A recycling system on the moon can have a reasonable reliability goal, such as only one unrecoverable failure every five years, if there is enough stored water to allow time for attempted repairs and for the crew to return if repair fails. The water system that has been developed and successfully operated on the International Space Station (ISS) could be used on a moon base. To achieve the same high level of crew safety on Mars without an escape option, either the recycling system must have much higher reliability or enough water must be stored to allow the crew to survive the full duration of the Mars surface mission. A three loop water system architecture that separately recycles condensate, wash water, and urine and flush can improve reliability and reduce cost for a Mars base.

  7. Moon-Mars Analogue Mission (EuroMoonMars 1 at the Mars Desert Research Station) (United States)

    Lia Schlacht, Irene; Voute, Sara; Irwin, Stacy; Foing, Bernard H.; Stoker, Carol R.; Westenberg, Artemis

    The Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS) is situated in an analogue habitat-based Martian environment, designed for missions to determine the knowledge and equipment necessary for successful future planetary exploration. For this purpose, a crew of six people worked and lived together in a closed-system environment. They performed habitability experiments within the dwelling and conducted Extra-Vehicular Activities (EVAs) for two weeks (20 Feb to 6 Mar 2010) and were guided externally by mission support, called "Earth" within the simulation. Crew 91, an international, mixed-gender, and multidisciplinary group, has completed several studies during the first mission of the EuroMoonMars campaign. The crew is composed of an Italian designer and human factors specialist, a Dutch geologist, an American physicist, and three French aerospace engineering students from Ecole de l'Air, all with ages between 21 and 31. Each crewmember worked on personal research and fulfilled a unique role within the group: commander, executive officer, engineer, health and safety officer, scientist, and journalist. The expedition focused on human factors, performance, communication, health and safety pro-tocols, and EVA procedures. The engineers' projects aimed to improve rover manoeuvrability, far-field communication, and data exchanges between the base and the rover or astronaut. The crew physicist evaluated dust control methods inside and outside the habitat. The geologist tested planetary geological sampling procedures. The crew designer investigated performance and overall habitability in the context of the Mars Habitability Experiment from the Extreme-Design group. During the mission the crew also participated in the Food Study and in the Ethospace study, managed by external groups. The poster will present crew dynamics, scientific results and daily schedule from a Human Factors perspective. Main co-sponsors and collaborators: ILEWG, ESA ESTEC, NASA Ames, Ecole de l'Air, SKOR, Extreme

  8. Lighting Condition Analysis for Mars' Moon Phobos (United States)

    Li, Zu Qun; de Carufel, Guy; Crues, Edwin Z.; Bielski, Paul


    This study used high fidelity computer simulation to investigate the lighting conditions, specifically the solar radiation flux over the surface, on Phobos. Ephemeris data from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) DE405 model was used to model the state of the Sun, Earth, Moon, and Mars. An occultation model was developed to simulate Phobos' self-shadowing and its solar eclipses by Mars. The propagated Phobos state was compared with data from JPL's Horizon system to ensure the accuracy of the result. Results for Phobos lighting conditions over one Martian year are presented, which include the duration of solar eclipses, average solar radiation intensity, surface exposure time, and radiant exposure for both sun tracking and fixed solar arrays. The results show that: Phobos' solar eclipse time varies throughout the Martian year, with longer eclipse durations during the Martian northern spring and fall seasons and no eclipses during the Martian northern summer and winter seasons; solar radiation intensity is close to minimum in late spring and close to maximum in late fall; exposure time per orbit is relatively constant over the surface during the spring and fall but varies with latitude during the summer and winter; and Sun tracking solar arrays generate more energy than a fixed solar array. A usage example of the result is also present in this paper to demonstrate the utility.

  9. "The Moon Village and Journey to Mars enable each other" (United States)

    Beldavs, Vidvuds


    with the addition of resource recovery from asteroids at industrial operations in cislunar space. Preliminary conclusions indicate that by doing more that the cost and risk of individual operations lessens. The cost and risk of the Journey to Mars will be significantly less if a parallel effort is underway with Moon Village. Moon Village is aimed at lunar exploration with a view towards enabling lunar ISRU. Success with lunar ISRU creates sources of fuel, water, and other materials required for missions to Mars. This creates a supplier- customer relationship. This economic aspect is further enhanced with space-based solar power first piloted for lunar applications then applied to terrestrial needs starting with disaster relief. The benefits of shared infrastructure are further augmented through development of industrial operations in cislunar space for asteroid and or lunar materials processing expanding the range of materials that become available for processing into products that do not have to be lifted out of the Earth's gravity well creating the basis for a space economy. The idea of an International Lunar Decade serving as a framework for coordination of international collaboration across multiple missions and fields is explored. [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] Lunar COTS: An Economical and Sustainable Approach to Reaching Mars,

  10. Reorientation Histories of Mercury, Venus, the Moon, and Mars (United States)

    Keane, J. T.; Matsuyama, I.


    The spins of planets are not constant with time. Impacts, volcanos, and other large geologic features can reorient planets (a process known as true polar wander). True polar wander can have important implications for the climate, volatiles, and tectonics of planets and moons. However, despite its importance, it has been difficult to study true polar wander for objects beyond the Earth. Here we present the results of the first comprehensive, data-driven investigation into the true polar wander histories of Mercury, Venus, the Moon, and Mars. We find that Mercury and the Moon have both reoriented in response to large impacts, while the spins of Mars and Venus are more strongly affected by volcanism. Venus, in particular, has been subject to some very dramatic episodes of true polar wander in the past.

  11. High-Resolution Mars Camera Test Image of Moon (Infrared) (United States)


    This crescent view of Earth's Moon in infrared wavelengths comes from a camera test by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft on its way to Mars. The mission's High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment camera took the image on Sept. 8, 2005, while at a distance of about 10 million kilometers (6 million miles) from the Moon. The dark feature on the right is Mare Crisium. From that distance, the Moon would appear as a star-like point of light to the unaided eye. The test verified the camera's focusing capability and provided an opportunity for calibration. The spacecraft's Context Camera and Optical Navigation Camera also performed as expected during the test. The Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, launched on Aug. 12, 2005, is on course to reach Mars on March 10, 2006. After gradually adjusting the shape of its orbit for half a year, it will begin its primary science phase in November 2006. From the mission's planned science orbit about 300 kilometers (186 miles) above the surface of Mars, the high resolution camera will be able to discern features as small as one meter or yard across.

  12. Limits to the expansion of Earth, Moon, Mars and Mercury and to changes in the gravitational constant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McElhinny, M.W.; Taylor, S.R.; Stevenson, D.J.


    It is stated that new estimates of the palaeoradius of the Earth for the past 400 Myr from palaeomagnetic data limit possible expansion to less than 0.8%, sufficient to exclude any current theory of Earth expansion. The lunar surface has remained static for 4,000 Myr with possible expansion limited to 0.06%, the Martian surface suggests a small possible expansion of 0.6%, while the surface of Mercury supports a small contraction. Observations of Mercury, together with reasonable assumptions about its internal structure, indicate that G decreased at a rate of less than 8 x 10 -12 yr -1 , in constant mass cosmologies, and 2.5 x 10 -11 yr -1 in Dirac's multiplicative creation cosmology. (author)

  13. Mars, earth, and ice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cordell, B.M.


    Possible mechanisms to explain the global ice covering of Mars, and previous ice ages on the earth, are considered. Evidence for the Milankovitch effect is found in the close correspondence of earth's past climate with its orbital variations, as recorded principally in ocean sediments, and the role of CO 2 is discussed. Mars' range of obliquity, 10 times that of the earth, and orbital eccentricity, fluctuating over a range 2 1/2 times that of the earth, could produce an important climate-driving cycle. Mathematical models of the Martian surface and atmosphere based on Viking data suggest that escaped CO 2 could create a surface pressure of 1-3 bars. Other factors such as the effect of continental drift, the increased brightness of the sun, and planetary reversals of magnetic field polarity are discussed, and the questions of where Martian water and CO 2 have gone are considered

  14. Highly Sideophile Element Abundance Constraints on the Nature of the Late Accretionary Histories of Earth, Moon and Mars (United States)

    Walker, R. J.; Puchtel, I. S.; Brandon, A. D.; Horan, M. F.; James, O. B.


    The highly siderophile elements (HSE) include Re, Os, Ir, Ru, Pt and Pd. These elements are initially nearly-quantitatively stripped from planetary silicate mantles during core segregation. They then may be re-enriched in mantles via continued accretion sans continued core segregation. This suite of elements and its included long-lived radiogenic isotopes systems (Re-187 (right arrow) Os-187; Pt-190 (right arrow) Os-186) can potentially be used to fingerprint the characteristics of late accreted materials. The fingerprints may ultimately be useful to constrain the prior nebular history of the dominant late accreted materials, and to compare the proportion and genesis of late accretionary materials added to the inner planets. The past ten years have seen considerable accumulation of isotopic and compositional data for HSE present in the Earth's mantle, lunar mantle and impact melt breccias, and Martian meteorites. Here we review some of these data and consider the broader implications of the compiled data.

  15. The 2012 Moon and Mars Analog Mission (United States)

    Graham, Lee


    The 2012 Moon and Mars Analog Mission Activities (MMAMA) scientific investigations were completed on Mauna Kea volcano in Hawaii in July 2012. The investigations were conducted on the southeast flank of the Mauna Kea volcano at an elevation of approximately 11,500 ft. This area is known as "Apollo Valley" and is in an adjacent valley to the Very Large Baseline Array dish antenna.

  16. Early differentiation of the Earth and the Moon. (United States)

    Bourdon, Bernard; Touboul, Mathieu; Caro, Guillaume; Kleine, Thorsten


    We examine the implications of new 182W and 142Nd data for Mars and the Moon for the early evolution of the Earth. The similarity of 182W in the terrestrial and lunar mantles and their apparently differing Hf/W ratios indicate that the Moon-forming giant impact most probably took place more than 60Ma after the formation of calcium-aluminium-rich inclusions (4.568Gyr). This is not inconsistent with the apparent U-Pb age of the Earth. The new 142Nd data for Martian meteorites show that Mars probably has a super-chondritic Sm/Nd that could coincide with that of the Earth and the Moon. If this is interpreted by an early mantle differentiation event, this requires a buried enriched reservoir for the three objects. This is highly unlikely. For the Earth, we show, based on new mass-balance calculations for Nd isotopes, that the presence of a hidden reservoir is difficult to reconcile with the combined 142Nd-143Nd systematics of the Earth's mantle. We argue that a likely possibility is that the missing component was lost during or prior to accretion. Furthermore, the 142Nd data for the Moon that were used to argue for the solidification of the magma ocean at ca 200Myr are reinterpreted. Cumulate overturn, magma mixing and melting following lunar magma ocean crystallization at 50-100Myr could have yielded the 200Myr model age.

  17. The origin of the moon and the early history of the earth - A chemical model. Part 1: The moon

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    O'Neill, H. St.C.


    The chemical implications of a giant impact model for the origin of the moon are examined, both for the moon and for the earth. The Impactor is taken to be an approximately Mars-sized body. It is argued that the likeliest bulk chemical composition of the moon is quite similar to that of the earth's mantle, and that this composition may be explained in detail if about 80% of the moon came from the primitive earth's mantle after segregation of the earth's core. The other 20% of the moon is modelled as coming from (a) the Impactor, which is constrained to be an oxidized, probably undifferentiated body of roughly CI chondritic composition (on a volatile free basis) and (b) a late stage veneer, with a composition and oxidation state similar to that of the H-group ordinary chondrites. This latter component is the source of all the volatile elements in the moon, which failed to condense from the earth-and Impactor-derived materials; this component constitutes about 4% of the moon. It is argued that Mo may behave as a volatile element under the relatively oxidising conditions necessary for the condensation of the proto-moon. The model accounts satisfactorily for most of the siderophile elements, including Fe, Ni, Co, W, P, and Cu. The relatively well-constrained lunar abundances of V, Cr, and Mn are also accounted for; their depletion in the moon is inherited from the earth's mantle

  18. NASAs Evolvable Mars Campaign: Mars Moons Robotic Precursor (United States)

    Gernhardt, Michael L.; Abercromby, Andrew F. J.; Abell, Paul A.; Love, Stanley G.; Lee, David E.; Chappell, Steven P.; Howe, A. Scott; Friedensen, Victoria


    Human exploration missions to the moons of Mars are being considered within NASA's Evolvable Mars Campaign (EMC) as an intermediate step for eventual human exploration and pioneering of the surface of Mars. A range of mission architectures is being evaluated in which human crews would explore one or both moons for as little as 14 days or for as long as 500 days with a variety of orbital and surface habitation and mobility options being considered. Relatively little is known about the orbital, surface, or subsurface characteristics of either moon. This makes them interesting but challenging destinations for human exploration missions during which crewmembers must be able to effectively conduct scientific exploration without being exposed to undue risks due to radiation, dust, micrometeoroids, or other hazards. A robotic precursor mission to one or both moons will be required to provide data necessary for the design and operation of subsequent human systems and for the identification and prioritization of scientific exploration objectives. This paper identifies and discusses considerations for the design of such a precursor mission based on current human mission architectures. Objectives of a Mars' moon precursor in support of human missions are expected to include: 1) identifying hazards on the surface and the orbital environment at up to 50-km distant retrograde orbits; 2) collecting data on physical characteristics for planning of detailed human proximity and surface operations; 3) performing remote sensing and in situ science investigations to refine and focus future human scientific activities; and 4) prospecting for in situ resource utilization. These precursor objectives can be met through a combination or remote sensing (orbital) and in-situ (surface) measurements. Analysis of spacecraft downlink signals using radio science techniques would measure the moon's mass, mass distribution, and gravity field, which will be necessary to enable trajectory planning

  19. Human Space Exploration: The Moon, Mars, and Beyond (United States)

    Sexton, Jeffrey D.


    America is returning to the Moon in preparation for the first human footprint on Mars, guided by the U.S. Vision for Space Exploration. This presentation will discuss NASA's mission, the reasons for returning to the Moon and going to Mars, and how NASA will accomplish that mission in ways that promote leadership in space and economic expansion on the new frontier. The primary goals of the Vision for Space Exploration are to finish the International Space Station, retire the Space Shuttle, and build the new spacecraft needed, to return people to the Moon and go to Mars. The Vision commits NASA and the nation to an agenda of exploration that also includes robotic exploration and technology development, while building on lessons learned over 50 years of hard-won experience. Why the Moon? Many questions about the Moon's potential resources and how its history is linked to that of Earth were spurred by the brief Apollo explorations of the 1960s and 1970s. This new venture will carry more explorers to more diverse landing sites with more capable tools and equipment for extended expeditions. The Moon also will serve as a training ground before embarking on the longer, more difficult trip to Mars. NASA plans to build a lunar outpost at one of the lunar poles, learn to live off the land, and reduce dePendence on Earth for longer missions. America needs to extend its ability to survive in hostile environments close to our home planet before astronauts will reach Mars, a planet very much like Earth. NASA has worked with scientists to define lunar exploration goals and is addressing the opportunities for a range of scientific study on Mars. In order to reach the Moon and Mars within a lifetime and within budget, NASA is building on common hardware, shared knowledge, and unique experience derived from the Apollo Saturn, Space Shuttle and contemporary commercial launch vehicle programs. The journeys to the Moon and Mars will require a variety of vehicles, including the Ares I

  20. Aerospace plane applications for heavy lift missions to the moon and Mars (United States)

    Froning, H. D., Jr.; Leingang, J. L.; Carreiro, L. R.


    The possibility of achieving heavy-lift and interplanetary transportation by aerospace plane-like launch vehicles and Mars transfer vehicles is discussed. It is concluded that reusable airbreathing heavy-lift launch vehicles based on aerospace plane technologies may eventually be feasible for boosting all elements of Mars expeditions into earth orbit for journeys embarked upon about every two years. The same vehicles could be used for heavy lift commerce between the earth and moon and for space tourism.

  1. Crescent-shaped Earth and Moon (United States)


    This picture of a crescent-shaped Earth and Moon -- the first of its kind ever taken by a spacecraft -- was recorded Sept. 18, 1977, by NASA's Voyager 1 when it was 7.25 million miles (11.66 million kilometers) from Earth. The Moon is at the top of the picture and beyond the Earth as viewed by Voyager. In the picture are eastern Asia, the western Pacific Ocean and part of the Arctic. Voyager 1 was directly above Mt. Everest (on the night side of the planet at 25 degrees north latitude) when the picture was taken. The photo was made from three images taken through color filters, then processed by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory's Image Processing Lab. Because the Earth is many times brighter than the Moon, the Moon was artificially brightened by a factor of three relative to the Earth by computer enhancement so that both bodies would show clearly in the print. Voyager 2 was launched Aug. 20, 1977, followed by Voyager 1 on Sept. 5, 1977, en route to encounters at Jupiter in 1979 and Saturn in 1980 and 1981. JPL manages the Voyager mission for NASA.

  2. Lighting Condition Analysis for Mars Moon Phobos (United States)

    Li, Zu Qun; Crues, Edwin Z.; Bielski, Paul; De Carufel, Guy


    A manned mission to Phobos may be an important precursor and catalyst for the human exploration of Mars, as it will fully demonstrate the technologies for a successful Mars mission. A comprehensive understanding of Phobos' environment such as lighting condition and gravitational acceleration are essential to the mission success. The lighting condition is one of many critical factors for landing zone selection, vehicle power subsystem design, and surface mobility vehicle path planning. Due to the orbital characteristic of Phobos, the lighting condition will change dramatically from one Martian season to another. This study uses high fidelity computer simulation to investigate the lighting conditions, specifically the solar radiation flux over the surface, on Phobos. Ephemeris data from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) DE405 model was used to model the state of the Sun, the Earth, and Mars. An occultation model was developed to simulate Phobos' self-shadowing and its solar eclipses by Mars. The propagated Phobos' state was compared with data from JPL's Horizon system to ensure the accuracy of the result. Results for Phobos lighting condition over one Martian year are presented in this paper, which include length of solar eclipse, average solar radiation intensity, surface exposure time, total maximum solar energy, and total surface solar energy (constrained by incident angle). The results show that Phobos' solar eclipse time changes throughout the Martian year with the maximum eclipse time occurring during the Martian spring and fall equinox and no solar eclipse during the Martian summer and winter solstice. Solar radiation intensity is close to minimum at the summer solstice and close to maximum at the winter solstice. Total surface exposure time is longer near the north pole and around the anti- Mars point. Total maximum solar energy is larger around the anti-Mars point. Total surface solar energy is higher around the anti-Mars point near the equator. The

  3. Mars via the Moon the next giant leap

    CERN Document Server

    Seedhouse, Erik


    MOMENTUM IS BUILDING for a return to the Moon. NASA’s international partners on the International Space Station are in favor of returning to the lunar surface, as are India and China. The horizon goal may be Mars, but the political, funding and the technological and medical infeasibility of such an objective means the next logical step is a return to the Moon. While much has been learned about the Moon over the years, we don’t understand its resource wealth potential and the technologies to exploit those resources have yet to be developed, but there are a number of companies that are developing these capabilities. And, with the discovery of water in the lunar polar regions, plans are in the works to exploit these resources for fuel for transportation operations in cis-lunar space and in low Earth orbit (LEO). The time has come for commercial enterprise to lead the way back to the lunar surface. Embarking on such a venture requires little in the way of new technologies. We don’t need to develop super-fas...

  4. Accretion of Moon and Earth and the emergence of life (United States)

    Arrhenius, G.; Lepland, A.


    The discrepancy between the impact records on the Earth and Moon in the time period, 4.0-3.5 Ga calls for a re-evaluation of the cause and localization of the late lunar bombardment. As one possible explanation, we propose that the time coverage in the ancient rock record is sufficiently fragmentary, so that the effects of giant, sterilizing impacts throughout the inner solar system, caused by marauding asteroids, could have escaped detection in terrestrial and Martian records. Alternatively, the lunar impact record may reflect collisions of the receding Moon with a series of small, original satellites of the Earth and their debris in the time period about 4.0-3.5 Ga. The effects on Earth of such encounters could have been comparatively small. The location of these tellurian moonlets has been estimated to have been in the region around 40 Earth radii. Calculations presented here, indicate that this is the region that the Moon would traverse at 4.0-3.5 Ga, when the heavy and declining lunar bombardment took place. The ultimate time limit for the emergence of life on Earth is determined by the effects of planetary accretion--existing models offer a variety of scenarios, ranging from low average surface temperature at slow accretion of the mantle, to complete melting of the planet followed by protracted cooling. The choice of accretion model affects the habitability of the planet by dictating the early evolution of the atmosphere and hydrosphere. Further exploration of the sedimentary record on Earth and Mars, and of the chemical composition of impact-generated ejecta on the Moon, may determine the choice between the different interpretations of the late lunar bombardment and cast additional light on the time and conditions for the emergence of life.

  5. Plant biology in reduced gravity on the Moon and Mars. (United States)

    Kiss, J Z


    While there have been numerous studies on the effects of microgravity on plant biology since the beginning of the Space Age, our knowledge of the effects of reduced gravity (less than the Earth nominal 1 g) on plant physiology and development is very limited. Since international space agencies have cited manned exploration of Moon/Mars as long-term goals, it is important to understand plant biology at the lunar (0.17 g) and Martian levels of gravity (0.38 g), as plants are likely to be part of bioregenerative life-support systems on these missions. First, the methods to obtain microgravity and reduced gravity such as drop towers, parabolic flights, sounding rockets and orbiting spacecraft are reviewed. Studies on gravitaxis and gravitropism in algae have suggested that the threshold level of gravity sensing is around 0.3 g or less. Recent experiments on the International Space Station (ISS) showed attenuation of phototropism in higher plants occurs at levels ranging from 0.l g to 0.3 g. Taken together, these studies suggest that the reduced gravity level on Mars of 0.38 g may be enough so that the gravity level per se would not be a major problem for plant development. Studies that have directly considered the impact of reduced gravity and microgravity on bioregenerative life-support systems have identified important biophysical changes in the reduced gravity environments that impact the design of these systems. The author suggests that the current ISS laboratory facilities with on-board centrifuges should be used as a test bed in which to explore the effects of reduced gravity on plant biology, including those factors that are directly related to developing life-support systems necessary for Moon and Mars exploration. © 2013 German Botanical Society and The Royal Botanical Society of the Netherlands.

  6. Training Space Surgeons for Missions to the Moon and Mars (United States)

    Pool, S. L.; McSwain, N.


    Over a period of 4 years, several working groups reviewed the provisions for medical care in low earth orbit and for future flights such as to the Moon and Mars. More than 60 medical experts representing a wide variety of clinical backgrounds participated in the working groups. They concluded that NASA medical training for long-duration missions, while critical to success, is currently aimed at short-term skill retention. They noted that several studies have shown that skills and knowledge deteriorate rapidly in the absence of adequate sustainment training. American Heart Association studies have shown that typically less than twenty-five percent of learned skills remain after 6 to 8 months. In addition to identifying the current training deficiencies, the working groups identified additional skill and knowledge sets required for missions to the Moon and Mars and curricula were developed to address inadequacies. Space medicine care providers may be categorized into 4 types based on health care responsibilities and level of education required. The first 2 types are currently recognized positions within the flight crew: crew medical officers and astronaut-physician. The crew medical officer (CMO), a non-medically trained astronaut crewmember, is given limited emergency medical technician-like training to provide medical care on orbit. Many of hidher duties are carried out under the direction of a ground-based flight surgeon in mission control. Second is the astronaut- physician whose primary focus is on mission specialist duties and training, and who has very limited ability to maintain medical proficiency. Two new categories are recommended to complete the 4 types of care providers primarily to address the needs of those who will travel to the Moon and Mars. Physician astronaut - a physician, who in addition to being a mission specialist, will be required to maintain and enhance hidher medical proficiency while serving as an astronaut. Space surgeon - a physician

  7. Precession of the Earth-Moon system

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Urbassek, Herbert M [Fachbereich Physik und Forschungszentrum OPTIMAS, Universitaet Kaiserslautern, Erwin-Schroedinger-Strasse, D-67663 Kaiserslautern (Germany)], E-mail:


    The precession rate of the Earth-Moon system by the gravitational influence of the Sun is derived. Attention is focussed on a physically transparent but complete presentation accessible to first- or second-year physics students. Both a shortcut and a full analysis are given, which allows the inclusion of this material as an example of the physics of the spinning top in undergraduate courses.

  8. Can Plants Grow on Mars and the Moon: A Growth Experiment on Mars and Moon Soil Simulants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wamelink, G.W.W.; Frissel, J.Y.; Krijnen, W.H.J.; Verwoert, M.R.; Goedhart, P.W.


    When humans will settle on the moon or Mars they will have to eat there. Food may be flown in. An alternative could be to cultivate plants at the site itself, preferably in native soils. We report on the first large-scale controlled experiment to investigate the possibility of growing plants in Mars

  9. Dynamics of the Sun-Earth-Moon System

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    The dynamics of the Sun-Earth-Moon system is discussed with special attention to the effects of. Sun's perturbations on the Moon's orbit around the Earth. Important secular effects are the re- gression of the nodes, the advance of the perigee and the increase in the Moon's mean longitude. We discuss the relationship of the ...

  10. Endogenic Activity of the Earth and Moon (United States)

    Marakushev, A. A.


    The endogenic activity of the Earth and Moon is created by the H fluid flows that ascends from their liquid cores and generates magnetic fields. In these flows, the generation of water together with hydrocarbons (3H2+CO = CH4+H2O), carbon (H2+CO=C+H2O), carbon dioxide (H2+3CO=C+CO2+H2O) and nitrogen (2H2+2NO=N2+2H2O) occurs. Water in fluids strongly lowers the melting temperature of rocks and thereby initiates magmatic activity and, making it to the surface, aids the generation of Earth's hydrosphere and aqueous ice covers of satellites. The endogenic activity of a planet or satellite stops after its complete consolidation; this occurs simultaneously with the disappearing of the magnetic field. Endogenic activity of the Earth continued for about 4.6 m.y. because of the existence of a liquid core rich with H. The other planets of the Earth's group lost their endogenic activity as well as magnetic fields due to complete consolidation. The Moon is the oldest known of the solar system bodies. Volcanic activity occurred on the Moon at 4.6-3.2 GA when it had a strong magnetic field, which is thought to be responsible for residual magnetization inherent in the samples. By analogy to the Moon, whose activity has been suppl.ied by its fluid reservoir for about 1.5 m .y., the current volcanic activity on Jupiter's satellite Io, (analogous to the Moon) suggest that Jupiter's satellite system is relatively young. This is confirmed by discoveries of the magnetic fields of Io, Europa, and Ganymede. However, Callisto is completely consolidated and has lots its magnetic field. The endogenic activity resulted in explosive volcanism on Io, and in the formation of aqueous ice covers on Europa and Ganymede. The ice cover of Europa si still forming, judging from the lack of meteoritic craters on its surface.

  11. Earth After the Moon Forming Impact (United States)

    Zahnle, Kevin


    The Hadean Earth is widely and enduringly pictured as a world of exuberant volcanism, exploding meteors, huge craters, infernal heat, and billowing sulfurous steams; i.e., a world of fire and brimstone punctuated with blows to the head. In the background the Moon looms gigantic in the sky. The popular image has given it a name that celebrates our mythic roots. A hot early Earth is an inevitable consequence of accretion. The Moon-forming impact ensured that Earth as we know it emerged from a fog of silicate vapor. The impact separated the volatiles from the silicates. It took -100 years to condense and rain out the bulk of the vaporized silicates, although relatively volatile elements may have remained present in the atmosphere throughout the magma ocena stage. The magma ocean lasted approx. 2 Myr, its lifetime prolonged by tidal heating and thermal blanketing by a thick (CO2-rich steam atmosphere. Water oceans condensed quickly after the mantle solidified, but for some 10-100 Myr the surface would have stayed warm (approx. 500 K) until the CO2 was removed into the mantle. Thereafter the faint young Sun suggests that a lifeless Earth would always have been evolving toward a bitterly cold ice world, but the cooling trend was frequently interrupted by volcanic or impact induced thaws.

  12. Earth after the Moon-forming Impact (United States)

    Zahnle, K. J.


    The Hadean Earth is widely and enduringly pictured as a world of exuberant volcanism, exploding meteors, huge craters, infernal heat, and billowing sulfurous steams; i.e., a world of fire and brimstone punctuated with blows to the head. In the background the Moon looms gigantic in the sky. The popular image has given it a name that celebrates our mythic roots. A hot early Earth is an inevitable consequence of accretion. The Moon-forming impact ensured that Earth as we know it emerged from a fog of silicate vapor. The impact separated the volatiles from the silicates. It took approx. 100 years to condense and rain out the bulk of the vaporized silicates, although relatively volatile elements may have remained present in the atmosphere throughout the magma ocena stage. The magma ocean lasted approx. 2 Myr, its lifetime prolonged by tidal heating and thermal blanketing by a thick CO2-rich steam atmosphere. Water oceans condensed quickly after the mantle solidified, but for some 10-100 Myr the surface would have stayed warm (approx. 500 K) until the CO2 was removed into the mantle. Thereafter the faint young Sun suggests that a lifeless Earth would always have been evolving toward a bitterly cold ice world, but the cooling trend was fiequently interrupted by volcanic or impact induced thaws. A cartoon history of water, temperature, and carbon dioxide in the aftermath of the moon-formining-impact is shown. How long it stays hot depends on how long it takes to scrub the C02 out of the atmosphere.

  13. Isotopic evolution of the protoplanetary disk and the building blocks of Earth and the Moon

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schiller, Martin; Bizzarro, Martin; Fernandes, Vera Assis


    Nucleosynthetic isotope variability among Solar System objects is often used to probe the genetic relationship between meteorite groups and the rocky planets (Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars), which, in turn, may provide insights into the building blocks of the Earth-Moon system. Using this approach......, it has been inferred that no primitive meteorite matches the terrestrial composition and the protoplanetary disk material from which Earth and the Moon accreted is therefore largely unconstrained. This conclusion, however, is based on the assumption that the observed nucleosynthetic variability of inner...... into the thermally processed inner protoplanetary disk associated with the accretion of mass to the proto-Sun. The identical calcium isotope composition of Earth and the Moon reported here is a prediction of our model if the Moon-forming impact involved protoplanets or precursors that completed their accretion near...

  14. Titan the earth-like moon

    CERN Document Server

    Coustenis, Athena


    This is the first book to deal with Titan, one of the most mysterious bodies in the solar system. The largest satellite of the giant planet Saturn, Titan is itself larger than the planet Mercury, and is unique in being the only known moon with a thick atmosphere. In addition, its atmosphere bears a startling resemblance to the Earth's, but is much colder.The American and European space agencies, NASA and ESA, have recently combined efforts to send a huge robot spacecraft to orbit Saturn and land on Titan. This book provides the background to this, the greatest deep space venture of our time, a

  15. Pingos on Earth and Mars (United States)

    Burr, D.M.; Tanaka, K.L.; Yoshikawa, K.


    Pingos are massive ice-cored mounds that develop through pressurized groundwater flow mechanisms. Pingos and their collapsed forms are found in periglacial and paleoperiglacial terrains on Earth, and have been hypothesized for a wide variety of locations on Mars. This literature review of pingos on Earth and Mars first summarizes the morphology of terrestrial pingos and their geologic contexts. That information is then used to asses hypothesized pingos on Mars. Pingo-like forms (PLFs) in Utopia Planitia are the most viable candidates for pingos or collapsed pingos. Other PLFs hypothesized in the literature to be pingos may be better explained with other mechanisms than those associated with terrestrial-style pingos. ?? 2008 Elsevier Ltd.

  16. Circumlunar Free-Return Cycler Orbits for a Manned Earth-Moon Space Station (United States)

    Genova, Anthony L.; Aldrin, Buzz


    Multiple free-return circumlunar cycler orbits were designed to allow regular travel between the Earth and Moon by a manned space station. The presented cycler orbits contain circumlunar free-return "figure-8" segments and yield lunar encounters every month. Smaller space "taxi" vehicles can rendezvous with (and depart from) the cycling Earth-Moon space station to enter lunar orbit (and/or land on the lunar surface), return to Earth, or reach destinations including Earth-Moon L1 and L2 halo orbits, near-Earth objects (NEOs), Venus, and Mars. To assess the practicality of the selected orbits, relevant cycler characteristics (including (Delta)V maintenance requirements) are presented and compared.

  17. Radiation Effects and Protection for Moon and Mars Missions (United States)

    Parnell, Thomas A.; Watts, John W., Jr.; Armstrong, Tony W.


    Manned and robotic missions to the Earth's moon and Mars are exposed to a continuous flux of Galactic Cosmic Rays (GCR) and occasional, but intense, fluxes of Solar Energetic Particles (SEP). These natural radiations impose hazards to manned exploration, but also present some constraints to the design of robotic missions. The hazards to interplanetary flight crews and their uncertainties have been studied recently by a National Research Council Committee (Space Studies Board 1996). Considering the present uncertainty estimates, thick spacecraft shielding would be needed for manned missions, some of which could be accomplished with onboard equipment and expendables. For manned and robotic missions, the effects of radiation on electronics, sensors, and controls require special consideration in spacecraft design. This paper describes the GCR and SEP particle fluxes, secondary particles behind shielding, uncertainties in radiobiological effects and their impact on manned spacecraft design, as well as the major effects on spacecraft equipment. The principal calculational tools and considerations to mitigate the radiation effects are discussed, and work in progress to reduce uncertainties is included.

  18. Space agriculture in micro- and hypo-gravity: A comparative study of soil hydraulics and biogeochemistry in a cropping unit on Earth, Mars, the Moon and the space station (United States)

    Maggi, Federico; Pallud, Céline


    Increasing interest is developing towards soil-based agriculture as a long-term bioregenerative life support during space and planetary explorations. Contrary to hydroponics and aeroponics, soil-based cropping would offer an effective approach to sustain food and oxygen production, decompose organic wastes, sequester carbon dioxide, and filter water. However, the hydraulics and biogeochemical functioning of soil systems exposed to gravities lower than the Earth's are still unknown. Since gravity is crucial in driving water flow, hypogravity will affect nutrient and oxygen transport in the liquid and gaseous phases, and could lead to suffocation of microorganisms and roots, and emissions of toxic gases. A highly mechanistic model coupling soil hydraulics and nutrient biogeochemistry previously tested on soils on Earth ( g=9.806 m s -2) is used to highlight the effects of gravity on the functioning of cropping units on Mars (0.38 g), the Moon (0.16 g), and in the international space station (ISS, nearly 0 g). For each scenario, we have compared the net leaching of water, the leaching of NH 3, NH 4+, NO 2- and NO 3- solutes, the emissions of NH 3, CO 2, N 2O, NO and N 2 gases, the concentrations profiles of O 2, CO 2 and dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in soil, the pH, and the dynamics of various microbial functional groups within the root zone against the same control variables in the soil under terrestrial gravity. The response of the soil ecodynamics was relatively linear; gravitational accelerations lower than the Earth's resulted in 90-100% lower water leaching rates, 95-100% lower nutrient leaching rates, and lower emissions of NH 3 and NO gases (80-95% and 30-40%, respectively). Lower N loss through leaching resulted in 60-100% higher concentration of the microbial biomass, but did not alter the vertical stratification of the microbial functional groups with respect to the stratification on Earth. However, the higher biomass concentration produced higher

  19. Moon, Mars and Mundus: primary school children discover the nature and science of planet Earth from experimentation and extra-terrestrial perspectives

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kleinhans, M.g.; Verkade, A.j.; Van Wessel, T.; Bastings, M.a.s.; Marra, W.a.; Van Gog, T.; Van Westrenen, W.; Reichwein, M.

    Like earth and planetary scientists, most children are curious about the world, the solar system and the rest of the universe. However, for various reasons primary schools emphasise language and calculus rather than natural sciences. When science is taught, examination systems often favour knowledge


    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Montgomery, M. M.


    Net tidal torque by the secondary on a misaligned accretion disk, like the net tidal torque by the Moon and the Sun on the equatorial bulge of the spinning and tilted Earth, is suggested by others to be a source to retrograde precession in non-magnetic, accreting cataclysmic variable (CV) dwarf novae (DN) systems that show negative superhumps in their light curves. We investigate this idea in this work. We generate a generic theoretical expression for retrograde precession in spinning disks that are misaligned with the orbital plane. Our generic theoretical expression matches that which describes the retrograde precession of Earths' equinoxes. By making appropriate assumptions, we reduce our generic theoretical expression to those generated by others, or to those used by others, to describe retrograde precession in protostellar, protoplanetary, X-ray binary, non-magnetic CV DN, quasar, and black hole systems. We find that spinning, tilted CV DN systems cannot be described by a precessing ring or by a precessing rigid disk. We find that differential rotation and effects on the disk by the accretion stream must be addressed. Our analysis indicates that the best description of a retrogradely precessing spinning, tilted, CV DN accretion disk is a differentially rotating, tilted disk with an attached rotating, tilted ring located near the innermost disk annuli. In agreement with the observations and numerical simulations by others, we find that our numerically simulated CV DN accretion disks retrogradely precess as a unit. Our final, reduced expression for retrograde precession agrees well with our numerical simulation results and with selective observational systems that seem to have main-sequence secondaries. Our results suggest that a major source to retrograde precession is tidal torques like that by the Moon and the Sun on the Earth. In addition, these tidal torques should be common to a variety of systems where one member is spinning and tilted, regardless if

  1. Can plants grow on Mars and the moon: a growth experiment on Mars and moon soil simulants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G W Wieger Wamelink

    Full Text Available When humans will settle on the moon or Mars they will have to eat there. Food may be flown in. An alternative could be to cultivate plants at the site itself, preferably in native soils. We report on the first large-scale controlled experiment to investigate the possibility of growing plants in Mars and moon soil simulants. The results show that plants are able to germinate and grow on both Martian and moon soil simulant for a period of 50 days without any addition of nutrients. Growth and flowering on Mars regolith simulant was much better than on moon regolith simulant and even slightly better than on our control nutrient poor river soil. Reflexed stonecrop (a wild plant; the crops tomato, wheat, and cress; and the green manure species field mustard performed particularly well. The latter three flowered, and cress and field mustard also produced seeds. Our results show that in principle it is possible to grow crops and other plant species in Martian and Lunar soil simulants. However, many questions remain about the simulants' water carrying capacity and other physical characteristics and also whether the simulants are representative of the real soils.

  2. Can plants grow on Mars and the moon: a growth experiment on Mars and moon soil simulants. (United States)

    Wamelink, G W Wieger; Frissel, Joep Y; Krijnen, Wilfred H J; Verwoert, M Rinie; Goedhart, Paul W


    When humans will settle on the moon or Mars they will have to eat there. Food may be flown in. An alternative could be to cultivate plants at the site itself, preferably in native soils. We report on the first large-scale controlled experiment to investigate the possibility of growing plants in Mars and moon soil simulants. The results show that plants are able to germinate and grow on both Martian and moon soil simulant for a period of 50 days without any addition of nutrients. Growth and flowering on Mars regolith simulant was much better than on moon regolith simulant and even slightly better than on our control nutrient poor river soil. Reflexed stonecrop (a wild plant); the crops tomato, wheat, and cress; and the green manure species field mustard performed particularly well. The latter three flowered, and cress and field mustard also produced seeds. Our results show that in principle it is possible to grow crops and other plant species in Martian and Lunar soil simulants. However, many questions remain about the simulants' water carrying capacity and other physical characteristics and also whether the simulants are representative of the real soils.

  3. Eifel field operation campaign supporting Moon Mars and NEO exploration (United States)

    Kamps, Oscar; Foing, Bernard H.; Offringa, Marloes


    As follow-up on the 2009 Eifel field campaign new field tests with our ExoGeoLab lander were conducted in November 2015 and February 2016. The two phase campaign was used to test the usability of a mock-up lander as test bench for experiments and its remote control in a Moon, Mars analogue environment. In a real mission such a lander could be used in a robotic or manned mission as scientific tool for scientists on Earth to do preliminary study on in-situ collected rocks. This could be useful for example for a sample return mission where scientists on Earth can determine if sample is interesting enough for a more detailed study. The prototype lander is one of the components of the ExoGeoLab project from ESA and ILEWG. Several student projects have prepared the lander for a geological field campaign in lunar and Martian analogue terrain. The lander can be divided in three sections which are used to store several components of the lander. The lower compartment can be used to store a rover or used as laboratory. The middle compartment is used for the lander computer(s), spectrometers and the associated cables. The top plate is used for a telescope which in our case is used to observe the environment around the lander and to guide astronauts during their EVA. As closest volcanic are there is chosen to do the Eifel area, Germany. Several stages of volcanism from Devon till Quaternary resulted in a variation of rocks which is analogue to volcanic rocks from Moon, Mars and other near Earth objects. Several topics we would like to test were pre-defined. Functional tests and demo were performed at European astronaut centre prior to the campaign. The latest updates with respect to the remote control were tested. The pressurised transport vehicle was equipped as remote base for (scientific) support during the campaign. The new instrument set-up were tested and some spectra were measured on collected rocks. The telescope was used to study the environment around the lander

  4. Flood basalt volcanism on the Moon and Mars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Benes, K.


    Comparative studies of the surfaces of the terrestrial planets reveal that processes of flood basalt volcanism were common to all of them, irrespective of their stages of evolution either primitive, intermediate or progressive. On the Moon manifestations of flood basalt volcanism have been recognized in basins (maria); on the planet Mars both in basins (planitiae) and in higher topographic (continental) levels. The mare-epoch of the less developed planets led to significant changes in their relief and in the crustal structure. Examples of volcanic flows from the lunar and martian surface are introduced. Some crustal uplifts on Mars can be interpreted in terms of Van Bemmelen's undations. (Auth.)

  5. Magnetic Storms at Mars and Earth

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vennerstrøm, Susanne; Falkenberg, Thea Vilstrup

    In analogy with magnetic storms at the Earth, periods of significantly enhanced global magnetic activity also exist at Mars. The extensive database of magnetic measurements from Mars Global Surveyor (MGS), covering almost an entire solar cycle, is used in combination with geomagnetic activity...... indices at Earth to compare the occurrence of magnetic storms at Mars and Earth. Based on superposed epochs analysis the time-development of typical magnetic storms at Mars and Earth is described. In contradiction to storms at Earth, most magnetic storms at Mars are found to be associated...... with heliospheric current sheet crossings, where the IMF changes polarity. While most storms at the Earth occur due to significant southward excursions of the IMF associated with CMEs, at Mars most storms seem to be associated with the density enhancement of the heliospheric current sheet. Density enhancements...

  6. The Electrostatic Environments of Mars and the Moon (United States)

    Calle, Carlos I.


    The electrical activity present in the environment near the surfaces of Mars and the moon has very different origins and presents a challenge to manned and robotic planetary exploration missions. Mars is covered with a layer of dust that has been redistributed throughout the entire planet by global dust storms. Dust, levitated by these storms as well as by the frequent dust devils, is expected to be electrostatically charged due to the multiple grain collisions in the dust-laden atmosphere. Dust covering the surface of the moon is expected to be electrostatically charged due to the solar wind, cosmic rays, and the solar radiation itself through the photoelectric effect. Electrostatically charged dust has a large tendency to adhere to surfaces. NASA's Mars exploration rovers have shown that atmospheric dust falling on solar panels can decrease their efficiency to the point of rendering the rover unusable. And as the Apollo missions to the moon showed, lunar dust adhesion can hinder manned and unmanned lunar exploration activities. Taking advantage of the electrical activity on both planetary system bodies, dust removal technologies are now being developed that use electrostatic and dielectrophoretic forces to produce controlled dust motion. This paper presents a short review of the theoretical and semiempirical models that have been developed for the lunar and Martian electrical environments.

  7. Nuclear Planetology: Especially Concerning the Moon and Mars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Kyeong Ja; Hasebe, Nobuyuki


    To approach basic scientific questions on the origin and evolution of planetary bodies such as planets, their satellites and asteroids, one needs data on their chemical composition. The measurements of gamma-rays, X-rays and neutrons emitted from their surface materials provide information on abundances of major elements and naturally radioactive gamma-ray emitters. Neutron spectroscopy can provide sensitive maps of hydrogen- and carbon-containing compounds, even if buried, and can uniquely identify layers of carbon-dioxide frost. Nuclear spectroscopy, as a means of compositional analysis, has been applied via orbital and lander spacecraft to extraterrestrial planetary bodies: the Moon, Venus, Mars, Mercury and asteroids. The knowledge of their chemical abundances, especially concerning the Moon and Mars, has greatly increased in recent years. This paper describes the principle of nuclear spectroscopy, nuclear planetary instruments carried on planetary missions so far, and the nature of observational results and findings of the Moon and Mars, recently obtained by nuclear spectroscopy. (invited reviews)

  8. The electrostatic environments of Mars and the Moon

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Calle, C I


    The electrical activity present in the environment near the surfaces of Mars and the moon has very different origins and presents a challenge to manned and robotic planetary exploration missions. Mars is covered with a layer of dust that has been redistributed throughout the entire planet by global dust storms. Dust, levitated by these storms as well as by the frequent dust devils, is expected to be electrostatically charged due to the multiple grain collisions in the dust-laden atmosphere. Dust covering the surface of the moon is expected to be electrostatically charged due to the solar wind, cosmic rays, and the solar radiation itself through the photoelectric effect. Electrostatically charged dust has a large tendency to adhere to surfaces. NASA's Mars exploration rovers have shown that atmospheric dust falling on solar panels can decrease their efficiency to the point of rendering the rover unusable. And as the Apollo missions to the moon showed, lunar dust adhesion can hinder manned and unmanned lunar exploration activities. Taking advantage of the electrical activity on both planetary system bodies, dust removal technologies are now being developed that use electrostatic and dielectrophoretic forces to produce controlled dust motion. This paper presents a short review of the theoretical and semiempirical models that have been developed for the lunar and Martian electrical environments.

  9. The electrostatic environments of Mars and the Moon (United States)

    Calle, C. I.


    The electrical activity present in the environment near the surfaces of Mars and the moon has very different origins and presents a challenge to manned and robotic planetary exploration missions. Mars is covered with a layer of dust that has been redistributed throughout the entire planet by global dust storms. Dust, levitated by these storms as well as by the frequent dust devils, is expected to be electrostatically charged due to the multiple grain collisions in the dust-laden atmosphere. Dust covering the surface of the moon is expected to be electrostatically charged due to the solar wind, cosmic rays, and the solar radiation itself through the photoelectric effect. Electrostatically charged dust has a large tendency to adhere to surfaces. NASA's Mars exploration rovers have shown that atmospheric dust falling on solar panels can decrease their efficiency to the point of rendering the rover unusable. And as the Apollo missions to the moon showed, lunar dust adhesion can hinder manned and unmanned lunar exploration activities. Taking advantage of the electrical activity on both planetary system bodies, dust removal technologies are now being developed that use electrostatic and dielectrophoretic forces to produce controlled dust motion. This paper presents a short review of the theoretical and semiempirical models that have been developed for the lunar and Martian electrical environments.

  10. Optimal Low Energy Earth-Moon Transfers (United States)

    Griesemer, Paul Ricord; Ocampo, Cesar; Cooley, D. S.


    The optimality of a low-energy Earth-Moon transfer is examined for the first time using primer vector theory. An optimal control problem is formed with the following free variables: the location, time, and magnitude of the transfer insertion burn, and the transfer time. A constraint is placed on the initial state of the spacecraft to bind it to a given initial orbit around a first body, and on the final state of the spacecraft to limit its Keplerian energy with respect to a second body. Optimal transfers in the system are shown to meet certain conditions placed on the primer vector and its time derivative. A two point boundary value problem containing these necessary conditions is created for use in targeting optimal transfers. The two point boundary value problem is then applied to the ballistic lunar capture problem, and an optimal trajectory is shown. Additionally, the ballistic lunar capture trajectory is examined to determine whether one or more additional impulses may improve on the cost of the transfer.

  11. Mars-Moons Exploration, Reconnaissance and Landed Investigation (MERLIN) (United States)

    Murchie, S. L.; Chabot, N. L.; Buczkowski, D.; Arvidson, R. E.; Castillo, J. C.; Peplowski, P. N.; Ernst, C. M.; Rivkin, A.; Eng, D.; Chmielewski, A. B.; Maki, J.; trebi-Ollenu, A.; Ehlmann, B. L.; Spence, H. E.; Horanyi, M.; Klingelhoefer, G.; Christian, J. A.


    The Mars-Moons Exploration, Reconnaissance and Landed Investigation (MERLIN) is a NASA Discovery mission proposal to explore the moons of Mars. Previous Mars-focused spacecraft have raised fundamental questions about Mars' moons: What are their origins and compositions? Why do the moons resemble primitive outer solar system D-type objects? How do geologic processes modify their surfaces? MERLIN answers these questions through a combination of orbital and landed measurements, beginning with reconnaissance of Deimos and investigation of the hypothesized Martian dust belts. Orbital reconnaissance of Phobos occurs, followed by low flyovers to characterize a landing site. MERLIN lands on Phobos, conducting a 90-day investigation. Radiation measurements are acquired throughout all mission phases. Phobos' size and mass provide a low-risk landing environment: controlled descent is so slow that the landing is rehearsed, but gravity is high enough that surface operations do not require anchoring. Existing imaging of Phobos reveals low regional slope regions suitable for landing, and provides knowledge for planning orbital and landed investigations. The payload leverages past NASA investments. Orbital imaging is accomplished by a dual multispectral/high-resolution imager rebuilt from MESSENGER/MDIS. Mars' dust environment is measured by the refurbished engineering model of LADEE/LDEX, and the radiation environment by the flight spare of LRO/CRaTER. The landed workspace is characterized by a color stereo imager updated from MER/HazCam. MERLIN's arm deploys landed instrumentation using proven designs from MER, Phoenix, and MSL. Elemental measurements are acquired by a modified version of Rosetta/APXS, and an uncooled gamma-ray spectrometer. Mineralogical measurements are acquired by a microscopic imaging spectrometer developed under MatISSE. MERLIN delivers seminal science traceable to NASA's Strategic Goals and Objectives, Science Plan, and the Decadal Survey. MERLIN's science

  12. A Free-Return Earth-Moon Cycler Orbit for an Interplanetary Cruise Ship (United States)

    Genova, Anthony L.; Aldrin, Buzz


    A periodic circumlunar orbit is presented that can be used by an interplanetary cruise ship for regular travel between Earth and the Moon. This Earth-Moon cycler orbit was revealed by introducing solar gravity and modest phasing maneuvers (average of 39 m/s per month) which yields close-Earth encounters every 7 or 10 days. Lunar encounters occur every 26 days and offer the chance for a smaller craft to depart the cycler and enter lunar orbit, or head for a Lagrange point (e.g., EM-L2 halo orbit), distant retrograde orbit (DRO), or interplanetary destination such as a near-Earth object (NEO) or Mars. Additionally, return-to-Earth abort options are available from many points along the cycling trajectory.

  13. Options for the human settlement of the moon and Mars (United States)

    Fairchild, Kyle O.; Roberts, Barney B.


    The evolutionary approach to space development is discussed in the framework of three overall strategies encompassing four case studies. The first strategy, human expeditions, places emphasis on highly visible, near-term manned missions to Mars or to one of the two moons of Mars. These expeditions are similar in scope and objectives to the Apollo program, with infrastructure development only conducted to the degree necessary to support one or two short-duration trips. Two such expeditionary scenarios, one to Phobus and the other to the Mars surface, are discussed. The second strategy involves the construction of science outposts, and emphasizes scientific exploration as well as investigation of technologies and operations needed for permanent habitation. A third strategy, evolutionary expansion, would explore and settle the inner solar system in a series of steps, with continued development of technologies, experience, and infrastructure.

  14. The Earth, the Moon and Conservation of Momentum (United States)

    Brunt, Marjorie; Brunt, Geoff


    We consider the application of both conservation of momentum and Newton's laws to the Moon in an assumed circular orbit about the Earth. The inadequacy of some texts in applying Newton's laws is considered.

  15. Use of Extraterrestrial Resources for Human Space Missions to Moon or Mars

    CERN Document Server

    Rapp, Donald


    This book carries out approximate estimates of the costs of implementing ISRU on the Moon and Mars. It is found that no ISRU process on the Moon has much merit. ISRU on Mars can save a great deal of mass, but there is a significant cost in prospecting for resources and validating ISRU concepts. Mars ISRU might have merit, but not enough data are available to be certain. In addition, this book provides a detailed review of various ISRU technologies. This includes three approaches for Mars ISRU based on processing only the atmosphere: solid oxide electrolysis, reverse water gas shift reaction (RWGS), and absorbing water vapor directly from the atmosphere. It is not clear that any of these technologies are viable although the RWGS seems to have the best chance. An approach for combining hydrogen with the atmospheric resource is chemically very viable, but hydrogen is needed on Mars. This can be approached by bringing hydrogen from Earth or obtaining water from near-surface water deposits in the soil. Bringing hy...

  16. Time and Energy, Exploring Trajectory Options Between Nodes in Earth-Moon Space (United States)

    Martinez, Roland; Condon, Gerald; Williams, Jacob


    The Global Exploration Roadmap (GER) was released by the International Space Exploration Coordination Group (ISECG) in September of 2011. It describes mission scenarios that begin with the International Space Station and utilize it to demonstrate necessary technologies and capabilities prior to deployment of systems into Earth-Moon space. Deployment of these systems is an intermediate step in preparation for more complex deep space missions to near-Earth asteroids and eventually Mars. In one of the scenarios described in the GER, "Asteroid Next", there are activities that occur in Earth-Moon space at one of the Earth-Moon Lagrange (libration) points. In this regard, the authors examine the possible role of an intermediate staging point in an effort to illuminate potential trajectory options for conducting missions in Earth-Moon space of increasing duration, ultimately leading to deep space missions. This paper will describe several options for transits between Low Earth Orbit (LEO) and the libration points, transits between libration points, and transits between the libration points and interplanetary trajectories. The solution space provided will be constrained by selected orbital mechanics design techniques and physical characteristics of hardware to be used in both crewed missions and uncrewed missions. The relationships between time and energy required to transfer hardware between these locations will provide a better understanding of the potential trade-offs mission planners could consider in the development of capabilities, individual missions, and mission series in the context of the ISECG GER.

  17. MaMBA - a functional Moon and Mars Base Analog (United States)

    Heinicke, C.; Foing, B.


    Despite impressive progress in robotic exploration of celestial bodies, robots are believed to never reach the effectiveness and efficiency of a trained human. Consequently, ESA proposes to build an international Moon Village in roughly 15 years and NASA plans for the first manned mission to Mars shortly after. One of the challenges still remaining is the need for a shelter, a habitat which allows human spacefarers to safely live and work on the surface of a celestial body. Although a number of prototype habitats has been built during the last decades and inhabited for various durations (e.g. MDRS, FMARS, HI-SEAS, M.A.R.S.), these habitats are typically equipped for studies on human factors and would not function in an extraterrestrial environment. Project MaMBA (Moon and Mars Base Analog) aims to build the first functional habitat based on the lessons learned from intermediate and long duration missions at the mentioned habitats. The habitat will serve for testing technologies like life support, power systems, and interplanetary communi­cation. Special attention will be given to the develop­ment of the geoscience laboratory module. Crews will live and work inside the habitat to ensure its functionality.

  18. Moon and Mars Analog Mission Activities for Mauna Kea 2012 (United States)

    Graham, Lee D.; Morris, Richard V.; Graff, Trevor G.; Yingst, R. Aileen; tenKate, I. L.; Glavin, Daniel P.; Hedlund, Magnus; Malespin, Charles A.; Mumm, Erik


    Rover-based 2012 Moon and Mars Analog Mission Activities (MMAMA) scientific investigations were recently completed at Mauna Kea, Hawaii. Scientific investigations, scientific input, and science operations constraints were tested in the context of an existing project and protocols for the field activities designed to help NASA achieve the Vision for Space Exploration. Initial science operations were planned based on a model similar to the operations control of the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER). However, evolution of the operations process occurred as the analog mission progressed. We report here on the preliminary sensor data results, an applicable methodology for developing an optimum science input based on productive engineering and science trades discussions and the science operations approach for an investigation into the valley on the upper slopes of Mauna Kea identified as "Apollo Valley".

  19. Cardiovascular models of simulated moon and mars gravities: head-up tilt vs. lower body unweighting. (United States)

    Kostas, Vladimir I; Stenger, Michael B; Knapp, Charles F; Shapiro, Robert; Wang, Siqi; Diedrich, André; Evans, Joyce M


    In this study we compare two models [head-up tilt (HUT) vs. body unweighting using lower body positive pressure (LBPP)] to simulate Moon, Mars, and Earth gravities. A literature search did not reveal any comparisons of this type performed previously. We hypothesized that segmental fluid volume shifts (thorax, abdomen, upper and lower leg), cardiac output, and blood pressure (BP), heart rate (HR), and total peripheral resistance to standing would be similar in the LBPP and HUT models. There were 21 subjects who were studied while supine (simulation of spaceflight) and standing at 100% (Earth), 40% (Mars), and 20% (Moon) bodyweight produced by LBPP in Alter-G and while supine and tilted at 80 degrees, 20 degrees, and 10 degrees HUT (analogues of Earth, Mars, and Moon gravities, respectively). Compared to supine, fluid shifts from the chest to the abdomen, increases in HR, and decreases in stroke volume were greater at 100% bodyweight than at reduced weights in response to both LBPP and HUT. Differences between the two models were found for systolic BP, diastolic BP, mean arterial BP, stroke volume, total peripheral resistance, and thorax and abdomen impedances, while HR, cardiac output, and upper and lower leg impedances were similar. Bodyweight unloading via both LBPP and HUT resulted in cardiovascular changes similar to those anticipated in actual reduced gravity environments. The LBPP model/Alter-G has the advantage of providing an environment that allows dynamic activity at reduced bodyweight; however, the significant increase in blood pressures in the Alter-GC may favor the HUT model.

  20. Human Exploration of the Moon and Mars: Space Radiation Data, Modeling and Instrumentation Needs (United States)

    Adams, James H.; Barghouty, A. F.; Bhattacharya, M.; Lin, Zi-Wei


    On January 14, 2004 President Bush announced the Vision for Space Exploration, a program for long-term human and robotic exploration of the solar system which will include a return of humans to the moon not later than 2020, followed by human missions to Mars. Since this announcement, NASA has been developing plans and mission architectures for these human missions as well as robotic precursor missions. Among the critical needs for research and development in support of this Vision are investigations on the ionizing radiation environment and development of instrumentation to guide NASA in managing the radiation exposure of the crew during the manned missions. For mission planning, models are needed for a reference worst-case solar energetic particle event and a reference worst-case galactic cosmic ray environment. During Lunar missions it will be necessary to carefully manage the radiation exposure of the crew in real time because of the variability of the radiation environment due to solar activity. In particular, prompt warnings will be needed when large solar energetic particle events occur. Accurate predictions will also be needed of the particle flux and flux history at the moon to support critical mission management decisions. A new generation of dosimeters and radiation monitors will also be needed to accompany the crew. These instruments must return data in real time so that they can be used in the critical decisions that must be made if a large solar energetic particle event occurs. This is especially true if it occurs during a lunar excursion. A substantial radiation exposure on extended lunar missions and Mars missions comes from galactic cosmic rays. This exposure must be mitigated by radiation shielding and other measures. During Mars missions the galactic cosmic ray exposure occurs primarily during the cruse phase between the Earth and Mars. This is especially true for opposition class missions. These missions would typically last -430 days with only

  1. An International Parallax Campaign to Measure Distance to the Moon and Mars (United States)

    Cenadelli, D.; Zeni, M.; Bernagozzi, A.; Calcidese, P.; Ferreira, L.; Hoang, C.; Rijsdijk, C.


    Trigonometric parallax is a powerful method to work out the distance of celestial bodies, and it was used in the past to measure the distance of the Moon, Venus, Mars and nearby stars. We set up an observation campaign for high school and undergraduate students with the purpose to measure both the Moon's and Mars' parallax. To have a large enough…

  2. Moon

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Henderson, P.


    Results of investigations into general composition of the Moon are discussed. Mineralogical and petrography characteristics of lunar samples are given. Chemical characteristics of the Moon rocks: depletion of rocks with volatile elements as compared with rocks of the Earth surface, rock formation under very low volatility of oxygen, enrichment as compared with chondrites by refractory elements, existence of strong positive correlations between concentrations of certain elements as well as peculiar distributions of race elements are presented

  3. An Earth-Moon System Trajectory Design Reference Catalog (United States)

    Folta, David; Bosanac, Natasha; Guzzetti, Davide; Howell, Kathleen C.


    As demonstrated by ongoing concept designs and the recent ARTEMIS mission, there is, currently, significant interest in exploiting three-body dynamics in the design of trajectories for both robotic and human missions within the Earth-Moon system. The concept of an interactive and 'dynamic' catalog of potential solutions in the Earth-Moon system is explored within this paper and analyzed as a framework to guide trajectory design. Characterizing and compiling periodic and quasi-periodic solutions that exist in the circular restricted three-body problem may offer faster and more efficient strategies for orbit design, while also delivering innovative mission design parameters for further examination.

  4. An Earth-Moon system trajectory design reference catalog (United States)

    Folta, David C.; Bosanac, Natasha; Guzzetti, Davide; Howell, Kathleen C.


    As demonstrated by ongoing concept designs and the recent ARTEMIS mission, there is, currently, significant interest in exploiting three-body dynamics in the design of trajectories for both robotic and human missions within the Earth-Moon system. The concept of an interactive and 'dynamic' catalog of potential solutions in the Earth-Moon system is explored within this paper and analyzed as a framework to guide trajectory design. Characterizing and compiling periodic and quasi-periodic solutions that exist in the circular restricted three-body problem may offer faster and more efficient strategies for orbit design, while also delivering innovative mission design parameters for further examination.

  5. Scientific analogs and the development of human mission architectures for the Moon, deep space and Mars (United States)

    Lim, D. S. S.; Abercromby, A.; Beaton, K.; Brady, A. L.; Cardman, Z.; Chappell, S.; Cockell, C. S.; Cohen, B. A.; Cohen, T.; Deans, M.; Deliz, I.; Downs, M.; Elphic, R. C.; Hamilton, J. C.; Heldmann, J.; Hillenius, S.; Hoffman, J.; Hughes, S. S.; Kobs-Nawotniak, S. E.; Lees, D. S.; Marquez, J.; Miller, M.; Milovsoroff, C.; Payler, S.; Sehlke, A.; Squyres, S. W.


    Analogs are destinations on Earth that allow researchers to approximate operational and/or physical conditions on other planetary bodies and within deep space. Over the past decade, our team has been conducting geobiological field science studies under simulated deep space and Mars mission conditions. Each of these missions integrate scientific and operational research with the goal to identify concepts of operations (ConOps) and capabilities that will enable and enhance scientific return during human and human-robotic missions to the Moon, into deep space and on Mars. Working under these simulated mission conditions presents a number of unique challenges that are not encountered during typical scientific field expeditions. However, there are significant benefits to this working model from the perspective of the human space flight and scientific operations research community. Specifically, by applying human (and human-robotic) mission architectures to real field science endeavors, we create a unique operational litmus test for those ConOps and capabilities that have otherwise been vetted under circumstances that did not necessarily demand scientific data return meeting the rigors of peer-review standards. The presentation will give an overview of our team's recent analog research, with a focus on the scientific operations research. The intent is to encourage collaborative dialog with a broader set of analog research community members with an eye towards future scientific field endeavors that will have a significant impact on how we design human and human-robotic missions to the Moon, into deep space and to Mars.

  6. Astrobiology Results from ILEWG EuroMoonMars Analogue Field Research (United States)

    Foing, Bernard H.

    . v’t Houd (8), A. Bruneau (6,9), M. Cross (6,7), V. Maivald (10), C. Orgel (6), A. Elsaesser (4), S.O.L. Direito (2,4), W.F.M. Röling (2), G.R. Davies (2); EuroGeoMars2009 Team, DOMMEX-ILEWG EuroMoonMars 2010-2013 Teams (1) ESA/ ESTEC, Postbus 299, 2200 AG Noordwik, NL; (2) Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam, Faculty of Earth & Life Sciences, De Boelelaan 1085, 1081 HV Amsterdam, NL; (3) NASA Ames Research Centre; US; (4) Leiden Institute of Chemistry, NL; (5) Space Policy Institute, GWU, Washington D.C., USA; (6) ILEWG; (7) CPSX; (8) Cerberus Blackshore, ESIC Noordwijk, NL; (9) ENSC Bordeaux; (10) DLR, Bremen References: Foing, Stoker & Ehrenfreund (Editors, 2011) “Astrobiology field Research in Moon/Mars Analogue Environments”, Special Issue of International Journal of Astrobiology , IJA 2011, 10, vol.3. 137-305; [1] Foing B. et al. (2011) Field astrobiology research at Moon-Mars analogue site: Instruments and methods, IJA 2011, 10 (3), 141; [2] Clarke, J., Stoker, C. Concretions in exhumed & inverte channels near Hanksville Utah: implications for Mars, (IJA 2011, 10 (3), 162; [3] Thiel et al., (2011) PCR-based analysis of microbial communities during the EuroGeoMars campaign at Mars Desert Research Station, Utah. (IJA 2011, 10 (3), 177; [4] Direito et al. (2011). A wide variety of putative extremophiles and large beta-diversity at the Mars Desert Research Station (Utah). (IJA 2011, 10 (3), 191; [5] Orzechowska, G. et al (20110 analysis of Mars Analog soils using solid Phase Microextraction, Organics solvent extraction and GCMS, (IJA 2011, 10 (3), 209; [6] Kotler et al. (2011). Analysis of mineral matrices of planetary soils analogs from the Utah Desert. (IJA 2011, 10 (3), 221; [7] Martins et al. (2011). Extraction of amino acids from soils close to the Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS), Utah. (IJA 2011, 10 (3), 231; [8] Ehrenfreund et al. (2011) Astrobiology and habitability studies in preparation for future Mars missions: trends from investigating minerals

  7. Using the Moon and Mars as Giant Detectors for Strange Quark Nuggets (United States)

    Chui, Talso; Penanen, Konstantin; Strayer, Don; Banerdt, Bruce; Tepliz, Vigdor; Herrin, Eugene


    On the Earth, the detectability of small seismic signals is limited by pervasive seismic background noise, caused primarily by interactions of the atmosphere and oceans with the solid surface. Mars, with a very thin atmosphere and no ocean is expected to have a noise level at least an order of magnitude lower than the Earth, and the airless Moon is even quieter still. These pristine low-vibration environments are ideal for searching for nuggets of "strange quark matter." Strange quark matter was postulated by Edward Witten [Phys. Rev. D30, 272, 1984] as the lowest possible energy state of matter. It would be made of up, down, and strange quarks, instead of protons and neutrons made only of up and down quarks. It would have nuclear densities, and hence be difficult to detect. Micron-sized nuggets would weigh in the ton range. As suggested by de Rujula and Glashow [Nature 312 (5996): 734, 1984], a massive strange quark nugget can generate a trail of seismic waves, as it traverses a celestial body. We discuss the mission concept for deploying a network of sensitive seismometers on Mars and on the Moon for such a search.

  8. Developing Ultra Reliable Life Support for the Moon and Mars (United States)

    Jones, Harry W.


    Recycling life support systems can achieve ultra reliability by using spares to replace failed components. The added mass for spares is approximately equal to the original system mass, provided the original system reliability is not very low. Acceptable reliability can be achieved for the space shuttle and space station by preventive maintenance and by replacing failed units, However, this maintenance and repair depends on a logistics supply chain that provides the needed spares. The Mars mission must take all the needed spares at launch. The Mars mission also must achieve ultra reliability, a very low failure rate per hour, since it requires years rather than weeks and cannot be cut short if a failure occurs. Also, the Mars mission has a much higher mass launch cost per kilogram than shuttle or station. Achieving ultra reliable space life support with acceptable mass will require a well-planned and extensive development effort. Analysis must define the reliability requirement and allocate it to subsystems and components. Technologies, components, and materials must be designed and selected for high reliability. Extensive testing is needed to ascertain very low failure rates. Systems design should segregate the failure causes in the smallest, most easily replaceable parts. The systems must be designed, produced, integrated, and tested without impairing system reliability. Maintenance and failed unit replacement should not introduce any additional probability of failure. The overall system must be tested sufficiently to identify any design errors. A program to develop ultra reliable space life support systems with acceptable mass must start soon if it is to produce timely results for the moon and Mars.

  9. Visualizing the Earth and Moon Relationship via Scaled Drawings (United States)

    Fidler, Chuck; Dotger, Sharon


    Students' difficulties with accurately conceptualizing the relationships among the Earth, Moon, and Sun are well documented. Any teacher who has seen the film "A Private Universe" (Schneps and Sadler 1988) will remember the challenge the interviewees experienced when trying to explain their understanding of this phenomenon. This paper describes a…

  10. Dynamics of the Sun-Earth-Moon System

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Home; Journals; Resonance – Journal of Science Education; Volume 10; Issue 8. Dynamics of the Sun-Earth-Moon System. S M Alladin G M Ballabh. General Article Volume 10 Issue 8 August 2005 pp 6-24. Fulltext. Click here to view fulltext PDF. Permanent link: ...

  11. Cycler orbit between Earth and Mars (United States)

    Byrnes, Dennis V.; Longuski, James M.; Aldrin, Buzz


    A periodic orbit between Earth and Mars has been discovered that, after launch, permits a space vehicle to cycle back and forth between the planets with moderate maneuvers at irregular intervals. A Space Station placed in this cycler orbit could provide a safe haven from radiation and comfortable living quarters for astronauts en route to Earth or Mars. The orbit is largely maintained by gravity assist from Earth. Numerical results from multiconic optimization software are presented for a 15-year period from 1995 through 2010.

  12. A Perspective On The Earth From The Moon (United States)

    Scott, David R.

    ``What was most significant about the lunar voyage was not that men set foot on the Moon, but that they set eye on the Earth''. This statement, by Mr. Norman Cousins, Editor of the Saturday Review, summarizes the most significant aspect of the first departure of humans from the environment in which they were born, and in which they must survive. Looking back at the Earth from the Moon, the view is both splendid and overwhelming. This small blue ball in the vastness of black space, dotted with millions of marvellous stars, is an oasis that we must understand and protect. For, if one searches the heavens, one will find no other island for life as we understand it. If we humans do not protect and nurture this environment, it will disappear - just as quickly as the Earth will disappear from behind an outstretched thumb of a man on the Moon. Everything that has meaning disappears: science, history, music, poetry, art, literature, all of it on this small, fragile, and precious little spot out there in the vastness of the universe. From the Moon, we see many new and fascinating visions of the Earth. These views change not only our perspective of the Earth but our value system as well. As an example, from the Earth, we see the Moon track across the sky from horizon to horizon, always the same face, always the same features. But from the Moon, we see the Earth at the same point in the sky, day after day, but always turning, showing us new faces and changing features as the hours pass. We become aware of how much the physical features of the Earth are interrelated. And in a sense, we can ``see the future'' as the Earth turns in our view. From the Moon we see the Earth as a ``whole'' - we see no borders, we see no boundaries, we see all humankind together and interrelated on this single small sphere. This perspective from the Moon makes us realize that the Earth is dynamic and alive and evolving for the human presence - and we realize that if we care not for the life of the

  13. An international parallax campaign to measure distance to the Moon and Mars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cenadelli, D; Hoang, C; Zeni, M; Bernagozzi, A; Calcidese, P; Ferreira, L; Rijsdijk, C


    Trigonometric parallax is a powerful method to work out the distance of celestial bodies, and it was used in the past to measure the distance of the Moon, Venus, Mars and nearby stars. We set up an observation campaign for high school and undergraduate students with the purpose to measure both the Moon's and Mars' parallax. To have a large enough baseline (or basis), we took simultaneous pictures of these celestial bodies from Italy and South Africa. Then, we estimated the apparent shift relative to background stars and, via trigonometry, we worked out the distances of the Moon and Mars. Reliable results were found

  14. Cosmic acceleration of Earth and the Moon by dark matter (United States)

    Nordtvedt, Kenneth L.


    In order to test the hypothesis that the gravitational interaction between our Galaxy's dark matter and the ordinary matter in Earth and the Moon might not fulfill the equivalence principle (universality of free fall), we consider the pertinent perturbation of the lunar orbit -- a sidereal month period range oscillation resulting from a spatially fixed polarization of the orbit. Lunar laser ranging (LLR) data can measure this sidereal perturbation to an accuracy equal to or better than its existing measurement of the synodic month period range oscillation amplitude (+/- 3 cm) which has been used for testing whether Earth and the Moon accelerate at equal rates toward the Sun. Because of the slow precession rate of the Moon's perigree (8.9 yr period), the lunar orbit is particularly sensitive to a cosmic acceleration; the LLR fit of the orbit places an upper limit of 10(exp -13) cm/sq. s for any cosmic differential acceleration between Earth (Fe) and the Moon (silicates). This is 10(exp -5) of the total galactic acceleration of the solar system, of which, it has been suggested, a large portion is produced by dark matter.

  15. Analysis of a Moon outpost for Mars enabling technologies through a Virtual Reality environment (United States)

    Casini, Andrea E. M.; Maggiore, Paolo; Viola, Nicole; Basso, Valter; Ferrino, Marinella; Hoffman, Jeffrey A.; Cowley, Aidan


    The Moon is now being considered as the starting point for human exploration of the Solar System beyond low-Earth orbit. Many national space agencies are actively advocating to build up a lunar surface habitat capability starting from 2030 or earlier: according to ESA Technology Roadmaps for Exploration this should be the result of a broad international cooperation. Taking into account an incremental approach to reduce risks and costs of space missions, a lunar outpost can be considered as a test bed towards Mars, allowing to validate enabling technologies, such as water processing, waste management, power generation and storage, automation, robotics and human factors. Our natural satellite is rich in resources that could be used to pursue such a goal through a necessary assessment of ISRU techniques. The aim of this research is the analysis of a Moon outpost dedicated to the validation of enabling technologies for human space exploration. The main building blocks of the outpost are identified and feasible evolutionary scenarios are depicted, to highlight the incremental steps to build up the outpost. Main aspects that are dealt with include outpost location and architecture, as well as ISRU facilities, which in a far term future can help reduce the mass at launch, by producing hydrogen and oxygen for consumables, ECLSS, and propellant for Earth-Moon sorties and Mars journeys. A test outpost is implemented in a Virtual Reality (VR) environment as a first proof-of-concepts, where the elements are computer-based mock-ups. The VR facility has a first-person interactive perspective, allowing for specific in-depth analyses of ergonomics and operations. The feedbacks of these analyses are crucial to highlight requirements that might otherwise be overlooked, while their general outputs are fundamental to write down procedures. Moreover, the mimic of astronauts' EVAs is useful for pre-flight training, but can also represent an additional tool for failures troubleshooting

  16. Cryogenic Fluid Management Technology for Moon and Mars Missions (United States)

    Doherty, Michael P.; Gaby, Joseph D.; Salerno, Louis J.; Sutherlin, Steven G.


    In support of the U.S. Space Exploration Policy, focused cryogenic fluid management technology efforts are underway within the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. Under the auspices of the Exploration Technology Development Program, cryogenic fluid management technology efforts are being conducted by the Cryogenic Fluid Management Project. Cryogenic Fluid Management Project objectives are to develop storage, transfer, and handling technologies for cryogens to support high performance demands of lunar, and ultimately, Mars missions in the application areas of propulsion, surface systems, and Earth-based ground operations. The targeted use of cryogens and cryogenic technologies for these application areas is anticipated to significantly reduce propellant launch mass and required on-orbit margins, to reduce and even eliminate storage tank boil-off losses for long term missions, to economize ground pad storage and transfer operations, and to expand operational and architectural operations at destination. This paper organizes Cryogenic Fluid Management Project technology efforts according to Exploration Architecture target areas, and discusses the scope of trade studies, analytical modeling, and test efforts presently underway, as well as future plans, to address those target areas. The target areas are: liquid methane/liquid oxygen for propelling the Altair Lander Ascent Stage, liquid hydrogen/liquid oxygen for propelling the Altair Lander Descent Stage and Ares V Earth Departure Stage, liquefaction, zero boil-off, and propellant scavenging for Lunar Surface Systems, cold helium and zero boil-off technologies for Earth-Based Ground Operations, and architecture definition studies for long term storage and on-orbit transfer and pressurization of LH2, cryogenic Mars landing and ascent vehicles, and cryogenic production via in situ resource utilization on Mars.

  17. Pressurized Rover for Moon and Mars Surface Missions (United States)

    Imhof, Barbara; Ransom, Stephen; Mohanty, Susmita; Özdemir, Kürsad; Häuplik-Meusburger, Sandra; Frischauf, Norbert; Hoheneder, Waltraut; Waclavicek, René

    The work described in this paper was done under ESA and Thales Alenia Space contract in the frame of the Analysis of Surface Architecture for European Space Exploration -Element Design. Future manned space missions to the Moon or to Mars will require a vehicle for transporting astronauts in a controlled and protected environment and in relative comfort during surface traverses of these planetary bodies. The vehicle that will be needed is a pressurized rover which serves the astronauts as a habitat, a refuge and a research laboratory/workshop. A number of basic issues influencing the design of such a rover, e.g. habitability, human-machine interfaces, safety, dust mitigation, interplanetary contamination and radiation protection, have been analysed in detail. The results of these analyses were subsequently used in an investigation of various designs for a rover suitable for surface exploration, from which a single concept was developed that satisfied scientific requirements as well as environmental requirements encoun-tered during surface exploration of the Moon and Mars. This concept was named in memory of the late Sir Arthur C. Clark RAMA (Rover for Advanced Mission Applications, Rover for Advanced Moon Applications, Rover for Advanced Mars Applications) The concept design of the pressurized rover meets the scientific and operational requirements defined during the course of the Surface Architecture Study. It is designed for surface missions with a crew of two or three lasting up to approximately 40 days, its source of energy, a liquid hydrogen/liquid oxygen fuel cell, allowing it to be driven and operated during the day as well as the night. Guidance, navigation and obstacle avoidance systems are foreseen as standard equipment to allow it to travel safely over rough terrain at all times of the day. The rover allows extra-vehicular activity and a remote manipulator is provided to recover surface samples, to deploy surface instruments and equipment and, in general

  18. Galileo Earth/Moon News Conference (United States)


    This NASA Kennedy Space Center (KSC) video release (Part 2 of 2) is a continuation of a press conference held at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory on Dec. 1, 1992, 7 days prior to the Galileo Earth-2 flyby. The video begins following presentations given by William J. O'Neil (Galileo Project Manager), Torrence Johnson (Galileo Project Scientist), Dr. Joseph Veverka (Galileo Imaging Team, Cornell University) and during a question and answer period given for the benefit of scientific journalists. Subjects include overall Galileo spacecraft health, verification of the Gaspra images timeframe, and the condition of certain scientific spacecraft instruments. Part 1 of this video can be retrieved by using Report No. NONP-NASA-VT-2000001077.

  19. Safe Crew Abort and Recovery for Ascent and Descent at the Moon and Mars (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Modular HSRV design includes a separable nose section with a unique propulsion system that nominally enables soft landing of the HSRV on the moon and Mars. Nose...

  20. CODE STEM - Moon, Mars, and Beyond; DLESE-Powered On-Line Classroom, Phase I (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — "CODE (COrps DEvelopment) STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) ? Moon Mars and Beyond; DLESE-Powered On-Line Classroom" shares the excitement of...

  1. Short-term capture of the Earth-Moon system (United States)

    Qi, Yi; de Ruiter, Anton


    In this paper, the short-term capture (STC) of an asteroid in the Earth-Moon system is proposed and investigated. First, the space condition of STC is analysed and five subsets of the feasible region are defined and discussed. Then, the time condition of STC is studied by parameter scanning in the Sun-Earth-Moon-asteroid restricted four-body problem. Numerical results indicate that there is a clear association between the distributions of the time probability of STC and the five subsets. Next, the influence of the Jacobi constant on STC is examined using the space and time probabilities of STC. Combining the space and time probabilities of STC, we propose a STC index to evaluate the probability of STC comprehensively. Finally, three potential STC asteroids are found and analysed.

  2. Ellipticity and crustal corrections for seismic body wave paths: application to Mars and Moon (United States)

    Hempel, S.; Garcia, R.; Wieczorek, M. A.


    Forward modeling of seismic body wave travel times and ray parameters for a given density and seismic velocity model is an important tool to investigate the interior structure of planets. The popular toolbox TauP by Crotwell et al. (1999) facilitates application to planets other than Earth, but does not consider a planet's ellipticity nor its surface topography. Due to their ellipticity, smaller radii and larger relative surface topography, these corrections become more significant in predicting seismic observations for celestial bodies like the Moon and Mars. In preparation for NASA's INSIGHT discovery mission (launch in March 2016), we include ellipticity corrections, geometrical spreading and topography corrections into TauP. The respective TauP extensions, as well as Lunar and Martian applications are presented: Previously, Lunar and Martian seismic velocity models have been proposed based on mass, moment of inertia, Love numbers and estimated bulk composition, and in case of the Moon also based on seismic data acquired during the Apollo Program (1969-1977). Due to the lack of direct seismic evidence, current Martian seismic velocity models vary widely and exhibit large travel time excursions, as well as considerable variations in epicentral distance ranges for which a given body wave is predicted to arrive. We discuss the effects of Lunar and Martian ellipticity and crustal structure on seismic travel times for a set of seismic velocity models and compare these to variations observed between the different 1D models. This comparison demonstrates the relevance of modeling the effects of ellipticity and crustal thickness during interpretation of seismic data acquired on planets like Mars or Moon.

  3. Proposal MaMBA - Moon and Mars Base Analog (United States)

    Heinicke, Christiane; Foing, Bernard


    Despite impressive progress in robotic exploration of celestial bodies, robots are believed to never reach the effectiveness and efficiency of a trained human. Consequently, ESA proposes to build an international Moon Village in roughly 15 years and NASA plans for the first manned mission to Mars shortly after. One of the challenges still remaining is the need for a shelter, a habitat which allows human spacefarers to safely live and work on the surface of a celestial body. Although various prototype habitats have been built and inhabited during the last decade, they typically share two fundamental flaws: First, they usually consist of a single space, which may become uninhabitable after depressurization due to just one single catastrophic event. Second, none of the habitats provides shielding against radiation, one of the major health concerns for spacefaring crews. Project MaMBA will address these two problems at the root and build an underground habitat comprised of five connected, but independent modules. The habitat will serve for testing technologies like life support, power systems, and interplanetary communication. Special attention will be given to the development of the geoscience laboratory module. In addition to the technological aspects, the envisioned habitat will serve as a unique test ground for studies on the effects of underground habitation on a crew.

  4. Life and Death on Mars and Earth (United States)

    Zahnle, K. J.; Sleep, N. H.


    Failure to discover life on Mars has led a great many experts to conclude that it must be hiding. Where? The likeliest hiding places are deep beneath the surface, where geothermal heat could permit liquid water. In this the search for life on Mars parallels the search for water on Mars. Liquid water has been, at least on occasion, a geologically significant presence on the surface. Channels were cut and plains dissected. This water is now hidden, in all likelihood having drained to the base of the porous regolith, where it fills possibly frozen aquifers. Presumably any surviving biota has followed the water from the surface to its hiding places in the deep. Accordingly, we have extended our environmental impact assessment of the environmental hazards posed by large asteroid and comet impacts to Mars, and compare its case to Earth's. In particular, we address the continuous habitability of surface and subsurface environments.

  5. Core-Mantle Partitioning of Volatile Elements and the Origin of Volatile Elements in Earth and Moon (United States)

    Righter, K.; Pando, K.; Danielson, L.; Nickodem, K.


    Depletions of siderophile elements in mantles have placed constraints on the conditions on core segregation and differentiation in bodies such as Earth, Earth's Moon, Mars, and asteroid 4 Vesta. Among the siderophile elements there are a sub-set that are also volatile (volatile siderophile elements or VSE; Ga, Ge, In, As, Sb, Sn, Bi, Zn, Cu, Cd), and thus can help to constrain the origin of volatile elements in these bodies, and in particular the Earth and Moon. One of the fundamental observations of the geochemistry of the Moon is the overall depletion of volatile elements relative to the Earth, but a satisfactory explanation has remained elusive. Hypotheses for Earth include addition during accretion and core formation and mobilized into the metallic core, multiple stage origin, or addition after the core formed. Any explanation for volatile elements in the Earth's mantle must also be linked to an explanation of these elements in the lunar mantle. New metal-silicate partitioning data will be applied to the origin of volatile elements in both the Earth and Moon, and will evaluate theories for exogenous versus endogenous origin of volatile elements.

  6. Venus, Mars, and the ices on Mercury and the moon: astrobiological implications and proposed mission designs. (United States)

    Schulze-Makuch, Dirk; Dohm, James M; Fairén, Alberto G; Baker, Victor R; Fink, Wolfgang; Strom, Robert G


    Venus and Mars likely had liquid water bodies on their surface early in the Solar System history. The surfaces of Venus and Mars are presently not a suitable habitat for life, but reservoirs of liquid water remain in the atmosphere of Venus and the subsurface of Mars, and with it also the possibility of microbial life. Microbial organisms may have adapted to live in these ecological niches by the evolutionary force of directional selection. Missions to our neighboring planets should therefore be planned to explore these potentially life-containing refuges and return samples for analysis. Sample return missions should also include ice samples from Mercury and the Moon, which may contain information about the biogenic material that catalyzed the early evolution of life on Earth (or elsewhere). To obtain such information, science-driven exploration is necessary through varying degrees of mission operation autonomy. A hierarchical mission design is envisioned that includes spaceborne (orbital), atmosphere (airborne), surface (mobile such as rover and stationary such as lander or sensor), and subsurface (e.g., ground-penetrating radar, drilling, etc.) agents working in concert to allow for sufficient mission safety and redundancy, to perform extensive and challenging reconnaissance, and to lead to a thorough search for evidence of life and habitability.

  7. Low energy trajectories for the Moon-to-Earth space flight

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Home; Journals; Journal of Earth System Science; Volume 114; Issue 6. Low energy ... 'Detour' lunar trajectories; Moon–Earth flight; escape; gravitational perturbations. Abstract. The Moon-to-Earth low energy trajectories of `detour'type are found and studied within the frame of the MoonEarth –Sun-particle system.

  8. Gravitational Focusing and the Computation of an Accurate Moon/Mars Cratering Ratio (United States)

    Matney, Mark J.


    There have been a number of attempts to use asteroid populations to simultaneously compute cratering rates on the Moon and bodies elsewhere in the Solar System to establish the cratering ratio (e.g., [1],[2]). These works use current asteroid orbit population databases combined with collision rate calculations based on orbit intersections alone. As recent work on meteoroid fluxes [3] have highlighted, however, collision rates alone are insufficient to describe the cratering rates on planetary surfaces - especially planets with stronger gravitational fields than the Moon, such as Earth and Mars. Such calculations also need to include the effects of gravitational focusing, whereby the spatial density of the slower-moving impactors is preferentially "focused" by the gravity of the body. This leads overall to higher fluxes and cratering rates, and is highly dependent on the detailed velocity distributions of the impactors. In this paper, a comprehensive gravitational focusing algorithm originally developed to describe fluxes of interplanetary meteoroids [3] is applied to the collision rates and cratering rates of populations of asteroids and long-period comets to compute better cratering ratios for terrestrial bodies in the Solar System. These results are compared to the calculations of other researchers.

  9. Terraforming: making an Earth of Mars. (United States)

    McKay, C P


    As we understand more about life on Earth and about the chemical and biological potential of other planets and objects in our solar system, it's not too much of a leap to consider creating a habitable environment on another planet. Scientists have begun to ponder the possibility of transforming Mars, the most Earthlike of the nearby planets. Various scenarios have been proposed, and in many ways these scenarios duplicate the processes that transformed the early Earth. Here we look at some of the possibilities.

  10. United States Human Access to Space, Exploration of the Moon and Preparation for Mars Exploration (United States)

    Rhatigan, Jennifer L.


    In the past, men like Leonardo da Vinci and Jules Verne imagined the future and envisioned fantastic inventions such as winged flying machines, submarines, and parachutes, and posited human adventures like transoceanic flight and journeys to the Moon. Today, many of their ideas are reality and form the basis for our modern world. While individual visionaries like da Vinci and Verne are remembered for the accuracy of their predictions, today entire nations are involved in the process of envisioning and defining the future development of mankind, both on and beyond the Earth itself. Recently, Russian, European, and Chinese teams have all announced plans for developing their own next generation human space vehicles. The Chinese have announced their intention to conduct human lunar exploration, and have flown three crewed space missions since 2003, including a flight with three crew members to test their extravehicular (spacewalking) capabilities in September 2008. Very soon, the prestige, economic development, scientific discovery, and strategic security advantage historically associated with leadership in space exploration and exploitation may no longer be the undisputed province of the United States. Much like the sponsors of the seafaring explorers of da Vinci's age, we are motivated by the opportunity to obtain new knowledge and new resources for the growth and development of our own civilization. NASA's new Constellation Program, established in 2005, is tasked with maintaining the United States leadership in space, exploring the Moon, creating a sustained human lunar presence, and eventually extending human operations to Mars and beyond. Through 2008, the Constellation Program developed a full set of detailed program requirements and is now completing the preliminary design phase for the new Orion Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV), the Ares I Crew Launch Vehicle, and the associated infrastructure necessary for humans to explore the Moon. Component testing is well

  11. The direct simulation of acoustics on Earth, Mars, and Titan. (United States)

    Hanford, Amanda D; Long, Lyle N


    With the recent success of the Huygens lander on Titan, a moon of Saturn, there has been renewed interest in further exploring the acoustic environments of the other planets in the solar system. The direct simulation Monte Carlo (DSMC) method is used here for modeling sound propagation in the atmospheres of Earth, Mars, and Titan at a variety of altitudes above the surface. DSMC is a particle method that describes gas dynamics through direct physical modeling of particle motions and collisions. The validity of DSMC for the entire range of Knudsen numbers (Kn), where Kn is defined as the mean free path divided by the wavelength, allows for the exploration of sound propagation in planetary environments for all values of Kn. DSMC results at a variety of altitudes on Earth, Mars, and Titan including the details of nonlinearity, absorption, dispersion, and molecular relaxation in gas mixtures are given for a wide range of Kn showing agreement with various continuum theories at low Kn and deviation from continuum theory at high Kn. Despite large computation time and memory requirements, DSMC is the method best suited to study high altitude effects or where continuum theory is not valid.

  12. Isotopic evolution of the protoplanetary disk and the building blocks of Earth and the Moon (United States)

    Schiller, Martin; Bizzarro, Martin; Fernandes, Vera Assis


    Nucleosynthetic isotope variability among Solar System objects is often used to probe the genetic relationship between meteorite groups and the rocky planets (Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars), which, in turn, may provide insights into the building blocks of the Earth–Moon system. Using this approach, it has been inferred that no primitive meteorite matches the terrestrial composition and the protoplanetary disk material from which Earth and the Moon accreted is therefore largely unconstrained. This conclusion, however, is based on the assumption that the observed nucleosynthetic variability of inner-Solar-System objects predominantly reflects spatial heterogeneity. Here we use the isotopic composition of the refractory element calcium to show that the nucleosynthetic variability in the inner Solar System primarily reflects a rapid change in the mass-independent calcium isotope composition of protoplanetary disk solids associated with early mass accretion to the proto-Sun. We measure the mass-independent 48Ca/44Ca ratios of samples originating from the parent bodies of ureilite and angrite meteorites, as well as from Vesta, Mars and Earth, and find that they are positively correlated with the masses of their parent asteroids and planets, which are a proxy of their accretion timescales. This correlation implies a secular evolution of the bulk calcium isotope composition of the protoplanetary disk in the terrestrial planet-forming region. Individual chondrules from ordinary chondrites formed within one million years of the collapse of the proto-Sun reveal the full range of inner-Solar-System mass-independent 48Ca/44Ca ratios, indicating a rapid change in the composition of the material of the protoplanetary disk. We infer that this secular evolution reflects admixing of pristine outer-Solar-System material into the thermally processed inner protoplanetary disk associated with the accretion of mass to the proto-Sun. The identical calcium isotope composition of Earth

  13. Basin-ring spacing on the Moon, Mercury, and Mars (United States)

    Pike, R.J.; Spudis, P.D.


    Radial spacing between concentric rings of impact basins that lack central peaks is statistically similar and nonrandom on the Moon, Mercury, and Mars, both inside and outside the main ring. One spacing interval, (2.0 ?? 0.3)0.5D, or an integer multiple of it, dominates most basin rings. Three analytical approaches yield similar results from 296 remapped or newly mapped rings of 67 multi-ringed basins: least-squares of rank-grouped rings, least-squares of rank and ring diameter for each basin, and averaged ratios of adjacent rings. Analysis of 106 rings of 53 two-ring basins by the first and third methods yields an integer multiple (2 ??) of 2.00.5D. There are two exceptions: (1) Rings adjacent to the main ring of multi-ring basins are consistently spaced at a slightly, but significantly, larger interval, (2.1 ?? 0.3)0.5D; (2) The 88 rings of 44 protobasins (large peak-plus-inner-ring craters) are spaced at an entirely different interval (3.3 ?? 0.6)0.5D. The statistically constant and target-invariant spacing of so many rings suggests that this characteristic may constrain formational models of impact basins on the terrestrial planets. The key elements of such a constraint include: (1) ring positions may not have been located by the same process(es) that formed ring topography; (2) ring location and emplacement of ring topography need not be coeval; (3) ring location, but not necessarily the mode of ring emplacement, reflects one process that operated at the time of impact; and (4) the process yields similarly-disposed topographic features that are spatially discrete at 20.5D intervals, or some multiple, rather than continuous. These four elements suggest that some type of wave mechanism dominates the location, but not necessarily the formation, of basin rings. The waves may be standing, rather than travelling. The ring topography itself may be emplaced at impact by this and/or other mechanisms and may reflect additional, including post-impact, influences. ?? 1987

  14. A desktop system of virtual morphometric globes for Mars and the Moon (United States)

    Florinsky, I. V.; Filippov, S. V.


    Global morphometric models can be useful for earth and planetary studies. Virtual globes - programs implementing interactive three-dimensional (3D) models of planets - are increasingly used in geo- and planetary sciences. We describe the development of a desktop system of virtual morphometric globes for Mars and the Moon. As the initial data, we used 15'-gridded global digital elevation models (DEMs) extracted from the Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter (MOLA) and the Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter (LOLA) gridded archives. For two celestial bodies, we derived global digital models of several morphometric attributes, such as horizontal curvature, vertical curvature, minimal curvature, maximal curvature, and catchment area. To develop the system, we used Blender, the free open-source software for 3D modeling and visualization. First, a 3D sphere model was generated. Second, the global morphometric maps were imposed to the sphere surface as textures. Finally, the real-time 3D graphics Blender engine was used to implement rotation and zooming of the globes. The testing of the developed system demonstrated its good performance. Morphometric globes clearly represent peculiarities of planetary topography, according to the physical and mathematical sense of a particular morphometric variable.

  15. ExoHab Pilot Project & Field Tests for Moon-Mars Human Laboratories (United States)

    Foing, Bernard


    outpost into an autonomous base. After a robotic sample return mission, a human presence will allow deeper research through well chosen geological samples. A polar lunar outpost can serve to prepare for a Mars outpost: system and crew safety aspects, use of local resources, operations on farside with limited communication to Earth, planetary protection protocol, astrobiology and life sciences. References: [1] Exploration Architecture Trade Report", ESA 2008. [2] Integrated Exploration Architecture", ESA, 2008. [3] 9th ILEWG International Conference on Exploration Utilization of the moon, 2007, [4] Schrunk et al , The Moon: Resources, Future Development and Colonization", 1999. [5] The Moon as a Platform for Astronomy and Space Science", B.H. Foing, ASR 14 (6), 1994. [6] Boche-Sauvan L., Foing B (2008) MSc/ESTEC report. Co-authors, ILEWG ExoGeoLab & ExoHab Team: B.H. Foing(1,11)*#, C. Stoker(2,11)*, P. Ehrenfreund(10,11), L. Boche-Sauvan(1,11)*, L. Wendt(8)*, C. Gross(8, 11)*, C. Thiel(9)*, S. Peters(1,6)*, A. Borst(1,6)*, J. Zavaleta(2)*, P. Sarrazin(2)*, D. Blake(2), J. Page(1,4,11), V. Pletser(5,11)*, E. Monaghan(1)*, P. Mahapatra(1)#, A. Noroozi(3), P. Giannopoulos(1,11) , A. Calzada(1,6,11), R. Walker(7), T. Zegers(1, 15) #, G. Groemer(12)# , W. Stumptner(12)#, B. Foing(2,5), J. K. Blom(3)#, A. Perrin(14)#, M. Mikolajczak(14)#, S. Chevrier(14)#, S. Direito(6)#, S. Voute (18)#, A. Olmedo-Soler(17)#, T. E. Zegers(1, 18)#, D. Scheer(12)#, K. Bickert(12)#, D. Schildhammer(12)#, B. Jantscher(1, 11, 12)#, MECA Team(6)#, ExoGeoLab ILEWG ExoHab teams(1,4,11) EuroGeoMars team(1,4,5); 1)ESTEC/SRE-S Postbus 299, 2200 AG Noordwijk, NL, 2)NASA Ames , 3)Delft TU , 4)ESTEC TEC Technology Dir., 5)ESTEC HSF Human Spaceflight, 6)VU Amsterdam, 7)ESTEC Education Office, 8)FU Berlin, 9)Max Planck Goettingen, 10)Leiden/GWU , 11)ILEWG ExoHab Team, 12)Austrian Space Forum (OEWF Innsbruck); 14) Ecole de l'Air, Salons de Provence, 15) Utrecht U., 16) MECA Team, 17) Olmedo

  16. Forward Contamination of the Moon and Mars: Implications for Future Life Detection Missions (United States)

    Glavin, Daniel P.; Dworkin, Jason P.; Lupisella, Mark; Kminek, Gerhard; Rummel, John D.


    NASA and ESA have outlined new visions for solar system exploration that will include a series of lunar robotic missions to prepare for, and support a human return to the Moon, and future human exploration of Mars and other destinations. One of the guiding principles for exploration is to pursue compelling scientific questions about the origin and evolution of life. The search for life on objects such as Mars will require that all spacecraft and instrumentation be sufficiently cleaned and sterilized prior to launch to ensure that the scientific integrity of extraterrestrial samples is not jeopardized by terrestrial organic contamination. Under COSPAR's current planetary protection policy for the Moon, no sterilization procedures are required for outbound lunar spacecraft. Nonetheless, future in situ investigations of a variety of locations on the Moon by highly sensitive instruments designed to search for biologically derived organic compounds would help assess the contamination of the Moon by lunar spacecraft. These studies could also provide valuable "ground truth" data for Mars sample return missions and help define planetary protection requirements for future Mars bound spacecraft carrying life detection experiments. In addition, studies of the impact of terrestrial contamination of the lunar surface by the Apollo astronauts could provide valuable data to help refine future Mars surface exploration plans for a human mission to Mars.

  17. The Electrostatic Environments of the Moon and Mars: Implications for Human Missions (United States)

    Calle, Carlos I.; Mackey, Paul J.; Johansen, Michael R.; Hogue, Michael D.; Phillips, James; Cox, Rachel E.


    Lacking a substantial atmosphere, the moon is exposed to the full spectrum of solar radiation as well as to cosmic rays. Electrostatically, the moon is a charged body in a plasma. A Debye sheet meters high on the dayside of the moon and kilometers high on the night side envelops the moon. This sheet isolates the lunar surface from high energy particles coming from the sun. The electrostatic environment on Mars is controlled by its ever present atmospheric dust. Dust devils and dust storms tribocharge this dust. Theoretical studies predict that lightning and/or glow discharges should be present on Mars, but none have been directly observed. Experiments are planned to shed light on this issue.

  18. Frontiers of Life Sciences: The Human Exploration of the Moon and Mars (United States)

    North, Regina M.; Pellis, Neal R.


    The rapid development of the productive processes after World War II extended human settlements into new ecological niches. Advances in Life Sciences played a decisive role supporting the establishment of human presence in areas of the planet where human life could have not existed otherwise. The evolution of life support systems, and the fabrication of new materials and technologies has enabled humans to inhabit Polar Regions, ocean surfaces and depths; and to leave Earth and occupy Low Earth Orbit. By the end of the 20 th Century, stations in the Antarctic and Arctic, off shore oil platforms, submarines, and space stations had become the ultimate demonstration of human ability to engineer habitats at Earth extreme environments and outer space. As we enter the 21st Century, the next development of human settlements will occur through the exploration of the Moon, Mars, and beyond. The major risks of space exploration derive from long exposure of humans and other life systems to radiation, microgravity, isolation and confinement, dependence on artificial life support systems, and unknown effects (e.g., altered magnetic fields, ultrahigh vacuum on bacteria, fungi, etc.). Countermeasures will require a complete characterization of human and other biological systems adaptation processes. To sustain life in transit and on the surface of the Moon and Mars will require a balance of spacecraft, cargo, astronaut crews, and the use of in situ resources. Limitations on the number of crewmembers, payloads, and the barrenness of the terrain require a novel design for the capabilities needed in transit and at exploration outpost sites. The planned destinations have resources that may be accessed to produce materials, food, shelter, power, and to provide an environment compatible with successful occupation of longterm exploration sites. Once more, the advancements of Life Sciences will be essential for the design of interplanetary voyages and planetary surface operations. This

  19. A geoethical approach to the geological and astrobiological exploration and research of the Moon and Mars (United States)

    Martinez-Frias, Jesus; Horneck, Gerda; de La Torre Noetzel, Rosa; Rull, Fernando

    procedures related to the study of Lunar and Mar-tian meteorites, and also the research, taking into account this new perspective, of the Earth locations which are called terrestrial analogs. 1 UN (1967) Treaty on principles governing the activities of states in the exploration and use of outer space, including the moon and other celestial bodies Article I . U.N. Doc. A/RES/2222/(XXI) (25 Jan 1967). United Nations TIAS No. 6347. 2 Nemec, V. Nemcova, L. (2008) 33rd Inter-national Geological Congress, Oslo, August 6-14th. 3 4 Martinez-Frias, J. et al. (2009) Bolides and Meteorite Falls, Prague, May 10-15, 14-15. 5 Martinez-Frias, J. et al. (2009) EANA'09, Brussels, 12-14 October 2009. 6 Planetary Prot 7 IUCN (2008) 8 Cockell, C.S. Hor-neck, G. (2004) Space Policy 20: 291-295. 9 Cockell, C.S. Horneck, G. (2006) Space Policy 22: 256-261.

  20. Space tourism: from earth orbit to the moon (United States)

    Collins, P.

    Travel to and from the lunar surface has been known to be feasible since it was first achieved 34 years ago. Since that time there has been enormous progress in related engineering fields such as rocket propulsion, materials and avionics, and about 1 billion has been spent on lunar science and engineering research. Consequently there are no fundamental technical problems facing the development of lunar tourism - only business and investment problems. The outstanding problem is to reduce the cost of launch to low Earth orbit. Recently there has been major progress towards overturning the myth that launch costs are high because of physical limits. Several "X Prize" competitor vehicles currently in test-flight are expected to be able to perform sub-orbital flights at approximately 1/1,000 of the cost of Alan Shepard's similar flight in 1961. This activity could have started 30 years ago if space agencies had had economic rather than political objectives. A further encouraging factor is that the demand for space tourism seems potentially limitless. Starting with sub-orbital flights and growing through orbital activities, travel to the Moon will offer further unique attractions. In every human culture there is immense interest in the Moon arising from millennia of myths. In addition, bird-like flying sports, first described by Robert Heinlein, will become another powerful demand factor. Roundtrips of 1 to 2 weeks are very convenient for travel companies; and the radiation environment will permit visitors several days of surface activity without significant health risks. The paper also discusses economic aspects of lunar tourism, including the benefits it will have for those on Earth. Lunar economic development based on tourism will have much in common with economic development on Earth based on tourism: starting from the fact that many people spontaneously wish to visit popular places, companies in the tourism industry invest to sell a growing range of services to ever

  1. NASA Exploration Launch Projects Systems Engineering Approach for Astronaut Missions to the Moon, Mars, and Beyond (United States)

    Dumbacher, Daniel L.


    The U.S. Vision for Space Exploration directs NASA to design and develop a new generation of safe, reliable, and cost-effective transportation systems to hlfill the Nation s strategic goals and objectives. These launch vehicles will provide the capability for astronauts to conduct scientific exploration that yields new knowledge from the unique vantage point of space. American leadership in opening new fi-ontiers will improve the quality of life on Earth for generations to come. The Exploration Launch Projects office is responsible for delivering the Crew Launch Vehicle (CLV) that will loft the Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV) into low-Earth orbit (LEO) early next decade, and for the heavy lift Cargo Launch Vehicle (CaLV) that will deliver the Lunar Surface Access Module (LSAM) to LEO for astronaut return trips to the Moon by 2020 in preparation for the eventual first human footprint on Mars. Crew travel to the International Space Station will be made available as soon possible after the Space Shuttle retires in 2010.

  2. Exploring the Moon and Mars Using an Orbiting Superconducting Gravity Gradiometer (United States)

    Paik, Ho Jung; Strayer, Donald M.


    Gravity measurement is fundamental to understanding the interior structure, dynamics, and evolution of planets. High-resolution gravity maps will also help locating natural resources, including subsurface water, and underground cavities for astronaut habitation on the Moon and Mars. Detecting the second spatial derivative of the potential, a gravity gradiometer mission tends to give the highest spatial resolution and has the advantage of requiring only a single satellite. We discuss gravity missions to the Moon and Mars using an orbiting Superconducting Gravity Gradiometer and discuss the instrument and spacecraft control requirements.

  3. V, Cr, and Mn in the Earth, Moon, EPB, and SPB and the origin of the Moon: Experimental studies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Drake, M.J.; Capobianco, C.J.; Newsom, H.E.


    The abundances of V, Cr, and Mn inferred for the mantles of the Earth and Moon decrease in that order and are similar, but are distinct from those inferred for the mantles of the Eucrite Parent Body (EPB) and Shergottite Parent Body (SPB). This similarity between Earth and Moon has been used to suggest that the Moon is derived substantially or entirely from Earth mantle material following terrestrial core formation. To test this hypothesis, the authors have determined the partitioning of V, Cr, and Mn between solid iron metal, S-rich metallic liquid, and synthetic basaltic silicate liquid at 1,260 degree C and one bar pressure. The sequence of compatibility in the metallic phases is Cr > V > Mn at high oxygen fugacity and V > Cr > Mn at low oxygen fugacities. Solubilities in liquid metal always exceed solubilities in solid metal. These partition coefficients suggest that the abundances of V, Cr, and Mn do not reflect core formation in the Earth. Rather, they are consistent with the relative volatilities of these elements. The similarity in the depletion patterns of V, Cr, and Mn inferred for the mantles of the Earth and Moon is a necessary, but not sufficient, condition for the Moon to have been derived wholly or in part from the Earth's mantle

  4. Earth-like sand fluxes on Mars. (United States)

    Bridges, N T; Ayoub, F; Avouac, J-P; Leprince, S; Lucas, A; Mattson, S


    Strong and sustained winds on Mars have been considered rare, on the basis of surface meteorology measurements and global circulation models, raising the question of whether the abundant dunes and evidence for wind erosion seen on the planet are a current process. Recent studies showed sand activity, but could not determine whether entire dunes were moving--implying large sand fluxes--or whether more localized and surficial changes had occurred. Here we present measurements of the migration rate of sand ripples and dune lee fronts at the Nili Patera dune field. We show that the dunes are near steady state, with their entire volumes composed of mobile sand. The dunes have unexpectedly high sand fluxes, similar, for example, to those in Victoria Valley, Antarctica, implying that rates of landscape modification on Mars and Earth are similar.

  5. Growing crops for space explorers on the moon, Mars, or in space (United States)

    Salisbury, F. B.


    An option in the long-duration exploration of space, whether on the Moon or Mars or in a spacecraft on its way to Mars or the asteroids, is to utilize a bioregenerative life-support system in addition to the physicochemical systems that will always be necessary. Green plants can use the energy of light to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and add oxygen to it while at the same time synthesizing food for the space travelers. The water that crop plants transpire can be condensed in pure form, contributing to the water purification system. An added bonus is that green plants provide a familiar environment for humans far from their home planet. The down side is that such a bioregenerative life-support system--called a controlled environment life-support system (CELSS) in this paper--must be highly complex and relatively massive to maintain a proper composition of the atmosphere while also providing food. Thus, launch costs will be high. Except for resupply and removal of nonrecycleable substances, such a system is nearly closed with respect to matter but open with respect to energy. Although a CELSS facility is small compared to the Earth's biosphere, it must be large enough to feed humans and provide a suitable atmosphere for them. A functioning CELSS can only be created with the help of today's advanced technology, especially computerized controls. Needed are energy for light, possibly from a nuclear power plant, and equipment to provide a suitable environment for plant growth, including a way to supply plants with the necessary mineral nutrients. All this constitutes the biomass production unit. There must also be food preparation facilities and a means to recycle or dispose of waste materials and there must be control equipment to keep the facility running. Humans are part of the system as well as plants and possibly animals. Human brain power will often be needed to keep the system functional in spite of the best computer-driven controls. The particulars

  6. Logistics for MoonMars Simulation Habitats: ExoHab ESTEC and LunAres Poland (United States)

    Blanc, A.; Authier, L.; Foing, B. H.; Lillo, A.; Evellin, P.; Kołodziejczyk, A.; Heinicke, C.; Harasymczuk, M.; Chahla, C.; Tomic, A.; Hettrich, S.


    ILEWG developed within EuroMoonMars research programme since 2008 a Mobile Laboratory Habitat (ExoHab) at ESTEC. Its organization led to logistic concerns our team had to work on. We contributed also to the installation of LunAres in Poland.

  7. Turning dust to gold building a future on the Moon and Mars

    CERN Document Server

    Benaroya, Haym


    Our continued prosperity and survival as species will in part depend upon space exploration and manned settlement. This will provide resources for our industrial societies and create new opportunities and markets. This book is a journey into our potential future, as several nations today begin seriously to plan and build up their capabilites for manned space flight and settlement on the Moon and Mars.

  8. 2012 Moon Mars Analog Mission Activities on Mauna Kea, Hawai'i

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Graham, Lee; Graff, Trevor G.; Aileen Yingst, R.; Ten Kate, Inge L.; Russell, Patrick


    Rover-based 2012 Moon and Mars Analog Mission Activities (MMAMA) scientific investigations were completed at Mauna Kea, Hawaii. Scientific investigations, scientific input, and science operations constraints were tested in the context of an existing project and protocols for the field activities

  9. Cognitive engineering for long duration missions: Human-machine collaboration on the moon and mars

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Neerincx, M.A.; Lindenberg, J.; Smets, N.; Grant, T.; Bos, A.; Olmedo-Soler, A.; Brauer, U.; Wolff, M.


    For manned long-duration missions to the Moon and Mars, there is a need for a Mission Execution Crew Assistant (MECA) that empowers the cognitive capacities of human-machine teams during planetary exploration missions in order to cope autonomously with unexpected, complex and potentially hazardous

  10. Human Exploration on the Moon, Mars and NEOs: PEX.2/ICEUM12B (United States)

    Foing, Bernard H.


    The session COSPAR-16-PEX.2: "Human Exploration on the Moon, Mars and NEOs", co-sponsored by Commissions B, F will include solicited and contributed talks and poster/interactive presentations. It will also be part of the 12th International Conference on Exploration and Utilisation of the Moon ICEUM12B from the ILEWG ICEUM series started in 1994. It will address various themes and COSPAR communities: - Sciences (of, on, from) the Moon enabled by humans - Research from cislunar and libration points - From robotic villages to international lunar bases - Research from Mars & NEOs outposts - Humans to Phobos/Deimos, Mars and NEOS - Challenges and preparatory technologies, field research operations - Human and robotic partnerships and precursor missions - Resource utilisation, life support and sustainable exploration - Stakeholders for human exploration One half-day session will be dedicated to a workshop format and meetings/reports of task groups: Science, Technology, Agencies, Robotic village, Human bases, Society & Commerce, Outreach, Young Explorers. COSPAR has provided through Commissions, Panels and Working Groups (such as ILEWG, IMEWG) an international forum for supporting and promoting the robotic and human exploration of the Moon, Mars and NEOS. Proposed sponsors : ILEWG, ISECG, IKI, ESA, NASA, DLR, CNES, ASI, UKSA, JAXA, ISRO, SRON, CNSA, SSERVI, IAF, IAA, Lockheed Martin, Google Lunar X prize, UNOOSA

  11. Evaluating predictions of ICME arrival at Earth and Mars

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Falkenberg, Thea Vilstrup; Taktakishvili, A.; Pulkkinen, A.


    We present a study of interplanetary coronal mass ejection (ICME) propagation to Earth and Mars. Because of the significant space weather hazard posed by ICMEs, understanding and predicting their arrival and impact at Mars is important for current and future robotic and manned missions to the pla......We present a study of interplanetary coronal mass ejection (ICME) propagation to Earth and Mars. Because of the significant space weather hazard posed by ICMEs, understanding and predicting their arrival and impact at Mars is important for current and future robotic and manned missions...... to the planet. We compare running ENLILv2.6 with coronal mass ejection (CME) input parameters from both a manual and an automated method. We analyze shock events identified at Mars in Mars Global Surveyor data in 2001 and 2003, when Earth and Mars were separated by...

  12. Venus-Earth-Mars: Comparative Climatology and the Search for Life in the Solar System (United States)

    Launius, Roger D.


    Both Venus and Mars have captured the human imagination during the twentieth century as possible abodes of life. Venus had long enchanted humans—all the more so after astronomers realized it was shrouded in a mysterious cloak of clouds permanently hiding the surface from view. It was also the closest planet to Earth, with nearly the same size and surface gravity. These attributes brought myriad speculations about the nature of Venus, its climate, and the possibility of life existing there in some form. Mars also harbored interest as a place where life had or might still exist. Seasonal changes on Mars were interpreted as due to the possible spread and retreat of ice caps and lichen-like vegetation. A core element of this belief rested with the climatology of these two planets, as observed by astronomers, but these ideas were significantly altered, if not dashed during the space age. Missions to Venus and Mars revealed strikingly different worlds. The high temperatures and pressures found on Venus supported a “runaway greenhouse theory,” and Mars harbored an apparently lifeless landscape similar to the surface of the Moon. While hopes for Venus as an abode of life ended, the search for evidence of past life on Mars, possibly microbial, remains a central theme in space exploration. This survey explores the evolution of thinking about the climates of Venus and Mars as life-support systems, in comparison to Earth. PMID:25371106

  13. Venus-Earth-Mars: Comparative Climatology and the Search for Life in the Solar System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roger D. Launius


    Full Text Available Both Venus and Mars have captured the human imagination during the twentieth century as possible abodes of life. Venus had long enchanted humans—all the more so after astronomers realized it was shrouded in a mysterious cloak of clouds permanently hiding the surface from view. It was also the closest planet to Earth, with nearly the same size and surface gravity. These attributes brought myriad speculations about the nature of Venus, its climate, and the possibility of life existing there in some form. Mars also harbored interest as a place where life had or might still exist. Seasonal changes on Mars were interpreted as due to the possible spread and retreat of ice caps and lichen-like vegetation. A core element of this belief rested with the climatology of these two planets, as observed by astronomers, but these ideas were significantly altered, if not dashed during the space age. Missions to Venus and Mars revealed strikingly different worlds. The high temperatures and pressures found on Venus supported a “runaway greenhouse theory,” and Mars harbored an apparently lifeless landscape similar to the surface of the Moon. While hopes for Venus as an abode of life ended, the search for evidence of past life on Mars, possibly microbial, remains a central theme in space exploration. This survey explores the evolution of thinking about the climates of Venus and Mars as life-support systems, in comparison to Earth.

  14. Venus-Earth-Mars: comparative climatology and the search for life in the solar system. (United States)

    Launius, Roger D


    Both Venus and Mars have captured the human imagination during the twentieth century as possible abodes of life. Venus had long enchanted humans-all the more so after astronomers realized it was shrouded in a mysterious cloak of clouds permanently hiding the surface from view. It was also the closest planet to Earth, with nearly the same size and surface gravity. These attributes brought myriad speculations about the nature of Venus, its climate, and the possibility of life existing there in some form. Mars also harbored interest as a place where life had or might still exist. Seasonal changes on Mars were interpreted as due to the possible spread and retreat of ice caps and lichen-like vegetation. A core element of this belief rested with the climatology of these two planets, as observed by astronomers, but these ideas were significantly altered, if not dashed during the space age. Missions to Venus and Mars revealed strikingly different worlds. The high temperatures and pressures found on Venus supported a "runaway greenhouse theory," and Mars harbored an apparently lifeless landscape similar to the surface of the Moon. While hopes for Venus as an abode of life ended, the search for evidence of past life on Mars, possibly microbial, remains a central theme in space exploration. This survey explores the evolution of thinking about the climates of Venus and Mars as life-support systems, in comparison to Earth.

  15. Moons

    CERN Document Server

    DeYoe, Aaron


    Moons explores the science of what we see in the night sky. Kids will learn how moons are made, find out which moon might have its own ocean of water, explore the moons that help keep Saturn's rings in place and more. Engaging photos, exciting graphics, and a fun quiz at the end of each book will keep them learning. Aligned to Common Core Standards and correlated to state standards. Super Sandcastle is an imprint of Abdo Publishing, a division of ABDO.

  16. Moon

    CERN Document Server

    Rivera, Andrea


    From moon phases to sending astronauts to the moon, learn all about the moon in five easy-to-read chapters. Vibrant, full-color photographs appeal to visual learners. Zoom in even deeper with a key stats section and bolded glossary words. Aligned to Common Core Standards and correlated to state standards. Abdo Zoom is a division of ABDO.

  17. Tidal Friction in the Earth-Moon System and Laplace Planes: Darwin Redux (United States)

    Rubincam, David P.


    The dynamical evolution of the Earth-Moon system due to tidal friction is treated here. George H. Darwin used Laplace planes (also called proper planes) in his study of tidal evolution. The Laplace plane approach is adapted here to the formalisms of W.M. Kaula and P. Goldreich. Like Darwin, the approach assumes a three-body problem: Earth, Moon, and Sun, where the Moon and Sun are point-masses. The tidal potential is written in terms of the Laplace plane angles. The resulting secular equations of motion can be easily integrated numerically assuming the Moon is in a circular orbit about the Earth and the Earth is in a circular orbit about the Sun. For Earth-Moon distances greater than 10 Earth radii, the Earth's approximate tidal response can be characterized with a single parameter, which is a ratio: a Love number times the sine of a lag angle divided by another such product. For low parameter values it can be shown that Darwin's low-viscosity molten Earth, M. Ross's and G. Schubert's model of an Earth near melting, and Goldreich's equal tidal lag angles must all give similar histories. For higher parameter values, as perhaps has been the case at times with the ocean tides, the Earth's obliquity may have decreased slightly instead of increased once the Moon's orbit evolved further than 50 Earth radii from the Earth, with possible implications for climate. This is contrast to the other tidal friction models mentioned, which have the obliquity always increasing with time. As for the Moon, its orbit is presently tilted to its Laplace plane by 5.2deg. The equations do not allow the Moon to evolve out of its Laplace plane by tidal friction alone, so that if it was originally in its Laplace plane, the tilt arose with the addition of other mechanisms, such as resonance passages.

  18. Monitoring of Global Climate Change in the Earth from the Moon (United States)

    Morozhenko, O. V.; Vidmachenko, A. P.; Nevedovskiy, P. V.; Choliy, V. Ya.


    The most important experimental data that should be obtained for the monitoring of global climate change of Earth are: investigations of the stratospheric aerosol layer, which affects the stratospheric ozone layer, effective and real equilibrium temperature of Earth, content of greenhouse gases. Scientific equipment should be installed on an automatic (better habitable) base on the surface of the Moon, on the polar, constantly visible from the Earth artificial satellite of the Moon or on a satellite located at the lunar point of Lagrange.

  19. Low energy trajectories for the Moon-to-Earth space flight

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    The Moon-to-Earth low energy trajectories of `detour'type are found and studied within the frame of the MoonEarth –Sun-particle system. ... This results in the particle flight to a distance of about 1.5 million km from the Earth where the Sun gravitation decreases the particle orbit perigee distance to a small value that leads to ...

  20. Radiation protection for human missions to the Moon and Mars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Simonsen, L.C.; Nealy, J.E.


    Radiation protection assessments are performed for advanced Lunar and Mars manned missions. The Langley cosmic ray transport code and the nucleon transport code are used to quantify the transport and attenuation of galactic cosmic rays and solar proton flares through various shielding media. Galactic cosmic radiation at solar maximum and minimum, as well as various flare scenarios are considered. Propagation data for water, aluminum, liquid hydrogen, lithium hydride, lead, and lunar and Martian regolith (soil) are included. Shield thickness and shield mass estimates required to maintain incurred doses below 30 day and annual limits (as set for Space Station Freedom and used as a guide for space exploration) are determined for simple geometry transfer vehicles. On the surface of Mars, dose estimates are presented for crews with their only protection being the carbon dioxide atmosphere and for crews protected by shielding provided by Martian regolith for a candidate habitat

  1. Terrestrial Analog Field Investigations to Enable Science and Exploration Studies of Impacts and Volcanism on the Moon, NEAs, and Moons of Mars (United States)

    Heldmann, Jennifer Lynne; Colaprete, Anthony; Cohen, Barbara; Elphic, Richard; Garry, William; Hodges, Kip; Hughes, Scott; Kim, Kyeon; Lim, Darlene; McKay, Chris; hide


    Terrestrial analog studies are a critical component for furthering our understanding of geologic processes on the Moon, near-Earth asteroids (NEAs), and the moons of Mars. Carefully chosen analog sites provide a unique natural laboratory with high relevance to the associated science on these solar system target bodies. Volcanism and impact cratering are fundamental processes on the Moon, NEAs, and Phobos and Deimos. The terrestrial volcanic and impact records remain invaluable for our understanding of these processes throughout our solar system, since these are our primary source of firsthand knowledge on volcanic landform formation and modification as well as the three-dimensional structural and lithological character of impact craters. Regarding impact cratering, terrestrial fieldwork can help us to understand the origin and emplacement of impactites, the history of impact bombardment in the inner Solar System, the formation of complex impact craters, and the effects of shock on planetary materials. Volcanism is another dominant geologic process that has significantly shaped the surface of planetary bodies and many asteroids. Through terrestrial field investigations we can study the processes, geomorphic features and rock types related to fissure eruptions, volcanic constructs, lava tubes, flows and pyroclastic deposits. Also, terrestrial analog studies have the advantage of enabling simultaneous robotic and/or human exploration testing in a low cost, low risk, high fidelity environment to test technologies and concepts of operations for future missions to the target bodies. Of particular interest is the importance and role of robotic precursor missions prior to human operations for which there is little to no actual mission experience to draw upon. Also critical to understanding new worlds is sample return, and analog studies enable us to develop the appropriate procedures for collecting samples in a manner that will best achieve the science objectives.

  2. Low energy trajectories for the Moon-to-Earth space flight

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Keldysh Institute of Applied Mathematics, Miusskaya Sq. 4, Moscow 125 047, Russia. ∗ e-mail: The Moon-to-Earth low energy trajectories of 'detour' type ..... to-Moon Transfer with Ballistic Capture; J. Guidance,. Control and Dynamics 16(4) 770–775. Belló Mora M, Graziani F et al 2000 A Systematic ...

  3. Effects of selective fusion on the thermal history of the Moon, Mars, and Venus (United States)

    Lee, W.H.K.


    A comparative study on the thermal history of the Moon, Mars, and Venus was made by numerical solutions of the heat equation including and excluding selective fusion of silicates. Selective fusion was approximated by melting in a multicomponent system and redistribution of radioactive elements. Effects on selective fusion on the thermal models are (1) lowering (by several hundred degrees centigrade) and stabilizing the internal temperature distribution, and (2) increasing the surface heat-flow. ?? 1968.

  4. Comprehensive NASA Cis-Lunar Earth Moon Libration Orbit Reference and Web Application Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — To finalize a comprehensive NASA Cis-Lunar / Earth-Moon Libration Orbit Reference and Web Application begun using FY13 IRAD funding approved in May 2013. This GSFC...

  5. Comprehensive NASA Cis-Lunar Earth Moon Libration Orbit Reference and Web Application (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This work will provide research and trajectory design analysis to develop a NASA Cis-Lunar / Earth-Moon Libration Orbit Reference and Web Application. A compendium...

  6. Electrodynamic Dust Shield for Surface Exploration Activities on the Moon and Mars (United States)

    Calle, C. I.; Immer, C. D.; Clements, J. S.; Chen, A.; Buhler, C. R.; Lundeen, P.; Mantovani, J. G.; Starnes, J. W.; Michalenko, M.; Mazumder, M. K.


    The Apollo missions to the moon showed that lunar dust can hamper astronaut surface activities due to its ability to cling to most surfaces. NASA's Mars exploration landers and rovers have also shown that the problem is equally hard if not harder on Mars. In this paper, we report on our efforts to develop and electrodynamic dust shield to prevent the accumulation of dust on surfaces and to remove dust already adhering to those surfaces. The parent technology for the electrodynamic dust shield, developed in the 1970s, has been shown to lift and transport charged and uncharged particles using electrostatic and dielectrophoretic forces. This technology has never been applied for space applications on Mars or the moon due to electrostatic breakdown concerns. In this paper, we show that an appropriate design can prevent the electrostatic breakdown at the low Martian atmospheric pressures. We are also able to show that uncharged dust can be lifted and removed from surfaces under simulated Martian environmental conditions. This technology has many potential benefits for removing dust from visors, viewports and many other surfaces as well as from solar arrays. We have also been able to develop a version of the electrodynamic dust shield working under. hard vacuum conditions. This version should work well on the moon.

  7. Stationkeeping of the First Earth-Moon Libration Orbiters: The ARTEMIS Mission (United States)

    Folta, David; Woodard, Mark; Cosgrove, D.


    Libration point orbits near collinear locations are inherently unstable and must be controlled. For Acceleration Reconnection and Turbulence and Electrodynamics of the Moon's Interaction with the Sun (ARTEMIS) Earth-Moon Lissajous orbit operations, stationkeeping is challenging because of short time scales, large orbital eccentricity of the secondary, and solar gravitational and radiation pressure perturbations. ARTEMIS is the first NASA mission continuously controlled at both Earth-Moon L1 and L2 locations and uses a balance of optimization, spacecraft implementation and constraints, and multi-body dynamics. Stationkeeping results are compared to pre-mission research including mode directions.

  8. Eclipses by the Earth and by the Moon as Constraints on the AXAF Mission (United States)

    Evans, Steven W.


    The Advanced X-ray Astrophysics Facility (AXAF) is scheduled for launch on September 1, 1998, on a mission lasting ten years. During this time AXAF will be subject to eclipses by the Earth and the Moon. Eclipses by the Earth will occur during regular 'seasons' six months apart. AXAF requires that none last longer than 120 minutes, and this constrains the orbit orientation. Eclipses by the Moon occur infrequently, but may pose serious operational problems. The AXAF perigee altitude can be chosen, once the other initial conditions are known, so that objectionable Moon-eclipses can be avoided by targeting the final burn.

  9. Using Gravity Assists in the Earth-moon System as a Gateway to the Solar System (United States)

    McElrath, Timothy P.; Lantoine, Gregory; Landau, Damon; Grebow, Dan; Strange, Nathan; Wilson, Roby; Sims, Jon


    For spacecraft departing the Earth - Moon system, lunar flybys can significantly increase the hyperbolic escape energy (C3, in km (exp 2) /sec (exp 2) ) for a modest increase in flight time. Within approx 2 months, lunar flybys can produce a C3 of approx 2. Over 4 - 6 months, lunar flybys alone can increase the C3 to approx 4.5, or they can provide for additional periapsis burns to increase the C3 from approx 2 -3 to 10 or more, suitable for planetary missions. A lunar flyby departure can be followed by additional delta -V (such as that efficiently provided by a low thrust system, eg. Solar Electric Propulsion (SEP)) to raise the Earth - relative velocity (at a ratio of more than 2:1) before a subsequent Earth flyby, which redirects that velocity to a more distant target, all within not more than a year. This paper describes the applicability of lunar flybys for different flight times and propulsion systems, and illustrates this with instances of past usage and future possibilities. Examples discussed include ISEE-3, Nozomi, STEREO, 2018 Mars studies (which showed an 8% payload increase), and missions to Near Earth Objects (NEOs). In addition, the options for the achieving the initial lunar flyby are systematically discussed, with a view towards their practical use within a compact launch period. In particular, we show that launches to geosynchronous transfer orbit (GTO) as a secondary payload provide a feasible means of obtaining a lunar flyby for an acceptable cost, even for SEP systems that cannot easily deliver large delta-Vs at periapsis. Taken together, these results comprise a myriad of options for increasing the mission performance, by the efficient use of lunar flybys within an acceptable extension of the flight time.

  10. Using Gravity Assists in the Earth-moon System as a Gateway to the Solar System (United States)

    McElrath, Tim; Lantoine, Gregory; Landau, Damon; Grebow, Dan; Strange, Nathan; Wilson, Roby; Sims, Jon


    For spacecraft departing the Earth - Moon system, lunar flybys can significantly increase the hype rbolic escape energy (C3, in km 2 /sec 2 ) for a modest increase in flight time. Within 2 months, lunar flybys can produce a C3 of 2. Over 4 - 6 months, lunar flybys alone can increase the C3 to 4.5, or they can provide for additional periapsis burns to increase the C3 from 2 -3 to 10 or more, suitable for planetary missions. A lunar flyby departure can be followed by additional ? -V (such as that efficiently provided by a low thrust system, eg. Solar Electric Propulsion (SEP)) to raise the Earth - relative velocity (at a ratio of more than 2:1) before a subsequent Earth flyby, which redirects that velocity to a more di stant target, all within not much more than a year. This paper describes the applicability of lunar flybys for different flight times and propulsi on systems, and illustrates this with instances of past usage and future possibilities. Examples discussed i nclude ISEE - 3, Nozomi, STEREO, 2018 Mars studies (which showed an 8% payload increase), and missions to Near Earth Objects (NEOs). In addition, the options for the achieving the initial lunar flyby are systematically discussed, with a view towards their p ractical use with in a compact launch period. In particular, we show that launches to geosynchronous transfer orbit (GTO) as a secondary payload provide a feasible means of obtaining a lunar flyby for an acceptable cost, even for SEP systems that cannot ea sily deliver large ? - Vs at periapsis. Taken together, these results comprise a myriad of options for increasing the mission performance, by the efficient use of lunar flybys within an acceptable extension of the flight time.

  11. Tidal evolution of the Moon from a high-obliquity, high-angular-momentum Earth. (United States)

    Ćuk, Matija; Hamilton, Douglas P; Lock, Simon J; Stewart, Sarah T


    In the giant-impact hypothesis for lunar origin, the Moon accreted from an equatorial circum-terrestrial disk; however, the current lunar orbital inclination of five degrees requires a subsequent dynamical process that is still unclear. In addition, the giant-impact theory has been challenged by the Moon's unexpectedly Earth-like isotopic composition. Here we show that tidal dissipation due to lunar obliquity was an important effect during the Moon's tidal evolution, and the lunar inclination in the past must have been very large, defying theoretical explanations. We present a tidal evolution model starting with the Moon in an equatorial orbit around an initially fast-spinning, high-obliquity Earth, which is a probable outcome of giant impacts. Using numerical modelling, we show that the solar perturbations on the Moon's orbit naturally induce a large lunar inclination and remove angular momentum from the Earth-Moon system. Our tidal evolution model supports recent high-angular-momentum, giant-impact scenarios to explain the Moon's isotopic composition and provides a new pathway to reach Earth's climatically favourable low obliquity.

  12. Earth-type planets (Mercury, Venus, and Mars) (United States)

    Marov, M. Y.; Davydov, V. D.


    Spacecraft- and Earth-based studies on the physical nature of the planets Mercury, Venus, and Mars are reported. Charts and graphs are presented on planetary surface properties, rotational parameters, atmospheric compositions, and astronomical characteristics.

  13. Sources of Extraterrestrial Rare Earth Elements:To the Moon and Beyond (United States)

    McLeod, C. L.; Krekeler, M. P. S.


    The resource budget of Earth is limited. Rare-earth elements (REEs) are used across the world by society on a daily basis yet several of these elements have elements (REE), and Phosphorus (P), (or "KREEP") formed. Today, the KREEP-rich region underlies the Oceanus Procellarum and Imbrium Basin region on the lunar near-side (the Procellarum KREEP Terrain, PKT) and has been tentatively estimated at preserving 2.2 × 10^8 km^3 of KREEP-rich lithologies. The majority of lunar samples (Apollo, Luna, or meteoritic samples) contain REE-bearing minerals as trace phases, e.g., apatite and/or merrillite, with merrillite potentially contributing up to 3% of the PKT. Other lunar REE-bearing lunar phases include monazite, yittrobetafite (up to 94,500 ppm yttrium), and tranquillityite (up to 4.6 wt % yttrium, up to 0.25 wt % neodymium), however, lunar sample REE abundances are low compared to terrestrial ores. At present, there is no geological, mineralogical, or chemical evidence to support REEs being present on the Moon in concentrations that would permit their classification as ores. However, the PKT region has not yet been mapped at high resolution, and certainly has the potential to yield higher REE concentrations at local scales (<10s of kms). Future lunar exploration and mapping efforts may therefore reveal new REE deposits. Beyond the Moon, Mars and other extraterrestrial materials are host to REEs in apatite, chevkinite-perrierite, merrillite, whitlockite, and xenotime. These phases are relatively minor components of the meteorites studied to date, constituting <0.6% of the total sample. Nonetheless, they dominate a samples REE budget with their abundances typically 1-2 orders of magnitude enriched relative to their host rock. As with the Moon, though phases which host REEs have been identified, no extraterrestrial REE resource, or ore, has been identified yet. At present extraterrestrial materials are therefore not suitable REE-mining targets. However, they are host to

  14. Nuclear thermal rockets - Key to moon-Mars exploration

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Borowski, S.K.; Clark, J.S.; Mcilwain, M.C.; Pelaccio, D.G.


    The Space Exploration Initiative (SEI) calls for lunar and Martian exploration missions for which solid-core nuclear thermal rockets (NTRs), in virtue of their single-stage, fully-reusable nature, are ideally suited. NTRs promise double the specific impulse of chemical propulsion. A lunar mission employing a reusable NTR is currently being conducted by NASA. The NTR would be assembled in LEO in such a way that it remained 'radioactively cold' during earth-to-orbit deployment by a heavy-lift chemical booster, and therefore presented no radioactive hazard. Also under consideration is a particle-bed reactor in which the hydrogen propulsive fluid directly cools coated-particle fuel spheres

  15. Human Powered Centrifuges on the Moon or Mars (United States)

    di Prampero, Pietro Enrico; Lazzer, Stefano; Antonutto, Guglielmo


    Exposure to microgravity leads to "cardiovascular deconditioning" (CVD), because of the fluids shift toward the thorax. CVD is characterised by: 1) a decrease of plasma and interstitial fluid volumes, 2) a relative increase of the erythrocytes mass, 3) a decrease of arterial diastolic pressure, of the stroke volume, of the end-diastolic volume and of the left ventricular mass. CVD can be expected to occur also in astronauts living permanently on Lunar or Martian bases, since on these celestial bodies the acceleration of gravity is about 0.165 and 0.379 the Earth value. In these conditions, cycling on appropriately constructed tracks may be useful to recreate artificial gravity and to allow the astronauts to perform physical exercise. Indeed, a cyclist riding a bicycle on a circular track, generates an outward acceleration vector which depends on the radius of the track and on the ground speed. The vectorial sum of this last and the acceleration of gravity acts in the head to feet direction, thus increasing the effects of gravity on the cardiovascular system. We propose to construct on a Lunar or Martian base a circular "track tunnel" with a radius of 25 m. We show here that when cycling on this track tunnel at speeds between 10 to 15 m · s - 1, astronauts will generate a g vector acting along the head to feet axis ranging from 0.44 to 0.99 of the Earth value. We suggest that the logistics and feasibility of these track-tunnels should be studied in view of their possible implementation.

  16. Seismic velocity and crustal thickness inversions: Moon and Mars (United States)

    Drilleau, Melanie; Blanchette-Guertin, Jean-François; Kawamura, Taichi; Lognonné, Philippe; Wieczorek, Mark


    We present results from new inversions of seismic data arrival times acquired by the Apollo active and passive experiments. Markov chain Monte Carlo inversions are used to constrain (i) 1-D lunar crustal and upper mantle velocity models and (ii) 3-D lateral crustal thickness models under the Apollo stations and the artificial and natural impact sites. A full 3-D model of the lunar crustal thickness is then obtained using the GRAIL gravimetric data, anchored by the crustal thicknesses under each Apollo station and impact site. To avoid the use of any seismic reference model, a Bayesian inversion technique is implemented. The advantage of such an approach is to obtain robust probability density functions of interior structure parameters governed by uncertainties on the seismic data arrival times. 1-D seismic velocities are parameterized using C1-Bézier curves, which allow the exploration of both smoothly varying models and first-order discontinuities. The parameters of the inversion include the seismic velocities of P and S waves as a function of depth, the thickness of the crust under each Apollo station and impact epicentre. The forward problem consists in a ray tracing method enabling both the relocation of the natural impact epicenters, and the computation of time corrections associated to the surface topography and the crustal thickness variations under the stations and impact sites. The results show geology-related differences between the different sites, which are due to contrasts in megaregolith thickness and to shallow subsurface composition and structure. Some of the finer structural elements might be difficult to constrain and might fall within the uncertainties of the dataset. However, we use the more precise LROC-located epicentral locations for the lunar modules and Saturn-IV upper stage artificial impacts, reducing some of the uncertainties observed in past studies. In the framework of the NASA InSight/SEIS mission to Mars, the method developed in

  17. PADME (Phobos And Deimos and Mars Environment): A Proposed NASA Discovery Mission to Investigate the Two Moons of Mars (United States)

    Lee, Pascal; Benna, Mehdi; Britt, Daniel; Colaprete, Anthony; Davis, Warren; Delory, Greg; Elphic, Richard; Fulsang, Ejner; Genova, Anthony; Glavin, Daniel; hide


    After 40 years of solar system exploration by spacecraft, the origin of Mars's satellites, remains vexingly unknown. There are three prevailing hypotheses concerning their origin: H1: They are captured small bodies from the outer main belt or beyond; H2: They are reaccreted Mars impact ejecta; H3: They are remnants of Mars' formation. There are many variants of these hypotheses, but as stated, these three capture the key ideas and constraints on their nature. So far, data and modeling have not allowed any one of these hypotheses to be verified or excluded. Each one of these hypotheses has important implications for the evolution of the solar system, the formation and evolution of planets and satellites, and the delivery of water and organics to Early Mars and Early Earth. Determining the origin of Phobos and Deimos is identified by the NASA and the NRC Decadal Survey as the most important science goal at these bodies.

  18. Water inventories on Earth and Mars: Clues to atmosphere formation (United States)

    Carr, M. H.


    Water is distributed differently on Earth and on Mars and the differences may have implications for the accretion of the two planets and the formation of their atmospheres. The Earth's mantle appears to contain at least several times the water content of the Martian mantle even accounting for differences in plate tectonics. One explanation is that the Earth's surface melted during accretion, as a result of development of a steam atmosphere, thereby allowing impact-devolitalized water at the surface to dissolve into the Earth's interior. In contrast, because of Mars' smaller size and greater distance from the Sun, the Martian surface may not have melted, so that the devolatilized water could not dissolve into the surface. A second possibility is suggested by the siderophile elements in the Earth's mantle, which indicates the Earth acquired a volatile-rich veneer after the core formed. Mars may have acquired a late volatile-rich veneer, but it did not get folded into the interior as with the Earth, but instead remained as a water rich veneer. This perception of Mars with a wet surface but dry interior is consistent with our knowledge of Mars' geologic history.

  19. SMART-1 leaves Earth on a long journey to the Moon (United States)


    The European Space Agency’s SMART-1 was one of three payloads on Ariane Flight 162. The generic Ariane-5 lifted off from the Guiana Space Centre, Europe’s spaceport at Kourou, French Guiana, at 2014 hrs local time (2314 hrs GMT) on 27 September (01:14 Central European Summer time on 28 September). 42 minutes after launch, SMART-1 as last of the three satellites had been successfully released into a geostationary transfer orbit (654 x 35 885 km, inclined at 7 degrees to the Equator). While the other two satellites are due to manoeuvre towards geostationary orbit, the 367 kg SMART-1 will begin a much longer journey to a target ten times more distant than the geostationary orbit: the Moon. “Europe can be proud”, said ESA Director General Jean-Jacques Dordain, after witnessing the launch from ESA’s ESOC space operations centre in Darmstadt, Germany, “we have set course for the Moon again. And this is only the beginning: we are preparing to reach much further”. The spacecraft has deployed its solar arrays and is currently undergoing initial checkout of its systems under control from ESA/ESOC. This checkout will continue until 4 October and will include with the initial firing of SMART-1’s innovative ion engine. By ion drive to the Moon “Science and technology go hand in hand in this exciting mission to the Moon. The Earth and Moon have over 4 thousand million years of shared history, so knowing the Moon better will help scientists in Europe and all over the world to better understand our planet and will give them valuable new hints on how to better safeguard it” said ESA Director of Science David Southwood, following the launch from Kourou. As the first mission in the new series of Small Missions for Advanced Research in Technology, SMART-1 is mainly designed to demonstrate innovative and key technologies for future deep space science missions. The first technology to be demonstrated on SMART-1 will be Solar Electric Primary Propulsion (SEPP), a

  20. Non-Rocket Earth-Moon Transport System (United States)

    Bolonkin, Alexander


    This paper proposes a new method and transportation system to travel to the Moon. This transportation system uses a mechanical energy transfer and requires only minimal energy so that it provides a 'Free Trip' into space. The method uses the rotary and kinetic energy of the Moon. This paper presents the theory and results of computations for the project provided Free Trips (without rockets and spend a big energy) to the Moon for six thousand people annually. The project uses artificial materials like nanotubes and whiskers that have a ratio of tensile strength to density equal 4 million meters. In the future, nanotubes will be produced that can reach a specific stress up 100 millions meter and will significantly improve the parameters of suggested project. The author is prepared to discuss the problems with serious organizations that want to research and develop these innovations.

  1. The Role and Usage of Libration Point Orbits in the Earth - Moon System


    Alessi, Elisa Maria


    In this dissertation, we show the effectiveness of the exploitation of the Circular Restricted Three - Body Problem (CR3BP) in the Earth - Moon framework. We study the motion of a massless particle under the gravitational attraction of Earth and Moon, either to design missions in the new era of lunar exploration and simulate the behaviour of minor bodies that get close to the Earth.A fundamental role is played by the five equilibrium, or libration, points that appear in the rotating reference...

  2. Formation of the Lunar Fossil Bulges and Its Implication for the Early Earth and Moon (United States)

    Qin, Chuan; Zhong, Shijie; Phillips, Roger


    First recognized by Laplace over two centuries ago, the Moon's present tidal-rotational bulges are significantly larger than hydrostatic predictions. They are likely relics of a former hydrostatic state when the Moon was closer to the Earth and had larger bulges, and they were established when stresses in a thickening lunar lithosphere could maintain the bulges against hydrostatic adjustment. We formulate the first dynamically self-consistent model of this process and show that bulge formation is controlled by the relative timing of lithosphere thickening and lunar orbit recession. Viable solutions indicate that lunar bulge formation was a geologically slow process lasting several hundred million years, that the process was complete about 4 Ga when the Moon-Earth distance was less than 32 Earth radii, and that the Earth in Hadean was significantly less dissipative to lunar tides than during the last 4 Gyr, possibly implying a frozen hydrosphere due to the fainter young Sun.

  3. Moon-Mars simulation campaign in volcanic Eifel: Remote science support and sample analysis (United States)

    Offringa, Marloes; Foing, Bernard H.; Kamps, Oscar


    Moon-Mars analogue missions using a mock-up lander that is part of the ESA/ILEWG ExoGeoLab project were conducted during Eifel field campaigns in 2009, 2015 and 2016 (Foing et al., 2010). In the last EuroMoonMars2016 campaign the lander was used to conduct reconnaissance experiments and in situ geological scientific analysis of samples, with a payload that mainly consisted of a telescope and a UV-VIS reflectance spectrometer. The aim of the campaign was to exhibit possibilities for the ExoGeoLab lander to perform remotely controlled experiments and test its applicability in the field by simulating the interaction with astronauts. The Eifel region in Germany where the experiments with the ExoGeoLab lander were conducted is a Moon-Mars analogue due to its geological setting and volcanic rock composition. The research conducted by analysis equipment on the lander could function in support of Moon-Mars sample return missions, by providing preliminary insight into characteristics of the analyzed samples. The set-up of the prototype lander was that of a telescope with camera and solar power equipment deployed on the top, the UV-VIS reflectance spectrometer together with computers and a sample webcam were situated in the middle compartment and to the side a sample analysis test bench was attached, attainable by astronauts from outside the lander. An alternative light source that illuminated the samples in case of insufficient daylight was placed on top of the lander and functioned on solar power. The telescope, teleoperated from a nearby stationed pressurized transport vehicle that functioned as a base control center, attained an overview of the sampling area and assisted the astronauts in their initial scouting pursuits. Locations of suitable sampling sites based on these obtained images were communicated to the astronauts, before being acquired during a simulated EVA. Sampled rocks and soils were remotely analyzed by the base control center, while the astronauts

  4. Sun-perturbed Earth-to-moon transfers with ballistic capture (United States)

    Belbruno, Edward A.; Miller, James K.


    A method is described for constructing a new type of low energy transfer trajectory from the Earth to the moon leading to ballistic capture. This is accomplished by utilizing the nonlinear Earth-moon-sun perturbations on a point mass in three dimensions. The interaction of the gravitational fields of the bodies defines transition regions in the position-velocity space where the dynamic effects on the point mass tend to balance. These are termed weak stability boundaries. The transfer is obtained by the use of trajectories connecting the weak stability boundaries. It uses approximately 18 percent less Delta-V than the Hohmann transfer to insert a spacecraft into a circular orbit about the moon. The use of this transfer has recently been demonstrated by Japan's Hiten spacecraft, which arrived at the moon on October 2, 1991. Application of the transfer method is also made to the Lunar Observer Mission.

  5. Creating an isotopically similar Earth-Moon system with correct angular momentum from a giant impact (United States)

    Wyatt, Bryant M.; Petz, Jonathan M.; Sumpter, William J.; Turner, Ty R.; Smith, Edward L.; Fain, Baylor G.; Hutyra, Taylor J.; Cook, Scott A.; Gresham, John H.; Hibbs, Michael F.; Goderya, Shaukat N.


    The giant impact hypothesis is the dominant theory explaining the formation of our Moon. However, the inability to produce an isotopically similar Earth-Moon system with correct angular momentum has cast a shadow on its validity. Computer-generated impacts have been successful in producing virtual systems that possess many of the observed physical properties. However, addressing the isotopic similarities between the Earth and Moon coupled with correct angular momentum has proven to be challenging. Equilibration and evection resonance have been proposed as means of reconciling the models. In the summer of 2013, the Royal Society called a meeting solely to discuss the formation of the Moon. In this meeting, evection resonance and equilibration were both questioned as viable means of removing the deficiencies from giant impact models. The main concerns were that models were multi-staged and too complex. We present here initial impact conditions that produce an isotopically similar Earth-Moon system with correct angular momentum. This is done in a single-staged simulation. The initial parameters are straightforward and the results evolve solely from the impact. This was accomplished by colliding two roughly half-Earth-sized impactors, rotating in approximately the same plane in a high-energy, off-centered impact, where both impactors spin into the collision.

  6. Chromium isotopic homogeneity between the Moon, the Earth, and enstatite chondrites (United States)

    Mougel, Bérengère; Moynier, Frédéric; Göpel, Christa


    Among the elements exhibiting non-mass dependent isotopic variations in meteorites, chromium (Cr) has been central in arguing for an isotopic homogeneity between the Earth and the Moon, thus questioning physical models of Moon formation. However, the Cr isotopic composition of the Moon relies on two samples only, which define an average value that is slightly different from the terrestrial standard. Here, by determining the Cr isotopic composition of 17 lunar, 9 terrestrial and 5 enstatite chondrite samples, we re-assess the isotopic similarity between these different planetary bodies, and provide the first robust estimate for the Moon. In average, terrestrial and enstatite samples show similar ε54Cr. On the other hand, lunar samples show variables excesses of 53Cr and 54Cr compared to terrestrial and enstatite chondrites samples with correlated ε53Cr and ε54Cr (per 10,000 deviation of the 53Cr/52Cr and 54Cr/52Cr ratios normalized to the 50Cr/52Cr ratio from the NIST SRM 3112a Cr standard). Unlike previous suggestions, we show for the first time that cosmic irradiation can affect significantly the Cr isotopic composition of lunar materials. Moreover, we also suggest that rather than spallation reactions, neutron capture effects are the dominant process controlling the Cr isotope composition of lunar igneous rocks. This is supported by the correlation between ε53Cr and ε54Cr, and 150Sm/152Sm ratios. After correction of these effects, the average ε54Cr of the Moon is indistinguishable from the terrestrial and enstatite chondrite materials reinforcing the idea of an Earth-Moon-enstatite chondrite system homogeneity. This is compatible with the most recent scenarios of Moon formation suggesting an efficient physical homogenization after a high-energy impact on a fast spinning Earth, and/or with an impactor originating from the same reservoir in the inner proto-planetary disk as the Earth and enstatite chondrites and having similar composition.

  7. Simulating the Liaison Navigation Concept in a Geo + Earth-Moon Halo Constellation (United States)

    Fujimoto, K.; Leonard, J. M.; McGranaghan, R. M.; Parker, J. S.; Anderson, R. L.; Born, G. H.


    Linked Autonomous Interplanetary Satellite Orbit Navigation, or LiAISON, is a novel satellite navigation technique where relative radiometric measurements between two or more spacecraft in a constellation are processed to obtain the absolute state of all spacecraft. The method leverages the asymmetry of the gravity field that the constellation exists in. This paper takes a step forward in developing a high fidelity navigation simulation for the LiAISON concept in an Earth-Moon constellation. In particular, we aim to process two-way Doppler measurements between a satellite in GEO orbit and another in a halo orbit about the Earth-Moon L1 point.

  8. Extensibility of the fission surface power (FSP) system from the moon to Mars

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Poston, David Irvin [Los Alamos National Laboratory


    Fission reactors have great near-term potential to power human and robotic missions/outposts on the surface of the Moon and Mars (and potentially other planets, moons, and asteroids). The ability to provide a power-rich environment that is independent of solar intensity, nights, dust storms, etc., is of significant (perhaps enabling) importance to the further expansion of humans into our solar system. NASA's Reference Fission Surface Power (FSP) System is a 40 kWe system that has been primarily designed for lunar applications. This paper examines the extensibility of the FSP design and technology for potential missions on Mars. Possible impacts include the effects of changes in heat sink, gravity, day-night cycles, mission transit time, communication delay, and the chemistry of the regolith and atmosphere. One of the biggest impacts might be differences in the potential utilization of in-situ materials for shielding. Another major factor is that different missions will likely require different performance requirements, e.g. power, lifetime and mass. This paper concludes that the environmental differences between potential mission locations will not require significant changes in design and technologies, unless performance requirements for a specific mission are substantially different than those adopted for the FSP The primary basis for this conclusion is that the FSP has been designed with robust materials and design margins.

  9. Solar rotation effects on the thermospheres of Mars and Earth. (United States)

    Forbes, Jeffrey M; Bruinsma, Sean; Lemoine, Frank G


    The responses of Earth's and Mars' thermospheres to the quasi-periodic (27-day) variation of solar flux due to solar rotation were measured contemporaneously, revealing that this response is twice as large for Earth as for Mars. Per typical 20-unit change in 10.7-centimeter radio flux (used as a proxy for extreme ultraviolet flux) reaching each planet, we found temperature changes of 42.0 +/- 8.0 kelvin and 19.2 +/- 3.6 kelvin for Earth and Mars, respectively. Existing data for Venus indicate values of 3.6 +/- 0.6 kelvin. Our observational result constrains comparative planetary thermosphere simulations and may help resolve existing uncertainties in thermal balance processes, particularly CO2 cooling.

  10. Orbit Determination of Spacecraft in Earth-Moon L1 and L2 Libration Point Orbits (United States)

    Woodard, Mark; Cosgrove, Daniel; Morinelli, Patrick; Marchese, Jeff; Owens, Brandon; Folta, David


    measurements that would be needed to meet the required orbit determination accuracies. Analysts used the Orbit Determination Error Analysis System (ODEAS) to perform covariance analyses using various tracking data schedules. From this analysis, it was determined that 3.5 hours of DSN TRK-2-34 range and Doppler tracking data every other day would suffice to meet the predictive orbit knowledge accuracies in the Lissajous region. The results of this analysis are presented. Both GTDS and ODTK have high-fidelity environmental orbit force models that allow for very accurate orbit estimation in the lunar Lissajous regime. These models include solar radiation pressure, Earth and Moon gravity models, third body gravitational effects from the Sun, and to a lesser extent third body gravitational effects from Jupiter, Venus, Saturn, and Mars. Increased position and velocity uncertainties following each maneuver, due to small execution performance errors, requires that several days of post-maneuver tracking data be processed to converge on an accurate post-maneuver orbit solution. The effects of maneuvers on orbit determination accuracy will be presented, including a comparison of the batch least squares technique to the extended Kalman filter/smoother technique. We will present the maneuver calibration results derived from processing post-maneuver tracking data. A dominant error in the orbit estimation process is the uncertainty in solar radiation pressure and the resultant force on the spacecraft. An estimation of this value can include many related factors, such as the uncertainty in spacecraft reflectivity and surface area which is a function of spacecraft orientation (spin-axis attitude), uncertainty in spacecraft wet mass, and potential seasonal variability due to the changing direction of the Sun line relative to the Earth-Moon Lissajous reference frame. In addition, each spacecraft occasionally enters into Earth or Moon penumbra or umbra and these shadow crossings reduche solar

  11. Parabolic flights as Earth analogue for surface processes on Mars (United States)

    Kuhn, Nikolaus J.


    The interpretation of landforms and environmental archives on Mars with regards to habitability and preservation of traces of life requires a quantitative understanding of the processes that shaped them. Commonly, qualitative similarities in sedimentary rocks between Earth and Mars are used as an analogue to reconstruct the environments in which they formed on Mars. However, flow hydraulics and sedimentation differ between Earth and Mars, requiring a recalibration of models describing runoff, erosion, transport and deposition. Simulation of these processes on Earth is limited because gravity cannot be changed and the trade-off between adjusting e.g. fluid or particle density generates other mismatches, such as fluid viscosity. Computational Fluid Dynamics offer an alternative, but would also require a certain degree of calibration or testing. Parabolic flights offer a possibility to amend the shortcomings of these approaches. Parabolas with reduced gravity last up to 30 seconds, which allows the simulation of sedimentation processes and the measurement of flow hydraulics. This study summarizes the experience gathered during four campaigns of parabolic flights, aimed at identifying potential and limitations of their use as an Earth analogue for surface processes on Mars.

  12. Highly siderophile elements in Earth's mantle as a clock for the Moon-forming impact. (United States)

    Jacobson, Seth A; Morbidelli, Alessandro; Raymond, Sean N; O'Brien, David P; Walsh, Kevin J; Rubie, David C


    According to the generally accepted scenario, the last giant impact on Earth formed the Moon and initiated the final phase of core formation by melting Earth's mantle. A key goal of geochemistry is to date this event, but different ages have been proposed. Some argue for an early Moon-forming event, approximately 30 million years (Myr) after the condensation of the first solids in the Solar System, whereas others claim a date later than 50 Myr (and possibly as late as around 100 Myr) after condensation. Here we show that a Moon-forming event at 40 Myr after condensation, or earlier, is ruled out at a 99.9 per cent confidence level. We use a large number of N-body simulations to demonstrate a relationship between the time of the last giant impact on an Earth-like planet and the amount of mass subsequently added during the era known as Late Accretion. As the last giant impact is delayed, the late-accreted mass decreases in a predictable fashion. This relationship exists within both the classical scenario and the Grand Tack scenario of terrestrial planet formation, and holds across a wide range of disk conditions. The concentration of highly siderophile elements (HSEs) in Earth's mantle constrains the mass of chondritic material added to Earth during Late Accretion. Using HSE abundance measurements, we determine a Moon-formation age of 95 ± 32 Myr after condensation. The possibility exists that some late projectiles were differentiated and left an incomplete HSE record in Earth's mantle. Even in this case, various isotopic constraints strongly suggest that the late-accreted mass did not exceed 1 per cent of Earth's mass, and so the HSE clock still robustly limits the timing of the Moon-forming event to significantly later than 40 Myr after condensation.

  13. Earth to Mars Ballistic Mission Opportunities from Naro Space Center

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sung-Moon Yoo


    Full Text Available Earth to Mars ballistic mission opportunities from Naro Space Center are studied. Determining ballistic mission opportunities can be divided into two major parts, i.e. the launch window and the daily launch window determination. At the launch window determination parts, Porkchop diagrams of Earth launch C3 magnitude, total mission duration, declination of V∞ vector at the Earth launch, and declination & right ascension of V∞ vector at the Mars arrival are examined. The location of launch site and rotation effects of the Earth are considered during the daily launch window determination parts. Using Lambert method, various Porkchop diagrams of launching in 2027 are examined for example. The daily launch window of Naro Space Center at that year was checked to verify the launch possibility by comparing with the Kennedy Space Center.

  14. Multi-Scale Particle Size Distributions of Mars, Moon and Itokawa based on a time-maturation dependent fragmentation model (United States)

    Charalambous, C. A.; Pike, W. T.


    We present the development of a soil evolution framework and multiscale modelling of the surface of Mars, Moon and Itokawa thus providing an atlas of extra-terrestrial Particle Size Distributions (PSD). These PSDs are profoundly based on a tailoring method which interconnects several datasets from different sites captured by the various missions. The final integrated product is then fully justified through a soil evolution analysis model mathematically constructed via fundamental physical principles (Charalambous, 2013). The construction of the PSD takes into account the macroscale fresh primary impacts and their products, the mesoscale distributions obtained by the in-situ data of surface missions (Golombek et al., 1997, 2012) and finally the microscopic scale distributions provided by Curiosity and Phoenix Lander (Pike, 2011). The distribution naturally extends at the magnitudinal scales at which current data does not exist due to the lack of scientific instruments capturing the populations at these data absent scales. The extension is based on the model distribution (Charalambous, 2013) which takes as parameters known values of material specific probabilities of fragmentation and grinding limits. Additionally, the establishment of a closed-form statistical distribution provides a quantitative description of the soil's structure. Consequently, reverse engineering of the model distribution allows the synthesis of soil that faithfully represents the particle population at the studied sites (Charalambous, 2011). Such representation essentially delivers a virtual soil environment to work with for numerous applications. A specific application demonstrated here will be the information that can directly be extracted for the successful drilling probability as a function of distance in an effort to aid the HP3 instrument of the 2016 Insight Mission to Mars. Pike, W. T., et al. "Quantification of the dry history of the Martian soil inferred from in situ microscopy

  15. Measuring Earth's Radiation Budget from the Vicinity of the Moon (United States)

    Swartz, W. H.; Lorentz, S. R.; Erlandson, R. E.; Cahalan, R. F.; Huang, P. M.


    We propose to measure Earth's radiation budget (integrated total and solar-reflected shortwave) using broadband radiometers and other technology demonstrated in space. The instrument is compact, autonomous, and has modest resource requirements.

  16. Gateway Studies of Dust Impacts at the Earth and Moon (United States)

    Nuth, J. A.; Jenniskens, P. M.


    Analysis of ultraviolet meteor spectra impacting Earth would provide unbiased data for meteors and meteor streams traceable to their sources to provide chemical data for large samples of small bodies and better models of particle flux in cislunar space.

  17. Integrated Human-Robotic Missions to the Moon and Mars: Mission Operations Design Implications (United States)

    Mishkin, Andrew; Lee, Young; Korth, David; LeBlanc, Troy


    For most of the history of space exploration, human and robotic programs have been independent, and have responded to distinct requirements. The NASA Vision for Space Exploration calls for the return of humans to the Moon, and the eventual human exploration of Mars; the complexity of this range of missions will require an unprecedented use of automation and robotics in support of human crews. The challenges of human Mars missions, including roundtrip communications time delays of 6 to 40 minutes, interplanetary transit times of many months, and the need to manage lifecycle costs, will require the evolution of a new mission operations paradigm far less dependent on real-time monitoring and response by an Earthbound operations team. Robotic systems and automation will augment human capability, increase human safety by providing means to perform many tasks without requiring immediate human presence, and enable the transfer of traditional mission control tasks from the ground to crews. Developing and validating the new paradigm and its associated infrastructure may place requirements on operations design for nearer-term lunar missions. The authors, representing both the human and robotic mission operations communities, assess human lunar and Mars mission challenges, and consider how human-robot operations may be integrated to enable efficient joint operations, with the eventual emergence of a unified exploration operations culture.

  18. An Effect of Technology Based Inquiry Approach on the Learning of "Earth, Sun, & Moon" Subject (United States)

    Turkmen, Hakan


    The purpose of this study was to investigate what affect a technology based inquiry approach (TBIA) had on 5th grade primary students' understanding of earth, sun, and moon concept in a science and technology course and how this changed their academic achievements. This study was carried out in a 5th grade elementary science and technology course…

  19. 7th Class Students' Opinions on Sun, Earth and Moon System (United States)

    Aydin, Suleyman


    This study is conducted to detect the students' perceptions on Sun, Moon and Earth (SME) system and define the 7th grade students' attitudes on the subject. In the study, since it was aimed to detect and evaluate the students' perceptions on some basic astronomical concepts without changing the natural conditions, a descriptive approach was…

  20. Diagrammatic Representational Constraints of Spatial Scale in Earth-Moon System Astronomy Instruction (United States)

    Taylor, Roger S.; Grundstrom, Erika D.


    Given that astronomy heavily relies on visual representations it is especially likely for individuals to assume that instructional materials, such as visual representations of the Earth-Moon system (EMS), would be relatively accurate. However, in our research, we found that images in middle-school textbooks and educational webpages were commonly…

  1. "Earth, Sun and Moon": Computer Assisted Instruction in Secondary School Science--Achievement and Attitudes (United States)

    Ercan, Orhan; Bilen, Kadir; Ural, Evrim


    This study investigated the impact of a web-based teaching method on students' academic achievement and attitudes in the elementary education fifth grade Science and Technology unit, "System of Earth, Sun and Moon". The study was a quasi-experimental study with experimental and control groups comprising 54 fifth grade students attending…

  2. Children's Concepts of the Shape and Size of the Earth, Sun and Moon (United States)

    Bryce, T. G. K.; Blown, E. J.


    Children's understandings of the shape and relative sizes of the Earth, Sun and Moon have been extensively researched and in a variety of ways. Much is known about the confusions which arise as young people try to grasp ideas about the world and our neighbouring celestial bodies. Despite this, there remain uncertainties about the conceptual models…

  3. Extension of Earth-Moon libration point orbits with solar sail propulsion

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heiligers, M.J.; Macdonald, Malcolm; Parker, Jeffrey S.


    This paper presents families of libration point orbits in the Earth-Moon system that originate from complementing the classical circular restricted three-body problem with a solar sail. Through the use of a differential correction scheme in combination with a continuation on the solar sail

  4. Lead isotope evidence for a young formation age of the Earth-Moon system (United States)

    Connelly, J. N.; Bizzarro, M.


    A model of a giant impact between two planetary bodies is widely accepted to account for the Earth-Moon system. Despite the importance of this event for understanding early Earth evolution and the inventory of Earth's volatiles critical to life, the timing of the impact is poorly constrained. We explore a data-based, two-stage Pb isotope evolution model in which the timing of the loss of volatile Pb relative to refractory U in the aftermath of the giant impact is faithfully recorded in the Pb isotopes of bulk silicate Earth. Constraining the first stage Pb isotopic evolution permits calculating an age range of 4.426-4.417 Ga for the inflection in the U/Pb ratio related to the giant impact. This model is supported by Pb isotope data for angrite meteorites that we use to demonstrate volatility-driven, planetary-scale Pb loss was an efficient process during the early Solar System. The revised age is ∼100 Myr younger than most current estimates for the age of the Moon but fully consistent with recent ages for lunar ferroan anorthosite and the timing of Earth's first crust inferred from the terrestrial zircon record. The estimated loss of ∼98% of terrestrial Pb relative to the Solar System bulk composition by the end of the Moon-forming process implies that the current inventory of Earth's most volatile elements, including water, arrived during post-impact veneering by volatile-rich bodies.


    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set contains low-resolution (R~150) near-infrared (0.7-2.5 microns) spectra of 27 asteroids, 5 Mars-crossing and 22 near-Earth asteroids, observed with the...

  6. Aspects of the atmospheric surface layers on Mars and Earth

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Søren Ejling; Ejsing Jørgensen, Hans; Landberg, L.


    and mean flow on Mars is found to obey the same scaling laws as on Earth. The largest micrometeorological differences between the two atmospheres are associated with the low air density of the Martian atmosphere. Together with the virtual absence of water vapour, it reduces the importance...

  7. Explosive mafic volcanism on Earth and Mars (United States)

    Gregg, Tracy K. P.; Williams, Stanley N.


    Deposits within Amazonia Planitia, Mars, have been interpreted as ignimbrite plains on the basis of their erosional characteristics. The western flank of Hecates Tholus appears to be mantled by an airfall deposit, which was produced through magma-water interactions or exsolution of magmatic volatiles. Morphologic studies, along with numerical and analytical modeling of Martian plinian columns and pyroclastic flows, suggest that shield materials of Tyrrhena and Hadriaca paterae are composed of welded pyroclastic flows. Terrestrial pyroclastic flows, ignimbrites, and airfall deposits are typically associated with silicic volcanism. Because it is unlikely that large volumes of silicic lavas have been produced on Mars, we seek terrestrial analogs of explosives, mafic volcanism. Plinian basaltic airfall deposits have been well-documented at Masaya, Nicaragua, and basaltic ignimbrite and surge deposits also have been recognized there. Ambrym and Yasour, both in Vanuatu, are mafic stratovolcanioes with large central calderas, and are composed of interbedded basaltic pyrocalstic deposits and lava flows. Zavaritzki, a mafic stratovolcano in the Kurile Islands, may have also produced pyroclastic deposits, although the exact nature of these deposits in unknown. Masaya, Ambrym and Yasour are known to be located above tensional zones. Hadriaca and Tyrrhena Paterae may also be located above zones of tension, resulting from the formation and evolution of Hellas basin, and, thus, may be directly analogous to these terrestrial mafic, explosive volcanoes.

  8. Mission Assurance and Flight Safety of Manned Space Flight: Implications for Future Exploration of the Moon and Mars (United States)

    Kezirian, M. T.


    As NASA implements the nation's Vision for Space Exploration to return to the moon and travel to Mars, new considerations will be be given to the processes governing design and operations of manned spaceflight. New objectives bring new technical challenges; Safety will drive many of these decisions.

  9. Geochemical arguments for an Earth-like Moon-forming impactor (United States)

    Dauphas, Nicolas; Burkhardt, Christoph; Warren, Paul H.; Fang-Zhen, Teng


    Geochemical evidence suggests that the material accreted by the Earth did not change in nature during Earth's accretion, presumably because the inner protoplanetary disc had uniform isotopic composition similar to enstatite chondrites, aubrites and ungrouped achondrite NWA 5363/5400. Enstatite meteorites and the Earth were derived from the same nebular reservoir but diverged in their chemical evolutions, so no chondrite sample in meteorite collections is representative of the Earth's building blocks. The similarity in isotopic composition (Δ17O, ε50Ti and ε54Cr) between lunar and terrestrial rocks is explained by the fact that the Moon-forming impactor came from the same region of the disc as other Earth-forming embryos, and therefore was similar in isotopic composition to the Earth. The heavy δ30Si values of the silicate Earth and the Moon relative to known chondrites may be due to fractionation in the solar nebula/protoplanetary disc rather than partitioning of silicon in Earth's core. An inversion method is presented to calculate the Hf/W ratios and ε182W values of the proto-Earth and impactor mantles for a given Moon-forming impact scenario. The similarity in tungsten isotopic composition between lunar and terrestrial rocks is a coincidence that can be explained in a canonical giant impact scenario if an early formed embryo (two-stage model age of 10–20 Myr) collided with the proto-Earth formed over a more protracted accretion history (two-stage model age of 30–40 Myr). PMID:25114316

  10. Geochemical arguments for an Earth-like Moon-forming impactor. (United States)

    Dauphas, Nicolas; Burkhardt, Christoph; Warren, Paul H; Fang-Zhen, Teng


    Geochemical evidence suggests that the material accreted by the Earth did not change in nature during Earth's accretion, presumably because the inner protoplanetary disc had uniform isotopic composition similar to enstatite chondrites, aubrites and ungrouped achondrite NWA 5363/5400. Enstatite meteorites and the Earth were derived from the same nebular reservoir but diverged in their chemical evolutions, so no chondrite sample in meteorite collections is representative of the Earth's building blocks. The similarity in isotopic composition (Δ(17)O, ε(50)Ti and ε(54)Cr) between lunar and terrestrial rocks is explained by the fact that the Moon-forming impactor came from the same region of the disc as other Earth-forming embryos, and therefore was similar in isotopic composition to the Earth. The heavy δ(30)Si values of the silicate Earth and the Moon relative to known chondrites may be due to fractionation in the solar nebula/protoplanetary disc rather than partitioning of silicon in Earth's core. An inversion method is presented to calculate the Hf/W ratios and ε(182)W values of the proto-Earth and impactor mantles for a given Moon-forming impact scenario. The similarity in tungsten isotopic composition between lunar and terrestrial rocks is a coincidence that can be explained in a canonical giant impact scenario if an early formed embryo (two-stage model age of 10-20 Myr) collided with the proto-Earth formed over a more protracted accretion history (two-stage model age of 30-40 Myr). © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  11. A taxonomy for the evolution of human settlements on the moon and Mars (United States)

    Roberts, Barney B.; Mandell, Humboldt C.


    A proposed structure is described for partnerships with shared interests and investments to develop the technology and approach for evolutionary surface systems for the moon and Mars. Five models are presented for cooperation with specific references to the technical evolutionary path of the surface systems. The models encompass the standard customer/provider relationship, a concept for exclusive government use, a joint venture with a government-sponsored non-SEI market, a technology joint-development approach, and a redundancy model to insure competitive pricing. The models emphasize the nonaerospace components of the settlement technologies and the decentralized nature of surface systems that make the project suitable for private industrial development by several companies. It is concluded that the taxonomy be considered when examining collaborative opportunities for lunar and Martian settlement.

  12. Japan's exploration of vertical holes and subsurface caverns on the Moon and Mars (United States)

    Haruyama, J.; Kawano, I.; Kubota, T.; Yoshida, K.; Kawakatsu, Y.; Kato, H.; Otsuki, M.; Watanabe, K.; Nishibori, T.; Yamamoto, Y.; Iwata, T.; Ishigami, G.; Yamada, T. T.


    Recently, gigantic vertical holes exceeding several tens of meters in diameter and depth were discovered on the Moon and Mars. Based on high-resolution image data, lunar holes and some Martian pits (called 'holes' hereafter) are probably skylights of subsurface caverns such as lava tubes or magma chambers. We are starting preparations for exploring the caverns through the vertical holes. The holes and subsurface caverns have high potential as resources for scientific studies. Various important geological and mineralogical processes could be uniquely and effectively observed inside these holes and subsurface caverns. The exposed fresh lava layers on the vertical walls of the lunar and Martian holes would provide information on volcanic eruption histories. The lava layers may also provide information on past magnetic fields of the celestial bodies. The regolith layers may be sandwiched between lava layers and may preserve volatile elements including solar wind protons that could be a clue to understanding past solar activities. Water molecules from solar winds or cometary/meteorite impacts may be stored inside the caverns because of mild temperatures there. The fresh lava materials forming the walls and floors of caverns might trap endogenic volatiles from magma eruptions that will be key materials for revealing the formation and early evolution of the Moon and Mars. Furthermore, the Martian subsurface caverns are highly expected to be life cradles where the temperatures are probably stable and that are free from ultra-violet and other cosmic rays that break chemical bonds, thus avoiding polymerization of molecules. Discovering extraterrestrial life and its varieties is one of our ultimate scientific purposes for exploring the lunar and Martian subsurface caverns. In addition to scientific interests, lunar and Martian subsurface caverns are excellent candidates for future lunar bases. We expect such caverns to have high potential due to stable temperatures; absence

  13. MoonMars Base in Poland: a Simulation Habitat and Laboratory for Research (United States)

    Kolodziejczyk, Agata; Gocyla, Michal; Harasymczuk, Matt; Krainski, Mateusz; Nawrot, Adam; Orzechowski, Leszek; Wszolek, Bogdan; Vos, Heleen; Foing, Bernard


    Analog simulation missions are notable steps of real space exploration missions, where the hardware, along with the psychological behavior, the scientific and geological experiments, and operations, are scrutinized and conducted in a simulated environment to prepare astronauts and space agencies for actual missions. Here we present the newly built MoonMars base in Poland to investigate human-robotic relations during long-term planetary missions. We apply novel tele-medicine solutions, novel architecture design, life-sustaining systems and novel methods of planning and working to simulate not only "the beginning of life" in the habitat but also "a need to transform". The aim of the project is to facilitate and to speed up development of space education in Europe. Particularly, we are interested to enroll students, engineers and PhD students for realization of their individual projects in the frame of their master and doctoral programmes.

  14. Tungsten isotopic evidence for disproportional late accretion to the Earth and Moon. (United States)

    Touboul, Mathieu; Puchtel, Igor S; Walker, Richard J


    Characterization of the hafnium-tungsten systematics ((182)Hf decaying to (182)W and emitting two electrons with a half-life of 8.9 million years) of the lunar mantle will enable better constraints on the timescale and processes involved in the currently accepted giant-impact theory for the formation and evolution of the Moon, and for testing the late-accretion hypothesis. Uniform, terrestrial-mantle-like W isotopic compositions have been reported among crystallization products of the lunar magma ocean. These observations were interpreted to reflect formation of the Moon and crystallization of the lunar magma ocean after (182)Hf was no longer extant-that is, more than about 60 million years after the Solar System formed. Here we present W isotope data for three lunar samples that are more precise by a factor of ≥4 than those previously reported. The new data reveal that the lunar mantle has a well-resolved (182)W excess of 20.6 ± 5.1 parts per million (±2 standard deviations), relative to the modern terrestrial mantle. The offset between the mantles of the Moon and the modern Earth is best explained by assuming that the W isotopic compositions of the two bodies were identical immediately following formation of the Moon, and that they then diverged as a result of disproportional late accretion to the Earth and Moon. One implication of this model is that metal from the core of the Moon-forming impactor must have efficiently stripped the Earth's mantle of highly siderophile elements on its way to merge with the terrestrial core, requiring a substantial, but still poorly defined, level of metal-silicate equilibration.

  15. Visualizing Sun-Earth-Moon Relationships through Hands-On Modeling (United States)

    Morton, Abby


    "Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn." -Benjamin Franklin Understanding the spatial relationships between the sun, Earth and Moon is fundamental to any basic earth science education. Since both of the following concepts involve shadows on three-dimensional spheres, seeing them on paper is not often conducive to understanding. In the first activity, students use five Styrofoam balls painted to look like the sun and the four positions of the earth in each season. Students position the Earth-balls in their correct order around the sun and translate what they are seeing onto paper. In the second activity, students hold up a Styrofoam ball painted half white, half black. A picture of the sun is projected at the front of the classroom. They move the ball around their heads as if they were the Earth, keeping the lit side of the moon always facing the sun. They then draw the phases of the moon as they see them.

  16. Fuel optimization for low-thrust Earth-Moon transfer via indirect optimal control (United States)

    Pérez-Palau, Daniel; Epenoy, Richard


    The problem of designing low-energy transfers between the Earth and the Moon has attracted recently a major interest from the scientific community. In this paper, an indirect optimal control approach is used to determine minimum-fuel low-thrust transfers between a low Earth orbit and a Lunar orbit in the Sun-Earth-Moon Bicircular Restricted Four-Body Problem. First, the optimal control problem is formulated and its necessary optimality conditions are derived from Pontryagin's Maximum Principle. Then, two different solution methods are proposed to overcome the numerical difficulties arising from the huge sensitivity of the problem's state and costate equations. The first one consists in the use of continuation techniques. The second one is based on a massive exploration of the set of unknown variables appearing in the optimality conditions. The dimension of the search space is reduced by considering adapted variables leading to a reduction of the computational time. The trajectories found are classified in several families according to their shape, transfer duration and fuel expenditure. Finally, an analysis based on the dynamical structure provided by the invariant manifolds of the two underlying Circular Restricted Three-Body Problems, Earth-Moon and Sun-Earth is presented leading to a physical interpretation of the different families of trajectories.

  17. Our Place in Space: Exploring the Earth-Moon System and Beyond with NASA's CINDI E/PO Program (United States)

    Urquhart, M. L.; Hairston, M. R.


    Where does space begin? How far is the Moon? How far is Mars? How does our dynamic star, the Sun, affect its family of planets? All of these questions relate to exploration of our Solar System, and are also part of the Education/Public Outreach (E/PO) Program for NASA’s CINDI project, a space weather mission of opportunity. The Coupled Ion Neutral Dynamics Investigation has been flying aboard the US Air Force Communication/Navigation Outage Forecast System (C/NOFS) satellite in the upper atmosphere of the Earth since April 2008. The Earth’s ionosphere, the part of the atmosphere CINDI studies, is also in space. The CINDI E/PO program uses this fact in lessons designed to help students in middle schools and introductory astronomy classes develop a sense of their place in space. In the activity "How High is Space?" students’ start by building an 8-page scale model of the Earth’s atmosphere with 100 km/page. The peak of Mount Everest, commercial airplanes, and the tops of thunderheads all appear at the bottom of the first page of the model, with astronaut altitude -where space begins- at the top of the same sheet of paper. In "Where Would CINDI Be?" the idea of scale is further developed by modeling the Earth-Moon system to scale first in size, then in distance, using half of standard containers of play dough. With a lowest altitude of about 400 km, similar to that of the International Space Station and orbiting Space Shuttle, CINDI is close to the Earth when compared with the nearly thousand times greater distance to the Moon. Comparing and combining the atmosphere and Earth-Moon system models help reinforce ideas of scale and build student understanding of how far away the Moon actually is. These scale models have also been adapted for use in Family Science Nights, and to include the planet Mars. In this presentation, we will show how we use CINDI’s scale modeling activities and others from our broader space sciences E/PO program in formal and informal

  18. Mars at Opposition (United States)

    Riddle, Bob


    On January 29, Mars will reach opposition, a point along its orbit around the Sun where Mars will be directly opposite from the Sun in a two-planet and Sun line-up with the Earth in between. At this opposition, the Earth and Mars will be separated by nearly 100 million km. An opposition is similar to a full Moon in that the planet at opposition…

  19. Effects of megascale eruptions on Earth and Mars (United States)

    Thordarson, T.; Rampino, M.; Keszthelyi, L.P.; Self, S.


    Volcanic features are common on geologically active earthlike planets. Megascale or "super" eruptions involving >1000 Gt of magma have occurred on both Earth and Mars in the geologically recent past, introducing prodigious volumes of ash and volcanic gases into the atmosphere. Here we discuss felsic (explosive) and mafi c (flood lava) supereruptions and their potential atmospheric and environmental effects on both planets. On Earth, felsic supereruptions recur on average about every 100-200,000 years and our present knowledge of the 73.5 ka Toba eruption implies that such events can have the potential to be catastrophic to human civilization. A future eruption of this type may require an unprecedented response from humankind to assure the continuation of civilization as we know it. Mafi c supereruptions have resulted in atmospheric injection of volcanic gases (especially SO2) and may have played a part in punctuating the history of life on Earth. The contrast between the more sustained effects of flood basalt eruptions (decades to centuries) and the near-instantaneous effects of large impacts (months to years) is worthy of more detailed study than has been completed to date. Products of mafi c supereruptions, signifi cantly larger than known from the geologic record on Earth, are well preserved on Mars. The volatile emissions from these eruptions most likely had global dispersal, but the effects may not have been outside what Mars endures even in the absence of volcanic eruptions. This is testament to the extreme variability of the current Martian atmosphere: situations that would be considered catastrophic on Earth are the norm on Mars. ?? 2009 The Geological Society of America.

  20. EarthMars Similarity Criteria for Martian Vehicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Octavian TRIFU


    Full Text Available In order to select the most efficient kind of a martian exploring vehicle, the similarity criteria are deduced from the equilibrium movement in the terrestrial and martian conditions. Different invariants have been obtained for the existing (entry capsules, parachutes and rovers and potential martian exploring vehicles (lighter-than-air vehicle, airplane, helicopter and Mars Jumper. These similarity criteria, as non dimensional numbers, allow to quickly compare if such a kind of vehicles can operate in the martian environment, the movement performances, the necessary geometrical dimensions and the power consumption. Following this way of study it was concluded what vehicle is most suitable for the near soil Mars exploration. “Mars Rover” has less power consumption on Mars, but due to the rugged terrain the performances are weak. A vacuumed rigid airship is possible to fly with high performances and endurance on Mars, versus the impossibility of such a machine on the Earth. Due to very low density and the low Reynolds numbers in the Mars atmosphere, the power consumption for the martian airplane or helicopter, is substantial higher. The most efficient vehicle for the Mars exploration it seems to be a machine using the in-situ non-chemical propellants: the 95% CO2 atmosphere and the weak solar radiation. A small compressor, electrically driven by photovoltaics, compresses the gas in a storage tank, in time. If the gas is expanded through a nozzle, sufficient lift and control forces are obtained for a VTOL flight of kilometers over the martian soil, in comparison with tens of meters of the actual Mars rovers.

  1. Nuclear Thermal Rocket/Vehicle Design Options for Future NASA Missions to the Moon and Mars (United States)

    Borowski, Stanley K.; Corban, Robert R.; Mcguire, Melissa L.; Beke, Erik G.


    The nuclear thermal rocket (NTR) provides a unique propulsion capability to planners/designers of future human exploration missions to the Moon and Mars. In addition to its high specific impulse (approximately 850-1000 s) and engine thrust-to-weight ratio (approximately 3-10), the NTR can also be configured as a 'dual mode' system capable of generating electrical power for spacecraft environmental systems, communications, and enhanced stage operations (e.g., refrigeration for long-term liquid hydrogen storage). At present the Nuclear Propulsion Office (NPO) is examining a variety of mission applications for the NTR ranging from an expendable, single-burn, trans-lunar injection (TLI) stage for NASA's First Lunar Outpost (FLO) mission to all propulsive, multiburn, NTR-powered spacecraft supporting a 'split cargo-piloted sprint' Mars mission architecture. Each application results in a particular set of requirements in areas such as the number of engines and their respective thrust levels, restart capability, fuel operating temperature and lifetime, cryofluid storage, and stage size. Two solid core NTR concepts are examined -- one based on NERVA (Nuclear Engine for Rocket Vehicle Application) derivative reactor (NDR) technology, and a second concept which utilizes a ternary carbide 'twisted ribbon' fuel form developed by the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS). The NDR and CIS concepts have an established technology database involving significant nuclear testing at or near representative operating conditions. Integrated systems and mission studies indicate that clusters of two to four 15 to 25 klbf NDR or CIS engines are sufficient for most of the lunar and Mars mission scenarios currently under consideration. This paper provides descriptions and performance characteristics for the NDR and CIS concepts, summarizes NASA's First Lunar Outpost and Mars mission scenarios, and describes characteristics for representative cargo and piloted vehicles compatible with a

  2. Simulating the Phases of the Moon Shortly after Its Formation (United States)

    Noordeh, Emil; Hall, Patrick; Cuk, Matija


    The leading theory for the origin of the Moon is the giant impact hypothesis, in which the Moon was formed out of the debris left over from the collision of a Mars sized body with the Earth. Soon after its formation, the orbit of the Moon may have been very different than it is today. We have simulated the phases of the Moon in a model for its…

  3. Teaching future teachers basic astronomy concepts Sun-Earth-Moon relative movements at a time of reform in science education (United States)

    Trumper, Ricardo


    In view of students' alternative conceptions about basic concepts in astronomy, we conducted a series of constructivist activities with future elementary and junior high school teachers aimed at changing their conceptions about the cause of seasonal changes, and of several characteristics of the Sun-Earth-Moon relative movements like Moon phases, Sun and Moon eclipses, and others. The activities concerning the characteristics of the Sun-Earth-Moon relative movements and their results are reported. The experimental class as well as the control groups improved their grasp of basic astronomy concepts at a statistically significant level. Regarding subjects relevant to this study (Sun-Earth-Moon relative movements), only the experimental class and one of the control groups showed a statistically significant improvement, and in both cases the experimental class made the most impressive progress of all.

  4. Formation of the Lunar Fossil Bulges and its Implication for the Early Earth and Moon (United States)

    Qin, C.; Zhong, S.; Phillips, R. J.


    First recognized by Laplace more than two centuries ago, the lunar gravitational and shape anomalies associated with rotational and tidal bulges are significantly larger than predicted from the hydrostatic theory. The harmonic degree-2 gravitational coefficients of the Moon, C20 and C22 (measuring the size of the rotational and tidal bulges), are 17 and 14 times of their hydrostatic counterparts, respectively, after removal of the effect from large impact basins. The bulges are commonly considered as remnant hydrostatic features, "frozen-in" when the Moon was closer to the Earth, experiencing larger tidal-rotational forces. The extant hypothesis is that as the Moon cooled and migrated outwards, a strong outer layer (lithosphere) thickened and reached a stress state that supported the bulges, which no longer tracked the hydrostatic ellipticity. However, this process is poorly understood and an appropriate dynamical model has not been engaged. Here we present the first dynamically self-consistent model of lunar bulge formation that couples a lunar interior thermal evolution model to the tidal-rotational forcing of the Moon. The forcing magnitude decreases with time as the Moon despins on the receding orbit, while the recession rate is controlled by the Earth's tidal dissipation factor Q. Assuming a viscoelastic rheology, the cooling of the Moon is described by a model with high viscosity lithosphere thickening with time. While conventional methods are not suitable for models with time-dependent viscoelastic structure, a semi-analytical method has been developed to address this problem. We show that the bulge formation is controlled by the relative timing of lithosphere thickening and lunar orbit recession. Based on our calculations, we conclude that the development of the fossil bulges may have taken as long as 400 million years after the formation of lunar lithosphere and was complete when the lunar orbit semi-major axis, a, was 32 Earth's radius, RE. We find a

  5. RITD - Adapting Mars Entry, Descent and Landing System for Earth (United States)

    Haukka, H.; Heilimo, J.; Harri, A.-M.; Aleksashkin, S.; Koryanov, V.; Arruego, I.; Schmidt, W.; Finchenko, V.; Martynov, M.; Ponomarenko, A.; Kazakovtsev, V.; Martin, S.


    We have developed an atmospheric re-entry and descent system concept based on inflatable hypersonic decelerator techniques that were originally developed for Mars. The ultimate goal of this EU-funded RITD-project (Re-entry: Inflatable Technology Development) was to assess the benefits of this technology when deploying small payloads from low Earth orbits to the surface of the Earth with modest costs. The principal goal was to assess and develop a preliminary EDLS design for the entire relevant range of aerodynamic regimes expected to be encountered in Earth's atmosphere during entry, descent and landing. Low Earth Orbit (LEO) and even Lunar applications envisaged include the use of the EDLS approach in returning payloads of 4-8 kg down to the surface.

  6. An Alternative view of Earth's Tectonics : The Moon's explosive origin out of SE Asia. (United States)

    Coleman, P. F.


    A lunar birth scar is typically considered untenable, under the standard paradigm (GTS-4.6-0 Ga, Giant Impact/Plate Tectonics), since it would have been erased by a combination of Wilson recycling, and erosion. This paradigm, while supported by robust, absolute dating, is still provisional, and, like all scientifc paradigms, is nonetheless open to refutation. It cannot, a priori, rule out such a scar. If empirical evidence were to be discovered, in favor of a lunar birthmark, it would have profound implications for the standard view. Coleman (2015) proposed an alternative paradigm based on an internal explosion of Proto-Earth (PE) that ejected the Moon into orbit and left coeval global signatures, such as; ocean-continent antipodality, the global geoid, origin of water, continents, trenches, fault lines, LIPs, hotspots, seamount chains, from the high TP shock/seismic waves. The abrupt deceleration also led to inertial effects of PE's crustal layers, possibly explaining subduction/obduction and fold and thrust fold belts. One major, first order, line of evidence is the actual fission signature ( 4000+ km long) where the Moon was explosively thrust tangentially (to the core) through ductile mantle (see Fig B) to escape into orbit. The proposed path, (locus Moon's center) is from (0°, 78.5°E) (Fig A), near present day India, to (+14.4°, 119°E) out of SE Asia (See Fig C). Possible evidence in favor of this path (but not limited to) include: the Indian Geoid Anomaly Low ( Moon's exhumation?), the Himalayas and Tibetan Plateau (generated by the Moon's NE collisional movement and temporary hole and mantle rebound), SE Asia with many minor plates and back arc basins ( the Moon's exit zone), the East African Rifts (EARs) form a NE-directed pull apart region (explained as a set explosive crustal fragments or "plates") moving towards this relic unconsolidated Asian sink hole (See Fig D). The existence of a fossilised lunar birth points to a recent Earth-Moon, since

  7. On the Tidal Evolution of the Earth-Moon System: A Cosmological Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arbab A. I.


    Full Text Available We have presented a cosmological model for the tidal evolution of the Earth-Moon system. We have found that the expansion of the universe has immense consequences on our local systems. The model can be compared with the present observational data. The close approach problem inflicting the known tidal theory is averted in this model. We have also shown that the astronomical and geological changes of our local systems are of the order of Hubble constant.

  8. A Quantitative Geochemical Target for Modeling the Formation of the Earth and Moon (United States)

    Boyce, Jeremy W.; Barnes, Jessica J.; McCubbin, Francis M.


    The past decade has been one of geochemical, isotopic, and computational advances that are bringing the laboratory measurements and computational modeling neighborhoods of the Earth-Moon community to ever closer proximity. We are now however in the position to become even better neighbors: modelers can generate testable hypthotheses for geochemists; and geochemists can provide quantitive targets for modelers. Here we present a robust example of the latter based on Cl isotope measurements of mare basalts.

  9. Navigation Design and Analysis for the Orion Earth-Moon Mission (United States)

    DSouza, Christopher; Zanetti, Renato


    This paper details the design of the cislunar optical navigation system being proposed for the Orion Earth-Moon (EM) missions. In particular, it presents the mathematics of the navigation filter. The unmodeled accelerations and their characterization are detailed. It also presents the analysis that has been performed to understand the performance of the proposed system, with particular attention paid to entry flight path angle constraints and the delta-V performance.

  10. The Astrobiology of the Subsurface: Caves and Rock Fracture Habitats on Earth, Mars and Beyond (United States)

    Boston, Penelope J.


    The Astrobiology of the Subsurface: Exploring Cave Habitats on Earth, Mars and Beyond. We are using the spectacular underground landscapes of Earth caves as models for the subsurfaces of other planets. Caves have been detected on the Moon and Mars and are strongly suspected for other bodies in the Solar System including some of the ice covered Ocean Worlds that orbit gas giant planets. The caves we explore and study include many extreme conditions of relevance to planetary astrobiology exploration including high and low temperatures, gas atmospheres poisonous to humans but where exotic microbes can fluorish, highly acidic or salty fluids, heavy metals, and high background radiation levels. Some cave microorganisms eat their way through bedrock, some live in battery acid conditions, some produce unusual biominerals and rare cave formations, and many produce compounds of potential pharmaceutical and industrial significance. We study these unique lifeforms and the physical and chemical biosignatures that they leave behind. Such traces can be used to provide a Field Guide to Unknown Organisms for developing life detection space missions.

  11. Changing inclination of earth satellites using the gravity of the moon

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karla de Souza Torres


    Full Text Available We analyze the problem of the orbital control of an Earth's satellite using the gravity of the Moon. The main objective is to study a technique to decrease the fuel consumption of a plane change maneuver to be performed in a satellite that is in orbit around the Earth. The main idea of this approach is to send the satellite to the Moon using a single-impulsive maneuver, use the gravity field of the Moon to make the desired plane change of the trajectory, and then return the satellite to its nominal semimajor axis and eccentricity using a bi-impulsive Hohmann-type maneuver. The satellite is assumed to start in a Keplerian orbit in the plane of the lunar orbit around the Earth and the goal is to put it in a similar orbit that differs from the initial orbit only by the inclination. A description of the close-approach maneuver is made in the three-dimensional space. Analytical equations based on the patched conics approach are used to calculate the variation in velocity, angular momentum, energy, and inclination of the satellite. Then, several simulations are made to evaluate the savings involved. The time required by those transfers is also calculated and shown.

  12. Children's Concepts of the Shape and Size of the Earth, Sun and Moon (United States)

    Bryce, T. G. K.; Blown, E. J.


    Children's understandings of the shape and relative sizes of the Earth, Sun and Moon have been extensively researched and in a variety of ways. Much is known about the confusions which arise as young people try to grasp ideas about the world and our neighbouring celestial bodies. Despite this, there remain uncertainties about the conceptual models which young people use and how they theorise in the process of acquiring more scientific conceptions. In this article, the relevant published research is reviewed critically and in-depth in order to frame a series of investigations using semi-structured interviews carried out with 248 participants aged 3-18 years from China and New Zealand. Analysis of qualitative and quantitative data concerning the reasoning of these subjects (involving cognitive categorisations and their rank ordering) confirmed that (a) concepts of Earth shape and size are embedded in a 'super-concept' or 'Earth notion' embracing ideas of physical shape, 'ground' and 'sky', habitation of and identity with Earth; (b) conceptual development is similar in cultures where teachers hold a scientific world view and (c) children's concepts of shape and size of the Earth, Sun and Moon can be usefully explored within an ethnological approach using multi-media interviews combined with observational astronomy. For these young people, concepts of the shape and size of the Moon and Sun were closely correlated with their Earth notion concepts and there were few differences between the cultures despite their contrasts. Analysis of the statistical data used Kolmogorov-Smirnov Two-Sample Tests with hypotheses confirmed at K-S alpha level 0.05; rs : p < 0.01.

  13. Feasibility of Ground Testing a Moon and Mars Surface Power Reactor in EBR-II

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sheryl Morton; Carl Baily; Tom Hill; Jim Werner


    Ground testing of a surface fission power system would be necessary to verify the design and validate reactor performance to support safe and sustained human exploration of the Moon and Mars. The Idaho National Laboratory (INL) has several facilities that could be adapted to support a ground test. This paper focuses on the feasibility of ground testing at the Experimental Breeder Reactor II (EBR-II) facility and using other INL existing infrastructure to support such a test. This brief study concludes that the INL EBR-II facility and supporting infrastructure are a viable option for ground testing the surface power system. It provides features and attributes that offer advantages to locating and performing ground testing at this site, and it could support the National Aeronautics and Space Administration schedules for human exploration of the Moon. This study used the initial concept examined by the U.S. Department of Energy Inter-laboratory Design and Analysis Support Team for surface power, a low-temperature, liquid-metal, three-loop Brayton power system. With some facility modification, the EBR-II can safely house a test chamber and perform long-term testing of the space reactor power system. The INL infrastructure is available to receive and provide bonded storage for special nuclear materials. Facilities adjacent to EBR-II can provide the clean room environment needed to assemble and store the test article assembly, disassemble the power system at the conclusion of testing, and perform post test examination. Capability for waste disposal is also available at the INL

  14. Feasibility of Ground Testing a Moon and Mars Surface Power Reactor in EBR-II

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sheryl Morton; Carl Baily; Tom Hill; Jim Werner


    Ground testing of a surface fission power system would be necessary to verify the design and validate reactor performance to support safe and sustained human exploration of the Moon and Mars. The Idaho National Laboratory (INL) has several facilities that could be adapted to support a ground test. This paper focuses on the feasibility of ground testing at the Experimental Breeder Reactor II (EBR-II) facility and using other INL existing infrastructure to support such a test. This brief study concludes that the INL EBR-II facility and supporting infrastructure are a viable option for ground testing the surface power system. It provides features and attributes that offer advantages to locating and performing ground testing at this site, and it could support the National Aeronautics and Space Administration schedules for human exploration of the Moon. This study used the initial concept examined by the U.S. Department of Energy Inter-laboratory Design and Analysis Support Team for surface power, a lowtemperature, liquid-metal, three-loop Brayton power system. With some facility modification, the EBR-II can safely house a test chamber and perform long-term testing of the space reactor power system. The INL infrastructure is available to receive and provide bonded storage for special nuclear materials. Facilities adjacent to EBR-II can provide the clean room environment needed to assemble and store the test article assembly, disassemble the power system at the conclusion of testing, and perform posttest examination. Capability for waste disposal is also available at the INL.

  15. Feasibility of Ground Testing a Moon and Mars Surface Power Reactor in EBR-II

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Morton, Sheryl L.; Baily, Carl E.; Hill, Thomas J.; Werner, James E.


    Ground testing of a surface fission power system would be necessary to verify the design and validate reactor performance to support safe and sustained human exploration of the Moon and Mars. The Idaho National Laboratory (INL) has several facilities that could be adapted to support a ground test. This paper focuses on the feasibility of ground testing at the Experimental Breeder Reactor II (EBR-II) facility and using other INL existing infrastructure to support such a test. This brief study concludes that the INL EBR-II facility and supporting infrastructure are a viable option for ground testing the surface power system. It provides features and attributes that offer advantages to locating and performing ground testing at this site, and it could support the National Aeronautics and Space Administration schedules for human exploration of the Moon. This study used the initial concept examined by the U.S. Department of Energy Inter-laboratory Design and Analysis Support Team for surface power, a low-temperature, liquid-metal, three-loop Brayton power system. With some facility modification, the EBR-II can safely house a test chamber and perform long-term testing of the space reactor power system. The INL infrastructure is available to receive and provide bonded storage for special nuclear materials. Facilities adjacent to EBR-II can provide the clean room environment needed to assemble and store the test article assembly, disassemble the power system at the conclusion of testing, and perform posttest examination. Capability for waste disposal is also available at the INL

  16. Mars extant-life campaign using an approach based on Earth-analog habitats (United States)

    Palkovic, Lawrence A.; Wilson, Thomas J.


    The Mars Robotic Outpost group at JPL has identified sixteen potential momentous discoveries that if found on Mars would alter planning for the future Mars exploration program. This paper details one possible approach to the discovery of and response to the 'momentous discovery'' of extant life on Mars. The approach detailed in this paper, the Mars Extant-Life (MEL) campaign, is a comprehensive and flexible program to find living organisms on Mars by studying Earth-analog habitats of extremophile communities.

  17. Evolution of the earliest mantle caused by the magmatism-mantle upwelling feedback: Implications for the Moon and the Earth (United States)

    Ogawa, M.


    The two most important agents that cause mantle evolution are magmatism and mantle convection. My earlier 2D numerical models of a coupled magmatism-mantle convection system show that these two agents strongly couple each other, when the Rayleigh number Ra is sufficiently high: magmatism induced by a mantle upwelling flow boosts the upwelling flow itself. The mantle convection enhanced by this positive feedback (the magmatism-mantle upwelling, or MMU, feedback) causes vigorous magmatism and, at the same time, strongly stirs the mantle. I explored how the MMU feedback influences the evolution of the earliest mantle that contains the magma ocean, based on a numerical model where the mantle is hot and its topmost 1/3 is partially molten at the beginning of the calculation: The evolution drastically changes its style, as Ra exceeds the threshold for onset of the MMU feedback, around 107. At Ra 107, however, the mantle remains compositionally more homogeneous in spite of the widespread magmatism, and the deep mantle remains hotter than the shallow mantle, because of the strong convective stirring caused by the feedback. The threshold value suggests that the mantle of a planet larger than Mars evolves in a way substantially different from that in the Moon does. Indeed, in my earlier models, magmatism makes the early mantle compositionally stratified in the Moon, but the effects of strong convective stirring overwhelms that of magmatism to keep the mantle compositionally rather homogeneous in Venus and the Earth. The MMU feedback is likely to be a key to understanding why vestiges of the magma ocean are so scarce in the Earth.

  18. Convective and radiative heating for vehicle return from the Moon and Mars (United States)

    Greendyke, Robert B.; Gnoffo, Peter A.


    The aerothermal environment is examined for two vehicle forebodies near the peak heating points of lunar and martian return-to-earth trajectories at several nominal entry velocities. The first vehicle forebody is that of a 70 deg aerobrake for entry into earth orbit; the second, a capsule of Apollo configuration for direct entry into the earth's atmosphere. The configurations and trajectories are considered likely candidates for such missions. Two-temperature, thermochemical nonequilibrium models are used in the flow field analyses. In addition to Park's empirical model for dissociation under conditions of thermal nonequilibrium, the Gordiets kinetic model for the homonuclear dissociation of N2 and O2 is also considered. Temperature and emission profiles indicate nonequilibrium effects in a 2 to 5 cm post shock region. Substantial portions of the shock layer flow appear to be in equilibrium. The shock layer over an aerobrake for return from the moon exhibits the largest extent of nonequilibrium effects of all considered missions. Differences between the Gordiets and Parks kinetic model were generally very small for the lunar return aerobrake case, the greatest difference of 6.1 percent occurring in the radiative heating levels.

  19. Drilling on the Moon and Mars: Developing the Science Approach for Subsurface Exploration with Human Crews (United States)

    Stoker, C. R.; Zavaleta, J.; Bell, M.; Direto, S.; Foing, B.; Blake, D.; Kim, S.


    DOMEX (Drilling on the Moon and Mars in Human Exploration) is using analog missions to develop the approach for using human crews to perform science activities on the Moon and Mars involving exploration and sampling of the subsurface. Subsurface science is an important activity that may be uniquely enabled by human crews. DOMEX provides an opportunity to plan and execute planetary mission science activities without the expense and overhead of a planetary mission. Objectives: The objective of this first in a series of DOMEX missions were to 1) explore the regional area to understand the geologic context and determine stratigraphy and geologic history of various geologic units in the area. 2) Explore for and characterize sites for deploying a deep (10 m depth) drilling system in a subsequent field season. 3) Perform GPR on candidate drill sites. 4) Select sites that represent different geological units deposited in different epochs and collect soil cores using sterile procedures for mineralogical, organic and biological analysis. 5) Operate the MUM in 3 different sites representing different geological units and soil characteristics. 6) Collect rock and soil samples of sites visited and analyze them at the habitat. Results: At mission start the crew performed a regional survey to identify major geologic units that were correlated to recognized stratigraphy and regional geologic maps. Several candidate drill sites were identified. During the rest of the mission, successful GPR surveys were conducted in four locations. Soil cores were collected in 5 locations representing soils from 4 different geologic units, to depths up to 1m. Soil cores from two locations were analyzed with PCR in the laboratory. The remainder were reserved for subsequent analysis. XRD analysis was performed in the habitat and in the field on 39 samples, to assist with sample characterization, conservation, and archiving. MUM was deployed at 3 field locations and 1 test location (outside the

  20. The Moon: A 100% Isolation Barrier for Earth During Exobiological Examination of Solar System Sample Return Missions (United States)

    DiGregorio, B. E.


    The only 100% guarantee of protecting our planet's biosphere from a back contamination event is to use the Moon as a sample return examination facility to qualify samples for eventual return to Earth.

  1. The iodine-plutonium-xenon age of the Moon-Earth system revisited. (United States)

    Avice, G; Marty, B


    Iodine-plutonium-xenon isotope systematics have been used to re-evaluate time constraints on the early evolution of the Earth-atmosphere system and, by inference, on the Moon-forming event. Two extinct radionuclides ((129)I, T1/2=15.6 Ma and (244)Pu, T1/2=80 Ma) have produced radiogenic (129)Xe and fissiogenic (131-136)Xe, respectively, within the Earth, the related isotope fingerprints of which are seen in the compositions of mantle and atmospheric Xe. Recent studies of Archaean rocks suggest that xenon atoms have been lost from the Earth's atmosphere and isotopically fractionated during long periods of geological time, until at least the end of the Archaean eon. Here, we build a model that takes into account these results. Correction for Xe loss permits the computation of new closure ages for the Earth's atmosphere that are in agreement with those computed for mantle Xe. The corrected Xe formation interval for the Earth-atmosphere system is [Formula: see text] Ma after the beginning of Solar System formation. This time interval may represent a lower limit for the age of the Moon-forming impact. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  2. A Prograde Gravitational Capture Model for the Origin of the Earth-Moon System: Is It Compatible with the Rock Records of the Earth and Moon (United States)

    Malcuit, R. J.; Winters, R. R.


    Regardless of one's favorite model for the origin of the Earth Moon system, the early history of lunar orbital evolution would produce significant thermal and tidal effects on both interacting bodies. Three lunar origin models (fission, co-formation, and giant impact) feature a circular orbit that undergoes a progressive increase in orbital radius from the time of origin to the present. In contrast, a gravitational capture model places the Moon in an elliptical orbit undergoing progressive circularization from the time of capture (for model purposes about 3.9 Ma) for at least a few hundred million years following the capture event. Once the orbit is circularized, the tidal history for a gravitational capture scenario is similar to that for other models of lunar origin and features a progressive increase in orbital radius to the present. This elliptical orbit phase, if it occurred, should have left a distinctive signature in the terrestrial and lunar rock records. A typical numerical simulation of a coplanar, three-body stable prograde capture scenario features an initial close encounter at about 1.43 Earth radii and dissipation of sufficient energy from (1 to 2 X 1028 J, depending on the heliocentric orbital configuration at the time of the encounter) for capture of lunarlike (lunar mass and density) planetoid into an eliptical orbit of about 183 Earth radii and eccentricity of about 0.81. This orbit then undergoes a progressive circularization due to tidal energy dissipation within the two interacting bodies. Numerical simulation of the postcapture orbit evolution suggests a timescale for orbit circularization of about 1 b.y. for a range of reasonable postcapture body deformation and energy-dissipation parameters. If a lunarlike planetoid is captured into an orbit with the above dimensions, then the prograde angular momentum of the lunar orbit and prograde rotational angular momentum of a 10hr/day Earth equals the angular momentum of the Earth-Moon system. The

  3. Mineral remains of early life on Earth? On Mars? (United States)

    Iberall, Robbins E.; Iberall, A.S.


    The oldest sedimentary rocks on Earth, the 3.8-Ga Isua Iron-Formation in southwestern Greenland, are metamorphosed past the point where organic-walled fossils would remain. Acid residues and thin sections of these rocks reveal ferric microstructures that have filamentous, hollow rod, and spherical shapes not characteristic of crystalline minerals. Instead, they resemble ferric-coated remains of bacteria. Because there are no earlier sedimentary rocks to study on Earth, it may be necessary to expand the search elsewhere in the solar system for clues to any biotic precursors or other types of early life. A study of morphologies of iron oxide minerals collected in the southern highlands during a Mars sample return mission may therefore help to fill in important gaps in the history of Earth's earliest biosphere. -from Authors

  4. Is Mars a habitable environment for extremophilic microorganisms from Earth? (United States)

    Rettberg, Petra; Reitz, Guenther; Flemming, Hans-Curt; Bauermeister, Anja

    In the last decades several sucessful space missions to our neighboring planet Mars have deepened our knowledge about its environmental conditions substantially. Orbiters with intruments for remote sensing and landers with sophisticated intruments for in situ investigations resulted in a better understanding of Mars’ radiation climate, atmospheric composition, geology, and mineralogy. Extensive regions of the surface of Mars are covered with sulfate- and ferric oxide-rich layered deposits. These sediments indicate the possible existence of aqueous, acidic environments on early Mars. Similar environments on Earth harbour a specialised community of microorganisms which are adapted to the local stress factors, e.g. low pH, high concentrations of heavy metal ions, oligotrophic conditions. Acidophilic iron-sulfur bacteria isolated from such habitats on Earth could be considered as model organisms for an important part of a potential extinct Martian ecosystem or an ecosystem which might even exist today in protected subsurface niches. Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans was chosen as a model organism to study the ability of these bacteria to survive or grow under conditions resembling those on Mars. Stress conditions tested included desiccation, radiation, low temperatures, and high salinity. It was found that resistance to desiccation strongly depends on the mode of drying. Biofilms grown on membrane filters can tolerate longer periods of desiccation than planktonic cells dried without any added protectants, and drying under anaerobic conditions is more favourable to survival than drying in the presence of oxygen. Organic compounds such as trehalose and glycine betaine had a positive influence on survival after drying and freezing. A. ferrooxidans was shown to be sensitive to high salt concentrations, ionizing radiation, and UV radiation. However, the bacteria were able to utilize the iron minerals in Mars regolith mixtures as sole energy source. The survival and growth of

  5. Analogue Simulation of human and psychosocial factors for MoonMars bases (United States)

    Davidová, Lucie; Foing, Bernard


    Several courageous plans regarding future human space exploration have been proposed. Both main future targets, ESA's Moon village, as well as journey to Mars represent huge challenge for humans. Appropriate research on psychological aspects of humans in extreme conditions is needed. Analogue simulations represent valuable source of information that help us to understand how to provide an adequate support to astronauts in specific conditions of isolation and limited resources. The psychosocial investigation was designed to builds on combination of several methods based on subjective as well as objective assessments, namely observation, sociomapping, content analysis of interviews etc. Research on several simulations provided lessons learned and various insights. The attention was paid particularly to the interpersonal interactions among crew members, intragroup as well as intergroup communication, cooperation, and performance. This comprehensive approach enables early detection of hidden structures and potential insufficiencies of an astronaut team. The sociomapping of interpersonal communication as well as analysis of interviews with participants revealed insufficiencies especially in communication between the analogue astronauts and mission control. Another important finding was gain by investigation of the relationship between the astronaut crew and mission control. Astronauts low trust to mission control can have a great negative impact to the performance and well-being of astronauts. The findings of the psychosocial studies are very important for designing astronaut training and planning future mission.

  6. Risk Assessment of Bone Fracture During Space Exploration Missions to the Moon and Mars (United States)

    Lewandowski, Beth E.; Myers, Jerry G.; Nelson, Emily S.; Griffin, Devon


    The possibility of a traumatic bone fracture in space is a concern due to the observed decrease in astronaut bone mineral density (BMD) during spaceflight and because of the physical demands of the mission. The Bone Fracture Risk Module (BFxRM) was developed to quantify the probability of fracture at the femoral neck and lumbar spine during space exploration missions. The BFxRM is scenario-based, providing predictions for specific activities or events during a particular space mission. The key elements of the BFxRM are the mission parameters, the biomechanical loading models, the bone loss and fracture models and the incidence rate of the activity or event. Uncertainties in the model parameters arise due to variations within the population and unknowns associated with the effects of the space environment. Consequently, parameter distributions were used in Monte Carlo simulations to obtain an estimate of fracture probability under real mission scenarios. The model predicts an increase in the probability of fracture as the mission length increases and fracture is more likely in the higher gravitational field of Mars than on the moon. The resulting probability predictions and sensitivity analyses of the BFxRM can be used as an engineering tool for mission operation and resource planning in order to mitigate the risk of bone fracture in space.

  7. Method for Identifying Lava Tubes Among Pit Craters Using Brightness Profile Across Pits on the Moon or Mars

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jongil Jung


    Full Text Available Caves can serve as major outposts for future human exploration of the Moon and Mars. In addition, caves can protect people and electronic equipment from external hazards such as cosmic ray radiation and meteorites impacts and serve as a shelter. Numerous pit craters have been discovered on the Moon and Mars and are potential entrances to caves; the principal topographic features of pit craters are their visible internal floors and pits with vertical walls. We have devised two topographical models for investigating the relationship between the topographical characteristics and the inner void of pit craters. One of our models is a concave floor void model and the other is a convex floor tube model. For each model, optical photographs have been obtained under conditions similar to those in which optical photographs have been acquired for craters on the Moon and Mars. Brightness profiles were analyzed for determining the profile patterns of the void pit craters. The profile patterns were compared to the brightness profiles of Martian pit craters, because no good-quality images of lunar pit craters were available. In future studies, the model profile patterns will be compared to those of lunar pit craters, and the proposed method will likely become useful for finding lunar caves and consequently for planning lunar bases for manned lunar expeditions.

  8. Development and Demonstration of Sustainable Surface Infrastructure for Moon/Mars Exploration (United States)

    Sanders, Gerald B.; Larson, William E.; Picard, Martin


    For long-term human exploration of the Moon and Mars to be practical, affordable, and sustainable, future missions must be able to identify and utilize resources at the site of exploration. The ability to characterize, extract, processes, and separate products from local material, known as In-Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU), can provide significant reductions in launch mass, logistics, and development costs while reducing risk through increased mission flexibility and protection as well as increased mission capabilities in the areas of power and transportation. Making mission critical consumables like propellants, fuel cell reagents and life support gases, as well as in-situ crew/hardware protection and energy storage capabilities can significantly enhance robotic and human science and exploration missions, however other mission systems need to be designed to interface with and utilize these in-situ developed products and services from the start or the benefits will be minimized or eliminated. This requires a level of surface and transportation system development coordination not typically utilized during early technology and system development activities. An approach being utilized by the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration and the Canadian Space Agency has been to utilize joint analogue field demonstrations to focus technology development activities to demonstrate and integrate new and potentially game changing. mission critical capabilities that would enable an affordable and sustainable surface infrastructure for lunar and Mars robotic and human exploration. Two analogue field tests performed in November 2008 and February 2010 demonstrated first generation capabilities for lunar resource prospecting, exploration site preparation, and oxygen extraction from regolith while initiating integration with mobility, science, fuel cell power, and propulsion disciplines. A third analogue field test currently planned for June 2012 will continue and expand

  9. First decadal lunar results from the Moon and Earth Radiation Budget Experiment. (United States)

    Matthews, Grant


    A need to gain more confidence in computer model predictions of coming climate change has resulted in greater analysis of the quality of orbital Earth radiation budget (ERB) measurements being used today to constrain, validate, and hence improve such simulations. These studies conclude from time series analysis that for around a quarter of a century, no existing satellite ERB climate data record is of a sufficient standard to partition changes to the Earth from those of un-tracked and changing artificial instrumentation effects. This led to the creation of the Moon and Earth Radiation Budget Experiment (MERBE), which instead takes existing decades old climate data to a higher calibration standard using thousands of scans of Earth's Moon. The Terra and Aqua satellite ERB climate records have been completely regenerated using signal-processing improvements, combined with a substantial increase in precision from more comprehensive in-flight spectral characterization techniques. This study now builds on previous Optical Society of America work by describing new Moon measurements derived using accurate analytical mapping of telescope spatial response. That then allows a factor of three reduction in measurement noise along with an order of magnitude increase in the number of retrieved independent lunar results. Given decadal length device longevity and the use of solar and thermal lunar radiance models to normalize the improved ERB results to the International System of Units traceable radiance scale of the "MERBE Watt," the same established environmental time series analysis techniques are applied to MERBE data. They evaluate it to perhaps be of sufficient quality to immediately begin narrowing the largest of climate prediction uncertainties. It also shows that if such Terra/Aqua ERB devices can operate into the 2020s, it could become possible to halve these same uncertainties decades sooner than would be possible with existing or even planned new observing systems.

  10. Earth-Moon Libration Point Orbit Stationkeeping: Theory, Modeling and Operations (United States)

    Folta, David C.; Pavlak, Thomas A.; Haapala, Amanda F.; Howell, Kathleen C.; Woodard, Mark A.


    Collinear Earth-Moon libration points have emerged as locations with immediate applications. These libration point orbits are inherently unstable and must be maintained regularly which constrains operations and maneuver locations. Stationkeeping is challenging due to relatively short time scales for divergence effects of large orbital eccentricity of the secondary body, and third-body perturbations. Using the Acceleration Reconnection and Turbulence and Electrodynamics of the Moon's Interaction with the Sun (ARTEMIS) mission orbit as a platform, the fundamental behavior of the trajectories is explored using Poincare maps in the circular restricted three-body problem. Operational stationkeeping results obtained using the Optimal Continuation Strategy are presented and compared to orbit stability information generated from mode analysis based in dynamical systems theory.

  11. Quasi-periodic climatic changes on Mars and earth (United States)

    Cutts, J. A.; Pollack, J. B.; Toon, O. B.; Howard, A. D.


    Evidence of climatic changes on Mars and the earth due to geologic and astronomical variations is discussed. Finely striped ice-free bands in the Martian polar caps have been taken to indicate that long term variations in the orbit and axial tilt of Mars have precipitated these features at the rate of a mm/yr. Photogrammetric and photometric methods have contributed to measurements of the composition and depth of the Martian caps (14-46 m), and observations of higher solar energy absorption in the northern ice cap implies greater dust deposition in that region than on the south cap; however, the transport mechanisms are not well understood. Comparisons of earth and Martian climatic variations data are made, noting a lack of information on the age intervals of marine and nonmarine sediments on the earth. The possibilities of using quantitative data other than layer thickness to constrain climate models are discussed, and the slope or albedo of layers, or the spacing of polar undulations are suggested.

  12. Impacts and tectonism in Earth and moon history of the past 3800 million years (United States)

    Stothers, Richard B.


    The moon's surface, unlike the Earth's, displays a comparatively clear record of its past bombardment history for the last 3800 Myr, the time since active lunar tectonism under the massive premare bombardment ended. From Baldwin's (1987) tabulation of estimated ages for a representative sample of large lunar craters younger than 3800 Ma, six major cratering episodes can be discerned. These six bombardment episodes, which must have affected the Earth too, appear to match in time the six major episodes of orogenic tectonism on Earth, despite typical resolution errors of +/- 100 Myr and the great uncertainties of the two chronologies. Since more highly resolved events during the Cenozoic and Mesozoic Eras suggest the same correlation, it is possible that large impacts have influenced plate tectonics and other aspects of geologic history, perhaps by triggering flood basalt eruptions.

  13. On the Nature of Earth-Mars Porkchop Plots (United States)

    Woolley, Ryan C.; Whetsel, Charles W.


    Porkchop plots are a quick and convenient tool to help mission designers plan ballistic trajectories between two bodies. Parameter contours give rise to the familiar 'porkchop' shape. Each synodic period the pattern repeats, but not exactly, primarily due to differences in inclination and non-zero eccentricity. In this paper we examine the morphological features of Earth-to-Mars porkchop plots and the orbital characteristics that create them. These results are compared to idealistic and optimized transfers. Conclusions are drawn about 'good' opportunities versus 'bad' opportunities for different mission applications.

  14. Natural radioactivity of the moon and planets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Surkov, Iu.A.


    In this report the main results of the study of natural radioactivity of the solar system bodies are considered. The radioactivity of the moon and planets was measured from orbiters and landers. The radioactivity of the returned lunar samples was studied with laboratory equipment. Analysis of the radioactivity data shows the bimodal structure of surfaces of the moon, Venus, Mars (ancient crust and young volcanic formations). Volcanic formations on all bodies, probably, consist of basaltic rocks. The compositions of ancient crusts are different (gabbro-anorthositic on the moon and maybe on Mars, granite-metamorphic on the earth and maybe on Venus)

  15. VIS/NIR reflectance and fluorescence spectrometric studies of minerals, water, organics and biomarkers in MoonMars analogue samples (United States)

    Vos, Heleen; Foing, Bernard; Kołodziejczyk, Agata; Vago, Jorge; Harasymczuk, Matt


    This study focuses on the detection and characterisation of elements, minerals, volatiles and organics using reflectance spectrometry. The goal is to create a calibration method to enable the use of spectrometers on analogue Moon/Mars missions and on a lander. For this study we use measurements that are done in the VIS and NIR spectrum, as well as fluorescence using different spectrometers. The first part of the study consists of measurements that are performed in a laboratory to create a calibration method. Different rock samples and soils are analysed and the reflectance and absorption of minerals, water, organics and biomarkers are measured. Also the influence of the grain size, light source and surroundings is being determined. An experiment on the reflectance spectra of plant growth in different soils is also done to determine the possibilities of detecting the presence of chlorophyll and other biomarkers, and to diagnose the growth and health of a plant. This analysis can result in a monitoring method for a Moon greenhouse, but also for general surface analysis. Using VIS and NIR spectrometry has a couple of advantages, one being the fact that measurements require no sample preparation, and also the small size of the spectrometer makes it an easy tool for different analyses on board space missions. However, VIS and NIR spectroscopy have detection limits which makes only certain characteristics detectable. Besides laboratory measurements, the different spectroscopy methods are tested during a field campaign in the Eifel, Germany. During this campaign we can determine the functionality of the spectrometer in the field and on a lander and the problems that can rise when a spectrometer is controlled from a distant or by a person who is not trained in using spectroscopy. These laboratory and field measurements can help in the scientific preparation for instruments on ExoMars rover, future MoonMars lander missions and for the MoonVillage.

  16. The Earth-Moon Transfer Trajectory Design and Analysis using Intermediate Loop Orbits

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Young-Joo Song


    Full Text Available Various Earth-Moon transfer trajectories are designed and analyzed to prepare the future Korea's Lunar missions. Minimum fuel trajectory solutions are obtained for the departure year of 2017, 2020, 2022, and every required mission phases are analyzed from Earth departure to the final lunar mission orbit. N-body equations of motion are formulated which include the gravitational effect of the Sun, Earth and Moon. In addition, accelerations due to geopotential harmonics, Lunar J2 and solar radiation pressures are considered. Impulsive high thrust is assumed as the main thrusting method of spacecraft with launcher capability of KSLV-2 which is planned to be developed. For the method of injecting a spacecraft into a trans Lunar trajectory, both direct shooting from circular parking orbit and shooting from the multiple elliptical intermediate orbits are adapted, and their design results are compared and analyzed. In addition, spacecraft's visibility from Deajeon ground station are constrained to see how they affect the magnitude of TLI (Trans Lunar Injection maneuver. The results presented in this paper includes launch opportunities, required optimal maneuver characteristics for each mission phase as well as the trajectory characteristics and numerous related parameters. It is confirmed that the final mass of Korean lunar explorer strongly depends onto the initial parking orbit's altitude and launcher's capability, rather than mission start time.

  17. Adapting Mars Entry, Descent and Landing System for Earth (United States)

    Heilimo, J.; Harri, A.-M.; Aleksashkin, S.; Koryanov, V.; Guerrero, H.; Schmidt, W.; Haukka, H.; Finchenko, V.; Martynov, M.; Ostresko, B.; Ponomarenko, A.; Kazakovtsev, V.; Arruego, I.; Martin, S.; Siili, T.


    In 2001 - 2011 an inflatable Entry, Descent and Landing System (EDLS) for Martian atmosphere was developed by FMI and the MetNet team. This MetNet Mars Lander EDLS is used in both the initial deceleration during atmospheric entry and in the final deceleration before the semi-hard impact of the penetrator to Martian surface. The EDLS design is ingenious and its applicability to Earth's atmosphere is studied in the on-going project. In particular, the behavior of the system in the critical transonic aerodynamic (from hypersonic to subsonic) regime will be investigated. This project targets to analyze and test the transonic behavior of this compact and light weight payload entry system to Earth's atmosphere [1]. Scaling and adaptation for terrestrial atmospheric conditions, instead of a completely new design, is a favorable approach for providing a new re-entry vehicle for terrestrial space applications.

  18. Greenhouse production analysis of early mission scenarios for Moon and Mars habitats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Schubert D.


    Full Text Available The establishment of planetary outposts and habitats on the Moon and Mars will help foster further exploration of the solar system. The crews that operate, live, and work in these artificial constructions will rely on bio-regenerative closed-loop systems and principles, such as algae reactors and higher plant chambers, in order to minimize resupply needs and improve system resiliency. Greenhouse modules will play a major role in closing not only the oxygen, carbon-dioxide, and water supply loops, but also by providing fresh food for the crew. In early mission scenarios, when the habitat is still in its build-up phase, only small greenhouse systems will be deployed, providing a supplemental food strategy. Small quantities of high water content crops (e.g. lettuce, cucumber, tomato will be cultivated, improving the crew’s diet plan with an add-on option to the pre-packed meals. The research results of a 400-day biomass and crew time simulation of an adapted EDEN ISS Future Exploration Greenhouse are presented. This greenhouse is an experimental cultivation system that will be used in an analogue test mission to Antarctica (2018-2019 to test plant cultivation technologies for space. The Future Exploration Greenhouse is a high-level analogue for cultivation systems of early mission scenarios on Moon/ Mars. Applying a net cultivation area of 11.9 m², 11 crops have been simulated. Biomass output values were tailored to a tray cultivation (batch strategy, where 34 trays (0.4x0.6 m have been integrated into the overall production plan. Detailed work procedures were established for each crop according to its production lifecycle requirements. Seven basic crew time requiring work procedures (e.g. seeding, pruning and training, harvesting, cleaning, post-harvesting were simulated. Two cultivation principles were the focus of the analysis: The In-Phase Cultivation approach where all trays start at the same time, and the Shifted Cultivation approach

  19. Quantum effects on Lagrangian points and displaced periodic orbits in the Earth-Moon system


    Battista, Emmanuele; Dell'Agnello, Simone; Esposito, Giampiero; Simo, Jules


    Recent work in the literature has shown that the one-loop long distance quantum corrections to the Newtonian potential imply tiny but observable effects in the restricted three-body problem of celestial mechanics, i.e., at the Lagrangian libration points of stable equilibrium the planetoid is not exactly at equal distance from the two bodies of large mass, but the Newtonian values of its coordinates are changed by a few millimeters in the Earth-Moon system. First, we assess such a theoretical...

  20. PLB, vertical tail, OMS pods above Earth with moon in distant background (United States)


    Payload bay (PLB) equipment, payloads, and experiments include remote manipulator system (RMS) stowed on port side sill longeron, Development Flight Instrument (DFI) pallet with High Capacity Heat Pipe Experiment, Special Philatelic Covers in two large storage (mail) boxes, Evaluation of Oxygen Interaction with Materials (EOIM) experiment trays, and Advanced Flexible Reusable Surface Insulation (AFRSI) blanket in foreground and Payload Flight Test Article (PFTA) behind DFI pallet. Vertical tail with orbital maneuvering system (OMS) pods at base points to Earth's cloud-covered surface with gibbous moon in distance.

  1. A flat array large telescope concept for use on the moon, earth, and in space (United States)

    Woodgate, Bruce E.


    An astronomical optical telescope concept is described which can provide very large collecting areas, of order 1000 sq m. This is an order of magnitude larger than the new generation of telescopes now being designed and built. Multiple gimballed flat mirrors direct the beams from a celestial source into a single telescope of the same aperture as each flat mirror. Multiple images of the same source are formed at the telescope focal plane. A beam combiner collects these images and superimposes them into a single image, onto a detector or spectrograph aperture. This telescope could be used on the earth, the moon, or in space.

  2. I-Pu-Xe dating and the relative ages of the earth and moon (United States)

    Swindle, T. D.; Caffee, M. W.; Hohenberg, C. M.; Taylor, S. R.


    The ages of the earth and moon as determined by various chronometric systems are discussed with primary emphasis placed on the development of an I-Pu-Xe chronometer. Data on excess fission xenon are reviewed with attention given to the strengths and weaknesses of the assumptions required for lunar I-Pu-Xe chronometry. Using I-Pu-Xe dating, it is estimated that the retention of excess fission xenon in lunar samples began no more than 63 + or - 42 m.y. after the time of primitive meteorite formation.

  3. Dust: A major environmental hazard on the earth's moon

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Heiken, G.; Vaniman, D.; Lehnert, B.


    On the Earth's Moon, obvious hazards to humans and machines are created by extreme temperature fluctuations, low gravity, and the virtual absence of any atmosphere. The most important other environmental factor is ionizing radiation. Less obvious environmental hazards that must be considered before establishing a manned presence on the lunar surface are the hazards from micrometeoroid bombardment, the nuisance of electro-statically-charged lunar dust, and an alien visual environment without familiar clues. Before man can establish lunar bases and lunar mining operations, and continue the exploration of that planet, we must develop a means of mitigating these hazards. 4 refs.

  4. Cell biology and biotechnology research for exploration of the Moon and Mars (United States)

    Pellis, N.; North, R.

    Health risks generated by human long exposure to radiation, microgravity, and unknown factors in the planetary environment are the major unresolved issues for human space exploration. A complete characterization of human and other biological systems adaptation processes to long-duration space missions is necessary for the development of countermeasures. The utilization of cell and engineered tissue cultures in space research and exploration complements research in human, animal, and plant subjects. We can bring a small number of humans, animals, or plants to the ISS, Moon, and Mars. However, we can investigate millions of their cells during these missions. Furthermore, many experiments can not be performed on humans, e.g. radiation exposure, cardiac muscle. Cells from critical tissues and tissue constructs per se are excellent subjects for experiments that address underlying mechanisms important to countermeasures. The development of cell tissue engineered for replacement, implantation of biomaterial to induce tissue regeneration (e.g. absorbable collagen matrix for guiding tissue regeneration in periodontal surgery), and immunoisolation (e.g. biopolymer coating on transplanted tissues to ward off immunological rejection) are good examples of cell research and biotechnology applications. NASA Cell Biology and Biotechnology research include Bone/Muscle and Cardiovascular cell culture and tissue engineering; Environmental Health and Life Support Systems; Immune System; Radiation; Gravity Thresholds ; and Advanced Biotechnology Development to increase the understanding of animal and plant cell adaptive behavior when exposed to space, and to advance technologies that facilitates exploration. Cell systems can be used to investigate processes related to food, microbial proliferation, waste management, biofilms and biomaterials. The NASA Cell Science Program has the advantage of conducting research in microgravity based on significantly small resources, and the ability to

  5. Design and Applications of Solar Sail Periodic Orbits in the Non-Autonomous Earth-Moon System

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heiligers, M.J.; Macdonald, Malcolm; Parker, Jeffrey S.; Turner, J.D.; Wawrzyniak, G.G.; Cerven, W.T.; Majji, M.


    Solar sailing has great potential for a range of high-energy and long duration mis-sions in the Sun-Earth system. This paper extends this potential to the non-autonomous Earth-Moon system through the use of a differential correction scheme, and by selecting suitable in-plane and out-of-plane sail

  6. Fast accretion of the earth with a late moon-forming giant impact. (United States)

    Yu, Gang; Jacobsen, Stein B


    Constraints on the formation history of the Earth are critical for understanding of planet formation processes. (182)Hf-(182)W chronometry of terrestrial rocks points to accretion of Earth in approximately 30 Myr after the formation of the solar system, immediately followed by the Moon-forming giant impact (MGI). Nevertheless, some N-body simulations and (182)Hf-(182)W and (87)Rb-(87)Sr chronology of some lunar rocks have been used to argue for a later formation of the Moon at 52 to > 100 Myr. This discrepancy is often explained by metal-silicate disequilibrium during giant impacts. Here we describe a model of the (182)W isotopic evolution of the accreting Earth, including constraints from partitioning of refractory siderophile elements (Ni, Co, W, V, and Nb) during core formation, which can explain the discrepancy. Our modeling shows that the concentrations of the siderophile elements of the mantle are consistent with high-pressure metal-silicate equilibration in a terrestrial magma ocean. Our analysis shows that the timing of the MGI is inversely correlated with the time scale of the main accretion stage of the Earth. Specifically, the earliest time the MGI could have taken place right at approximately 30 Myr, corresponds to the end of main-stage accretion at approximately 30 Myr. A late MGI (> 52 Myr) requires the main stage of the Earth's accretion to be completed rapidly in < 10.7 ± 2.5 Myr. These are the two end member solutions and a continuum of solutions exists in between these extremes.

  7. Particle motion in atmospheric boundary layers of Mars and Earth (United States)

    White, B. R.; Iversen, J. D.; Greeley, R.; Pollack, J. B.


    To study the eolian mechanics of saltating particles, both an experimental investigation of the flow field around a model crater in an atmospheric boundary layer wind tunnel and numerical solutions of the two- and three-dimensional equations of motion of a single particle under the influence of a turbulent boundary layer were conducted. Two-dimensional particle motion was calculated for flow near the surfaces of both Earth and Mars. For the case of Earth both a turbulent boundary layer with a viscous sublayer and one without were calculated. For the case of Mars it was only necessary to calculate turbulent boundary layer flow with a laminar sublayer because of the low values of friction Reynolds number; however, it was necessary to include the effects of slip flow on a particle caused by the rarefied Martian atmosphere. In the equations of motion the lift force functions were developed to act on a single particle only in the laminar sublayer or a corresponding small region of high shear near the surface for a fully turbulent boundary layer. The lift force functions were developed from the analytical work by Saffman concerning the lift force acting on a particle in simple shear flow.

  8. Navigating the Return Trip from the Moon Using Earth-Based Ground Tracking and GPS (United States)

    Berry, Kevin; Carpenter, Russell; Moreau, Michael C.; Lee, Taesul; Holt, Gregg N.


    NASA s Constellation Program is planning a human return to the Moon late in the next decade. From a navigation perspective, one of the most critical phases of a lunar mission is the series of burns performed to leave lunar orbit, insert onto a trans-Earth trajectory, and target a precise re-entry corridor in the Earth s atmosphere. A study was conducted to examine sensitivity of the navigation performance during this phase of the mission to the type and availability of tracking data from Earth-based ground stations, and the sensitivity to key error sources. This study also investigated whether GPS measurements could be used to augment Earth-based tracking data, and how far from the Earth GPS measurements would be useful. The ability to track and utilize weak GPS signals transmitted across the limb of the Earth is highly dependent on the configuration and sensitivity of the GPS receiver being used. For this study three GPS configurations were considered: a "standard" GPS receiver with zero dB antenna gain, a "weak signal" GPS receiver with zero dB antenna gain, and a "weak signal" GPS receiver with an Earth-pointing direction antenna (providing 10 dB additional gain). The analysis indicates that with proper selection and configuration of the GPS receiver on the Orion spacecraft, GPS can potentially improve navigation performance during the critical final phases of flight prior to Earth atmospheric entry interface, and may reduce reliance on two-way range tracking from Earth-based ground stations.

  9. Weathering profiles in soils and rocks on Earth and Mars (United States)

    Hausrath, E.; Adcock, C. T.; Bamisile, T.; Baumeister, J. L.; Gainey, S.; Ralston, S. J.; Steiner, M.; Tu, V.


    Interactions of liquid water with rock, soil, or sediments can result in significant chemical and mineralogical changes with depth. These changes can include transformation from one phase to another as well as translocation, addition, and loss of material. The resulting chemical and mineralogical depth profiles can record characteristics of the interacting liquid water such as pH, temperature, duration, and abundance. We use a combined field, laboratory, and modeling approach to interpret the environmental conditions preserved in soils and rocks. We study depth profiles in terrestrial field environments; perform dissolution experiments of primary and secondary phases important in soil environments; and perform numerical modeling to quantitatively interpret weathering environments. In our field studies we have measured time-integrated basaltic mineral dissolution rates, and interpreted the impact of pH and temperature on weathering in basaltic and serpentine-containing rocks and soils. These results help us interpret fundamental processes occurring in soils on Earth and on Mars, and can also be used to inform numerical modeling and laboratory experiments. Our laboratory experiments provide fundamental kinetic data to interpret processes occurring in soils. We have measured dissolution rates of Mars-relevant phosphate minerals, clay minerals, and amorphous phases, as well as dissolution rates under specific Mars-relevant conditions such as in concentrated brines. Finally, reactive transport modeling allows a quantitative interpretation of the kinetic, thermodynamic, and transport processes occurring in soil environments. Such modeling allows the testing of conditions under longer time frames and under different conditions than might be possible under either terrestrial field or laboratory conditions. We have used modeling to examine the weathering of basalt, olivine, carbonate, phosphate, and clay minerals, and placed constraints on the duration, pH, and solution

  10. Indirect Optimization of Three-Dimensional Multiple-Impulse Moon-to-Earth Transfers (United States)

    Shen, Hong-Xin; Casalino, Lorenzo


    This paper illustrates an indirect method to optimize multiple-impulse trajectories from circular lunar orbit to Earth. Optimization is performed in the circular restricted three-body problem, and the necessary optimality conditions are found through optimal control theory. In order to overcome the difficulty of initial adjoints estimation, a homotopic approach, which is based on an auxiliary optimization problem with known solution, is developed; this approach proves to be robust and efficient. Examples are presented for a range of lunar orbit orientations to assess the impact on velocity impulse requirements. Optimization results for trajectories with different number of impulses are also compared. The developed procedure can support fast and accurate evaluation of the transfer costs for Moon-to-Earth trajectories both in nominal conditions and for contingency plans.

  11. Designating Earth's Moon as a United Nations World Heritage Site - Permanently Protected from Commercial or Military Uses (United States)

    Steiner, R. G.


    This paper proposes that Earth's Moon, in its entirety, be designated a United Nations World Heritage Site (WHS), permanently protected from any and all commercial or military utilization and reserved exclusively for scientific and aesthetic purposes. The paper discusses: 1) the extraordinary importance of the Moon for science, culture, and religion - past, present and future; 2) the history of proposals to exploit the Moon for commercial and military purposes and the shortcomings of this colonial, exploitation paradigm; and 3) the necessity, policy mechanisms, and political dynamics of designating the Moon as a World Heritage Site, permanently protected from commercial and/or military uses. The first part of the paper discusses the extraordinary importance of the Moon as it exists today - as a scientific laboratory, a source of beauty and inspiration throughout human evolution, a source for artistic expression, and as an object that is considered sacred by many cultures. Next, the paper traces the history of specific proposals for the exploitation of the Moon for commercial and/or military purposes - including plans by the U.S. Air Force in 1959 to detonate a nuclear explosion on the Moon, proposals to strip-mine the lunar regolith for helium-3 and rocket-fuel hydrogen; construction of solar power plants to transmit energy to Earth, and proposals to use the lunar surface as a billboard upon which to project commercial advertisements visible from Earth. The profound ethical, legal, and scientific shortcomings of this exploitation paradigm are described as an emerging Extraterrestrial Manifest Destiny that we have a collective obligation to challenge and constrain. The paper proposes that space exploration be infused with an ethical commitment to compassion, reverence, conservation, and non-interference to abiotic and biotic systems alike; as opposed to the expansion and extraterrestrial imposition of the colonization, exploitation, domination, and despoliation

  12. Existence of collisional trajectories of Mercury, Mars and Venus with the Earth. (United States)

    Laskar, J; Gastineau, M


    It has been established that, owing to the proximity of a resonance with Jupiter, Mercury's eccentricity can be pumped to values large enough to allow collision with Venus within 5 Gyr (refs 1-3). This conclusion, however, was established either with averaged equations that are not appropriate near the collisions or with non-relativistic models in which the resonance effect is greatly enhanced by a decrease of the perihelion velocity of Mercury. In these previous studies, the Earth's orbit was essentially unaffected. Here we report numerical simulations of the evolution of the Solar System over 5 Gyr, including contributions from the Moon and general relativity. In a set of 2,501 orbits with initial conditions that are in agreement with our present knowledge of the parameters of the Solar System, we found, as in previous studies, that one per cent of the solutions lead to a large increase in Mercury's eccentricity-an increase large enough to allow collisions with Venus or the Sun. More surprisingly, in one of these high-eccentricity solutions, a subsequent decrease in Mercury's eccentricity induces a transfer of angular momentum from the giant planets that destabilizes all the terrestrial planets approximately 3.34 Gyr from now, with possible collisions of Mercury, Mars or Venus with the Earth.

  13. Fast accretion of the Earth with a late Moon-forming giant impact (United States)

    Yu, Gang; Jacobsen, Stein B.


    Constraints on the formation history of the Earth are critical for understanding of planet formation processes. 182Hf-182W chronometry of terrestrial rocks points to accretion of Earth in approximately 30 Myr after the formation of the solar system, immediately followed by the Moon-forming giant impact (MGI). Nevertheless, some N-body simulations and 182Hf-182W and 87Rb-87Sr chronology of some lunar rocks have been used to argue for a later formation of the Moon at 52 to > 100 Myr. This discrepancy is often explained by metal-silicate disequilibrium during giant impacts. Here we describe a model of the 182W isotopic evolution of the accreting Earth, including constraints from partitioning of refractory siderophile elements (Ni, Co, W, V, and Nb) during core formation, which can explain the discrepancy. Our modeling shows that the concentrations of the siderophile elements of the mantle are consistent with high-pressure metal-silicate equilibration in a terrestrial magma ocean. Our analysis shows that the timing of the MGI is inversely correlated with the time scale of the main accretion stage of the Earth. Specifically, the earliest time the MGI could have taken place right at approximately 30 Myr, corresponds to the end of main-stage accretion at approximately 30 Myr. A late MGI (> 52 Myr) requires the main stage of the Earth’s accretion to be completed rapidly in < 10.7 ± 2.5 Myr. These are the two end member solutions and a continuum of solutions exists in between these extremes. PMID:22006299

  14. Natural impacts on the Moon and Mars: seismic constrains on the impact shock wave and perspectives in term of crustal and upper mantle imaging. (United States)

    Lognonne, P.; Gudkova, T.; Le Feuvre, M.; Garcia, R. F.; Kawamura, T.; Banerdt, B.; Kobayashi, N.


    Natural Impacts occurring on the surface of telluric planets are important seismic sources for constraining the crustal and upper mantle structure, especially when their impact location and impacting time can be determined by other complementing experiments, such as Earth based flash detection for the Moon or differential orbital imaging of the surface for Mars. When these complementary data are not available, which was the case of Apollo with the exception of artificial impacts, the location of impact as compared to quake is easier, as only their geographical location must be determined from seismic data. We present recent results of the analysis of impact related seismic data gathered by the Apollo Lunar seismic network during the 70th. By using the artificial impact, we first develop a calibrated analysis for extracting the impulse (i.e. mass time impact velocity) from the amplitude of seismic waves, and point out the effect of the generation of ejecta in the seismic impulse. This approach not only allows to constrain the mass of the impacts, but also to constrain the impact frequency-impactor mass relation. By combining both the Apollo long period and short period data, further analysis can be made on the dynamic of the seismic source. The combination of these date provides indeed broadband seismic analysis have been made allowing to constraint the seismic cut-off frequency and source spectrum associated with both natural and artificial impacts. We show that the source cut-off is, as compared to moonquakes, relatively low and around a few Hz for remotely detected impacts. It is also depending not only on the impact size, but also on the impact location, as the seismic radiation of the shock wave depends on the most-upper regolith layers. We finally use our results and forward modeling to prepare the GEMS seismic mission to Mars, considered by NASA for a launch in 2016. In order to have a robust estimation of the rates of seismic detection of impacts, we analyze

  15. Notes on Earth Atmospheric Entry for Mars Sample Return Missions (United States)

    Rivell, Thomas


    The entry of sample return vehicles (SRVs) into the Earth's atmosphere is the subject of this document. The Earth entry environment for vehicles, or capsules, returning from the planet Mars is discussed along with the subjects of dynamics, aerodynamics, and heat transfer. The material presented is intended for engineers and scientists who do not have strong backgrounds in aerodynamics, aerothermodynamics and flight mechanics. The document is not intended to be comprehensive and some important topics are omitted. The topics considered in this document include basic principles of physics (fluid mechanics, dynamics and heat transfer), chemistry and engineering mechanics. These subjects include: a) fluid mechanics (aerodynamics, aerothermodynamics, compressible fluids, shock waves, boundary layers, and flow regimes from subsonic to hypervelocity; b) the Earth s atmosphere and gravity; c) thermal protection system design considerations; d) heat and mass transfer (convection, radiation, and ablation); e) flight mechanics (basic rigid body dynamics and stability); and f) flight- and ground-test requirements; and g) trajectory and flow simulation methods.

  16. Mert Davies: Pioneer in the Use of Spacecraft to Map Earth and Mars (United States)

    Murray, B.; Augenstein, B.


    Mert Davies was one of the founding employees of the RAND Corporation in 1946, and continued that relationship until his death in 2001. He began his involvement in satellite imaging at Rand as one of about 100 researchers in Project Feedback in 1954, provided the basis for the initial US military space program. In 1957, in response to the Soviet launch of Sputnik, Mert and a small group of Rand cohorts proposed a family of recoverable reconnaissance satellites featuring spin stabilized cameras, for which he later received a patent. This work, now declassified, was for a short time considered as a basis for the Corona, America's first reconnaissance satellite Corona, although ultimately alternative technologies were employed. In addition he was looking beyond Earth quite early and in May, 1958 published an analysis of a lunar mapping satellite. The 1957 work at Rand spurred considerations of space-based geodesy and mapping. These and other early contributions were recognized in 1999 by the National Reconnaissance Office which honored him as one of the founders of national reconnaissance. He was so enthused by the opportunity developing in the mid 1960?s to explore photographically the planets that he changed careers and joined the Television Team of the Mariner probes being developed to flyby Mars in 1969 (Mariner's 6&7). His abilities and accomplishments there led directly to central roles later in the Mariner 9 Mars Orbiter mission (1971-72) as well as Mariner 10 to Mercury (1973-75) and Voyagers 1&2 (1979-89) These early flights to Mars represented unprecedented technical challenges, especially to radio communications. As a consequence, analog television systems, like that carried on the Ranger impact probe in 1964-65 or film readout technology like that used on Lunar Orbiter in 1965-66 to send back high-resolution images from the Moon were not feasible from planetary distances. In order to exploit the remarkable communication potential of the DSN, JPL

  17. The focusing effect of P-wave in the Moon's and Earth's low-velocity core. Analytical solution (United States)

    Fatyanov, A. G.; Burmin, V. Yu


    The important aspect in the study of the structure of the interiors of planets is the question of the presence and state of core inside them. While for the Earth this task was solved long ago, the question of whether the core of the Moon is in a liquid or solid state up to the present is debatable up to present. If the core of the Moon is liquid, then the velocity of longitudinal waves in it should be lower than in the surrounding mantle. If the core is solid, then most likely, the velocity of longitudinal waves in it is higher than in the mantle. Numerical calculations of the wave field allow us to identify the criteria for drawing conclusions about the state of the lunar core. In this paper we consider the problem of constructing an analytical solution for wave fields in a layered sphere of arbitrary radius. A stable analytic solution is obtained for the wave fields of longitudinal waves in a three-layer sphere. Calculations of the total wave fields and rays for simplified models of the Earth and the Moon with real parameters are presented. The analytical solution and the ray pattern showed that the low-velocity cores of the Earth and the Moon possess the properties of a collecting lens. This leads to the emergence of a wave field focusing area. As a result, focused waves of considerable amplitude appear on the surface of the Earth and the Moon. In the Earth case, they appear before the first PKP-wave arrival. These are so-called "precursors", which continue in the subsequent arrivals of waves. At the same time, for the simplified model of the Earth, the maximum amplitude growth is observed in the 147-degree region. For the Moon model, the maximum amplitude growth is around 180°.

  18. Blueberries on Earth and Mars: Correlations Between Concretions in Navajo Sandstone and Terra Meridiani on Mars. (United States)

    Mahaney, W. C.; Milner, M. W.; Netoff, D.; Dohm, J.; Kalm, V.; Krinsley, D.; Sodhi, R. N.; Anderson, R. C.; Boccia, S.; Malloch, D.; Kapran, B.; Havics, A.


    Concretionary Fe-Mn-rich nodular authigenic constituents of Jurassic Navajo sandstone (moki marbles) bear a certain relationship to similar concretionary forms ('blueberries') observed on Mars. Their origin on Earth is considered to invoke variable redox conditions with underground fluids penetrating porous quartz-rich sandstone leading to precipitation of hematite and goethite-rich material from solution, generally forming around a central nucleus of fine particles of quartz and orthoclase, recently verified by XRD and SEM-EDS analyses. At the outer rim/inner nucleus boundary, bulbous lobes of fine-grained quartz often invade and fracture the outer rim armored matrix. The bulbous forms are interpreted to result from fluid explusion from the inner concretionary mass, a response to pressure changes accompanying overburden loading. Moki marbles, harder than enclosing rock, often weather out of in situ sandstone outcrops that form a surface lag deposit of varnished marbles that locally resemble desert pavement. The marbles appear morphologically similar to 'blueberries' identified on the martian surface in Terra Meridiani through the MER-1 Opportunity rover. On Earth, redox fluids responsible for the genesis of marbles may have emanated from deep in the crust (often influenced by magmatic processes). These fluids, cooling to ambient temperatures, may have played a role in the genesis of the cemented outer rim of the concretions. The low frequency of fungi filaments in the marbles, contrasts with a high occurrence in Fe-encrusted sands of the Navajo formation [1], indicating that microbial content is of secondary importance in marble genesis relative to the fluctuating influx of ambient groundwater. Nevertheless, the presence of filaments in terrestrial concretions hints at the possibility of discovering fossil/extant life on Mars, and thus should be considered as prime targets for future reconnaissance missions to Mars. 1] Mahaney, W.C., et al. (2004), Icarus, 171, 39-53.

  19. Thick plate flexure. [for lithospheric models of Mars and earth (United States)

    Comer, R. P.


    Analytical expressions are derived for the displacements and stresses due to loading of a floating, uniform, elastic plate of arbitrary thickness by a plane or axisymmetric harmonic load. The solution is exact except for assumptions of small strains and linear boundary conditions, and gravitation within the plate is neglected. For typical earth parameters its predictions are comparable to those of the usual thin plate theory frequently assumed in studies of lithospheric flexure, gravity and regional isostasy. Even for a very thick lithosphere, which may exist in some regions of Mars, the thin plate theory is a better approximation to the thick plate solution than the elastic half-space limit, except for short-wavelength loads.

  20. LIDAR technology for measuring trace gases on Mars and Earth (United States)

    Riris, H.; Abshire, J. B.; Graham, Allan; Hasselbrack, William; Rodriguez, Mike; Sun, Xiaoli; Weaver, Clark; Mao, Jianping; Kawa, Randy; Li, Steve; Numata, Kenji; Wu, Stewart


    greenhouse gas and called for a mission to measure CO2, CO and CH4. Methane has absorptions in the mid-infrared (3.3 um) and the near infrared (1.65 um). The 3.3 um spectral region is ideal for planetary (Mars) Methane monitoring, but unfortunately is not suitable for earth monitoring since the Methane absorption lines are severely interfered with by water. The near infra-red overtones of Methane at 1.65 um are relatively free of interference from other atmospheric species and are suitable for Earth observations. The methane instrument uses Optical Parametric Generation (OPG) along with sensitive detectors to achieve the necessary sensitivity. Our instrument generates and detects tunable laser signals in the 3.3 or 1.65 um spectral regions with different detectors in order to measure methane on Earth or Mars. For Mars, the main interest in methane is its importance as a biogenic marker.

  1. Dynamics of Orbits near 3:1 Resonance in the Earth-Moon System (United States)

    Dichmann, Donald J.; Lebois, Ryan; Carrico, John P., Jr.


    The Interstellar Boundary Explorer (IBEX) spacecraft is currently in a highly elliptical orbit around Earth with a period near 3:1 resonance with the Moon. Its orbit is oriented so that apogee does not approach the Moon. Simulations show this orbit to be remarkably stable over the next twenty years. This article examines the dynamics of such orbits in the Circular Restricted 3-Body Problem (CR3BP). We look at three types of periodic orbits, each exhibiting a type of symmetry of the CR3BP. For each of the orbit types, we assess the local stability using Floquet analysis. Although not all of the periodic solutions are stable in the mathematical sense, any divergence is so slow as to produce practical stability over several decades. We use Poincare maps with twenty-year propagations to assess the nonlinear stability of the orbits, where the perturbation magnitudes are related to the orbit uncertainty for the IBEX mission. Finally we show that these orbits belong to a family of orbits connected in a bifurcation diagram that exhibits exchange of stability. The analysis of these families of period orbits provides a valuable starting point for a mission orbit trade study.

  2. Foundations for the post 2030 space economy: Cislunar and lunar infrastructure, Moon Village, Mars and planetary missions as markets. (United States)

    Beldavs, Vid; Dunlop, David; Crisafulli, Jim; Bernard, Foing


    Introduction: The International Lunar Decade (ILD)[1] is a framework for international collaboration from 2020 to 2030 to achieve the ultimate goal in space -- to open the space frontier. Key to opening a frontier is the capacity to "live off the land" through in situ resource utilization (ISRU). Activities in space will remain limited to exploration until ISRU becomes possible on an industrial scale. ISRU, the mining and use of resources on the Moon, asteroids, comets and other cosmic bodies will enable the opening of the space frontier for permanent occupancy and settlement. The capacity for ISRU creates the basis for a space economy where products and services are traded for resources, and increasingly sophisticated products can be produced from mined resources to help sustain life indefinitely. Enabling ISRU will require infrastructure - energy, transportation, and communications systems, as well as navigation, storage and other support services. However, regolith or other lunar/asteroid material will remain regolith until converted to a form useful to customers that will enable the development of markets. NASA's Mars journey, various planetary missions, and emerging operations on the lunar surface and at EML1 and EML2 will provide initial markets for ISRU. This paper will explore a scenario explaining how a self-sustaining space economy can be achieved by 2030, what kind of infrastructure will need to be developed, the role of NASA's Mars Journey in the creation of markets for ISRU, and the role of private-public partnership for financing the various building blocks of a self-sustaining space economy. Also dis-cussed will be the potential for a Moon Village to serve as a formative structure for the nucleation of elements of an emerging space economy, including its potential role as a forum for actors to play a role in the development of governance mechanisms that eventually would enable commercial and industrial development of the Moon. References: [1] Beldavs

  3. Late Proterozoic and Paleozoic Tides, Retreat of the Moon, and Rotation of the Earth (United States)

    Sonett; Kvale; Zakharian; Chan; Demko


    The tidal rhythmites in the Proterozoic Big Cottonwood Formation (Utah, United States), the Neoproterozoic Elatina Formation of the Flinders Range (southern Australia), and the Lower Pennsylvanian Pottsville Formation (Alabama, United States) and Mansfield Formation (Indiana, United States) indicate that the rate of retreat of the lunar orbit is dxi/dt approximately k2 sin(2delta) (where xi is the Earth-moon radius vector, k2 is the tidal Love number, and delta is the tidal lag angle) and that this rate has been approximately constant since the late Precambrian. When the contribution to tidal friction from the sun is taken into account, these data imply that the length of the terrestrial day 900 million years ago was approximately18 hours.

  4. Periodic orbits of solar sail equipped with reflectance control device in Earth-Moon system (United States)

    Yuan, Jianping; Gao, Chen; Zhang, Junhua


    In this paper, families of Lyapunov and halo orbits are presented with a solar sail equipped with a reflectance control device in the Earth-Moon system. System dynamical model is established considering solar sail acceleration, and four solar sail steering laws and two initial Sun-sail configurations are introduced. The initial natural periodic orbits with suitable periods are firstly identified. Subsequently, families of solar sail Lyapunov and halo orbits around the L1 and L2 points are designed with fixed solar sail characteristic acceleration and varying reflectivity rate and pitching angle by the combination of the modified differential correction method and continuation approach. The linear stabilities of solar sail periodic orbits are investigated, and a nonlinear sliding model controller is designed for station keeping. In addition, orbit transfer between the same family of solar sail orbits is investigated preliminarily to showcase reflectance control device solar sail maneuver capability.

  5. Moon and Mars gravity environment during parabolic flights: a new European approach to prepare for planetary exploration (United States)

    Pletser, Vladimir; Clervoy, Jean-Fran; Gharib, Thierry; Gai, Frederic; Mora, Christophe; Rosier, Patrice

    Aircraft parabolic flights provide repetitively up to 20 seconds of reduced gravity during ballis-tic flight manoeuvres. Parabolic flights are used to conduct short microgravity investigations in Physical and Life Sciences and in Technology, to test instrumentation prior to space flights and to train astronauts before a space mission. The European Space Agency (ESA) has organized since 1984 more than fifty parabolic flight campaigns for microgravity research experiments utilizing six different airplanes. More than 600 experiments were conducted spanning several fields in Physical Sciences and Life Sciences, namely Fluid Physics, Combustion Physics, Ma-terial Sciences, fundamental Physics and Technology tests, Human Physiology, cell and animal Biology, and technical tests of Life Sciences instrumentation. Since 1997, ESA uses the Airbus A300 'Zero G', the largest airplane in the world used for this type of experimental research flight and managed by the French company Novespace, a subsidiary of the French space agency CNES. From 2010 onwards, ESA and Novespace will offer the possibility of flying Martian and Moon parabolas during which reduced gravity levels equivalent to those on the Moon and Mars will be achieved repetitively for periods of more than 20 seconds. Scientists are invited to submit experiment proposals to be conducted at these partial gravity levels. This paper presents the technical capabilities of the Airbus A300 Zero-G aircraft used by ESA to support and conduct investigations at Moon-, Mars-and micro-gravity levels to prepare research and exploration during space flights and future planetary exploration missions. Some Physiology and Technology experiments performed during past ESA campaigns at 0, 1/6 an 1/3 g are presented to show the interest of this unique research tool for microgravity and partial gravity investigations.

  6. MoonBEAM: A Beyond Earth-Orbit Gamma-Ray Burst Detector for Gravitational-Wave Astronomy (United States)

    Hui, C. M.; Briggs, M. S.; Goldstein, A. M.; Jenke, P. A.; Kocevski, D.; Wilson-Hodge, C. A.


    Moon Burst Energetics All-sky Monitor (MoonBEAM) is a CubeSat concept of deploying gamma-ray detectors in cislunar space to improve localization precision for gamma-ray bursts by utilizing the light travel time difference between different orbits. We present here a gamma-ray SmallSat concept in Earth-Moon L3 halo orbit that is capable of rapid response and provide a timing baseline for localization improvement when partnered with an Earth-orbit instrument. Such an instrument would probe the extreme processes in cosmic collision of compact objects and facilitate multi-messenger time-domain astronomy to explore the end of stellar life cycles and black hole formations.

  7. Optimal Electromagnetic (EM) Geophysical Techniques to Map the Concentration of Subsurface Ice and Adsorbed Water on Mars and the Moon (United States)

    Stillman, D. E.; Grimm, R. E.


    Water ice is ubiquitous in our Solar System and is a probable target for planetary exploration. Mapping the lateral and vertical concentration of subsurface ice from or near the surface could determine the origin of lunar and martian ice and quantify a much-needed resource for human exploration. Determining subsurface ice concentration on Earth is not trivial and has been attempted previously with electrical resistivity tomography (ERT), ground penetrating radar (GPR), airborne EM (AEM), and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR). These EM geophysical techniques do not actually detect ice, but rather the absence of unfrozen water. This causes a non-unique interpretation of frozen and dry subsurface sediments. This works well in the arctic because most locations are not dry. However, for planetary exploration, liquid water is exceedingly rare and subsurface mapping must discriminate between an ice-rich and a dry subsurface. Luckily, nature has provided a unique electrical signature of ice: its dielectric relaxation. The dielectric relaxation of ice creates a temperature and frequency dependence of the electrical properties and varies the relative dielectric permittivity from ~3.1 at radar frequencies to >100 at low frequencies. On Mars, sediments smaller than silt size can hold enough adsorbed unfrozen water to complicate the measurement. This is because the presence of absorbed water also creates frequency-dependent electrical properties. The dielectric relaxation of adsorbed water and ice can be separated as they have different shapes and frequency ranges as long as a spectrum spanning the two relaxations is measured. The volume concentration of ice and adsorbed water is a function of the strength of their relaxations. Therefore, we suggest that capacitively-coupled dielectric spectroscopy (a.k.a. spectral induced polarization or complex resistivity) can detect the concentration of both ice and adsorbed water in the subsurface. To prove this concept we have collected

  8. Rapid Biochemical Analysis on the International Space Station (ISS): Preparing for Human Exploration of the Moon and Mars (United States)

    Maule, J.; Morris, Heather; Monaco, L.; Steele, A.; Wainwright, N.


    . The goals of this initial study were to i) test the cleanliness of reagents/supplies on orbit, ii) test the crew's ability to collect and process a sample in microgravity without contamination, iii) demonstrate nominal function of the LOCAD-PTS, and iv) provide a general survey of endotoxin within the ISS. The surface sites varied greatly in terms of their frequency-of-use and material texture/composition; from relatively smooth aluminum, to fabric, to the room temperature vulcanizing (RTV) rubber of a Extravehicular Mobility Unit (EMU) spacesuit. Results showed that: i) the swabbing kits and reagents remained clean on orbit, ii) the crew could collect and process a sample without contamination, and iii) the LOCAD-PTS functioned nominally in > 99% of the 55 tests completed. We will present detailed results of the survey of endotoxin on ISS surfaces. These results and technology are important in the near-term - by providing an extra tool in the toolbox for ISS microbial monitoring. They are also important in the longer term as valuable preparation for human exploration of the Moon and Mars. One of the proposed science goals for the human exploration of Mars will be to detect and characterize any indigenous biological molecules that may exist on the Martian surface. To achieve that goal, the crew must have the technology available onboard to differentiate indigenous biology from any terrestrial biological material brought to Mars by the spacecraft and crew (termed 'forward contamination'). The LAL assay is already one of the official methods used by NASA's planetary protection program to certify cleanliness of interplanetary robotic spacecraft prior to launch; and therefore endotoxin is a good marker of forward contamination (as well as other microbial molecules detectable with LOCAD-PTS e.g. box-1, 3-glucan and lipoteichoic acid). Furthermore, the distribution and abundance of these molecules on the ISS provides a good indicator of what to expect on the Crew

  9. The Effect of Teaching Strategies Using Models on Preservice Elementary Teachers' Conceptions about Earth-Sun-Moon Relationships. (United States)

    Callison, Priscilla L.; Wright, Emmett L.

    This study investigated the effect of three specific hands-on teaching strategies on the attainment and alteration of preservice elementary teachers' conceptions about earth-sun-moon relationships. The subjects (n=76) were enrolled in an elementary school science methods course. The descriptive nature of this study explored: (1) the effect of two…

  10. A Sun-Earth-Moon Activity to Develop Student Understanding of Lunar Phases and Frames of Reference (United States)

    Ashmann, Scott


    The Moon is an ever-present subject of observation, and it is a recurring topic in the science curriculum from kindergarten's basic observations through graduate courses' mathematical analyses of its orbit. How do students come to comprehend Earth's nearest neighbor? What is needed for them to understand the lunar phases and other phenomena and…

  11. Preliminary investigations on a NTP cargo shuttle for earth to moon orbit payload transfer based on a particle bed reactor

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Raepsaet, X.; Proust, E.; Gervaise, F.; Baraer, L.; Naury, S.; Linet, F.L.


    MAPS, a 3-year study program on NTP has recently been launched at CEA following the conclusions of a preliminary scoping study of an NTP system for earth to moon orbit cargo shuttle missions. This paper presents the main results of this scoping study, and gives an outline of the MAPS program. (authors). 5 figs., 11 tabs., 7 refs

  12. Field astrobiology research instruments and methods in moon-mars analogue site.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Foing, B.H.; Stoker, C.; Zavaleta, J.; Ehrenfreund, P.; Sarrazin, P.; Blake, D.; Page, J.; Pletser, V.; Hendrikse, J.; Oliveira Lebre Direito, M.S.; Kotler, M.; Martins, Z.; Orzechowska, G.; Thiel, C.S.; Clarke, J.; Gross, J.; Wendt, L.; Borst, A.; Peters, S.; Wilhelm, M.-B.; Davies, G.R.; EuroGeoMars 2009 Team, ILEWG


    We describe the field demonstration of astrobiology instruments and research methods conducted in and from the Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS) in Utah during the EuroGeoMars campaign 2009 coordinated by ILEWG, ESA/ESTEC and NASA Ames, with the contribution of academic partners. We discuss the

  13. Earth Based Views of Solute Profiles on Mars (Invited) (United States)

    Amundson, R.


    'Historical accounts of planetary evolution are mostly written in stone' (1), but the last chapter of that history is embedded in its soil. Soil properties reflect the effects of prevailing environmental boundary conditions. Solute profiles are powerful indicators of the direction and magnitude of water flow. I briefly review the chemistry of salt profiles from deserts formed by upward vs. downward migrating water, use this as a basis for interpreting aspects of Mars hydrological history. The Noachian-aged Meridiani Planum land surface is exposed in the Endurance and Victoria Craters. These craters have been estimated to be ~ craters and the pre-excavation alteration of the landscape by aqueous processes. Crater profiles include APXS 'asis' (fresh surface), brushed , and RAT'd samples. Using RAT'd samples as a baseline, the gains and losses of elements in the surficial samples can be assessed (Fig. 1). The calculations reveal similar trends of surface alteration within a crater (Victoria) and between two craters (Fig. 1). The asis samples are enriched in Na2O, Al2O3, CaO, and Br (and depleted in MgO, SO3, Cl, K2O, MnO, FeO) relative to the RAT'd material. Brushing drastically reduces these differences. These data show that the alteration is very surficial. The RAT'd samples appear to represent pre-impact chemical profiles of the sediment (Fig. 2). It has previously been reported that the upper ~1m at Victoria has been visibly altered by diagenesis (3). Both Endurance (4) and Victoria craters have remarkably similar depth profiles (relative to the lowest sampling point) of SO3, Cl, and Br. The salt profiles, combined with observations of physical alteration, suggest modest pedogenic alteration of the landsurface sometime prior to impact. The sequence of the SO3 and Cl is consistent only with downward aqueous transport, as clearly illustrated by comparison to Earth soils that form by groundwater evaporation vs. downward moving meteoric water. While the total water

  14. Apollo 15 impact melts, the age of Imbrium, and the Earth-Moon impact cataclysm (United States)

    Ryder, Graham; Dalrymple, G. Brent


    The early impact history of the lunar surface is of critical importance in understanding the evolution of both the primitive Moon and the Earth, as well as the corresponding populations of planetesimals in Earth-crossing orbits. Two endmember hypotheses call for greatly dissimilar impact dynamics. One is a heavy continuous (declining) bombardment from about 4.5 Ga to 3.85 Ga. The other is that an intense but brief bombardment at about 3.85 +/- Ga was responsible for producing the visible lunar landforms and for the common 3.8-3.9 Ga ages of highland rocks. The Apennine Front, the main topographic ring of the Imbrium Basin, was sampled on the Apollo 15 mission. The Apollo 15 impact melts show a diversity of chemical compositions, indicating their origin in at least several different impact events. The few attempts at dating them have generally not produced convincing ages, despite their importance. Thus, we chose to investigate the ages of melt rock samples from the Apennine Front, because of their stratigraphic importance yet lack of previous age definition.

  15. Habitability: where lo look for life? Halophilic habitats: earth analogs to study Mars and Europá s habitability (United States)

    Gómez, F.; Gómez-Elvira, J.; Rodríguez, N.; Caballero Castrejón, J. F.; Amils, R.; Rodríguez-Manfredi, J. A.


    have been detected in different regions of Mars (Fernández-Remolar et al., 2004). But, where to look for life in other planetary bodies? Planet's or Icy Moon`s surface are adverse for life. Harsh conditions for life to wheal with. Similar harsh conditions as the primordial Earth ones during the time when origin of life occurred. In the last case, life was originated under high irradiation conditions, meteorite bombardment and high temperature. Some particular protective environments or elements should house the organic molecules and the first bacterial life forms (Gómez F. et al., 2007). Terrestrial analogues work could help us to afford its comprehension. We are reporting here some preliminary studies about endolithic niches inside salt deposits used by phototrophs for taking advantage of sheltering particular light wavelengths. These acidic salts deposits located in Río Tinto shelter life forms which are difficult to localize by eye. Molecular ecology techniques are needed for its localization and study. Bibliography Fernández-Remolar, D., Gómez-Elvira, J., Gómez, F., Sebastián, E., Martín, J., Manfredi, J.A., Torres, J., González Kesler, C. and Amils, R. Planetary and Space Science 52 (2004) 239 - 248 Gómez, F., Aguilera, A. and Amils, R. Icarus 191 (2007) 352-359. Acknowledgments This study was funded by the project ESP2006-06640 from Spanish Ministry of Education and Science and FEDER funds from European Community.

  16. Verifying single-station seismic approaches using Earth-based data: Preparation for data return from the InSight mission to Mars (United States)

    Panning, Mark P.; Beucler, Éric; Drilleau, Mélanie; Mocquet, Antoine; Lognonné, Philippe; Banerdt, W. Bruce


    The planned InSight mission will deliver a single seismic station containing 3-component broadband and short-period sensors to the surface of Mars in 2016. While much of the progress in understanding the Earth and Moon's interior has relied on the use of seismic networks for accurate location of sources, single station approaches can be applied to data returned from Mars in order to locate events and determine interior structure. In preparation for the data return from InSight, we use a terrestrial dataset recorded at the Global Seismic Network station BFO, located at the Black Forest Observatory in Germany, to verify an approach for event location and structure determination based on recordings of multiple orbit surface waves, which will be more favorable to record on Mars than Earth due to smaller planetary radius and potentially lower background noise. With this approach applied to events near the threshold of observability on Earth, we are able to determine epicentral distance within approximately 1° (corresponding to ∼60 km on Mars), and origin time within ∼30 s. With back azimuth determined from Rayleigh wave polarization, absolute locations are determined generally within an aperture of 10°, allowing for localization within large tectonic regions on Mars. With these locations, we are able to recover Earth mantle structure within ±5% (the InSight mission requirements for martian mantle structure) using 1D travel time inversions of P and S travel times for datasets of only 7 events. The location algorithm also allows for the measurement of great-circle averaged group velocity dispersion, which we measure between 40 and 200 s to scale the expected reliable frequency range of the InSight data from Earth to Mars data. Using the terrestrial data, we are able to resolve structure down to ∼200 km, but synthetic tests demonstrate we should be able to resolve martian structure to ∼400 km with the same frequency content given the smaller planetary size.

  17. Ascent and eruption of basaltic magma on the earth and moon

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wilson, L.; Head, J.W. III.


    Geological and physical observations and constraints are applied to the development of a model of the ascent and emplacement of basaltic magma on the earth and moon. Mathematical models of the nature and motion of gas/liquid mixtures are developed and show that gas exsolution from terrestrial and lunar magmas commonly only occurs at shallow depths (less than 2 km); thus the ascent of bubble-free magma at depth can be treated separately from the complex motions caused by gas exsolution near the surface. Magma ascent is related to dike or conduit width. For terestrial basalts with negligible yield strengths and viscosities greater than 10 2 Ps s, widths in the range 0.2--0.6 m are needed to allow eruptions from between depths of 0.5--20 km. Fissure widths of about 4 m would be needed to account for output rates estimated for the Columbia River flood basalt eruptions. As the magma nears the surface, bubble coalescence will tend to occur, leading to intermittent explosive strombolian-style activity. For commonly occuring lunar and terrestrial basalts the magma rise speed must be greater than 0.5-1 m/s if strombolian activity is to be avoided and relatively steady fire fountaining is to take place. Terrestrial fire fountain heights are dictated by the vertical velocity of the magma/gas dispersion emerging through the vent, increasing with increasing magma gas content and mass eruption rate, and decreasing with increasing magma viscosity. Terrestrial fire fountain heights up to 500 m imply the release of up to 0.4 wt % water from the magma, corresponding to initial water contents up to 0.6 wt %. The presence of extremely long lava flows and sinuous rilles on the moon has often been cited as evidence for very high extrusion rates and thus a basic difference between terrestrial and lunar magmas and crustal environments


    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Electron Reflectometer Data Record (ERDR) is a time ordered series of electron measurements from the Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mission. Each record consists of...


    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set consists of calibrated, time-ordered, angle-resolved electron flux data from the Electron Reflectometer (ER) instrument on the Mars Global Surveyor...


    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set contains vector magnetic field data acquired by the Fluxgate section of the Magnetometer / Electron Reflectometer instrument aboard the Mars Global...

  1. Oxygen isotopic evidence for accretion of Earth's water before a high-energy Moon-forming giant impact. (United States)

    Greenwood, Richard C; Barrat, Jean-Alix; Miller, Martin F; Anand, Mahesh; Dauphas, Nicolas; Franchi, Ian A; Sillard, Patrick; Starkey, Natalie A


    The Earth-Moon system likely formed as a result of a collision between two large planetary objects. Debate about their relative masses, the impact energy involved, and the extent of isotopic homogenization continues. We present the results of a high-precision oxygen isotope study of an extensive suite of lunar and terrestrial samples. We demonstrate that lunar rocks and terrestrial basalts show a 3 to 4 ppm (parts per million), statistically resolvable, difference in Δ 17 O. Taking aubrite meteorites as a candidate impactor material, we show that the giant impact scenario involved nearly complete mixing between the target and impactor. Alternatively, the degree of similarity between the Δ 17 O values of the impactor and the proto-Earth must have been significantly closer than that between Earth and aubrites. If the Earth-Moon system evolved from an initially highly vaporized and isotopically homogenized state, as indicated by recent dynamical models, then the terrestrial basalt-lunar oxygen isotope difference detected by our study may be a reflection of post-giant impact additions to Earth. On the basis of this assumption, our data indicate that post-giant impact additions to Earth could have contributed between 5 and 30% of Earth's water, depending on global water estimates. Consequently, our data indicate that the bulk of Earth's water was accreted before the giant impact and not later, as often proposed.

  2. Whole planet cooling and the radiogenic heat source contents of the earth and moon

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schubert, G.; Stevenson, D.


    It is widely believed that the surface heat flows of the earth and moon provide good measures of the total amounts of radioactives in these bodies. Simple thermal evolution models, based on subsolidus whole mantle convection, indicate that this may not be the case. These models have been constructed assuming an initially hot state, but with a wide variety of choices for the parameters characterizing the rheology and convective vigor. All models are constrained to be consistent with present-day surface heat fluxes, and many of the terrestrial models are consistent with the mantle viscosities indicated by post-glacial rebound. For the earth the acceptable models give a radiogenic heat production that is only 65--85% of the surface heat output, the difference being due to secular cooling of the earth (about 50 0 --100 0 C per 10 9 years in the upper mantle). It is argued that the actual heat generation may be substantially less, since the models omit core heat, upward migration of heat sources, possible layering of the mantle, and deviations from steady convection. Geochemical models which are near to chondritic (apart from potassium depletion) are marginally consistent with surface heat flow. In the lunar models, heat generation is typically only 70--80% of the surface heat flow, even with allowance for the strong near-surface enhancement of radioactives. Despite the simplicity of the models the persistence of a significant difference between heat generation and heat output for a wide range of parameter choices indicates that this difference is real and should be incorporated in geochemical modeling of the planets

  3. Designing remote operations strategies to optimize science mission goals : Lessons learned from the Moon Mars Analog Mission Activities Mauna Kea 2012 field test

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Yingst, R. A.; Russell, P.; Ten Kate, I. L.; Noble, S.; Graff, T.; Graham, L. D.; Eppler, D.

    The Moon Mars Analog Mission Activities Mauna Kea 2012 (MMAMA 2012) field campaign aimed to assess how effectively an integrated science and engineering rover team operating on a 24-h planning cycle facilitates high-fidelity science products. The science driver of this field campaign was to

  4. Size-Selective Modes of Aeolian Transport on Earth and Mars (United States)

    Swann, C.; Ewing, R. C.; Sherman, D. J.; McLean, C. J.


    Aeolian sand transport is a dominant driver of surface change and dust emission on Mars. Estimates of aeolian sand transport on Earth and Mars rely on terrestrial transport models that do not differentiate between transport modes (e.g., creep vs. saltation), which limits estimates of the critical threshold for transport and the total sand flux during a transport event. A gap remains in understanding how the different modes contribute to the total sand flux. Experiments conducted at the MARtian Surface WInd Tunnel separated modes of transport for uniform and mixed grain size surfaces at Earth and Martian atmospheric pressures. Crushed walnut shells with a density of 1.0 gm/cm3 were used. Experiments resolved grain size distributions for creeping and saltating grains over 3 uniform surfaces, U1, U2, and U3, with median grain sizes of 308 µm, 721 µm, and 1294 µm, and a mixed grain size surface, M1, with median grain sizes of 519 µm. A mesh trap located 5 cm above the test bed and a surface creep trap were deployed to capture particles moving as saltation and creep. Grains that entered the creep trap at angles ≥ 75° were categorized as moving in creep mode only. Only U1 and M1 surfaces captured enough surface creep at both Earth and Mars pressure for statistically significant grain size analysis. Our experiments show that size selective transport differs between Earth and Mars conditions. The median grain size of particles moving in creep for both uniform and mixed surfaces are larger under Earth conditions. (U1Earth = 385 µm vs. U1Mars = 355 µm; M1Earth = 762 vs. M1Mars = 697 µm ). However, particles moving in saltation were larger under Mars conditions (U1Earth = 282 µm; U1Mars = 309 µm; M1Earth = 347 µm; M1Mars = 454 µm ). Similar to terrestrial experiments, the median size of surface creep is larger than the median grain size of saltation. Median sizes of U1, U2, U3 at Mars conditions for creep was 355 µm, 774 µm and 1574 µm. Saltation at Mars

  5. Global drainage patterns and the origins of topographic relief on Earth, Mars, and Titan. (United States)

    Black, Benjamin A; Perron, J Taylor; Hemingway, Douglas; Bailey, Elizabeth; Nimmo, Francis; Zebker, Howard


    Rivers have eroded the topography of Mars, Titan, and Earth, creating diverse landscapes. However, the dominant processes that generated topography on Titan (and to some extent on early Mars) are not well known. We analyzed drainage patterns on all three bodies and found that large drainages, which record interactions between deformation and erosional modification, conform much better to long-wavelength topography on Titan and Mars than on Earth. We use a numerical landscape evolution model to demonstrate that short-wavelength deformation causes drainage directions to diverge from long-wavelength topography, as observed on Earth. We attribute the observed differences to ancient long-wavelength topography on Mars, recent or ongoing generation of long-wavelength relief on Titan, and the creation of short-wavelength relief by plate tectonics on Earth. Copyright © 2017, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  6. Modeling the Infrared Spectrum of the Earth-Moon System: Implications for the Detection and Characterization of Earthlike Extrasolar Planets and their Moonlike Companions


    Robinson, Tyler D.


    Large surface temperatures on the illuminated hemisphere of the Moon can lead it to contribute a significant amount of flux to spatially unresolved infrared (IR) observations of the Earth-Moon system, especially at wavelengths where Earth's atmosphere is absorbing. We have paired the NASA Astrobiology Institute's Virtual Planetary Laboratory three-dimensional spectral Earth model with a model of the phase dependent IR spectrum of a Moonlike satellite to investigate the effects of an unresolve...

  7. Thermal and magmatic processes on Venus, Earth, and Mars (United States)

    Hauck, Steven Arthur, II

    Venus, Mars, and Earth present unique opportunities and laboratories for studying the thermal and magmatic evolution of terrestrial planets. Key observations from the Magellan mission to Venus were that the surface hosts a mere ˜1000 impact craters and that more than 65% of the surface is covered by volcanic plains. A popular hypothesis suggested the plains were emplaced in 10--100 Myr. However, analysis of the population of impact craters with respect to plains geology suggests that magmatism associated with plains emplacement lasted approximately half the average surface age of the planet, almost 500 Myr. Martian thermo-magmatic evolution is constrained by estimates that the crust was predominantly emplaced within the first 500 Myr, has an average crustal thickness of 50--100 km, and observations that imply that the planet had an internally generated magnetic field early, but is lacking one today. Coupling of a simple, parameterized model of mantle convection to a batch-melting model for peridotite allows reconstruction of reasonable estimates of the conditions and evolutionary path of the crust and mantle. Key elements of the nominal model are inclusion of the energetics of melting, a wet (weak) mantle rheology, self-consistent fractionation of heat producing elements to the crust, a near chondritic abundance of those same elements, and a core with 15 wt% sulfur. Inclusion of the latent heat of melting mantle material is crucial for constraining thermal and magmatic history of Mars. The nominal model results in an average crustal thickness of 67 km that was 75% emplaced by 4 Ga. The subduction of terrestrial oceanic lithosphere is an important heat transfer process related to plate tectonics. The source of deep focus earthquakes may be tied to the thermal structure of downgoing slabs and the potential for catastrophic transformation of metastable olivine below the 410 km discontinuity. The first models of subducting slabs that include thermal conductivity that

  8. Habitability: where lo look for life? Habitability Index Earth analogs to study Mars and Europa`s habitability (United States)

    Gomez, F.; Amils, R.; Gomez-Elvira, J.


    The first astrobiological mission specially designed to detect life on Mars, the Viking missions, thought life unlikely, considering the amount of UV radiation bathing the surface of the planet, the resulting oxidative conditions, and the lack of adequate atmospheric protection. The necessity of the Europa surface exploration comes from the idea of a water ocean existence in its interior. Life needs several requirements for its establishment but, the only sine qua nom elements is the water, taking into account our experience on Earth extreme ecosystems The discovery of extremophiles on Earth widened the window of possibilities for life to develop in the universe, and as a consequence on Mars. The compilation of data produced by the ongoing missions (Mars Global Surveyor, Mars Odyssey, Mars Express and Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity) offers a completely different view: signs of an early wet Mars and rather recent volcanic activity. The discovery of important accumulations of sulfates, and the existence of iron minerals like jarosite, goethite and hematite in rocks of sedimentary origin has allowed specific terrestrial models related with this type of mineralogy to come into focus. Río Tinto (Southwestern Spain, Iberian Pyritic Belt) is an extreme acidic environment, product of the chemolithotrophic activity of microorganisms that thrive in the massive pyrite-rich deposits of the Iberian Pyritic Belt. The high concentrations of ferric iron and sulfates, products of the metabolism of pyrite, generate a collection of minerals, mainly gypsum, jarosite, goethite and hematites, all of which have been detected in different regions of Mars (Fernández-Remolar et al., 2004). But, where to look for life in other planetary bodies? Planet`s or Icy Moon`s surface are adverse for life. Some particular protective environments or elements should house the organic molecules and the first bacterial life forms (Gómez F. et al., 2007). Terrestrial analogues work could help us to

  9. Mass Flux in the Ancient Earth-Moon System and Benign Implications for the Origin of Life on Earth (United States)

    Ryder, Graham


    The origin of life on Earth is commonly considered to have been negatively affected by intense impacting in the Hadean, with the potential for the repeated evaporation and sterilization of any ocean. The impact flux is based on scaling from the lunar crater density record, but that record has no tie to any absolute age determination for any identified stratigraphic unit older than approx. 3.9 Ga (Nectaris basin). The flux can be described in terms of mass accretion, and various independent means can be used to estimate the mass flux in different intervals. The critical interval is that between the end of essential crustal formation (approx. 4.4 Ga) and the oldest mare times (approx. 3.8 Ga). The masses of the basin-forming projectiles during Nectarian and early Imbrian times, when the last 15 of the approx.45 identified impact basins formed, can be reasonably estimated as minima. These in sum provide a minimum of 2 x 10(exp 21)g for the mass flux to the Moon during those times. If the interval was 80 million years (Nectaris 3.90 Ga, Orientale 3.82 Ga), then the flux was approx. 2 x 10(exp 13) g/yr over this period. This is higher by more than an order of magnitude than a flux curve that declines continuously and uniformly from lunar accretion to the rate inferred for the older mare plains. This rate cannot be extrapolated back increasingly into pre-Nectarian times, because the Moon would have added masses far in excess of itself in post-crust-formation time. Thus this episode was a distinct and cataclysmic set of events. There are approx. 30 pre-Nectarian basins, and they were probably part of the same cataclysm (starting at approx. 4.0 Ga?) because the crust is fairly intact, the meteoritic contamination of the pre-Nectarian crust is very low, impact melt rocks older than 3.92 Ga are virtually unknown, and ancient volcanic and plutonic rocks have survived this interval. The accretionary flux from approx. 4.4 to approx. 4.0 Ga was comparatively benign. When scaled

  10. Mars Exploration: Is There Water on Mars? An Educator's Guide with Activities for Physical and Earth and Space Science. (United States)

    TERC, Cambridge, MA.

    This educator's guide discusses whether there is water on the planet Mars. The activities, written for grades 9-12, concern physical, earth, and space sciences. By experimenting with water as it changes state and investigating some effects of air pressure, students not only learn core ideas in physical science but can also deduce the water…

  11. Blueberries on Earth and Mars: Some Correlations Between Andean Paleosols, Geothermal Pipes in Navajo Sandstone and Terra Meridiani on Mars (United States)

    Mahaney, W. C.; Milner, M. W.; Netoff, D. I.; Dohm, J. M.; Sodhi, R. N. S.; Aufreiter, S.; Hancock, R. G. V.; Bezada, M.; Kalm, V.; Malloch, D.


    The origin of "blueberries" on Mars and their relationship to similar concretionary forms on Earth invokes a process of variable redox conditions in underground fluids. The possible role of microorganisms in the origin of bluberries opens an avenue for biological investigations.

  12. Modulation of LISA free-fall orbits due to the Earth-Moon system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cerdonio, Massimo; Marzari, Francesco; De Marchi, Fabrizio; De Pietri, Roberto; Jetzer, Philippe; Mazzolo, Giulio; Ortolan, Antonello; Sereno, Mauro


    We calculate the effect of the Earth-Moon (EM) system on the free-fall motion of LISA test masses. We show that the periodic gravitational pulling of the EM system induces a resonance with fundamental frequency 1 yr -1 and a series of periodic perturbations with frequencies equal to integer harmonics of the synodic month (≅ 3.92 x 10 -7 Hz). We then evaluate the effects of these perturbations (up to the 6th harmonics) on the relative motions between each test mass couple, finding that they range between 3 mm and 10 pm for the 2nd and 6th harmonic, respectively. If we take the LISA sensitivity curve, as extrapolated down to 10 -6 Hz in Bender (2003 Class. Quantum Grav. 20 301-10), we obtain that a few harmonics of the EM system can be detected in the Doppler data collected by the LISA space mission. This suggests that the EM system gravitational near field could provide an additional crosscheck to the calibration of LISA, as extended to such low frequencies.

  13. Spacecraft navigation at Mars using earth-based and in situ radio tracking techniques (United States)

    Thurman, S. W.; Edwards, C. D.; Kahn, R. D.; Vijayaraghavan, A.; Hastrup, R. C.; Cesarone, R. J.


    A survey of earth-based and in situ radiometric data types and results from a number of studies investigating potential radio navigation performance for spacecraft approaching/orbiting Mars and for landed spacecraft and rovers on the surface of Mars are presented. The performance of Doppler, ranging and interferometry earth-based data types involving single or multiple spacecraft is addressed. This evaluation is conducted with that of in situ data types, such as Doppler and ranging measurements between two spacecraft near Mars, or between a spacecraft and one or more surface radio beacons.

  14. Natural radioactivity of the rocks from the Moon and planets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Surkov, Yu.A.


    Tha data on natural radioactivity of rocks (U, Th and K contents) from the Moon, Venus and Mars obtained by means of cosmic means are analyzed. The Moon rock radioactivity has been measured in situ (from orbital vehicles) as well as in the samples of lunar material delivered to the Earth and as for Venus and Mars rocks - by landing vehicles. It has been found that the main specific feature of the Moon and the Earth group planets is the presence of two geomorphological types of the structure of their surface composed by two different types of the matter. The ancient contineent regions are made up by feldspar rock - gabbroanorthosite at the Moon (and possibly at the Mars) and granite-metamorphic at the Earth (and possibly at the Venus). The younger ''marine'' regions are composed by basalt rock. The presence at the Moon of two types of crust (marine and continental ones) having a different nature is clearly reflected on the Moon radioactivity map where marine regions (15% of the total surface) which have high radioactivity and continental regions with a relatively low radioactivity can be seen. The discovery of rocks on the Venus surface highly enriched by U, Th and K speaks of their melting from the primary matter in the depth of the Earth. The Marsian rock by the natural radioelement content is close to igneous rocks of the Earth crust of the basic composition and lunar marine basalts

  15. Earth-based and Cassini-spacecraft Observations of Irregular Moons of Jupiter and Saturn (United States)

    Denk, Tilmann; Mottola, S.; Roatsch, T.; Rosenberg, H.; Neukum, G.


    We observed irregular satellites of Jupiter and Saturn with the ISS camera of the Cassini spacecraft [1] and with the 1.23-m telescope of the Calar Alto observatory in Spain [2]. Scientific goals are the determination of rotation periods, rotation-axis orientations, spin directions, size parameters, color properties, phase curves, and searches for binaries. Himalia (J6), the largest of the irregular jovian moons, has been imaged by Cassini on 18 Dec 2000; a body size of 120±5 km x 150±10 km and an albedo of 0.05±0.01 have been measured [3,4]. Earth-based observations revealed that Himalia's rotation period is probably 9.3 h, which is in agreement with the 9.2 to 9.8 h suggested by [5], although periods of 7.8 or 11.7 h cannot be ruled out yet. In the saturnian system, 10 irregular moons were scheduled for Cassini ISS observations over time spans >9 hrs until end-of-August, 2010. Observation distances vary between 5.6 and 22 million km, corresponding to ISS pixel scales of 34 to 130 km. For the objects measured so far, the rotation periods vary significantly. For instance, Siarnaq (S/2000 S3; size 40 km) and Ymir (S/2000 S1; 18 km) exhibit rotation periods of 6.7 h and 7.3 h, respectively, while Kiviuq (S/2000 S5; 16 km) might take about 22 h for one rotation. First results from the observation campaigns will be presented at the meeting. References: [1] Porco, C.C., et al. (2004), Space Sci. Rev. 115, 363; [2]; [3] Denk, T. et al. (2001), Conference on Jupiter (Planet, Satellites & Magnetosphere), Boulder, CO, 25-30 June 2001, abstracts book p. 30-31; [4] Porco, C.C., et al. (2003), Science 299, 1541; [5] Degewij, J., et al. (1980), Icarus 44, 520. We gratefully acknowledge funding by the German Space Agency (DLR) Bonn through grant no. 50 OH 0305.

  16. Teaching Future Teachers Basic Astronomy Concepts--Sun-Earth-Moon Relative Movements--at a Time of Reform in Science Education (United States)

    Trumper, Ricardo


    In view of students' alternative conceptions about basic concepts in astronomy, we conducted a series of constructivist activities with future elementary and junior high school teachers aimed at changing their conceptions about the cause of seasonal changes, and of several characteristics of the Sun-Earth-Moon relative movements like Moon phases,…

  17. Titanium stable isotope investigation of magmatic processes on the Earth and Moon (United States)

    Millet, Marc-Alban; Dauphas, Nicolas; Greber, Nicolas D.; Burton, Kevin W.; Dale, Chris W.; Debret, Baptiste; Macpherson, Colin G.; Nowell, Geoffrey M.; Williams, Helen M.


    We present titanium stable isotope measurements of terrestrial magmatic samples and lunar mare basalts with the aims of constraining the composition of the lunar and terrestrial mantles and evaluating the potential of Ti stable isotopes for understanding magmatic processes. Relative to the OL-Ti isotope standard, the δ49Ti values of terrestrial samples vary from -0.05 to +0.55‰, whereas those of lunar mare basalts vary from -0.01 to +0.03‰ (the precisions of the double spike Ti isotope measurements are ca. ±0.02‰ at 95% confidence). The Ti stable isotope compositions of differentiated terrestrial magmas define a well-defined positive correlation with SiO2 content, which appears to result from the fractional crystallisation of Ti-bearing oxides with an inferred isotope fractionation factor of ΔTi49oxide-melt = - 0.23 ‰ ×106 /T2. Primitive terrestrial basalts show no resolvable Ti isotope variations and display similar values to mantle-derived samples (peridotite and serpentinites), indicating that partial melting does not fractionate Ti stable isotopes and that the Earth's mantle has a homogeneous δ49Ti composition of +0.005 ± 0.005 (95% c.i., n = 29). Eclogites also display similar Ti stable isotope compositions, suggesting that Ti is immobile during dehydration of subducted oceanic lithosphere. Lunar basalts have variable δ49Ti values; low-Ti mare basalts have δ49Ti values similar to that of the bulk silicate Earth (BSE) while high-Ti lunar basalts display small enrichment in the heavy Ti isotopes. This is best interpreted in terms of source heterogeneity resulting from Ti stable isotope fractionation associated with ilmenite-melt equilibrium during the generation of the mantle source of high-Ti lunar mare basalts. The similarity in δ49Ti between terrestrial samples and low-Ti lunar basalts provides strong evidence that the Earth and Moon have identical stable Ti isotope compositions.

  18. Radiation protection for human exploration of the moon and mars: Application of the mash code system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Johnson, J.O.; Santoro, R.T.; Drischler, J.D.; Barnes, J.M.


    The Monte Carlo Adjoint Shielding code system -- MASH, developed for the Department of Defense for calculating radiation protection factors for armored vehicles against neutron and gamma radiation, has been used to assess the dose from reactor radiation to an occupant in a habitat on Mars. The capability of MASH to reproduce measured data is summarized to demonstrate the accuracy of the code. The estimation of the radiation environment in an idealized reactor-habitat model is reported to illustrate the merits of the adjoint Monte Carlo procedure for space related studies. The reactor radiation dose for different reactor-habitat surface configurations to a habitat occupant is compared with the natural radiation dose acquired during a 500-day Mars mission

  19. Space Studies of the Earth-Moon System, Planets, and Small Bodies of the Solar System (B) Past, Present and Future of Small Body Science and Exploration (B0.4) (United States)

    Abell, Paul; Mazanek, Dan; Reeves, Dan; Chodas, Paul; Gates, Michele; Johnson, Lindley; Ticker, Ronald


    To achieve its long-term goal of sending humans to Mars, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) plans to proceed in a series of incrementally more complex human space flight missions. Today, human flight experience extends only to Low- Earth Orbit (LEO), and should problems arise during a mission, the crew can return to Earth in a matter of minutes to hours. The next logical step for human space flight is to gain flight experience in the vicinity of the Moon. These cis-lunar missions provide a "proving ground" for the testing of systems and operations while still accommodating an emergency return path to the Earth that would last only several days. Cis-lunar mission experience will be essential for more ambitious human missions beyond the Earth-Moon system, which will require weeks, months, or even years of transit time. In addition, NASA has been given a Grand Challenge to find all asteroid threats to human populations and know what to do about them. Obtaining knowledge of asteroid physical properties combined with performing technology demonstrations for planetary defense provide much needed information to address the issue of future asteroid impacts on Earth. Hence the combined objectives of human exploration and planetary defense give a rationale for the Asteroid Re-direct Mission (ARM).

  20. Breaking Ground on the Moon and Mars: Reconstructing Lunar Tectonic Evolution and Martian Central Pit Crater Formation (United States)

    Williams, Nathan Robert

    Understanding the structural evolution of planetary surfaces provides key insights to their physical properties and processes. On the Moon, large-scale tectonism was thought to have ended over a billion years ago. However, new Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera (LROC) Narrow Angle Camera (NAC) high resolution images show the Moon's surface in unprecedented detail and show many previously unidentified tectonic landforms, forcing a re-assessment of our views of lunar tectonism. I mapped lobate scarps, wrinkle ridges, and graben across Mare Frigoris -- selected as a type area due to its excellent imaging conditions, abundance of tectonic landforms, and range of inferred structural controls. The distribution, morphology, and crosscutting relationships of these newly identified populations of tectonic landforms imply a more complex and longer-lasting history of deformation that continues to today. I also performed additional numerical modeling of lobate scarp structures that indicates the upper kilometer of the lunar surface has experienced 3.5-18.6 MPa of differential stress in the recent past, likely due to global compression from radial thermal contraction. Central pit craters on Mars are another instance of intriguing structures that probe subsurface physical properties. These kilometer-scale pits are nested in the centers of many impact craters on Mars as well as on icy satellites. They are inferred to form in the presence of a water-ice rich substrate; however, the process(es) responsible for their formation is still debated. Previous models invoke origins by either explosive excavation of potentially water-bearing crustal material, or by subsurface drainage of meltwater and/or collapse. I assessed radial trends in grain size around central pits using thermal inertias calculated from Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) thermal infrared images. Average grain size decreases with radial distance from pit rims -- consistent with pit-derived ejecta but not

  1. Dynamic Isotope Power System design considerations for human exploration of the moon and Mars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bents, D.J.; McKissock, B.I.; Rodriguez, C.D.


    This paper reports that to support the Space Exploration Initiative, studies were performed to investigate and characterize Dynamic Isotope Power System (DIPS) alternatives for the surface mission elements associated with a lunar base and subsequent manned Mars expedition. A key part of this characterization was to determine how the mission environment affects system design. The impact of shielding to provide astronaut protection form power system radiation was also examined. Impacts of mission environment and shielding were examined for two representative DIPS types (closed Brayton cycle and Stirling cycle converters). Physical effects of these factors on thermal power systems were identified and their parametric range associated with the mission and mission environment were determined

  2. Blue moons and Martian sunsets. (United States)

    Ehlers, Kurt; Chakrabarty, Rajan; Moosmüller, Hans


    The familiar yellow or orange disks of the moon and sun, especially when they are low in the sky, and brilliant red sunsets are a result of the selective extinction (scattering plus absorption) of blue light by atmospheric gas molecules and small aerosols, a phenomenon explainable using the Rayleigh scattering approximation. On rare occasions, dust or smoke aerosols can cause the extinction of red light to exceed that for blue, resulting in the disks of the sun and moon to appear as blue. Unlike Earth, the atmosphere of Mars is dominated by micron-size dust aerosols, and the sky during sunset takes on a bluish glow. Here we investigate the role of dust aerosols in the blue Martian sunsets and the occasional blue moons and suns on Earth. We use the Mie theory and the Debye series to calculate the wavelength-dependent optical properties of dust aerosols most commonly found on Mars. Our findings show that while wavelength selective extinction can cause the sun's disk to appear blue, the color of the glow surrounding the sun as observed from Mars is due to the dominance of near-forward scattering of blue light by dust particles and cannot be explained by a simple, Rayleigh-like selective extinction explanation.

  3. Global Reference Atmospheric Models, Including Thermospheres, for Mars, Venus and Earth (United States)

    Justh, Hilary L.; Justus, C. G.; Keller, Vernon W.


    This document is the viewgraph slides of the presentation. Marshall Space Flight Center's Natural Environments Branch has developed Global Reference Atmospheric Models (GRAMs) for Mars, Venus, Earth, and other solar system destinations. Mars-GRAM has been widely used for engineering applications including systems design, performance analysis, and operations planning for aerobraking, entry descent and landing, and aerocapture. Preliminary results are presented, comparing Mars-GRAM with measurements from Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) during its aerobraking in Mars thermosphere. Venus-GRAM is based on the Committee on Space Research (COSPAR) Venus International Reference Atmosphere (VIRA), and is suitable for similar engineering applications in the thermosphere or other altitude regions of the atmosphere of Venus. Until recently, the thermosphere in Earth-GRAM has been represented by the Marshall Engineering Thermosphere (MET) model. Earth-GRAM has recently been revised. In addition to including an updated version of MET, it now includes an option to use the Naval Research Laboratory Mass Spectrometer Incoherent Scatter Radar Extended Model (NRLMSISE-00) as an alternate thermospheric model. Some characteristics and results from Venus-GRAM and Earth-GRAM thermospheres are also presented.

  4. Optimal trajectories between Earth and Mars in their true planetary orbits. (United States)

    Gravier, J. P.; Marchal, C.; Culp, R. D.


    The optimal transfers from Earth to Mars and from Mars to Earth, considering the actual planetary orbits, are presented as functions of the corresponding idealized Hohmann transfers. The numerically exact two-impulse optimal trajectories are given in graphical form for all possible Hohmann windows. The two-impulse transfers which are absolute optimals and those for which a third impulse provides the absolute optimal are delineated. These data are designed to provide all the information necessary for quick orbit calculations for preliminary Martian mission analysis. In this form, they are as easy to use as the standard Hohmann transfer approximations and provide much greater accuracy.

  5. Bouncing on Mars and the Moon-the role of gravity on neuromuscular control: correlation of muscle activity and rate of force development. (United States)

    Ritzmann, Ramona; Freyler, Kathrin; Krause, Anne; Gollhofer, Albert


    On our astronomical neighbors Mars and the Moon, bouncing movements are the preferred locomotor techniques. During bouncing, the stretch-shortening cycle describes the muscular activation pattern. This study aimed to identify gravity-dependent changes in kinematic and neuromuscular characteristics in the stretch-shortening cycle. Hence, neuromuscular control of limb muscles as well as correlations between the muscles' pre-activation, reflex components, and force output were assessed in lunar, Martian, and Earth gravity. During parabolic flights, peak force (F max ), ground-contact-time, rate of force development (RFD), height, and impulse were measured. Electromyographic (EMG) activities in the m. soleus (SOL) and gastrocnemius medialis (GM) were assessed before (PRE) and during bounces for the reflex phases short-, medium-, and long-latency response (SLR, MLR, LLR). With gradually decreasing gravitation, F max , RFD, and impulse were reduced, whereas ground-contact time and height increased. Concomitantly, EMG_GM decreased for PRE, SLR, MLR, and LLR, and in EMG_SOL in SLR, MLR, and LLR. For SLR and MLR, F max and RFD were positively correlated to EMG_SOL. For PRE and LLR, RFD and F max were positively correlated to EMG_GM. Findings emphasize that biomechanically relevant kinematic adaptations in response to gravity variation were accompanied by muscle- and phase-specific modulations in neural control. Gravitational variation is anticipated and compensated for by gravity-adjusted muscle activities. Importantly, the pre-activation and reflex phases were differently affected: in SLR and MLR, SOL is assumed to contribute to the decline in force output with a decreasing load, and, complementary in PRE and LLR, GM seems to be of major importance for force generation. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  6. Biota and Biomolecules in Extreme Environments on Earth: Implications for Life Detection on Mars

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joost W. Aerts


    Full Text Available The three main requirements for life as we know it are the presence of organic compounds, liquid water, and free energy. Several groups of organic compounds (e.g., amino acids, nucleobases, lipids occur in all life forms on Earth and are used as diagnostic molecules, i.e., biomarkers, for the characterization of extant or extinct life. Due to their indispensability for life on Earth, these biomarkers are also prime targets in the search for life on Mars. Biomarkers degrade over time; in situ environmental conditions influence the preservation of those molecules. Nonetheless, upon shielding (e.g., by mineral surfaces, particular biomarkers can persist for billions of years, making them of vital importance in answering questions about the origins and limits of life on early Earth and Mars. The search for organic material and biosignatures on Mars is particularly challenging due to the hostile environment and its effect on organic compounds near the surface. In support of life detection on Mars, it is crucial to investigate analogue environments on Earth that resemble best past and present Mars conditions. Terrestrial extreme environments offer a rich source of information allowing us to determine how extreme conditions affect life and molecules associated with it. Extremophilic organisms have adapted to the most stunning conditions on Earth in environments with often unique geological and chemical features. One challenge in detecting biomarkers is to optimize extraction, since organic molecules can be low in abundance and can strongly adsorb to mineral surfaces. Methods and analytical tools in the field of life science are continuously improving. Amplification methods are very useful for the detection of low concentrations of genomic material but most other organic molecules are not prone to amplification methods. Therefore, a great deal depends on the extraction efficiency. The questions “what to look for”, “where to look”, and “how to

  7. Biota and biomolecules in extreme environments on Earth: implications for life detection on Mars. (United States)

    Aerts, Joost W; Röling, Wilfred F M; Elsaesser, Andreas; Ehrenfreund, Pascale


    The three main requirements for life as we know it are the presence of organic compounds, liquid water, and free energy. Several groups of organic compounds (e.g., amino acids, nucleobases, lipids) occur in all life forms on Earth and are used as diagnostic molecules, i.e., biomarkers, for the characterization of extant or extinct life. Due to their indispensability for life on Earth, these biomarkers are also prime targets in the search for life on Mars. Biomarkers degrade over time; in situ environmental conditions influence the preservation of those molecules. Nonetheless, upon shielding (e.g., by mineral surfaces), particular biomarkers can persist for billions of years, making them of vital importance in answering questions about the origins and limits of life on early Earth and Mars. The search for organic material and biosignatures on Mars is particularly challenging due to the hostile environment and its effect on organic compounds near the surface. In support of life detection on Mars, it is crucial to investigate analogue environments on Earth that resemble best past and present Mars conditions. Terrestrial extreme environments offer a rich source of information allowing us to determine how extreme conditions affect life and molecules associated with it. Extremophilic organisms have adapted to the most stunning conditions on Earth in environments with often unique geological and chemical features. One challenge in detecting biomarkers is to optimize extraction, since organic molecules can be low in abundance and can strongly adsorb to mineral surfaces. Methods and analytical tools in the field of life science are continuously improving. Amplification methods are very useful for the detection of low concentrations of genomic material but most other organic molecules are not prone to amplification methods. Therefore, a great deal depends on the extraction efficiency. The questions "what to look for", "where to look", and "how to look for it" require more of

  8. Low-Thrust Transfers from Distant Retrograde Orbits to L2 Halo Orbits in the Earth-Moon System (United States)

    Parrish, Nathan L.; Parker, Jeffrey S.; Hughes, Steven P.; Heiligers, Jennette


    Enable future missions Any mission to a DRO or halo orbit could benefit from the capability to transfer between these orbits Chemical propulsion could be used for these transfers, but at high propellant cost Fill gaps in knowledge A variety of transfers using SEP or solar sails have been studied for the Earth-Moon system Most results in literature study a single transfer This is a step toward understanding the wide array of types of transfers available in an N-body force model.

  9. Students' annotated drawings of Sun, Moon and Earth mediating teachers' professional development

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Birgitte Lund

    A case study of a teacher examining her 4th graders’ conceptual understanding of factors causing day and night, seasons, and the phases of the Moon is presented. The teaching example and the data-collection are sourced from the Danish continuous professional development (CPD) project QUEST......-making model. The pre-teaching annotated drawings reveal several alternative conceptions, but based on the post-teaching drawings the teaching must be seen as rather efficient in most areas concerning challenging students’ alternative conceptions; however not in relation to the phases of the Moon. The teacher...

  10. The Moon is a Planet Too: Lunar Science and Robotic Exploration (United States)

    Cohen, Barbara A.


    This slide presentation reviews some of what is known about the moon, and draws parallels between the moon and any other terrestrial planet. The Moon is a cornerstone for all rocky planets The Moon is a terrestrial body, formed and evolved similarly to Earth, Mars, Mercury, Venus, and large asteroids The Moon is a differentiated body, with a layered internal structure (crust, mantle, and core) The Moon is a cratered body, preserving a record of bombardment history in the inner solar system The Moon is an active body, experiencing moonquakes, releasing primordial heat, conducting electricity, sustaining bombardment, and trapping volatile molecules Lunar robotic missions provide early science return to obtain important science and engineering objectives, rebuild a lunar science community, and keep our eyes on the Moon. These lunar missions, both past and future are reviewed.

  11. Source-to-Sink: An Earth/Mars Comparison of Boundary Conditions for Eolian Dune Systems


    Kocurek, Gary; Ewing, Ryan C.


    Eolian dune fields on Earth and Mars evolve as complex systems within a set of boundary conditions. A source-to-sink comparison indicates that although differences exist in sediment production and transport, the systems largely converge at the dune-flow and pattern-development levels, but again differ in modes of accumulation and preservation. On Earth, where winds frequently exceed threshold speeds, dune fields are sourced primarily through deflation of subaqueous deposits as these sediments...

  12. A Hands-on Exploration of the Retrograde Motion of Mars as Seen from the Earth (United States)

    Pincelli, M. M.; Otranto, S.


    In this paper, we propose a set of activities based on the use of a celestial simulator to gain insights into the retrograde motion of Mars as seen from the Earth. These activities provide a useful link between the heliocentric concepts taught in schools and those tackled in typical introductory physics courses based on classical mechanics for…

  13. Pioneering Mars: Turning the Red Planet Green with Earth's Smallest Settlers (United States)

    Cwikla, Julie; Milroy, Scott; Reider, David; Skelton, Tara


    Pioneering Mars: Turning the Red Planet Green with the Earth's Smallest Settlers ( provides a partnership model for STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) learning that brings university scientists together with high school students to investigate whether cyanobacteria from Antarctica could survive on…

  14. Measuring Heat Flow on the Moon and Mars- The Heat Flow and Physical Properties Package HP-cubed (United States)

    Spohn, T.; Grott, M.; Ho, T.; van Zoest, T.; Kargl, G.; Smrekar, S. E.; Hudson, T. L.


    With only two successful heat flow measurements performed on the surface of the Moon to date, the thermal state of the Moon remains poorly constrained. Furthermore, measurements were taken close to the boundary of the Procellarum KREEP terraine, and the obtained values may not be representative for the bulk of the planet. For Mars, no heat flow measurement is yet available. Here we will present the Heat Flow and Physical Properties Package HP-cubed a self-penetrating, robotic heat flow probe. The instrument consists of electrical and temperature sensors that will be emplaced into the lunar subsurface by means of an electro-mechanical hammering mechanism. The instruement is foreseen to penetrate 3-5 m into the planet’s soil and will perform depth resolved measurements, from which the surface planetary heat flow can be directly deduced. The instrument has been pre-developed in two ESA funded precursor studies and has been further developed in the framework of ESA’s ExoMars mission. The current readiness level of the instrument is TRL 5.62 (ESA PDR Apr. 2009) which has been achieved with several Breadboards developed and tested between 2004 and 2009. As no drilling is required to achieve soil penetration, HP-cubed is a relatively lightweight heat flow probe, weighting less than 1800 g. It has been further studied as parts of the discovery proposals Lunette and GEMS and for the proposed Japanese lunar mission SELENE 2 The instrument consists of an electro-mechanic mole, a pay-load compartment, and a tether equipped with temperature sensors. The latter can be actively heated for thermal conductivity measurements. A tiltmeter and acceleraometer will help to track the path of the mole. The payload compartment has room for sensors such as a permittivity probe, a bore-hole camera, and/or a masspectrometer. Following deployment of the instrument, instrument operations will be split into two phases: During the penetration phase soil intrusion is achieved by means of the

  15. Human/Automation Trade Methodology for the Moon, Mars and Beyond (United States)

    Korsmeyer, David J.


    It is possible to create a consistent trade methodology that can characterize operations model alternatives for crewed exploration missions. For example, a trade-space that is organized around the objective of maximizing Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV) independence would have the input as a classification of the category of analysis to be conducted or decision to be made, and a commitment to a detailed point in a mission profile during which the analysis or decision is to be made. For example, does the decision have to do with crew activity planning, or life support? Is the mission phase trans-Earth injection, cruise, or lunar descent? Different kinds of decision analysis of the trade-space between human and automated decisions will occurs at different points in a mission's profile. The necessary objectives at a given point in time during a mission will call for different kinds of response with respect to where and how computers and automation are expected to help provide an accurate, safe, and timely response. In this paper, a consistent methodology for assessing the trades between human and automated decisions on-board will be presented and various examples discussed.

  16. "We Put on the Glasses and Moon Comes Closer!" Urban Second Graders Exploring the Earth, the Sun and Moon through 3D Technologies in a Science and Literacy Unit (United States)

    Isik-Ercan, Zeynep; Zeynep Inan, Hatice; Nowak, Jeffrey A.; Kim, Beomjin


    This qualitative case study describes (a) the ways 3D visualization, coupled with other science and literacy experiences, supported young children's first exploration of the Earth-Sun-Moon system and (b) the perspectives of classroom teachers and children on using 3D visualization. We created three interactive 3D software modules that simulate day…

  17. Analysis of Periodic Orbits about the Triangular Solutions of the Restricted Sum-Jupiter and Earth-Moon Problem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sang-Young Park


    Full Text Available Using the numerical solution in the plane restricted problem of three bodies, about 490 periodic orbits are computed numerically around the L5 of Sun-Jupiter and about 1600 periodic orbits also be done around the L5 of Earth-Moon system. As period increase, the energy and the shape of periodic orbits increase around the L5 of Sun-Jupiter system. But, in Earth-Moon system, the complex shapes and dents appear around the L5 and periodic orbits intersect one another in the place where dents are shown. And there is a region that three different periodic orbits exist with the same period in this region. The regions can exist around the L5 of Sun-Jupiter system where periodic orbit can be unstable by perturbation of other force besides the gravitational force of Jupiter. These regions which is close to L5 are a ~5.12 AU and a ~5.29 AU. The Trojan asteroids that have a small eccentricity and inclination can not exist in this region.

  18. Geochemical arguments for an Earth-like Moon-forming impactor


    Dauphas, Nicolas; Burkhardt, Christoph; Warren, Paul H.; Fang-Zhen, Teng


    Geochemical evidence suggests that the material accreted by the Earth did not change in nature during Earth's accretion, presumably because the inner protoplanetary disc had uniform isotopic composition similar to enstatite chondrites, aubrites and ungrouped achondrite NWA 5363/5400. Enstatite meteorites and the Earth were derived from the same nebular reservoir but diverged in their chemical evolutions, so no chondrite sample in meteorite collections is representative of the Earth's building...

  19. Mars NanoOrbiter: A CubeSat for Mars System Science (United States)

    Ehlmann, Bethany; Klesh, Andrew; Alsedairy, Talal


    The Mars NanoOrbiter mission consists of two identical 12U spacecraft, launched simultaneously as secondary payloads on a larger planetary mission launch, and deployed to Earth-escape, as early as with Mars 2020. The nominal mission will last for 1 year, during which time the craft will independently navigate to Mars, enter into elliptical orbit, and achieve close flybys of Phobos and Deimos, obtaining unprecedented coverage of each moon. The craft will additionally provide high temporal resolution data of Mars clouds and atmospheric phenomena at multiple times of day. Two spacecraft provide redundancy to reduce the risk in meeting the science objectives at the Mars moons and enhanced coverage of the dynamic Mars atmosphere. This technology is enabled by recent advances in CubeSat propulsion technology, attitude control systems, guidance, navigation and control. NanoOrbiter builds directly on the systems heritage of the MarCO mission, scheduled to launch with the 2018 Discovery mission Insight.

  20. Formation of topographically inverted fluvial deposits on Earth and Mars (United States)

    Hayden, A.; Lamb, M. P.; Fischer, W. W.; Ewing, R. C.; McElroy, B. J.


    Sinuous ridges interpreted as exhumed river deposits (so-called "inverted channels") are common features on Mars that show promise for quantifying ancient martian surface hydrology. Morphological similarity of these inverted channels to river channels led to a "landscape inversion hypothesis" in which the geometries of ridges and ridge networks accurately reflect the geometries of the paleo-river channels and networks. An alternative "deposit inversion hypothesis" proposes that ridges represent eroded fluvial channel-belt deposits with channel-body geometries that may differ significantly from those of the rivers that built the deposit. To investigate these hypotheses we studied the sedimentology and morphology of inverted channels in Jurassic and Cretaceous outcrops in Utah and the Aeolis Dorsa region of Mars. Ridges in Utah extend for hundreds of meters, are tens of meters wide, and stand up to 30 meters above the surrounding plain. A thick ribbon-geometry sandstone or conglomerate body caps overbank mudstone, paleosols, and thin crevasse-splay sandstone beds. Caprock beds consist of stacked dune- to bar-scale trough cross sets, mud intraclasts, and in cases scroll bars indicating meandering. In plan view, ridge networks bifurcate; however, crosscutting relationships show that distinct sandstone channel bodies at distinct stratigraphic levels intersect at these junctions. Ridge-forming sandstone bodies have been narrowed from their original dimensions by cliff retreat and bisected by modern fluvial erosion and mass wasting. We therefore interpret the sinuous ridges in Utah as eroded remnants of channel-belt sandstone bodies formed by laterally migrating and avulsing rivers rather than channel fills - consistent with deposit inversion. If the sinuous ridges in Aeolis Dorsa also formed by deposit inversion, river widths previously interpreted under the landscape inversion hypothesis are overestimated by up to a factor of 10 and discharges by up to a factor of 100.

  1. Detection of Crater Rims by Image Analysis in Very High Resolution Images of Mars, Mercury and the Moon (United States)

    Pina, P.; Marques, J. S.; Bandeira, L.


    The adaptive nature of automated crater detection algorithms permits achieving a high level of autonomous detections in different surfaces and consequently becoming an important tool in the update of crater catalogues. Nevertheless, the available approaches assume all craters as circular and only provide as output the radius and location of each crater. However, the delineation of impact craters following the local variability of the rims is also important to, among others, evaluate their degree of degradation or preservation, namely those studies related to ancient climate analysis. This contour determination is normally prepared in a manual way but can advantageously be done by image analysis methods, eliminating subjectivity and allowing large scale delineations. We have recently proposed a pair of independent approaches to tackle with this problem, one based on processing the crater image in polar coordinates [1], the other using morphological operators [2], which achieved a good degree of success on very high resolution images from Mars [3-4], but where enough room for improvement was still available. Thus, the integration of both approaches into a single one, suppressing the individual drawbacks of the previous approaches, permitted to strength the detection procedure. We describe now the novel sequence of processing that we have built and test it intensively in a wider variety of planetary surfaces, namely, those of Mars, Mercury and the Moon, using the very high resolution images provided by HiRISE, MDIS and LROC cameras. The automated delineations of the craters are compared to a ground-truth reference (manually delineated contours), so a quantitative evaluation can be performed; on a dataset constituted by more than one thousand impact craters we have obtained a global high delineation rate. The breakdown by crater size on each surface is performed. The whole processing procedure works on raster images and also delivers the output in the same image format

  2. Simulated stand tests and centrifuge training to prevent orthostatic intolerance on Earth, moon, and Mars. (United States)

    Coats, Brandon W; Sharp, M Keith


    One proposed method to overcome postflight orthostatic intolerance is for astronauts to undergo inflight centrifugation. Cardiovascular responses were compared between centrifuge and gravitational conditions using a seven-compartment cardiovascular model. Vascular resistance, heart rate, and stroke volume values were adopted from literature, while compartmental volumes and compliances were derived from impedance plethysmography of subjects (n=8) riding on a centrifuge. Three different models were developed to represent the typical male subject who completed a 10-min postflight stand test ("male finisher"), "non-finishing male" and "female" (all non-finishers). A sensitivity analysis found that both cardiac output and arterial pressure were most sensitive to total blood volume. Simulated stand tests showed that female astronauts were more susceptible to orthostatic intolerance due to lower initial blood pressure and higher pressure threshold for presyncope. Rates of blood volume loss by capillary filtration were found to be equivalent in female and male non-finishers, but four times smaller in male finishers. For equivalent times to presyncope during centrifugation as those during constant gravity, lower G forces at the level of the heart were required. Centrifuge G levels to match other cardiovascular parameters varied depending on the parameter, centrifuge arm length, and the gravity level being matched.

  3. Buoyancy-driven melt segregation in the earth's moon. I. Numerical results

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Delano, J.W.


    The densities of lunar mare magmas have been estimated at liquidus temperatures for pressures from 0 to 47 kbar (0.4 GPa; center of the moon) using a third-order Birch-Murnaghan equation and compositionally dependent parameters from Large and Carmichael (1987). Results on primary magmatic compositions represented by pristine volcanic glasses suggest that the density contrast between very-high-Ti melts and their liquidus olivines may approach zero at pressures of about 25 kbar (2.5 GPa). Since this is the pressure regime of the mantle source regions for these magmas, a compositional limit of eruptability for mare liquids may exist that is similar to the highest Ti melt yet observed among the lunar samples. Although the moon may have generated magmas having greater than 16.4 wt pct TiO2, those melts would probably not have reached the lunar surface due to their high densities, and may have even sunk deeper into the moon's interior as negatively buoyant diapirs. This process may have been important for assimilative interactions in the lunar mantle. The phenomenon of melt/solid density crossover may therefore occur not only in large terrestrial-type objects but also in small objects where, despite low pressures, the range of melt compositions is extreme. 54 refs

  4. Studies of Life on Earth are Important for Mars Exploration (United States)

    DesMarais, D. J.


    The search for evidence of the early martian environment and a martian biosphere is benefitted by diverse studies of life on Earth. Most fundamentally, origin-of-life research highlights the challenge in formulating a rigorous definition of life. Because such definitions typically list several of life's most basic properties, they also help to define those observable features that distinguish life and thus might be sought through telescopes, spacecraft, and analyses of extraterrestrial samples. Studies of prebiotic chemistry also help by defining the range of environments and processes that sustain prebiotic organic synthesis. These studies might indicate if and where prebiotic processes occur today on Earth and elsewhere. Such studies should also help to identify which localities are good candidates for the origin of life. A better understanding of the most fundamental principles by which molecules are assembled into living systems will help us to appreciate possible alternatives to the path followed by life on Earth. These perspectives will sharpen our ability to recognize exotic life and/or those environments that can sustain it.

  5. Volcano-ice interaction as a microbial habitat on Earth and Mars. (United States)

    Cousins, Claire R; Crawford, Ian A


    Volcano-ice interaction has been a widespread geological process on Earth that continues to occur to the present day. The interaction between volcanic activity and ice can generate substantial quantities of liquid water, together with steep thermal and geochemical gradients typical of hydrothermal systems. Environments available for microbial colonization within glaciovolcanic systems are wide-ranging and include the basaltic lava edifice, subglacial caldera meltwater lakes, glacier caves, and subsurface hydrothermal systems. There is widespread evidence of putative volcano-ice interaction on Mars throughout its history and at a range of latitudes. Therefore, it is possible that life on Mars may have exploited these habitats, much in the same way as has been observed on Earth. The sedimentary and mineralogical deposits resulting from volcano-ice interaction have the potential to preserve evidence of any indigenous microbial populations. These include jökulhlaup (subglacial outflow) sedimentary deposits, hydrothermal mineral deposits, basaltic lava flows, and subglacial lacustrine deposits. Here, we briefly review the evidence for volcano-ice interactions on Mars and discuss the geomicrobiology of volcano-ice habitats on Earth. In addition, we explore the potential for the detection of these environments on Mars and any biosignatures these deposits may contain.

  6. Feasibility study of a single, elliptical heliocentric Earth-Mars trajectory (United States)

    Blake, M.; Fulgham, K.; Westrup, S.


    The initial intent of this design project was to evaluate the existence and feasibility of a single elliptical heliocentric Earth/Mars trajectory. This trajectory was constrained to encounter Mars twice in its orbit, within a time interval of 15 to 180 Earth days between encounters. The single ellipse restriction was soon found to be prohibitive for reasons shown later. Therefore, the approach taken in the design of the round-trip mission to Mars was to construct single-leg trajectories which connected two planets on two prescribed dates. Three methods of trajectory design were developed. Method 1 is an eclectic approach and employs Gaussian Orbit Determination (Method 1A) and Lambert-Euler Preliminary Orbit Determination (Method 1B) in conjunction with each other. Method 2 is an additional version of Lambert's Solution to orbit determination, and both a coplanar and a noncoplanar solution were developed within Method 2. In each of these methods, the fundamental variables are two position vectors and the time between the position vectors. In all methods, the motion was considered Keplerian motion and the reference frame origin was located at the sun. Perturbative effects were not considered in Method 1. The feasibility study of round-trip Earth/Mars trajectories maintains generality by considering only heliocentric trajectory parameters and planetary approach conditions. The coordinates and velocity components of the planets, for the standard epoch J2000, were computed from an approximate set of osculating elements by the procedure outlined in an ephemeris of coordinates.

  7. Atmospheric Production of Perchlorate on Earth and Mars (United States)

    Claire, M.; Catling, D. C.; Zahnle, K. J.


    Natural production and preservation of perchlorate on Earth occurs only in arid environments. Isotopic evidence suggests a strong role for atmospheric oxidation of chlorine species via pathways including ozone or its photochemical derivatives. As the Martian atmosphere is both oxidizing and drier than the driest places on Earth, we propose an atmospheric origin for the Martian perchlorates measured by NASA's Phoenix Lander. A variety of hypothetical formation pathways can be proposed including atmospheric photochemical reactions, electrostatic discharge, and gas-solid reactions. Here, we investigate gas phase formation pathways using a 1-D photochemical model (Catling et al. 2009, accepted by JGR). Because perchlorate-rich deposits in the Atacama desert are closest in abundance to perchlorate measured at NASA's Phoenix Lander site, we start with a study of the means to produce Atacama perchlorate. We found that perchlorate can be produced in sufficient quantities to explain the abundance of perchlorate in the Atacama from a proposed gas phase oxidation of chlorine volatiles to perchloric acid. These results are sensitive to estimated reaction rates for ClO3 species. The feasibility of gas phase production for the Atacama provides justification for further investigations of gas phase photochemistry as a possible source for Martian perchlorate. In addition to the Atacama results, we will present a preliminary study incorporating chlorine chemistry into an existing Martian photochemical model (Zahnle et al. JGR 2008).

  8. Infrared heterodyne spectroscopy of astronomical and laboratory sources at 8.5 micron. [absorption line profiles of nitrogen oxide and black body emission from Moon and Mars (United States)

    Mumma, M.; Kostiuk, T.; Cohen, S.; Buhl, D.; Vonthuna, P. C.


    The first infrared heterodyne spectrometer using tuneable semiconductor (PbSe) diode lasers has been constructed and was used near 8.5 micron to measure absorption line profiles of N2O in the laboratory and black body emission from the Moon and from Mars. Spectral information was recorded over a 200 MHz bandwidth using an 8-channel filter bank. The resolution was 25 MHz and the minimum detectable (black body) power was 1 x 10 to the minus 16th power watts for 8 minutes of integration. The results demonstrate the usefulness of heterodyne spectroscopy for the study of remote and local sources in the infrared.

  9. Fate of Earth Microbes on Mars: UV Radiation Effects (United States)

    Cockell, Charles


    A radiative transfer model is used to quantitatively investigate aspects of the martian ultraviolet radiation environment. Biological action spectra for DNA inactivation are used to estimate biologically effective irradiances for the martian surface under cloudless skies. Although the present-day martian UV flux is similar to early earth and thus may not be a limitation to life in the evolutionary context, it is a constraint to an unadapted biota and will rapidly kill spacecraft-borne microbes not covered by a martian dust layer. Here calculations for loss of microbial viability on the Pathfinder and Polar lander spacecraft are presented and the effects of martian dust on loss of viability are discussed. Details of the radiative transfer model are presented.

  10. Fate of Earth Microbes on Mars -- UV Radiation Effects (United States)

    Cockell, Charles


    A radiative transfer model is used to quantitatively investigate aspects of the martian ultraviolet radiation environment. Biological action spectra for DNA inactivation are used to estimate biologically effective irradiances for the martian surface under cloudless skies. Although the present-day martian UV flux is similar to early earth and thus may not be a limitation to life in the evolutionary context, it is a constraint to an unadapted biota and will rapidly kill spacecraft-borne microbes not covered by a martian dust layer. Here calculations for loss of microbial viability on the Pathfinder and Polar lander spacecraft are presented and the effects of martian dust on loss of viability are discussed. Details of the radiative transfer model are presented.

  11. Neuro-vestibular and Sensory-motor Challenges Associated with NASA Mission Architectures for Moon and Mars (United States)

    Paloski, William H.


    Data from six-month low Earth orbit space flight missions suggest that that substantial neuro-vestibuladsensory-motor adaptation will take place during six-month transit missions to and from Mars. Could intermittent or continuous artificial gravity be used to offset these effects? To what degree would the effects of adaptation to this rotational cure affect its potential benefits? Also, little information exists regarding the gravity thresholds for maintaining functional performance of complex sensory-motor tasks such as balance control and locomotion. Will sensory-motor coordination systems adapt to 30-90 days of 1/6 g on the lunar surface or 18 months of 3/8 g on the Martian surface? Would some form of gravity replacement therapy be required on the surface? And, will transitions between 0 g and 1/6 g or 1/3 g present as great a challenge to the vestibular system as transitions between 0 g and 1 g? Concerted research and development efforts will be required to obtain the answers.

  12. Moon taken by Galileo after completing its first Earth Gravity Assist (United States)


    Galileo spacecraft images of the Moon were taken at (right photo) 6:47 pm Pacific Standard Time (PST), 12-08-90, and at (left photo) 9:35 am PST, 12-09-90, at a range of more than 350,000 miles. The picture on the right shows the dark Oceanus Procellarum in the upper center, with Mare Imbrium above it and the smaller circular Mare Humorum below. The Orientale Basin, with a small mare in its center, is on the lower left near the limb or edge. Between stretches the cratered highland terrain, with scattered bright young craters on highlands and maria alike. The picture at left shows the globe of the Moon rotated, putting Mare Imbrium on the eastern limb and moving the Orientale Basin almost to the center. The extent of the cratered highlands on the far side is very apparent. At lower left, near the limb, is the South-Pole-Aitken basin, similar to Orientale but very much older and some 1,200 miles in diameter. This feature was previously known as a large depression in the southern far side

  13. The Search for Life on Mars - Current Knowledge, Earth Analogues, and Principal Issues (United States)

    Mumma, Michael J.


    For centuries, the planet Mars has been imagined as a possible abode for life. Serious searches for life's signatures began in the 19th century via ground-based visual astronomy that stimulated a vibrant fantasy literature but little lasting scientific knowledge. Modern scientific inquiry has emphasized the search for chemical signatures of life in the soil and rocks at the planet's surface, and via biomarker gases in the atmosphere. Today, investigations are based on high-resolution spectroscopy at Earth's largest telescopes along with planet orbiting and landed space missions. Methane has assumed central importance in these searches. Living systems produce more than 900/0 of Earth's atmospheric methane; the balance is of geochemical origin. Abundant methane is not expected in an oxidizing atmosphere such as Mars', and its presence would imply recent release - whether biological or geochemical. F or that reason, the quest for methane on Mars has been a continuing thread in the fabric of searches conducted since 1969. I will review aspects of the discovery and distribution of methane on Mars, and will mention ongoing extended searches for clues to its origin and destruction. On Earth, hydrogen (generated via serpentinization or radiolysis of water) provides an important 'fuel' for carbonate-reducing and sulphate-reducing biota (CH4 and H2S producers, respectively). Several such communities are known to reside at depth in continental domains (e.g., Lidy Hot Springs, Idaho; Witwatersrand Basin, S. Africa). If similar conditions exist in favourable locations on Mars, organisms similar to these could likely prosper there. Geologic (abiotic) production will also be mentioned, especially abiotic methane production associated with low-temperature serpentinization (e.g., terrestrial ophiolites). It is vitally important to pursue evidence for geochemical and biological production with equal vigour and intellectual weight lest unwanted and unintended bias contaminate the

  14. The feasibility and application of using gravitational energy to allow efficient travel between earth and Mars (United States)

    King, O. L.; Avvento, Gennaro J.

    This paper discusses the feasibility and application of using gravitational energy attained in a planetary swing-by to control the trajectory of an interplanetary transfer vehicle (IPTV) - establishing nonstop round trip orbits between earth and Mars. Energy supplied by the swing-by process and supplemented by minor correction burns will allow efficient nonstop round trip travel between earth and Mars. The IPTV will have all the necessary support equipment to maintain the cargo (manned/unmanned) during transit. At the planetary 'landfall' points, the IPTV will not decelerate but will perform a swing-by maneuver returning to the planet of origin. Cargo elements will either depart or dock with the IPTV at the planetary approach asymptote. This will be the only component of the system to undergo propulsive maneuvers.

  15. Student Mastery of the Sun-Earth-Moon System in a Flipped Classroom of Pre-service Elementary Education Students (United States)

    Larsen, Kristine


    One of the current trends in pedagogy at all levels(K-college) is the so-called ‘flipped classroom’, in which students prepare for a class meeting through self-study of the material. It is based on a rejection of the classic model of the faculty member as the ‘sage on the stage’ instead, responsibility for learning shifts to the individual student. The faculty member takes on the role of learning facilitator or mentor, and focuses the students’ learning by crafting and administering timely formative assessments (in multiple formats and applied multiple times) that aid both students and the faculty member in tracking the students’ mastery of the learning outcomes. In a flipped, freshman-only, section of SCI 111 Elementary Earth-Physical Sciences (a required introductory science course for pre-service elementary school teachers) the students learned through a combination of individual and group hands-on in-class activities, technology (including PowerPoint presentations and short videos viewed prior to attending class), in-class worksheets, and in-class discussions. Students self-differentiated in how they interacted with the available teaching materials, deciding which activities to spend the most time on based on their individual needs (based on an online quiz taken the night before the class period, and their personal self-confidence with the material). Available in-class activities and worksheets were developed by the faculty member based on student scores on the online quiz as well as personal messages submitted through the course management system the night before the class meeting. While this placed a significant burden on the faculty member in terms of course preparation, it allowed for just-in-time teaching to take place. This poster describes the results of student mastery of content centered on the sun-earth-moon system (specifically seasons, moon phases, and eclipses) as compared to traditional classroom sections.

  16. Escape and Capture from Deep Gravity Wells (Earth, Moon, Planets) Using Low Thrust Propulsion Systems (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — NASA missions are increasingly looking to use low thrust propulsion to capture into planetary orbits and/or lunar orbits, and to escape from low earth orbit. This...

  17. Tunable Light-Guide Image Processing Snapshot Spectrometer (TuLIPSS) for Earth and Moon Observations (United States)

    Tkaczyk, T. S.; Alexander, D.; Luvall, J. C.; Wang, Y.; Dwight, J. G.; Pawlowsk, M. E.; Howell, B.; Tatum, P. F.; Stoian, R.-I.; Cheng, S.; Daou, A.


    A tunable light-guide image processing snapshot spectrometer (TuLIPSS) for Earth science research and observation is being developed through a NASA instrument incubator project with Rice University and Marshall Space Flight Center.

  18. Optimization of Return Trajectories for Orbital Transfer Vehicle between Earth and Moon (United States)

    Funase, Ryu; Tsuda, Yuichi; Kawaguchi, Jun'ichiro


    In this paper, optimum trajectories in Earth Transfer Orbit (ETO) for a lunar transportation system are proposed. This paper aims at improving the payload ratio of the reusable orbital transfer vehicle (OTV), which transports the payload from Low Earth Orbit (LEO) to Lunar Low Orbit (LLO) and returns to LEO. In ETO, we discuss ballistic flight using chemical propulsion, multi-impulse flight using electrical propulsion, and aero-assisted flight using aero-brake. The feasibility of the OTV is considered.

  19. The Atmospheres of the Terrestrial Planets:Clues to the Origins and Early Evolution of Venus, Earth, and Mars (United States)

    Baines, Kevin H.; Atreya, Sushil K.; Bullock, Mark A.; Grinspoon, David H,; Mahaffy, Paul; Russell, Christopher T.; Schubert, Gerald; Zahnle, Kevin


    We review the current state of knowledge of the origin and early evolution of the three largest terrestrial planets - Venus, Earth, and Mars - setting the stage for the chapters on comparative climatological processes to follow. We summarize current models of planetary formation, as revealed by studies of solid materials from Earth and meteorites from Mars. For Venus, we emphasize the known differences and similarities in planetary bulk properties and composition with Earth and Mars, focusing on key properties indicative of planetary formation and early evolution, particularly of the atmospheres of all three planets. We review the need for future in situ measurements for improving our understanding of the origin and evolution of the atmospheres of our planetary neighbors and Earth, and suggest the accuracies required of such new in situ data. Finally, we discuss the role new measurements of Mars and Venus have in understanding the state and evolution of planets found in the habitable zones of other stars.

  20. Mission analysis for the Martian Moons Explorer (MMX) mission (United States)

    Campagnola, Stefano; Yam, Chit Hong; Tsuda, Yuichi; Ogawa, Naoko; Kawakatsu, Yasuhiro


    Mars Moon eXplorer (MMX) is JAXA's next candidate flagship mission to be launched in the early 2020s. MMX will explore the Martian moons and return a sample from Phobos. This paper presents the mission analysis work, focusing on the transfer legs and comparing several architectures, such as hybrid options with chemical and electric propulsion modules. The selected baseline is a chemical-propulsion Phobos sample return, which is discussed in detail with the launch- and return-window analysis. The trajectories are optimized with the jTOP software, using planetary ephemerides for Mars and the Earth; Earth re-entry constraints are modeled with simple analytical equations. Finally, we introduce an analytical approximation of the three-burn capture strategy used in the Mars system. The approximation can be used together with a Lambert solver to quickly determine the transfer Δ v costs.

  1. Approach to Mars Field Geology (United States)

    Muehlberger, William; Rice, James W.; Parker, Timothy; Lipps, Jere H.; Hoffman, Paul; Burchfiel, Clark; Brasier, Martin


    The goals of field study on Mars are nothing less than to understand the processes and history of the planet at whatever level of detail is necessary. A manned mission gives us an unprecedented opportunity to use the immense power of the human mind to comprehend Mars in extraordinary detail. To take advantage of this opportunity, it is important to examine how we should approach the field study of Mars. In this effort, we are guided by over 200 years of field exploration experience on Earth as well as six manned missions exploring the Moon.

  2. Radiation Environment in EARTH-MOON Space: Results from Radom Experiment Onboard CHANDRAYAAN-1 (United States)

    Vadawale, S. V.; Goswami, J. N.; Dachev, T. P.; Tomov, B. T.; Girish, V.


    The radiation monitor (RADOM) payload is a miniature dosimeter spectrometer onboard Chandrayaan-1 mission for monitoring the local radiation environment in near-Earth space and in lunar space. RADOM measured the total absorbed dose and spectrum of the deposited energy from high-energy particles in near-Earth space, en-route and in lunar orbit. RADOM was the first experiment to be switched on soon after the launch of Chandrayaan-1 and was operational till the end of the mission. This article summarizes the observations carried out by RADOM during the entire life time of the Chandrayaan-1 mission and some of the salient results.

  3. Comparative habitability of the Earth, Venus and Mars in the young solar system. (United States)

    Nisbet, E. G.


    Abstract To be habitable, a planet must be suitable at all scales [1]. The setting in relation to the star must be right, so that surface temperatures can sustain liquid water. The planetary inventory must be suitable, providing surface water, rocks, and accessible thermodynamic disequilibrium. There must be physical habitat, especially mud and hydrothermal systems around volcanoes. Planets are not static: they evolve. Habitability must evolve with the planet. On accretion, the processes of impact and formation of volatile inventory must be suitable. Tectonics and volcanism must supply redox contrasts and biochemical substrates capable not only of starting life but of sustaining it. Mud or soft sediment may be essential: it is unlikely that early life can sustain itself in open water or air. This requirement for mud has tectonic implications. Once life starts, it immediately alters its own environment, by consuming nutrient. Until photosynthesis evolves, inorganic sources must supply sustained redox contrast to the local environment. But life changes its setting, both by risky alterations to the atmospheric greenhouse (drawing down CO2, emitting CH4), and by partitioning reductants (e.g. as dead bodies) and oxidants (waste). Somehow the planet must avoid both freezing and boiling. Early in the history of the solar system, a passing galactic tourist might have rated Venus as the likeliest habitat for life, Mars next, and Earth last of the three. Venus was warm and hospitable, Mars clement, and Earth had been though an impact episode powerful enough to make a silicate atmosphere. By comparison with Earth there are many potential environmental settings on Mars in which life may once have occurred, or may even continue to exist. Perhaps Mars seeded earth? Yet today the reverse order of habitability is the case. Earth today is safeguarded by a reworked atmosphere that is 99% of biological construction, maintained in active disequilibrium with the surface. Mars, in

  4. Declaring the Republic of the Moon - Some artistic strategies for re-imagining the Moon. (United States)

    La Frenais., R.


    Sooner or later, humans are going back to the Moonwhether to mine it, to rehearse for a Mars mission or to just live there. But how will human activity there reflect what has happened on Earth since the last moon mission, to reflect the diversity and political and social changes that have happened since? Can artists imagine what it would be like to live on the Moon? Artists are already taking part in many scientific endeavours, becoming involved in emerging fields such as synthetic bioloogy, nanotechology, ecological remediation and enthusiastically participating in citizen science. There are already artists in Antarctica. It should be inevitable that artists will sooner or later accompany the next visit by humans to the Moon. But why wait? Artists are already imagining how it would be to live on the Moon, whether in their imaginations or though rehearsals in lunar analogues. In the recent exhibition 'Republic of the Moon' a number of visionary strategies were employed, from the use of earth-moon-earth 'moonbouncing' (Katie Paterson) to the breeding and imprinting of real geese as imagined astronauts. (Agnes Meyer-Brandis). The Outer Space Treaty and the (unsigned) Moon treaty were re-analysed and debates and even small demonstrations were organised protesting (or demanding) the industrial exploitation of the Moon. Fortuitously, China's Chang-e mission landed during the exhibition and the life and death of the rover Jade Rabbit brought a real life drama to the Republic of the Moon. There have been other artistic interventions into lunar exploration, including Aleksandra Mir's First Woman on the Moon, Alicia Framis's Moonlife project and of course the historic inclusion of two artistic artefacts into the Apollo missions, Monument to the Fallen Astronaut (still on the Moon) and the Moon Museum, reportedly inserted by an engineer into the leg of the Lunar Exploration Module. With the worldwide race by the Global Lunar X Prize teams to land a rover independently of any

  5. IAU Colloquium 63—High-Precision Earth Rotation and Earth-Moon Dynamics, Lunar Distances, and Related Observations (United States)

    Tapley, Byron D.

    IAU Colloquium 63 was held in Grasse, France, May 22-27, 1981. The colloquium was sponsored by the International Astronomical Union (IAU) and cosponsored by the Council of Scientific Unions, Committee on Space Research (COSPAR), and the International Association of Geodesy. The 51 participants at the conference were drawn from a wide geographical region and consisted of observers, responsible for collecting the data; analysts, who apply the data to determine polar motion and earth rotation; and theoreticians, who interpret the results and provide predictions to guide future observation efforts.The colloquium occurred at a particularly opportune time, since the short MERIT (Monitor Earth Rotation and Intercompare the Techniques of Observation and Analysis) campaign, conducted during August, September, and October 1980, provided a focus for both observation and analysis of efforts to obtain polar motion solutions. Independent solutions were provided by using data from the general categories: laser ranging (Lageos, Starlette and lunar), VLBI (Very Long Baseline Interferometry), satellite Doppler, astrometric (classical methods), and connected element interferometer.

  6. The limits of life on Earth and searching for life on Mars (United States)

    Nealson, K. H.


    Considerations of basic properties of bacteria such as size, structure, and metabolic versatility allow one to understand how these remarkable life-forms are so adaptable to environments previously thought to be uninhabitable. It is now appreciated that bacteria on Earth can utilize almost any redox couple that yields energy, taking advantage of this energy, while transforming the elements during metabolism. The ability to grow at the expense of inorganic redox couples allows the microbes to occupy niches not available to the more metabolically constrained eukaryotes. Furthermore, the simplicity of the bacterial structure allows them considerably more resistance to environmental variables (pH, salinity, temperature) that are toxic or lethal to more complex organisms. This information can be used to explain the predominance of prokaryotes in extreme environments on Earth, and to speculate as to simple types of metabolism and biogeochemical cycles that may exist on this planet, Mars, and perhaps other non-Earth environments.

  7. Evidence for Seismogenic Hydrogen Gas, a Potential Microbial Energy Source on Earth and Mars. (United States)

    McMahon, Sean; Parnell, John; Blamey, Nigel J F


    The oxidation of molecular hydrogen (H2) is thought to be a major source of metabolic energy for life in the deep subsurface on Earth, and it could likewise support any extant biosphere on Mars, where stable habitable environments are probably limited to the subsurface. Faulting and fracturing may stimulate the supply of H2 from several sources. We report the H2 content of fluids present in terrestrial rocks formed by brittle fracturing on fault planes (pseudotachylites and cataclasites), along with protolith control samples. The fluids are dominated by water and include H2 at abundances sufficient to support hydrogenotrophic microorganisms, with strong H2 enrichments in the pseudotachylites compared to the controls. Weaker and less consistent H2 enrichments are observed in the cataclasites, which represent less intense seismic friction than the pseudotachylites. The enrichments agree quantitatively with previous experimental measurements of frictionally driven H2 formation during rock fracturing. We find that conservative estimates of current martian global seismicity predict episodic H2 generation by Marsquakes in quantities useful to hydrogenotrophs over a range of scales and recurrence times. On both Earth and Mars, secondary release of H2 may also accompany the breakdown of ancient fault rocks, which are particularly abundant in the pervasively fractured martian crust. This study strengthens the case for the astrobiological investigation of ancient martian fracture systems. Deep biosphere-Faults-Fault rocks-Seismic activity-Hydrogen-Mars. Astrobiology 16, 690-702.

  8. An integrated geophysical survey of Kilbourne Hole, southern New Mexico: Implications for near surface exploration of Mars and the Moon (United States)

    Maksim, Nisa

    Features such as the Home Plate plateau on Mars, a suspected remnant of an ancient phreatomagmatic eruption, can reveal important information about paleohydrologic conditions. The eruption intensity of a phreatomagmatic volcano is controlled mainly by the quantity of water and magma, the internal geometry of the volcano, and the depth of the interaction zone between magma and water. In order to understand the paleohydrologic conditions at the time of eruption, we must understand all the factors that influenced the phreatomagmatic event. I conducted an integrated geophysical survey, which are magnetic and gravity surveys, and a ground-penetrating radar (GPR) surveys at Kilbourne Hole, a phreatomagmatic crater in southern New Mexico. These investigations serve an analog paleo-hydrogeological study that could be conducted on Mars and the Moon with an implication for planetary exploration. These geophysical surveys are designed to delineate the internal structure of a phreatomagmatic volcano and to define the volumes and masses of volcanic dikes and excavation unit, the depth of feeder dikes, and impacted velocity of the volcanic blocks. For the gravity and magnetic surveys at Kilbourne Hole, I collected data at a total of 171 gravity survey stations and 166 magnetics survey stations. A 2D gravity and magnetic inverse model was developed jointly to map the body of the magma intrusions and the internal structure of Kilbourne Hole. A total of 6 GPR surveys lines were also completed at Kilbourne Hole to image and to define locations of pyroclastic deposits, volcanic sags and blocks, the sizes distribution of volcanic blocks, and the impact velocity of the volcanic blocks. Using the size distribution and impact velocity of volcanic blocks from our GPR data, I derived the initial gas expansion velocity and the time duration of the gas expansion phase of the Kilbourne Hole eruption. These obtained parameters (volumes, masses, and depths of the feeder dikes and the excavation

  9. Origin of the Moon - capture by gas drag of the Earth's primordial atmosphere

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nakazawa, K.; Komuro, T.; Hayashi, C.


    A new scenario of the lunar origin is proposed, which is a natural extension of planetary formation processes studied so far. According to these studies, the Earth grew up in a gaseous solar nebula and, consequently, the sphere of its gravitational influence (i.e., the Hill sphere of the Earth) was filled by a gas forming a dense primordial atmosphere of the Earth. In the later stages, this atmosphere as well as the solar nebula was dissipated gradually, owing to strong activities of the early-Sun in a T Tauri-stage. A series of dynamical processes are studied where a low-energy (i.e., slightly unbound) planetesimal is trapped within the terrestrial Hill sphere, under the above-mentioned circumstances that the gas density of the primordial atmosphere is gradually decreasing. It is clear that two conditions must be satisfied for the lunar origin: first, an unbound planetesimal entering the Hill sphere has to dissipate its kinetic energy and come into bound orbit before it escapes from the Hill sphere and, second, the bound planetesimal never falls onto the surface of the Earth. The authors study the first condition by calculating the oribital motion of a planetesimal in the Hill sphere, which is affected both by solar gravity and by atmospheric gas drag. The results show that a low-energy planetesimal with the lunar mass or less can be trapped in the Hill sphere with a high probability, if it enters the Hill sphere at stages before the atmospheric density is decreased to about 1/50 of the initial value. (Auth.)

  10. Silicon in the Earth's core. (United States)

    Georg, R Bastian; Halliday, Alex N; Schauble, Edwin A; Reynolds, Ben C


    Small isotopic differences between the silicate minerals in planets may have developed as a result of processes associated with core formation, or from evaporative losses during accretion as the planets were built up. Basalts from the Earth and the Moon do indeed appear to have iron isotopic compositions that are slightly heavy relative to those from Mars, Vesta and primitive undifferentiated meteorites (chondrites). Explanations for these differences have included evaporation during the 'giant impact' that created the Moon (when a Mars-sized body collided with the young Earth). However, lithium and magnesium, lighter elements with comparable volatility, reveal no such differences, rendering evaporation unlikely as an explanation. Here we show that the silicon isotopic compositions of basaltic rocks from the Earth and the Moon are also distinctly heavy. A likely cause is that silicon is one of the light elements in the Earth's core. We show that both the direction and magnitude of the silicon isotopic effect are in accord with current theory based on the stiffness of bonding in metal and silicate. The similar isotopic composition of the bulk silicate Earth and the Moon is consistent with the recent proposal that there was large-scale isotopic equilibration during the giant impact. We conclude that Si was already incorporated as a light element in the Earth's core before the Moon formed.

  11. Galileo observations of post-imbrium lunar craters during the first Earth-Moon flyby (United States)

    McEwen, Alfred S.; Gaddis, Lisa R.; Neukum, Gerhard; Hoffmann, Harald; Pieters, Carle M.; Head, James W.

    Copernican-age craters are among the most conspicuous features seen on the far side and western limb of the Moon in the Galileo multispectral images acquired in December 1990. Among the new morphologic observations of far-side craters are bright rays, continuous ejecta deposits, and dark rings associated with probable impact-melt veneers. These observations suggest that the mapped age assignments of several large far-side craters (Ohm, Robertson, and possibly Lowell and Lenz) need revision. New crater size-frequency measurements on Lunar Orbiter images suggest the following age reassignments: Hausen (170 km diameter), Pythagoras (120 km), and Bullialdus (61 km) from Eratosthenian to Upper Imbrian, and Carpenter (60 km) and Harpalus (39 km) from Copernican to Eratosthenian. Colors and albedos of craters (away from impact-melt veneers) are correlated with their geologic emplacement ages as determined from counts of superposed craters; these age-color relations are used to estimate the emplacement age (time since impact event) for other Copernican-age craters. These age-color relations indicate a probable Copernican age for 27 far-side or western limb craters larger than 10 km diameter that were not previously mapped as Copernican. The apparent deficiency of Copernican craters on the far side compared with the near side in published geologic maps is not present in our data. Age-color trends differ between mare and highland regions and between the interiors and continuous ejecta of the craters. Similar trends are established for color and albedo versus soil-maturity indices for the returned lunar samples, with distinct trends for mare and highland soils. However, the mare versus highland offsets are reversed in the two comparisons. These relations can be explained by variations in regolith thicknesses and rates of mixing with relatively fresh, crystalline ejecta. Therefore, the soil-maturity trends represent longer geologic time periods in regions with thinner

  12. Chemical composition of Mars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Morgan, J.W.; Anders, E.


    The composition of Mars has been calculated from a cosmochemical model which assumes that planets and chondrites underwent the same 4 fractionation processes in the solar nebula. Because elements of similar volatility stay together in these processes, only 4 index elements are needed to calculate the abundances of all 83 elements in the planet. The values chosen are U = 28 ppb, K = 62 ppm, Fe = 26.72% and Tl = 0.14 ppb. The mantle of Mars is an iron-rich garnet wehrlite. It is nearly identical to the previously reported bulk Moon composition. The core makes up 0.19 of the planet and contains 3.5% S - much less than estimated by other models. Volatiles have nearly Moon-like abundances, being depleted relative to the Earth. The water abundance corresponds to a 9 m layer, but could be higher by as much as a factor of 11. Comparison of model compositions for 5 differentiated planets (Earth, Venus, Mars, Moon, and eucrite parent body) suggests that volatile depletion correlates mainly with size rather than with radial distance from the Sun. However, the relatively high volatile content of shergottites and some chondrites shows that the correlation is not simple; other factors must also be involved. (author)

  13. Interior of the Moon (United States)

    Weber, Renee C.


    A variety of geophysical measurements made from Earth, from spacecraft in orbit around the Moon, and by astronauts on the lunar surface allow us to probe beyond the lunar surface to learn about its interior. Similarly to the Earth, the Moon is thought to consist of a distinct crust, mantle, and core. The crust is globally asymmetric in thickness, the mantle is largely homogeneous, and the core is probably layered, with evidence for molten material. This chapter will review a range of methods used to infer the Moon's internal structure, and briefly discuss the implications for the Moon's formation and evolution.

  14. Formation of Box Canyon, Idaho, by megaflood: implications for seepage erosion on Earth and Mars. (United States)

    Lamb, Michael P; Dietrich, William E; Aciego, Sarah M; Depaolo, Donald J; Manga, Michael


    Amphitheater-headed canyons have been used as diagnostic indicators of erosion by groundwater seepage, which has important implications for landscape evolution on Earth and astrobiology on Mars. Of perhaps any canyon studied, Box Canyon, Idaho, most strongly meets the proposed morphologic criteria for groundwater sapping because it is incised into a basaltic plain with no drainage network upstream, and approximately 10 cubic meters per second of seepage emanates from its vertical headwall. However, sediment transport constraints, 4He and 14C dates, plunge pools, and scoured rock indicate that a megaflood (greater than 220 cubic meters per second) carved the canyon about 45,000 years ago. These results add to a growing recognition of Quaternary catastrophic flooding in the American northwest, and may imply that similar features on Mars also formed by floods rather than seepage erosion.

  15. Bedrock Canyons Carved by the Largest Known Floods on Earth and Mars (United States)

    Lamb, M. P.; Lapôtre, M. G. A.; Larsen, I. J.; Williams, R. M. E.


    The surface of Earth is a dynamic and permeable interface where the rocky crust is sculpted by ice, wind and water resulting in spectacular mountain ranges, vast depositional basins and environments that support life. These landforms and deposits contain a rich, yet incomplete, record of Earth history that we are just beginning to understand. Some of the most dramatic landforms are the huge bedrock canyons carved by catastrophic floods. On Mars, similar bedrock canyons, known as Outflow Channels, are the most important indicators of large volumes of surface water in the past. Despite their importance and now decades of observations of canyon morphology, we lack a basic understanding of how the canyons formed, which limits our ability to reconstruct flood discharge, duration and water volume. In this presentation I will summarize recent work - using mechanistic numerical models and field observations - that suggests that bedrock canyons carved by megafloods rapidly evolve to a size and shape such that boundary shear stresses just exceed that required to entrain fractured blocks of rock. The threshold shear stress constraint allows for quantitative reconstruction of the largest known floods on Earth and Mars, and implies far smaller discharges than previous methods that assume flood waters fully filled the canyons to high water marks.

  16. Tectonics and volcanism on Mars: a compared remote sensing analysis with earthly geostructures (United States)

    Baggio, Paolo; Ancona, M. A.; Callegari, I.; Pinori, S.; Vercellone, S.


    The recent knowledge on Mars' lithosphere evolution does not find yet sufficient analogies with the Earth's tectonic models. The Viking image analysis seems to be even now frequently, rather fragmentary, and do not permits to express any coherent relationships among the different detected phenomena. Therefore, today it is impossible to support any reliable kinematic hypothesis. The Remote-Sensing interpretation is addressed to a Viking image mosaic of the known Tharsis Montes region and particularly focused on the Arsia Mons volcano. Several previously unknown lineaments, not directly linked to volcano-tectonics, were detected. Their mutual relationships recall transcurrent kinematics that could be related to similar geostructural models known in the Earth plate tectonic dynamics. Several concordant relationships between the Arsia Mons volcano and the brittle extensive tectonic features of earthly Etnean district (Sicily, South Italy), interpreted on Landsat TM images, were pointed out. These analogies coupled with the recently confirmed strato- volcano topology of Tharsis Montes (Head and Wilson), the layout distribution of the effusive centers (Arsia, Pavonis and Ascraeus Montes), the new tectonic lineaments and the morphological features, suggest the hypothesis of a plate tectonic volcanic region. The frame could be an example in agreement with the most recent interpretation of Mars (Sleep). A buried circular body, previously incorrectly interpreted as a great landslide event from the western slope of Arsia Mons volcano, seems really to be a more ancient volcanic structure (Arsia Mons Senilis), which location is in evident relation with the interpreted new transcurrent tectonic system.


    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set contains vector magnetic field data acquired by the Fluxgate section of the Magnetometer / Electron Reflectometer instrument aboard the Mars Global...

  18. Radiative impact of cryosphere on the climate of Earth and Mars (United States)

    Singh, Deepak

    Snow- and ice-covered surfaces are the most reflective regions on Earth and Mars, and their extent can change substantially with small changes in climate. The presence of Earth's cryosphere greatly alters the planet's albedo and changes in cryospheric extent and reflectivity therefore partially determine the sensitivity of climate to anthropogenic and external forcings. Carbon dioxide ice is abundant on the Martian surface, and plays an important role in the planet's energy budget. Firstly, we quantify the shortwave Cryosphere Radiative Effect (CrRE) on Earth. Relatively high resolution (0.05°x0.05°) MODIS data along with radiative kernel datasets are used to estimate the global land shortwave CrRE. We perform multiple analyses to determine the sensitivity of our estimates to the use of different thresholds for snow cover determinations, different climatologies for missing data, and radiative kernels generated with different distributions of clouds produced with various versions of the Community Atmosphere Model. We estimate a global land-based CrRE of about -2.6 W/m-2 during 2001-2013, with about 59% of the effect originating from Antarctica. Secondly, we adapt the terrestrial Snow, Ice, and Aerosol Radiation (SNICAR) model to simulate CO2 snow albedo across the solar spectrum (0.2-5.0 mum). We apply recent laboratory derived refractive indices of CO2 ice, which produce higher broadband CO2 snow albedo (0.93-0.98) than previously estimated. We perform multiple analyses to determine the sensitivity of cryosphere spectral albedo to the amount and type of dust, co-presence of CO2 and H2O ices, ice grain size, snow layer thickness, and solar zenith angle. In addition, we also compare our simulations with observed Mars surface albedo, and achieved a reasonable fit between the two. Finally, SNICAR is implemented with the Laboratoire de Meteorologie Dynamique Mars GCM to prognostically determine ice cap (both H2O and CO2) albedos interactively in the model. We then

  19. Models of the Origin of the Moon; Early History of Earth and Venus (The Role of Tidal Friction in the Formation of Structure of the Planets) (United States)

    Pechernikova, G. V.; Ruskol, E. L.


    An analytical review of the two contemporary models of the origin of the Earth-Moon system in the process of solid-body accretion is presented: socalled co-accretion model and as a result of a gigantic collision with a planetarysized body (i.e. a megaimpact model). The co-accretion model may be considered as a universal mechanism of the origin of planetary satellites, that accompanies the growth of planets. We consider the conditions of this process that secure the sufficient mass and angular momentum of the protolunar disk such as macroimpacts (collisions with the bodies of asteroidal size) into the mantle of the growing Earth, the role of an lunar embryo growing on the geocentric lunar orbit, its tidal interaction with the Earth. The most difficult remains the explanation of chemical composition of the Moon. Different scenarios of megaimpact are reviewed, in which the Earth's mantle is destroyed and the protosatellite disk is filled mainly by its fragments. There is evaluated amount of energy transferred to the Earth from the evolution of lunar orbit. It is an order of magnitude lower than three main sources of the Earth's interior heat, i.e. the heat of accretion, the energy of differentiation and the heat of radioactive sources. The tidal heating of the Venus's interiors could reach 1000K by slowing its axial initial rotation, in addition to three sources mentioned above in concern of the Earth.

  20. Report for mission selection of hyper resolution camera for Chinese Mars mission (United States)

    Wang, Weigang; Lian, Huadong; Huang, Wei; Fu, Ruimin; Li, Tuotuo


    Mars is the most similar planet as the Earth in the solar system. So it is the most studied planets in the solar system. U.S.A., Russia and E.U. have launched more than 43 satellites or spacecraft. China has realized to surround and land on the Moon, but has never been to explore Mars.

  1. Development of a TRL6 1 m class drill for acquisition and transfer of volatile rich samples on the Moon, Mars, and Ocean Worlds (United States)

    Zacny, K.; Paulsen, G.


    For over a decade, Honeybee Robotics has been developing a 1 m class sample acquisition drill for acquisition of volatile rich samples from planetary surfaces. The latest drill system is at TRL6 and ready to be infused into future missions requiring acquisition of samples from approx. 10 cm to 2 m depth (the drill is scalable with respect to the depth). The technology for 1 m class drill started with the development of the TRL4 Icebreaker drill for the Mars Icebreaker mission. The drill has been extensively tested in the Arctic, Antarctica, and Mars chamber. The system demonstrated drilling in rocks, ice cemented ground, and ice with low power (100-200 Watt), low Weight on Bit (power is approx. 500 Watt. The drill weighs approx. 15 kg. The drill uses a bite sampling approach whereby samples (nominally 10 cc in volume) are captured at the lowest section of the auger. The auger is then pulled out of the hole and sample is transferred to a cup or a funnel. The auger is lowered back into the same hole to drill another 10 cm and capture another 10 cc sample. This process continues all the way to 100 cm depth. The process can be sped up if needed, i.e. the drill can drill all the way to say 70 cm and capture sample between 60 cm and 70 cm depth. Since the drill has undergone extensive tests in the Arctic, Antarctic, Greenland, Mars chamber and Lunar chamber, the system is applicable to a surface mission to virtually any planetary body (Mars, Moon, Comets, Ocean Worlds etc.).

  2. Seismic generated infrasounds on Telluric Planets: Modeling and comparisons between Earth, Venus and Mars (United States)

    Lognonne, P. H.; Rolland, L.; Karakostas, F. G.; Garcia, R.; Mimoun, D.; Banerdt, W. B.; Smrekar, S. E.


    Earth, Venus and Mars are all planets in which infrasounds can propagate and interact with the solid surface. This leads to infrasound generation for internal sources (e.g. quakes) and to seismic waves generations for atmospheric sources (e.g. meteor, impactor explosions, boundary layer turbulences). Both the atmospheric profile, surface density, atmospheric wind and viscous/attenuation processes are however greatly different, including major differences between Mars/Venus and Earth due to the CO2 molecular relaxation. We present modeling results and compare the seismic/acoustic coupling strength for Earth, Mars and Venus. This modeling is made through normal modes modelling for models integrating the interior, atmosphere, both with realistic attenuation (intrinsic Q for solid part, viscosity and molecular relaxation for the atmosphere). We complete these modeling, made for spherical structure, by integration of wind, assuming the later to be homogeneous at the scale of the infrasound wavelength. This allows us to compute either the Seismic normal modes (e.g. Rayleigh surface waves), or the acoustic or the atmospheric gravity modes. Comparisons are done, for either a seismic source or an atmospheric source, on the amplitude of expected signals as a function of distance and frequency. Effects of local time are integrated in the modeling. We illustrate the Rayleigh waves modelling by Earth data (for large quakes and volcanoes eruptions). For Venus, very large coupling can occur at resonance frequencies between the solid part and atmospheric part of the planet through infrasounds/Rayleigh waves coupling. If the atmosphere reduced the Q (quality coefficient) of Rayleigh waves in general, the atmosphere at these resonance soffers better propagation than Venus crust and increases their Q. For Mars, Rayleigh waves excitations by atmospheric burst is shown and discussed for the typical yield of impacts. The new data of the Nasa INSIGHT mission which carry both seismic and

  3. Development of Optical Parametric Amplifier for Lidar Measurements of Trace Gases on Earth and Mars (United States)

    Numata, Kenji; Riris, Haris; Li, Steve; Wu, Stewart; Kawa, Stephen R.; Krainak, Michael; Abshire, James


    Trace gases in planetary atmospheres offer important clues as to the origins of the planet's hydrology, geology. atmosphere. and potential for biology. Wc report on the development effort of a nanosecond-pulsed optical parametric amplifier (OPA) for remote trace gas measurements for Mars and Earth. The OP A output light is single frequency with high spectral purity and is widely tunable both at 1600 nm and 3300 nm with an optical-optical conversion efficiency of approximately 40%. We demonstrated open-path atmospheric measurements ofCH4 (3291 nm and 1651 nm). CO2 (1573 nm), H20 (1652 nm) with this laser source.

  4. `We put on the glasses and Moon comes closer!' Urban Second Graders Exploring the Earth, the Sun and Moon Through 3D Technologies in a Science and Literacy Unit (United States)

    Isik-Ercan, Zeynep; Zeynep Inan, Hatice; Nowak, Jeffrey A.; Kim, Beomjin


    This qualitative case study describes (a) the ways 3D visualization, coupled with other science and literacy experiences, supported young children's first exploration of the Earth-Sun-Moon system and (b) the perspectives of classroom teachers and children on using 3D visualization. We created three interactive 3D software modules that simulate day and night, Moon phases and seasons. These modules were used in a science and literacy unit for 35 second graders at an urban elementary school in Midwestern USA. Data included pre- and post-interviews, audio-taped lessons and classroom observations. Post-interviews demonstrated that children's knowledge of the shapes and the movements of the Earth and Moon, alternation of day and night, the occurrence of the seasons, and Moon's changing appearance increased. Second graders reported that they enjoyed expanding their knowledge through hands-on experiences; through its reality effect, 3D visualization enabled them to observe the space objects that move in the virtual space. The teachers noted that 3D visualization stimulated children's interest in space and that using 3D visualization in combination with other teaching methods-literacy experiences, videos and photos, simulations, discussions, and presentations-supported student learning. The teachers and the students still experienced challenges using 3D visualization due to technical problems with 3D vision and time constraints. We conclude that 3D visualization offers hands-on experiences for challenging science concepts and may support young children's ability to view phenomena that would typically be observed through direct, long-term observations in outer space. Results imply a reconsideration of assumed capabilities of young children to understand astronomical phenomena.

  5. Bell Test over Extremely High-Loss Channels: Towards Distributing Entangled Photon Pairs between Earth and the Moon (United States)

    Cao, Yuan; Li, Yu-Huai; Zou, Wen-Jie; Li, Zheng-Ping; Shen, Qi; Liao, Sheng-Kai; Ren, Ji-Gang; Yin, Juan; Chen, Yu-Ao; Peng, Cheng-Zhi; Pan, Jian-Wei


    Quantum entanglement was termed "spooky action at a distance" in the well-known paper by Einstein, Podolsky, and Rosen. Entanglement is expected to be distributed over longer and longer distances in both practical applications and fundamental research into the principles of nature. Here, we present a proposal for distributing entangled photon pairs between Earth and the Moon using a Lagrangian point at a distance of 1.28 light seconds. One of the most fascinating features in this long-distance distribution of entanglement is as follows. One can perform the Bell test with human supplying the random measurement settings and recording the results while still maintaining spacelike intervals. To realize a proof-of-principle experiment, we develop an entangled photon source with 1 GHz generation rate, about 2 orders of magnitude higher than previous results. Violation of Bell's inequality was observed under a total simulated loss of 103 dB with measurement settings chosen by two experimenters. This demonstrates the feasibility of such long-distance Bell test over extremely high-loss channels, paving the way for one of the ultimate tests of the foundations of quantum mechanics.

  6. The past and present Earth-Moon system: the speed of light stays steady as tides evolve. (United States)

    Williams, James G; Turyshev, Slava G; Boggs, Dale H

    Tides induce a semimajor axis rate of +38.08 ± 0.19 mm/yr, corresponding to an acceleration of the Moon's orbital mean longitude of -25.82 ± 0.13 "/cent 2 , as determined by the analysis of 43 yr of Lunar Laser Ranging (LLR) data. The LLR result is consistent with analyses made with different data spans, different analysis techniques, analysis of optical observations, and independent knowledge of tides. Plate motions change ocean shapes, and geological evidence and model calculations indicate lower rates of tidal evolution for extended past intervals. Earth rotation has long-term slowing due to tidal dissipation, but it also experiences variations for times up to about 10 5  yr due to changes in the moment of inertia. An analysis of LLR data also tests for any rate of change in either the speed of light c or apparent mean distance. The result is (-2.8 ± 3.4)×10 -12 /yr for either scale rate or -(d c /d t )/ c , or equivalently -1.0 ± 1.3 mm/yr for apparent distance rate. The lunar range does not reveal any change in the speed of light.

  7. NIMPH - Nano Icy Moons Propellant Harvester (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The latest Decadal Survey lists multiple sample return missions to the Moon, Mars and Jovian moons as high priority goals. In particular, a mission to Jupiter's...

  8. Study on meteoric particle destruction when passing through the Earth, Mars and Venus atmospheres

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Apshtejn, Eh.Z.; Pilyugin, N.N.; Vartanyan, N.V.


    A problem of a meteoric particle motion with provision for its nonstationary heating up and change of a form due to evaporation in rarefied layers of the Earth, Mars and Venus atmospheres is investigated. Numerical calculations are performed for a series of stone particles with sizes of approximately 1 mm at initial inlet velocity of 15 km/s 0 <= 60 km/s and inlet angles of 10-90 deg. The particle mass carrying away, temperature of particles, luminescence intensity, and meteoric trace electron concentration in successive time periods during the motion along the trajectory are determined. A comparison of the physical theory of met rites with the known approximate solutions and observations is conducted for the Earth atmosphere. Some peculiarities of meteoric particle destruction in different atmospheres are pointed out. Some methods of atmospheric parameter recovery according to observations of meteoric particle motion are proposed on the base of calculated dependences

  9. Earth

    CERN Document Server

    Carter, Jason


    This curriculum-based, easy-to-follow book teaches young readers about Earth as one of the eight planets in our solar system in astronomical terms. With accessible text, it provides the fundamental information any student needs to begin their studies in astronomy, such as how Earth spins and revolves around the Sun, why it's uniquely suitable for life, its physical features, atmosphere, biosphere, moon, its past, future, and more. To enhance the learning experience, many of the images come directly from NASA. This straightforward title offers the fundamental information any student needs to sp

  10. Ultramafic Terranes and Associated Springs as Analogs for Mars and Early Earth (United States)

    Blake, David; Schulte, Mitch; Cullings, Ken; DeVincezi, D. (Technical Monitor)


    Putative extinct or extant Martian organisms, like their terrestrial counterparts, must adopt metabolic strategies based on the environments in which they live. In order for organisms to derive metabolic energy from the natural environment (Martian or terrestrial), a state of thermodynamic disequilibrium must exist. The most widespread environment of chemical disequilibrium on present-day Earth results from the interaction of mafic rocks of the ocean crust with liquid water. Such environments were even more pervasive and important on the Archean Earth due to increased geothermal heat flow and the absence of widespread continental crust formation. The composition of the lower crust and upper mantle of the Earth is essentially the-same as that of Mars, and the early histories of these two planets are similar. It follows that a knowledge of the mineralogy, water-rock chemistry and microbial ecology of Earth's oceanic crust could be of great value in devising a search strategy for evidence of past or present life on Mars. In some tectonic regimes, cross-sections of lower oceanic crust and upper mantle are exposed on land as so-called "ophiolite suites." Such is the case in the state of California (USA) as a result of its location adjacent to active plate margins. These mafic and ultramafic rocks contain numerous springs that offer an easily accessible field laboratory for studying water/rock interactions and the microbial communities that are supported by the resulting geochemical energy. A preliminary screen of Archaean biodiversity was conducted in a cold spring located in a presently serpentinizing ultramafic terrane. PCR and phylogenetic analysis of partial 16s rRNA, sequences were performed on water and sediment samples. Archaea of recent phylogenetic origin were detected with sequences nearly identical to those of organisms living in ultra-high pH lakes of Africa.

  11. A probabilistic framework for single-station location of seismicity on Earth and Mars (United States)

    Böse, M.; Clinton, J. F.; Ceylan, S.; Euchner, F.; van Driel, M.; Khan, A.; Giardini, D.; Lognonné, P.; Banerdt, W. B.


    Locating the source of seismic energy from a single three-component seismic station is associated with large uncertainties, originating from challenges in identifying seismic phases, as well as inevitable pick and model uncertainties. The challenge is even higher for planets such as Mars, where interior structure is a priori largely unknown. In this study, we address the single-station location problem by developing a probabilistic framework that combines location estimates from multiple algorithms to estimate the probability density function (PDF) for epicentral distance, back azimuth, and origin time. Each algorithm uses independent and complementary information in the seismic signals. Together, the algorithms allow locating seismicity ranging from local to teleseismic quakes. Distances and origin times of large regional and teleseismic events (M > 5.5) are estimated from observed and theoretical body- and multi-orbit surface-wave travel times. The latter are picked from the maxima in the waveform envelopes in various frequency bands. For smaller events at local and regional distances, only first arrival picks of body waves are used, possibly in combination with fundamental Rayleigh R1 waveform maxima where detectable; depth phases, such as pP or PmP, help constrain source depth and improve distance estimates. Back azimuth is determined from the polarization of the Rayleigh- and/or P-wave phases. When seismic signals are good enough for multiple approaches to be used, estimates from the various methods are combined through the product of their PDFs, resulting in an improved event location and reduced uncertainty range estimate compared to the results obtained from each algorithm independently. To verify our approach, we use both earthquake recordings from existing Earth stations and synthetic Martian seismograms. The Mars synthetics are generated with a full-waveform scheme (AxiSEM) using spherically-symmetric seismic velocity, density and attenuation models of

  12. Earth-Mars Telecommunications and Information Management System (TIMS): Antenna Visibility Determination, Network Simulation, and Management Models (United States)

    Odubiyi, Jide; Kocur, David; Pino, Nino; Chu, Don


    This report presents the results of our research on Earth-Mars Telecommunications and Information Management System (TIMS) network modeling and unattended network operations. The primary focus of our research is to investigate the feasibility of the TIMS architecture, which links the Earth-based Mars Operations Control Center, Science Data Processing Facility, Mars Network Management Center, and the Deep Space Network of antennae to the relay satellites and other communication network elements based in the Mars region. The investigation was enhanced by developing Build 3 of the TIMS network modeling and simulation model. The results of several 'what-if' scenarios are reported along with reports on upgraded antenna visibility determination software and unattended network management prototype.

  13. Tectonic evolution of mercury; comparison with the moon

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Thomas, P.G.; Masson, P.


    With regard to the Earth or to Mars, the Moon and Mercury look like tectonicless planetary bodies, and the prominent morphologies of these two planets are due to impact and volcanic processes. Despite these morphologies, several types of tectonic activities may be shown. Statistical studies of lineaments direction indicate that Mercury, as well as the Moon, have a planet wide lineament pattern, known as a ''grid''. Statistical studies of Mercury scarps and the Moon grabens indicate an interaction between planetary lithospheric evolution and large impact basins. Detailed studies of the largest basins indicate specific tectonic motions directly or indirectly related to impacts. These three tectonic types have been compared on each planet. The first tectonic type seems to be identical for Mercury and the Moon. But the two other types seem to be different, and are consistent with the planets' thermal evolution

  14. Synthetic biology meets bioprinting: enabling technologies for humans on Mars (and Earth). (United States)

    Rothschild, Lynn J


    Human exploration off planet is severely limited by the cost of launching materials into space and by re-supply. Thus materials brought from Earth must be light, stable and reliable at destination. Using traditional approaches, a lunar or Mars base would require either transporting a hefty store of metals or heavy manufacturing equipment and construction materials for in situ extraction; both would severely limit any other mission objectives. Long-term human space presence requires periodic replenishment, adding a massive cost overhead. Even robotic missions often sacrifice science goals for heavy radiation and thermal protection. Biology has the potential to solve these problems because life can replicate and repair itself, and perform a wide variety of chemical reactions including making food, fuel and materials. Synthetic biology enhances and expands life's evolved repertoire. Using organisms as feedstock, additive manufacturing through bioprinting will make possible the dream of producing bespoke tools, food, smart fabrics and even replacement organs on demand. This new approach and the resulting novel products will enable human exploration and settlement on Mars, while providing new manufacturing approaches for life on Earth. © 2016 The Author(s).


    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Home; Journals; Pramana – Journal of Physics. MOON MOON DEVI. Articles written in Pramana – Journal of Physics. Volume 88 Issue 5 May 2017 pp 79 Research Article. Physics potential of the ICAL detector at the India-based Neutrino Observatory (INO) · A KUMAR A M VINOD KUMAR ABHIK JASH AJIT K MOHANTY ...

  16. Obliquity histories of Earth and Mars: Influence of inertial and dissipative core-mantle coupling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bills, B.G.


    For both the Earth and Mars, secular variations in the angular separation of the spin axis from the orbit normal are suspected of driving major climatic changes. There is considerable interest in determining the amplitude and timing of these obliquity variations. If the orientation of the orbital plane were inertially fixed, the spin axis would simply precess around the orbit at a fixed obliquity and at a uniform angular rate. The precession rate parameter depends on the principal moments of inertia and rotation rate of the perturbed body, and on the gravitational masses and semiminor axes of the perturbing bodies. For Mars, the precession rate is not well known, but probably lies in the interval 8 to 10 arcsec/year. In the rigid body case, the spin axis still attempts to precess about the instantaneous orbit normal, but now the obliquity varies. The hydrostatic figure of a planet represents a compromise between gravitation, which attempts to attain spherical symmetry, and rotation, which prefers cylindrical symmetry. Due to their higher mean densities the cores of the Earth and Mars will be more nearly spherical than the outer layers of these planets. On short time scales it is appropriate to consider the core to be an inviscid fluid. The inertial coupling provided by this mechanism is effective whenever the ellipticicy of the container exceeds the ratio of precessional to rotational rates. If the mantle were actually rigid, this would be an extremely effective type of coupling. However, on sufficiently long time scales, the mantle will deform viscously and can accommodate the motions of the core fluid. A fundamentally different type of coupling is provided by electromagnetic or viscous torques. This type of coupling is likely to be most important on longer time scales

  17. Mars

    CERN Document Server

    Day, Trevor


    Discusses the fundamental facts concerning this mysterious planet, including its mass, size, and atmosphere, as well as the various missions that helped planetary scientists document the geological history of Mars. This volume also describes Mars'' seasons with their surface effects on the planet and how they have changed over time.

  18. Life in and Beneath Glacial Ice -- Implications for Earth, Mars, and Europa (United States)

    Allen, C.

    Earth history apparently includes several periods of essentially total glaciation. Ice is present in the subsurface of Mars, and may have discharged liquid water in the recent past. The crust of Jupiter's satellite Europa is composed of water ice, apparently overlying a liquid ocean, and cracks in this ice crust may have allowed repeated releases of water to the surface. Bacteria adapted to survive and grow at low temperatures are found throughout the Earth's oceans and polar regions. Such bacteria have been recovered from marine and freshwater ice, glacial ice and meltwater, and permafrost. Microbes, some possibly viable, have been recovered from an Antarctic ice core over 3,500 m deep and from the refrozen water of subglacial Lake Vostok. Chemolithotrophic bacteria, analogous to those at terrestrial deep sea vents, could have survived beneath the ice of "Snowball Earth", and life forms with similar characteristics might exist beneath the ice of Mars or Europa. These sub-ice bacteria could exist i isolation from sunlight, protected from extremes of temperature,n desiccation, and radiation. Periodic discharges of water to the surface could provide accessible evidence for the existence of such life beneath the ice. We are investigating a contemporary terrestrial analog - a set of springs that deposit sulfur and carbonate minerals on the surface of a glacier in the Canadian arctic. The deposits contain psychrophilic microorganisms.A variety of evidence supports the interpretation that native sulphur and associated deposits in these springs are related to bacterially m diated reduction and oxidation of sulphur below the glacier. Thise work provides evidence that a non-volcanic, topography driven geothermal system, that harbors microbiological commu nities, can operate in extreme cold environments and discharge through solid ice. This conclusion supports the idea that life can exist in isolated geothermal refuges despite subfreezing surface conditions such as those on

  19. Evolving earth-based and in-situ satellite network architectures for Mars communications and navigation support (United States)

    Hastrup, Rolf; Weinberg, Aaron; McOmber, Robert


    Results of on-going studies to develop navigation/telecommunications network concepts to support future robotic and human missions to Mars are presented. The performance and connectivity improvements provided by the relay network will permit use of simpler, lower performance, and less costly telecom subsystems for the in-situ mission exploration elements. Orbiting relay satellites can serve as effective navigation aids by supporting earth-based tracking as well as providing Mars-centered radiometric data for mission elements approaching, in orbit, or on the surface of Mars. The relay satellite orbits may be selected to optimize navigation aid support and communication coverage for specific mission sets.

  20. A Google Earth Grand Tour of the Terrestrial Planets (United States)

    De Paor, Declan; Coba, Filis; Burgin, Stephen


    Google Earth is a powerful instructional resource for geoscience education. We have extended the virtual globe to include all terrestrial planets. Downloadable Keyhole Markup Language (KML) files (Google Earth's scripting language) associated with this paper include lessons about Mercury, Venus, the Moon, and Mars. We created "grand…

  1. Technological requirements of nuclear electric propulsion systems for fast Earth-Mars transfers (United States)

    Bérend, N.; Epenoy, R.; Cliquet, E.; Laurent-Varin, J.; Avril, S.


    Recent advances in electric propulsion technologies such as magnetoplasma rockets gave a new momentum to the study of nuclear electric propulsion concepts for Mars missions. Some recent works have been focused on very short Earth-to-Mars transfers of about 40 days with high-power, variable specific impulse propulsion systems [1]. While the interest of nuclear electric propulsion appears clearly with regard to the payload mass ratio (due to a high level of specific impulse), its interest with regard to the transfer time is more complex to define, as it depends on many design parameters. In this paper, a general analysis of the capability of nuclear electric propulsion systems considering both criteria (the payload mass ratio and the transfer time) is performed, and the technological requirements for fast Earth-Mars transfers are studied. This analysis has been performed in two steps. First, complete trajectory optimizations have been performed by CNES-DCT in order to obtain the propulsion requirements of the mission for different technological hypotheses regarding the engine technology (specific impulse levels and the throttling capability) and different mission requirements. The methodology used for designing fuel-optimal heliocentric trajectories, based on the Pontryagin's Maximum Principle will be presented. Trajectories have been computed for various power levels combined with either variable or fixed Isp. The second step consisted in evaluating a simpler method that could easily link the main mission requirements (the transfer time and the payload fraction) to the main technological requirements (the specific mass of the power generation system and the structure mass ratio of the whole vehicle, excluding the power generation system). Indeed, for power-limited systems, propulsion requirements can be characterized through the "trajectory characteristic" parameter, defined as the integral over time of the squared thrust acceleration. Technological requirements for

  2. A young Moon-forming giant impact at 70-110 million years accompanied by late-stage mixing, core formation and degassing of the Earth. (United States)

    Halliday, Alex N


    New W isotope data for lunar metals demonstrate that the Moon formed late in isotopic equilibrium with the bulk silicate Earth (BSE). On this basis, lunar Sr isotope data are used to define the former composition of the Earth and hence the Rb-Sr age of the Moon, which is 4.48+/-0.02Ga, or 70-110Ma (million years) after the start of the Solar System. This age is significantly later than had been deduced from W isotopes based on model assumptions or isotopic effects now known to be cosmogenic. The Sr age is in excellent agreement with earlier estimates based on the time of lunar Pb loss and the age of the early lunar crust (4.46+/-0.04Ga). Similar ages for the BSE are recorded by xenon and lead-lead, providing evidence of catastrophic terrestrial degassing, atmospheric blow-off and significant late core formation accompanying the ca 100Ma giant impact. Agreement between the age of the Moon based on the Earth's Rb/Sr and the lead-lead age of the Moon is consistent with no major losses of moderately volatile elements from the Earth during the giant impact. The W isotopic composition of the BSE can be explained by end member models of (i) gradual accretion with a mean life of roughly 35Ma or (ii) rapid growth with a mean life of roughly 10Ma, followed by a significant hiatus prior to the giant impact. The former assumes that approximately 60 per cent of the incoming metal from impactors is added directly to the core during accretion. The latter includes complete mixing of all the impactor material into the BSE during accretion. The identical W isotopic composition of the Moon and the BSE limits the amount of material that can be added as a late veneer to the Earth after the giant impact to less than 0.3+/-0.3 per cent of ordinary chondrite or less than 0.5+/-0.6 per cent CI carbonaceous chondrite based on their known W isotopic compositions. Neither of these on their own is sufficient to explain the inventories of both refractory siderophiles such as platinum group

  3. An Earth-Moon Transfer Trajectory Design and Analysis Considering Spacecraft’s Visibility from Daejeon Ground Station at TLI and LOI Maneuvers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jin Woo


    Full Text Available The optimal Earth-Moon transfer trajectory considering spacecraft’s visibility from the Daejeon ground station visibility at both the trans lunar injection (TLI and lunar orbit insertion (LOI maneuvers is designed. Both the TLI and LOI maneuvers are assumed to be impulsive thrust. As the successful execution of the TLI and LOI maneuvers are crucial factors among the various lunar mission parameters, it is necessary to design an optimal lunar transfer trajectory which guarantees the visibility from a specified ground station while executing these maneuvers. The optimal Earth-Moon transfer trajectory is simulated by modifying the Korean Lunar Mission Design Software using Impulsive high Thrust Engine (KLMDS-ITE which is developed in previous studies. Four different mission scenarios are established and simulated to analyze the effects of the spacecraft’s visibility considerations at the TLI and LOI maneuvers. As a result, it is found that the optimal Earth-Moon transfer trajectory, guaranteeing the spacecraft’s visibility from Daejeon ground station at both the TLI and LOI maneuvers, can be designed with slight changes in total amount of delta-Vs. About 1% difference is observed with the optimal trajectory when none of the visibility condition is guaranteed, and about 0.04% with the visibility condition is only guaranteed at the time of TLI maneuver. The spacecraft’s mass which can delivered to the Moon, when both visibility conditions are secured is shown to be about 534 kg with assumptions of KSLV-2’s on-orbit mass about 2.6 tons. To minimize total mission delta-Vs, it is strongly recommended that visibility conditions at both the TLI and LOI maneuvers should be simultaneously implemented to the trajectory optimization algorithm.

  4. Mars

    CERN Document Server

    Payment, Simone


    This curriculum-based, fun, and approachable book offers everything young readers need to know to begin their study of the Red Planet. They will learn about the fundamental aspects of the Mars, including its size, mass, surface features, interior, orbit, and spin. Further, they will learn about the history of the missions to Mars, including the Viking spacecraft and the Curiosity and MAVEN rovers. Finally, readers will learn about why scientists think there's a chance that Mars is or was suitable for life. With stunning imagery from NASA itself, readers will have a front seat-view of the missi

  5. Comparison of the Mantle Potential Temperature of Ancient Mars and the Earth (United States)

    Filiberto, Justin; Dasgupta, Rajdeep


    Basaltic igneous rocks shed light onto the chemistry, tectonic, and thermal state of planetary interiors. For the purpose of comparative planetology, therefore, it is critical to fully utilize the compositional diversity of basaltic rocks for different terrestrial planets. For Mars, basaltic compositions have been analyzed in situ on the surface at three different landing sites, from orbit providing global geochemistry, and in the laboratory for specific Martian meteorites [1-4]. This provides a range in chemistry and age of Martian rocks. Terrestrial mafic to ultramafic igneous rocks have a range in chemistry across different tectonic regimes and different ages [5-8]. These differences in chemistry and age of planetary basalts may reflect changes in the conditions of partial melting in the planetary interiors. Therefore, here we compare estimates of basalt genesis conditions for Mars with rocks from the Noachian (Gusev Crater, Meridiani Planum, Gale Crater, and a clast in the NWA 7034 meteorite [9, 10]), Hesperian (surface volcanics [11]), and Amazonian (surface volcanics and shergottites [11-14]), to calculate an average mantle potential temperature for different Martian epochs and investigate how the interior of Mars has changed through time. We also calculate formation conditions for terrestrial komatiites and Archean basalts to calculate an average mantle potential temperature during the Archean. Finally, we compare Martian mantle potential temperatures with petrologic estimate of cooling for the Earth to compare the cooling history for Mars and the Earth. References: [1] Squyres S.W. et al. (2006) JGR. doi:10.1029/2005je002562. [2] Schmidt M.E., et al. (2014) JGRP. doi:2013JE004481. [3] Zipfel J. et al. (2011) MaPS. 46(1): 1-20. [4] Treiman A.H. and Filiberto J. (2015) MaPS. DOI:10.1111/maps.12363. [5] Putirka K.D.(2005) G-cubed. DOI:10.1029/2005gc000915. [6] Putirka K.D. et al. (2007) ChemGeo. 241(3-4): 177-206. [7] Courtier A.M. et al. (2007) EPSL. 264

  6. Shoot the Moon


    Koon, Wang Sang; Lo, Martin W.; Marsden, Jerrold E.; Ross, Shane D.


    In 1991, the Japanese Hiten mission used a low energy transfer with a ballistic capture at the Moon which required less ΔV than a standard Hohmann transfer to the Moon. In this paper, we apply the same dynamical systems techniques used to produce the “Petit Grand Tour” of Jovian moons to reproduce a Hiten-like mission. We decouple the Sun-Earth-Moon- Spacecraft 4-body problem into two 3-body problems. Using the invariant manifold theory of the Lagrange points of the 3-body s...

  7. TYCHO: Demonstrator and operational satellite mission to Earth-Moon-Libration point EML-4 for communication relay provision as a service (United States)

    Hornig, Andreas; Homeister, Maren


    In the current wake of mission plans to the Moon and to Earth-Moon Libration points (EML) by several agencies and organizations, TYCHO identifies the key role of telecommunication provision for the future path of lunar exploration. It demonstrates an interesting extension to existing communication methods to the Moon and beyond by combining innovative technology with a next frontier location and the commercial space communication sector. It is evident that all communication systems will rely on direct communication to Earth ground stations. In case of EML-2 missions around HALO orbits or bases on the far side of the Moon, it has to be extended by communication links via relay stations. The innovative approach is that TYCHO provides this relay communication to those out-of-sight lunar missions as a service. TYCHO will establish a new infrastructure for future missions and even create a new market for add-on relay services. The TMA-0 satellite is TYCHO's first phase and a proposed demonstrator mission to the Earth-Moon Libration point EML-4. It demonstrates relay services needed for automated exploratory and manned missions (Moon bases) on the rim (>90°E and >90°W) and far side surface, to lunar orbits and even to EML-2 halo orbits (satellites and space stations). Its main advantage is the permanent availability of communication coverage. This will provide full access to scientific and telemetry data and furthermore to crucial medical monitoring and safety. The communication subsystem is a platform for conventional communication but also a test-bed for optical communication with high data-rate LASER links to serve the future needs of manned bases and periodic burst data-transfer from lunar poles. The operational TMA-1 satellite is a stand-alone mission integrated into existing space communication networks to provide open communication service to external lunar missions. Therefore the long-time stable libration points EML-4 and -5 are selected to guarantee an

  8. ESAS-Derived Earth Departure Stage Design for Human Mars Exploration (United States)

    Flaherty, Kevin; Grant, Michael; Korzun, Ashley; Malo-Molina, Faure; Steinfeldt, Bradley; Stahl, Benjamin; Wilhite, Alan


    The Vision for Space Exploration has set the nation on a course to have humans on Mars as early as 2030. To reduce the cost and risk associated with human Mars exploration, NASA is planning for the Mars architecture to leverage the lunar architecture as fully as possible. This study takes the defined launch vehicles and system capabilities from ESAS and extends their application to DRM 3.0 to design an Earth Departure Stage suitable for the cargo and crew missions to Mars. The impact of a propellant depot in LEO was assessed and sLzed for use with the EDS. To quantitatively assess and compare the effectiveness of alternative designs, an initial baseline architecture was defined using the ESAS launch vehicles and DRM 3.0. The baseline architecture uses three NTR engines, LH2 propellant, no propellant depot in LEO, and launches on the Ares I and Ares V. The Mars transfer and surface elements from DRM 3.0 were considered to be fixed payloads in the design of the EDS. Feasible architecture alternatives were identified from previous architecture studies and anticipated capabilities and compiled in a morphological matrix. ESAS FOMs were used to determine the most critical design attributes for the effectiveness of the EDS. The ESAS-derived FOMs used in this study to assess alternative designs are effectiveness and performance, affordability, reliability, and risk. The individual FOMs were prioritized using the AHP, a method for pairwise comparison. All trades performed were evaluated with respect to the weighted FOMs, creating a Pareto frontier of equivalently ideal solutions. Additionally, each design on the frontier was evaluated based on its fulfillment of the weighted FOMs using TOPSIS, a quantitative method for ordinal ranking of the alternatives. The designs were assessed in an integrated environment using physics-based models for subsystem analysis where possible. However, for certain attributes such as engine type, historical, performance-based mass estimating

  9. Origin of the terrestrial planets and the moon. (United States)

    Taylor, S R


    Our ideas about the origin and evolution of the solar system have advanced significantly as a result of the past 25 years of space exploration. Metal-sulfide-silicate partitioning seems to have been present in the early dust components of the solar nebula, prior to chondrule formation. The inner solar nebula was depleted in volatile elements by early solar activity. The early formation of the gas giant, Jupiter, affected the subsequent development of inner solar system and is responsible for the existence of the asteroid belt, and the small size of Mars. The Earth and the other terrestrial planets accreted in a gas-free environment, mostly from volatile-depleted planetesimals which were already differentiated into metallic cores and silicate mantles. The origin of the Moon by a single massive impact with a body larger than Mars explains the angular momentum, orbital characteristics and unique nature of the Earth-Moon system. The density and chemical differences between the Earth and Moon are accounted for by deriving the Moon from the mantle of the impactor.

  10. Meteoroid impacts as seismic sources on Mars (United States)

    Davis, Paul M.


    Lunar Apollo seismic experiment results reflecting asteroid fragment impacts are presently used to estimate the seismic signals that can be expected on Mars, with allowances for impact-rate differences due to a different impactor population, and the combined effect of ablation and deceleration in the Martian atmosphere on impact energy. The entry flux at Mars is 2.6 times that at the earth. The net result for such seismic activity, which has an uncertainty factor of 3, is that the number of large impacts/year detected at a Mars seismic station comparable to Apollo's in sensitivity will be 116 events/year, compared to the moon's 76 events/year.

  11. Meteorites on Mars (United States)

    Flynn, G. J.; Mckay, D. S.


    Four types of meteoritic material should be found on Mars: (1) micrometeorites, many of which will survive atmospheric entry unmelted, which should fall relatively uniformly over the planet's surface, (2) ablation products from larger meteorites which ablate, break up and burn up in the Mars atmosphere, (3) debris from large, crater forming objects, which, by analogy to terrestrial and lunar impact events, will be concentrated in the crater ejecta blankets (except for rare, large events, such as the proposed C-T event on earth, which can distribute debris on a planetary scale), and (4) debris from the early, intense bombardment, which, in many areas of the planet, may now be incorporated into rocks by geologic processes subsequent to the intense bombardment era. To estimate the extent of meteoritic addition to indigenous Martian material, the meteoritic flux on Mars must be known. It is estimated that the overall flux is twice that for the Moon and 1.33 that for Earth. For small particles, whose orbital evolution is dominated by Poynting Robertson drag, the flux at Mars can be estimated from the Earth flux. The smaller Martian gravitational enhancement as well as the decrease in the spatial density of interplanetary dust with increasing heliocentric distance should reduce the flux of small particles at Mars to about 0.33 times the flux at Earth. Because of the smaller planetary cross-section the total infalling mass at Mars is then estimated to be 0.09 time the infalling mass in the micrometeorite size range at Earth.

  12. Reconstructing paleo-discharge from geometries of fluvial sinuous ridges on Earth and Mars (United States)

    Hayden, A.; Lamb, M. P.; Mohrig, D. C.; Williams, R. M. E.; Myrow, P.; Ewing, R. C.; Cardenas, B. T.; Findlay, C. P., III


    Sinuous, branching networks of topographic ridges resembling river networks are common across Mars, and show promise for quantifying ancient martian surface hydrology. There are two leading formation mechanisms for ridges with a fluvial origin. Inverted channels are ridges that represent casts (e.g., due to lava fill) of relict river channel topography, whereas exhumed channel deposits are eroded remnants of a more extensive fluvial deposit, such as a channel belt. The inverted channel model is often assumed on Mars; however, we currently lack the ability to distinguish these ridge formation mechanisms, motivating the need for Earth-analog study. To address this issue, we studied the extensive networks of sinuous ridges in the Ebro basin of northeast Spain. The Ebro ridges stand 3-15 meters above the surrounding plains and are capped by a cliff-forming sandstone unit 3-10 meters thick and 20-50 meters in breadth. The caprock sandstone bodies contain bar-scale cross stratification, point-bar deposits, levee deposits, and lenses of mudstone, indicating that these are channel-belt deposits, rather than casts of channels formed from lateral channel migration, avulsion and reoccupation. In plan view, ridges form segments branching outward to the north resembling a distributary network; however, crosscutting relationships indicate that ridges cross at different stratigraphic levels. Thus, the apparent network in planview reflects non-uniform exhumation of channel-belt deposits from multiple stratigraphic positions, rather than an inverted coeval river network. As compared to the inverted channel model, exhumed fluvial deposits indicate persistent fluvial activity over geologic timescales, indicating the potential for long-lived surface water on ancient Mars.

  13. Full-Frame Reference for Test Photo of Moon (United States)


    This pair of views shows how little of the full image frame was taken up by the Moon in test images taken Sept. 8, 2005, by the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. The Mars-bound camera imaged Earth's Moon from a distance of about 10 million kilometers (6 million miles) away -- 26 times the distance between Earth and the Moon -- as part of an activity to test and calibrate the camera. The images are very significant because they show that the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft and this camera can properly operate together to collect very high-resolution images of Mars. The target must move through the camera's telescope view in just the right direction and speed to acquire a proper image. The day's test images also demonstrate that the focus mechanism works properly with the telescope to produce sharp images. Out of the 20,000-pixel-by-6,000-pixel full frame, the Moon's diameter is about 340 pixels, if the full Moon could be seen. The illuminated crescent is about 60 pixels wide, and the resolution is about 10 kilometers (6 miles) per pixel. At Mars, the entire image region will be filled with high-resolution information. The Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, launched on Aug. 12, 2005, is on course to reach Mars on March 10, 2006. After gradually adjusting the shape of its orbit for half a year, it will begin its primary science phase in November 2006. From the mission's planned science orbit about 300 kilometers (186 miles) above the surface of Mars, the high resolution camera will be able to discern features as small as one meter or yard across. The Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter mission is managed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, for the NASA Science Mission Directorate. Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver, prime contractor for the project, built the spacecraft. Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp., Boulder, Colo., built the High

  14. Moons a very short introduction

    CERN Document Server

    Rothery, David A


    Moons: A Very Short Introduction introduces the reader to the varied and fascinating moons of our Solar System. Beginning with the early discoveries of Galileo and others, it describes their variety of mostly mythological names, and the early use of Jupiter’s moons to establish position at sea and to estimate the speed of light. It discusses the structure, formation, and profound influence of our Moon, those of the other planets, and ends with the recent discovery of moons orbiting asteroids, whilst looking forward to the possibility of discovering microbial life beyond Earth and of finding moons of exoplanets in planetary systems far beyond our own.

  15. Direct-to-Earth Communications with Mars Science Laboratory During Entry, Descent, and Landing (United States)

    Soriano, Melissa; Finley, Susan; Fort, David; Schratz, Brian; Ilott, Peter; Mukai, Ryan; Estabrook, Polly; Oudrhiri, Kamal; Kahan, Daniel; Satorius, Edgar


    Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) undergoes extreme heating and acceleration during Entry, Descent, and Landing (EDL) on Mars. Unknown dynamics lead to large Doppler shifts, making communication challenging. During EDL, a special form of Multiple Frequency Shift Keying (MFSK) communication is used for Direct-To-Earth (DTE) communication. The X-band signal is received by the Deep Space Network (DSN) at the Canberra Deep Space Communication complex, then down-converted, digitized, and recorded by open-loop Radio Science Receivers (RSR), and decoded in real-time by the EDL Data Analysis (EDA) System. The EDA uses lock states with configurable Fast Fourier Transforms to acquire and track the signal. RSR configuration and channel allocation is shown. Testing prior to EDL is discussed including software simulations, test bed runs with MSL flight hardware, and the in-flight end-to-end test. EDA configuration parameters and signal dynamics during pre-entry, entry, and parachute deployment are analyzed. RSR and EDA performance during MSL EDL is evaluated, including performance using a single 70-meter DSN antenna and an array of two 34-meter DSN antennas as a back up to the 70-meter antenna.

  16. Multipoint observations of coronal mass ejection and solar energetic particle events on Mars and Earth during November 2001

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Falkenberg, Thea Vilstrup; Vennerstrøm, Susanne; Brain, D. A.


    and Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) data to study ICMEs and SEPs at Earth, we present a detailed study of three CMEs and flares in late November 2001. In this period, Mars trailed Earth by 56 degrees solar longitude so that the two planets occupied interplanetary magnetic field lines......Multipoint spacecraft observations provide unique opportunities to constrain the propagation and evolution of interplanetary coronal mass ejections (ICMEs) throughout the heliosphere. Using Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) data to study both ICME and solar energetic particle (SEP) events at Mars and OMNI...... separated by only similar to 25 degrees. We model the interplanetary propagation of CME events using the ENLIL version 2.6 3-D MHD code coupled with the Wang-Sheeley-Arge version 1.6 potential source surface model, using Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) Large Angle and Spectrometric Coronagraph...

  17. Tactile Earth and Space Science Materials for Students with Visual Impairments: Contours, Craters, Asteroids, and Features of Mars (United States)

    Rule, Audrey C.


    New tactile curriculum materials for teaching Earth and planetary science lessons on rotation=revolution, silhouettes of objects from different views, contour maps, impact craters, asteroids, and topographic features of Mars to 11 elementary and middle school students with sight impairments at a week-long residential summer camp are presented…

  18. Life, death and revival of debris-flow fans on Earth and Mars : fan dynamics and climatic inferences

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Haas, T.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/374023190


    Alluvial fans are ubiquitous landforms in high-relief regions on Earth and Mars. They have a semi-conical shape and are located at the transition between highlands and adjacent basins. Alluvial fans can form by a range of processes including debris flows, which are water-laden masses of soil and

  19. Measurement of planetary surface composition by gamma-ray and neutron spectrometry - Preparatory studies for Mars and for the Moon by numerical simulations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gasnault, O.


    Gamma-ray and neutron spectrometry sets up a powerful tool of geological and geochemical characterization of planetary surfaces. This method allows to tackle some critical planet science questions: crustal and mantle compositions; ices; volcanism; alteration processes... Most of the neutrons and gamma photons result from the interactions of galactic cosmic rays with matter. The first chapter introduces the physics of these nuclear interactions in planetary soils and in detectors. Our work aims at optimizing the observations by specifying instrumental performances, and by highlighting relations between soil composition and neutron fluxes. Numerical simulations using the GEANT code from CERN support our analysis. The second chapter estimates the performances of the Germanium gamma-ray spectrometer for MARS SURVEYOR 2001. The result of simulations is compared to calibration measurements; then performances are calculated in flight configuration. The background at Mars is estimated to about 160 c/s. The instrument offers a fine sensitivity to: Fe, Mg, K, Si, Th, Cl and O. It will also be possible to measure U, Ti, H, C, S, Ca and Al. The emission lobes at the surface are calculated too. These measurements shall permit a better understanding of the Martian surface. The last chapter deals with fast neutrons [500 keV; 10 MeV] emitted by the Moon. The strong influence of oxygen is underlined. As observed by LUNAR PROSPECTOR, the integrated flux shows a pronounced dependence with regolith content in iron and titanium, allowing the mapping. The influence of the other chemical elements is quantified. A simple mathematical formula is suggested to estimate the integrated neutron flux according to soil composition. At last, a study of hydrogen effects on fast neutron flux is carried out; we examine the possibilities to quantify its abundance in the soil by this method. (author)

  20. The PROCESS experiment: amino and carboxylic acids under Mars-like surface UV radiation conditions in low-earth orbit. (United States)

    Noblet, Audrey; Stalport, Fabien; Guan, Yuan Yong; Poch, Olivier; Coll, Patrice; Szopa, Cyril; Cloix, Mégane; Macari, Frédérique; Raulin, Francois; Chaput, Didier; Cottin, Hervé


    The search for organic molecules at the surface of Mars is a top priority of the next Mars exploration space missions: Mars Science Laboratory (NASA) and ExoMars (ESA). The detection of organic matter could provide information about the presence of a prebiotic chemistry or even biological activity on this planet. Therefore, a key step in interpretation of future data collected by these missions is to understand the preservation of organic matter in the martian environment. Several laboratory experiments have been devoted to quantifying and qualifying the evolution of organic molecules under simulated environmental conditions of Mars. However, these laboratory simulations are limited, and one major constraint is the reproduction of the UV spectrum that reaches the surface of Mars. As part of the PROCESS experiment of the European EXPOSE-E mission on board the International Space Station, a study was performed on the photodegradation of organics under filtered extraterrestrial solar electromagnetic radiation that mimics Mars-like surface UV radiation conditions. Glycine, serine, phthalic acid, phthalic acid in the presence of a mineral phase, and mellitic acid were exposed to these conditions for 1.5 years, and their evolution was determined by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy after their retrieval. The results were compared with data from laboratory experiments. A 1.5-year exposure to Mars-like surface UV radiation conditions in space resulted in complete degradation of the organic compounds. Half-lives between 50 and 150 h for martian surface conditions were calculated from both laboratory and low-Earth orbit experiments. The results highlight that none of those organics are stable under low-Earth orbit solar UV radiation conditions.

  1. Ertel Potential Vorticity versus Bernoulli Streamfunction in Earth's Southern Ocean: Comparison with the Atmospheres of Earth, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn (United States)

    Dowling, Timothy E.; Stanley, Geoff; Bradley, Mary Elizabeth; Marshall, David P.


    We are working to expand the comparative planetology of vorticity-streamfunction correlations established for the atmospheres of Earth, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn to include Earth’s Antarctic Circumpolar Current (ACC), which is the only oceanic jet that encircles the planet. Interestingly, the ACC and its eddies scale like atmospheric jets and eddies on Jupiter and Saturn---the Southern Ocean is a “giant planet” with a zonal jet stream. Our input is the Southern Ocean State Estimate (SOSE; Mazloff et al 2010, J. Phys. Ocean. 40, 880-899), an optimal combination of observations and primitive-equation model that spans 2005-2010. Two hurdles not encountered in atmospheric work arise from the nonlinear equation of state of ocean water: non-zero helicity, which prevents the existence of truly neutral (analogous to adiabatic) surfaces, and the lack of a geostrophic streamfunction in general. We follow de Szoeke et al (2000, J. Phys. Ocean. 30, 2830-2852) to overcome these hurdles, regionally, by using orthobaric density as the vertical coordinate. In agreement with results for all atmospheres analyzed to date, scatter plots of Ertel potential vorticity, Q, versus Bernoulli streamfunction, B, on orthobaric density surfaces in the Southern Ocean are well correlated. The general shape of the correlation is like a hockey stick, with the “blade” corresponding to a broad horizontal region that spans the ACC, and the “handle” corresponding to shallow water. The same linear-regression Q versus B model employed for Mars is applied to the ACC (“blade”) signal. Results include that the deeper water on the equatorward side of the ACC is most prone to shear instability, and elsewhere the ACC is “supersonic” such that the net propagation of vorticity waves is eastward, not the usual westward. During the 6-year span of the SOSE data, there is a steady drift of the correlation to larger values at the top of the vertical profile, and to smaller values in the middle of

  2. Processes involved in the formation of magnesian-suite plutonic rocks from the highlands of the Earth's Moon (United States)

    Snyder, Gregory A.; Neal, Clive R.; Taylor, Lawrence A.; Halliday, Alex N.


    The earliest evolution of the Moon likely included the formation of a magma ocean and the subsequent development of anorthositic flotation cumulates. This primary anorthositic crust was then intruded by mafic magmas which crystallized to form the lunar highlands magnesian suite. The present study is a compilation of petrologic, mineral-chemical, and geochemical information on all pristine magnesian-suite plutonic rocks and the interpretation of this data in light of 18 'new' samples. Of these 18 clasts taken from Apollo 14 breccias, 12 are probably pristine and include four dunites, two norites, four troctolites, and two anorthosites. Radiogenic isotopic whole rock data also are reported for one of the 'probably pristine' anorthositic troctolites, sample 14303,347. The relatively low Rb content and high Sm and Nd abundances of 14303,347 suggest that this cumulate rock was derived from a parental magma which had these chemical characteristics. Trace element, isotopic, and mineral-chemical data are used to interpret the total highlands magnesian suite as crustal precipitates of a primitive KREEP (possessing a K-, rare earth element (REE)-, and P-enriched chemical signature) basalt magma. This KREEP basalt was created by the mixing of ascending ultramafic melts from the lunar interior with urKREEP (the late, K-, REE-, and P-enriched residuum of the lunar magma ocean). A few samples of the magnesian suite with extremely elevated large-ion lithophile elements (5-10x other magnesian-suite rocks) cannot be explained by this model or any other model of autometasomatism, equilibrium crystallization, or 'local melt-pocket equilibrium' without recourse to an extremely large-ion lithophile element-enriched parent liquid. It is difficult to generate parental liquids which are 2-4 x higher in the REE than average lunar KREEP, unless the liquids are the basic complement of a liquid-liquid pair, i.e., the so-called 'REEP-fraction,' from the silicate liquid immiscibility of ur

  3. A colossal impact enriched Mars' mantle with noble metals (United States)

    Brasser, R.; Mojzsis, S. J.


    Once the terrestrial planets had mostly completed their assembly, bombardment continued by planetesimals left over from accretion. Highly siderophile element (HSE) abundances in Mars' mantle imply that its late accretion supplement was 0.8 wt %; Earth and the Moon obtained an additional 0.7 wt % and 0.02 wt %, respectively. The disproportionately high Earth/Moon accretion ratio is explicable by stochastic addition of a few remaining Ceres-sized bodies that preferentially targeted Earth. Here we show that Mars' late accretion budget also requires a colossal impact, a plausible visible remnant of which is the emispheric dichotomy. The addition of sufficient HSEs to the Martian mantle entails an impactor of at least 1200 km in diameter to have struck Mars before 4430 Ma, by which time crust formation was well underway. Thus, the dichotomy could be one of the oldest geophysical features of the Martian crust. Ejected debris could be the source material for its satellites.

  4. Earth's early fossil record: Why not look for similar fossils on Mars? (United States)

    Awramik, Stanley M.


    The oldest evidence of life on Earth is discussed with attention being given to the structure and formation of stromatolites and microfossils. Fossilization of microbes in calcium carbonate or chert media is discussed. In searching for fossil remains on Mars, some lessons learned from the study of Earth's earliest fossil record can be applied. Certain sedimentary rock types and sedimentary rock configurations should be targeted for investigation and returned by the Martian rover and ultimately by human explorers. Domical, columnar to wavy laminated stratiform sedimentary rocks that resemble stromatolites should be actively sought. Limestone, other carbonates, and chert are the favored lithology. Being macroscopic, stromatolites might be recognized by an intelligent unmanned rover. In addition, black, waxy chert with conchoidal fracture should be sought. Chert is by far the preferred lithology for the preservation of microbes and chemical fossils. Even under optimal geological conditions (little or no metamorphism or tectonic alteration, excellent outcrops, and good black chert) and using experienced field biogeologists, the chances of finding well preserved microbial remains in chert are very low.

  5. Combustion Joining of Regolith Tiles for In-Situ Fabrication of Launch/Landing Pads on the Moon and Mars (United States)

    Ferguson, Robert E.; Shafirovich, Evgeny; Mantovani, James G.


    To mitigate dust problems during launch/landing operations in lunar and Mars missions, it is desired to build solid pads on the surface. Recently, strong tiles have been fabricated from lunar regolith simulants using high-temperature sintering. The present work investigates combustion joining of these tiles through the use of exothermic intermetallic reactions. Specifically, nickel/aluminum (1:1 mole ratio) mixture was placed in a gap between the tiles sintered from JSC-1A lunar regolith simulant. Upon ignition by a laser, a self-sustained propagation of the combustion front over the mixture occurred. Joining was improved with increasing the tile thickness from 6.3 mm to 12.7 mm. The temperatures sufficient for melting the glass phase of JSC-1A were recorded for 12.7-mm tiles, which explains the observed better joining.

  6. Primary school children and teachers discover the nature and science of planet Earth and Mars (United States)

    Kleinhans, Maarten; Verkade, Alex; Bastings, Mirjam; Reichwein, Maarten


    For various reasons primary schools emphasise language and calculus rather than natural sciences. When science is taught at all, examination systems often favour technological tricks and knowledge of the 'right' answer over the process of investigation and logical reasoning towards that answer. Over the long term, this is not conducive to curiosity and scientific attitude in large parts of the population. Since the problem is more serious in primary than in secondary education, and as children start their school career with a natural curiosity and great energy to explore their world, we focus our efforts on primary school teachers in close collaboration with teachers and researchers. Our objective was to spark children's curiosity and their motivation to learn and discover, as well as to help teachers develop self-afficacy in science education. To this end we developed a three-step program with a classroom game and sand-box experiments related to planet Earth and Mars. The classroom game Expedition Mundus simulates science in its focus on asking questions, reasoning towards answers on the basis of multiple sources and collaboration as well as growth of knowledge. Planet Mundus is entirely fictitional to avoid differences in foreknowledge between pupils. The game was tested in hundreds of classes in primary schools and the first years of secondary education and was printed (in Dutch) and distributed over thousands of schools as part of teacher education through university science hubs. Expedition Mundus was developed by the Young Academy of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences and De Praktijk. The tested translations in English and German are available on Following the classroom game, we conducted simple landscape experiments in sand boxes supported by google earth imagery of real rivers, fans and deltas on Earth and Mars. This was loosely based on our fluvial morphodynamics research. This, in the presence of a

  7. Are we There Yet? ... Developing In-Situ Fabrication and Repair (ISFR) Technologies to Explore and Live on the Moon and Mars (United States)

    Bassler, Julie A.; Bodiford, Melanie P.; Fiske, Michael R.; Strong, Janet D.


    NASA's human exploration initiative poses great opportunity and great risk for manned missions to the Moon and Mars. Engineers and Scientists at the Marshall Space Flight Center are evaluating current technologies for in situ exploration habitat and fabrication and repair applications. Several technologies to be addressed in this paper have technology readiness levels (TRLs) that are currently mature enough to pursue for exploration purposes. However, many technologies offer promising applications but these must be pulled along by the demands and applications of this great initiative. The In Situ Fabrication and Repair (ISFR) program will supply and push state of the art technologies for applications such as habitat structure development, in situ resource utilization for tool and part fabrication, and repair and replacement of common life support elements. This paper will look at the current and future habitat technology applications such as the implementation of in situ environmental elements such as caves, rilles and lavatubes, the development of lunar regolith concrete and structure design and development, thin film and inflatable technologies. We will address current rapid prototyping technologies, their ISFR applications and near term advancements. We will discuss the anticipated need to utilize in situ resources to produce replacement parts and fabricate repairs to vehicles, habitats, life support and quality of life elements. All ISFR technology developments will incorporate automated deployment and robotic construction and fabrication techniques. The current state of the art for these applications is fascinating, but the future is out of this world.

  8. Forecasting Proximal Femur and Wrist Fracture Caused by a Fall to the Side during Space Exploration Missions to the Moon and Mars (United States)

    Lewandowski, Beth E.; Myers, Jerry G.; Sulkowski, C.; Ruehl, K.; Licata, A.


    The possibility of bone fracture in space is a concern due to the negative impact it could have on a mission. The Bone Fracture Risk Module (BFxRM) developed at the NASA Glenn Research Center is a statistical simulation that quantifies the probability of bone fracture at specific skeletal locations for particular activities or events during space exploration missions. This paper reports fracture probability predictions for the proximal femur and wrist resulting from a fall to the side during an extravehicular activity (EVA) on specific days of lunar and Martian exploration missions. The risk of fracture at the proximal femur on any given day of the mission is small and fairly constant, although it is slightly greater towards the end of the mission, due to a reduction in proximal femur bone mineral density (BMD). The risk of wrist fracture is greater than the risk of hip fracture and there is an increased risk on Mars since it has a higher gravitational environment than the moon. The BFxRM can be used to help manage the risk of bone fracture in space as an engineering tool that is used during mission operation and resource planning.

  9. Mesoscale Raised Rim Depressions (MRRDs) on Earth: A Review of the Characteristics, Processes, and Spatial Distributions of Analogs for Mars (United States)

    Burr, Devon M.; Bruno, Barbara C.; Lanagan, Peter D.; Glaze, Lori; Jaeger, Windy L.; Soare, Richard J.; Tseung, Jean-Michel Wan Bun; Skinner, James A. Jr.; Baloga, Stephen M.


    Fields of mesoscale raised rim depressions (MRRDs) of various origins are found on Earth and Mars. Examples include rootless cones, mud volcanoes, collapsed pingos, rimmed kettle holes, and basaltic ring structures. Correct identification of MRRDs on Mars is valuable because different MRRD types have different geologic and/or climatic implications and are often associated with volcanism and/or water, which may provide locales for biotic or prebiotic activity. In order to facilitate correct identification of fields of MRRDs on Mars and their implications, this work provides a review of common terrestrial MRRD types that occur in fields. In this review, MRRDs by formation mechanism, including hydrovolcanic (phreatomagmatic cones, basaltic ring structures), sedimentological (mud volcanoes), and ice-related (pingos, volatile ice-block forms) mechanisms. For each broad mechanism, we present a comparative synopsis of (i) morphology and observations, (ii) physical formation processes, and (iii) published hypothesized locations on Mars. Because the morphology for MRRDs may be ambiguous, an additional tool is provided for distinguishing fields of MRRDs by origin on Mars, namely, spatial distribution analyses for MRRDs within fields on Earth. We find that MRRDs have both distinguishing and similar characteristics, and observation that applies both to their mesoscale morphology and to their spatial distribution statistics. Thus, this review provides tools for distinguishing between various MRRDs, while highlighting the utility of the multiple working hypotheses approach.

  10. Physics and astronomy of the Moon

    CERN Document Server

    Kopal, Zdenek


    Physics and Astronomy of the Moon focuses on the application of principles of physics in the study of the moon, including perturbations, equations, light scattering, and photometry. The selection first offers information on the motion of the moon in space and libration of the moon. Topics include Hill's equations of motion, non-solar perturbations, improved lunar ephemeris, optical and physical libration of the moon, and adjustment of heliometric observations of the moon's libration. The text then elaborates on the dynamics of the earth-moon system, photometry of the moon, and polarization of

  11. Moon Phases (United States)

    Riddle, Bob


    When teaching Moon phases, the focus seems to be on the sequence of Moon phases and, in some grade levels, how Moon phases occur. Either focus can sometimes be a challenge, especially without the use of models and observations of the Moon. In this month's column, the author describes some of the lessons that he uses to teach the phases of the Moon…

  12. Paleo-hydraulic Reconstructions of Topographically Inverted River Deposits on Earth and Mars (United States)

    Hayden, A.; Lamb, M. P.; Fischer, W. W.; Ewing, R. C.; McElroy, B. J.


    River deposits are one of the keys to understanding the history of flowing water and sediment on Earth and Mars. Deposits of some ancient Martian rivers have been topographically inverted resulting in sinuous ridges visible from orbit. However, it is unclear what aspects of the fluvial deposits these ridges represent, so reconstructing paleo-hydraulics from ridge geometry is complicated. Most workers have assumed that ridges represent casts of paleo-river channels, such that ridge widths and slopes, for example, can be proxies for river widths and slopes at some instant in time. Alternatively, ridges might reflect differential erosion of extensive channel bodies, and therefore preserve a rich record of channel conditions and paleoenvironment over time. To explore these hypotheses, we examined well exposed inverted river deposits in the Jurassic Morrison and Early Cretaceous Cedar Mountain Formations across the San Rafael Swell of central Utah. We mapped features on foot and by UAV, measured stratigraphic sections and sedimentary structures to constrain deposit architecture and river paleo-hydraulics, and used field observations and drainage network analyses to constrain recent erosion. Our work partly confirms earlier work in that the local trend of the ridge axis generally parallels paleo-flow indicators. However, ridge relief is much greater than reconstructed channel depths, and ridge widths vary from zero to several times the reconstructed channel width. Ridges instead appear to record a rich history of channel lateral migration, floodplain deposition, and soil development over significant time. The ridge network is disjointed owing to active modern fluvial incision and scarp retreat. Our results suggest that ridge geometry alone contains limited quantitative information about paleo-rivers, and that stratigraphic sections and observations of sedimentary structures within ridge-forming deposits are necessary to constrain ancient river systems on Mars.

  13. The divergent fates of primitive hydrospheric water on Earth and Mars (United States)

    Wade, Jon; Dyck, Brendan; Palin, Richard M.; Moore, James D. P.; Smye, Andrew J.


    Despite active transport into Earth’s mantle, water has been present on our planet’s surface for most of geological time. Yet water disappeared from the Martian surface soon after its formation. Although some of the water on Mars was lost to space via photolysis following the collapse of the planet’s magnetic field, the widespread serpentinization of Martian crust suggests that metamorphic hydration reactions played a critical part in the sequestration of the crust. Here we quantify the relative volumes of water that could be removed from each planet’s surface via the burial and metamorphism of hydrated mafic crusts, and calculate mineral transition-induced bulk-density changes at conditions of elevated pressure and temperature for each. The metamorphic mineral assemblages in relatively FeO-rich Martian lavas can hold about 25 per cent more structurally bound water than those in metamorphosed terrestrial basalts, and can retain it at greater depths within Mars. Our calculations suggest that in excess of 9 per cent by volume of the Martian mantle may contain hydrous mineral species as a consequence of surface reactions, compared to about 4 per cent by volume of Earth’s mantle. Furthermore, neither primitive nor evolved hydrated Martian crust show noticeably different bulk densities compared to their anhydrous equivalents, in contrast to hydrous mafic terrestrial crust, which transforms to denser eclogite upon dehydration. This would have allowed efficient overplating and burial of early Martian crust in a stagnant-lid tectonic regime, in which the lithosphere comprised a single tectonic plate, with only the warmer, lower crust involved in mantle convection. This provided an important sink for hydrospheric water and a mechanism for oxidizing the Martian mantle. Conversely, relatively buoyant mafic crust and hotter geothermal gradients on Earth reduced the potential for upper-mantle hydration early in its geological history, leading to water being retained

  14. Water ice is water ice: some applications and limitations of Earth analogues to Mars (United States)

    Koutnik, M.; Pathare, A.; Waddington, E. D.; Winebrenner, D. P.


    Quantitative and qualitative analyses of ice on Mars have advanced with the acquisition of abundant topography, imagery, and radar data, which have enabled the planetary-science community to tackle sophisticated questions about the martian cryosphere. Over the past decades, many studies have applied knowledge of terrestrial ice-sheet and glacier flow to improve understanding of ice behavior on Mars. A key question for both planets is how we can robustly interpret past climate from glaciological and glacial geomorphological features. Doing this requires deciphering how the history of accumulation, ablation, dust/debris deposition, and flow led to the shape and internal structure of present-day ice. Terrestrial glaciology and glacial geomorphology provide physical relationships that can be extended across environmental conditions to characterize related processes that may act at different rates or on different timescales. However, there remain fundamental unknowns about martian ice rheology and history that often limit our ability to directly apply understanding of ice dynamics learned from Antarctica, Greenland, terrestrial glaciers, and laboratory ice experiments. But the field is rich with opportunity because the constitutive relationship for water ice depends on quantities that can typically be reasonably estimated; water ice is water ice. We reflect on progress to understand the history of the ice-rich North Polar Layered Deposits (NPLD) and of select mid-latitude Lobate Debris Aprons (LDAs), and the utility of terrestrial ice-sheet and glacier analogues for these problems. Our work on Earth and Mars has focused on constraining surface accumulation/ablation patterns and ice-flow histories from topography and radar observations. We present on the challenge of interpreting internal-layer shapes when both accumulation/ablation and ice-flow histories are unknown, and how this non-uniqueness can be broken only by making assumptions about one or the other. In

  15. Protecting the Moon for research: ILEWG report (United States)

    Foing, Bernard H.

    We give a report on recommendations with emphasis on environment protection, and since last COSPAR from ILEWG International conferences Exploration and Utilisation of the Moon on held at Cape Canaveral in 2008 (ICEUM10), and in Beijing in May 2010 with IAF (GLUC -ICEUM11). We discuss the different rationale for Moon exploration, as debated at ILEWG. ILEWG Science task group has listed priorities for scientific investigations: clues on the formation and evolution of rocky planets, accretion and bombardment in the inner solar system, comparative planetology processes (tectonic, volcanic, impact cratering, volatile delivery), records astrobiology, survival of organics; past, present and future life; sciences from a biology lunar laboratory. We discuss how to preserve Moon research potential in these areas while operating with instruments, landers, rover during a cooperative robotic village, and during the transition form lunar human outpost to permanent sustainable human base. We discuss how Moon-Mars Exploration can inspire solutions to global Earth sustained development with the trade-off of In-Situ Utilisation of resources; Establishment of permanent robotic infrastructures, Environmental and planetary protection aspects and lessons for Mars; Life sciences laboratories, and support to human exploration. Co-authors: ILEWG Task Groups on Science, Technology and Human Lunar Bases ILEWG Reference documents: -10th ILEWG Conference on Exploration and Utilisation of the Moon, NASA Lunar Ex-ploration Analysis Group-PSace Resources Roundtable, Cape Canaveral October 2008, pro-gramme online at -9th ILEWG Conference on Exploration and Utilisation of the Moon, ICEUM9 Sorrento 2007, programme online at -8th ILEWG Conference on Exploration and Utilisation of the Moon, Beijing July 2006, programme online at -The Moon and Near Earth Objects (P. Ehrenfreund , B.H. Foing, A

  16. Early History of the Moon: Zircon Perspective (United States)

    Grange, M.L.; Nemchin, A.A.; Pidgeon, R.T.; Meyer, C.


    The Moon is believed to have formed from debris produced by a giant impact of a Mars sized body with the Earth (at around 4.51 Ga), forming a primitive body with a thick global layer of melt referred to as the Lunar Magma Ocean (LMO). The crystallization of LMO created internal stratification of the Moon forming main geochemical reservoirs. The surface features on the Moon were shaped by the subsequent collision with several large impactors during a short period of time (3.9-4.0 Ga). This process known as the Late Heavy Bombardment is supported by models of planetary motion, suggesting that rapid migration of giant planets could have triggered a massive delivery of planetesimals from the asteroid belt into the inner Solar System at about 3.9 Ga. Although, general chronology of LMO and LHB is well established using both long lived (U-Pb, Rb-Sr, Sm-147-Nd-143 and Ar-Ar) and extinct (Hf-182-W-182 and 146Sm-142Nd) isotope systems, some of these systems such as Ar-Ar are known to reset easily during secondary thermal overprints. As a result important details in the timing of LMO and LHB remain unresolved. In addition, the relative weakness of these systems under high T conditions can potentially bias the chronological information towards later events in the history of the Moon.

  17. Hydrogeologic Controls on the Deep Terrestrial Biosphere - Chemolithotrophic Energy for Subsurface Life on Earth and Mars (United States)

    Sherwood Lollar, B.; Moran, J.; Tille, S.; Voglesonger, K.; Lacrampe-Couloume, G.; Onstott, T.; Pratt, L.; Slater, G.


    As exploration for gold, diamonds and base metals expand mine workings to depths of almost 3 km below the Earth's surface, the mines of the Canadian Shield provide a window into the deep biosphere as diverse, but to date less well-explored than the South African Gold Mines. To date investigations of the deep biosphere have, in most cases, focused on the marine subsurface, including deep sea sediments, hydrothermal vents, off-axis spreading centers and cold seeps. Yet the deep terrestrial subsurface hosted in the fracture waters of Archean Shield rocks provides an important analog and counterpoint to studies of the deep marine biosphere. Depending on the particular geologic and hydrogeologic setting, sites vary from those dominated by paleometeoric waters and microbial hydrocarbon production, to those in which H2 and hydrocarbon gases have been suggested to be a function of long-term accumulation of the products of water-rock interaction in the deepest, most saline fracture waters with residence times on the order of tens of millions of years. The hydrogeologically isolated fracture-controlled ground water system periodically generates steep redox gradients and chemical disequilibrium due to fracture opening, and episodic release of mM levels of H2 that support a redox driven microbial community of H2-utilizing sulfate reducers and methanogens. Exploration of these systems may provide information about the limits of the deep terrestrial biosphere, controls on the distribution of deep subsurface life, and the diversity of geochemical reactions that produce substrates on which microbiological communities at great depths survive. The geologically stable Precambrian cratons of Earth are arguably the closest analogs available to single-plate planets such as Mars. Studies of these Earth analogs imply that the habitability of the Martian crust might similarly not be restricted to sites of localized hydrothermal activity. While the presence of the Martian cryosphere and

  18. A novel interplanetary optical navigation algorithm based on Earth-Moon group photos by Chang'e-5T1 probe (United States)

    Bu, Yanlong; Zhang, Qiang; Ding, Chibiao; Tang, Geshi; Wang, Hang; Qiu, Rujin; Liang, Libo; Yin, Hejun


    This paper presents an interplanetary optical navigation algorithm based on two spherical celestial bodies. The remarkable characteristic of the method is that key navigation parameters can be estimated depending entirely on known sizes and ephemerides of two celestial bodies, especially positioning is realized through a single image and does not rely on traditional terrestrial radio tracking any more. Actual Earth-Moon group photos captured by China's Chang'e-5T1 probe were used to verify the effectiveness of the algorithm. From 430,000 km away from the Earth, the camera pointing accuracy reaches 0.01° (one sigma) and the inertial positioning error is less than 200 km, respectively; meanwhile, the cost of the ground control and human resources are greatly reduced. The algorithm is flexible, easy to implement, and can provide reference to interplanetary autonomous navigation in the solar system.

  19. Zero, minimum and maximum relative radial acceleration for planar formation flight dynamics near triangular libration points in the Earth-Moon system (United States)

    Salazar, F. J. T.; Masdemont, J. J.; Gómez, G.; Macau, E. E.; Winter, O. C.


    Assume a constellation of satellites is flying near a given nominal trajectory around L4 or L5 in the Earth-Moon system in such a way that there is some freedom in the selection of the geometry of the constellation. We are interested in avoiding large variations of the mutual distances between spacecraft. In this case, the existence of regions of zero and minimum relative radial acceleration with respect to the nominal trajectory will prevent from the expansion or contraction of the constellation. In the other case, the existence of regions of maximum relative radial acceleration with respect to the nominal trajectory will produce a larger expansion and contraction of the constellation. The goal of this paper is to study these regions in the scenario of the Circular Restricted Three Body Problem by means of a linearization of the equations of motion relative to the periodic orbits around L4 or L5. This study corresponds to a preliminar planar formation flight dynamics about triangular libration points in the Earth-Moon system. Additionally, the cost estimate to maintain the constellation in the regions of zero and minimum relative radial acceleration or keeping a rigid configuration is computed with the use of the residual acceleration concept. At the end, the results are compared with the dynamical behavior of the deviation of the constellation from a periodic orbit.

  20. Chemical composition of Mars (United States)

    Morgan, J.W.; Anders, E.


    The composition of Mars has been calculated from the cosmochemical model of Ganapathy and Anders (1974) which assumes that planets and chondrites underwent the same 4 fractionation processes in the solar nebula. Because elements of similar volatility stay together in these processes, only 4 index elements (U, Fe, K and Tl or Ar36) are needed to calculate the abundances of all 83 elements in the planet. The values chosen are U = 28 ppb, K = 62 ppm (based on K U = 2200 from orbital ??-spectrometry and on thermal history calculations by Tokso??z and Hsui (1978) Fe = 26.72% (from geophysical data), and Tl = 0.14 ppb (from the Ar36 and Ar40 abundances measured by Viking). The mantle of Mars is an iron-rich [Mg/(Mg + Fe) = 0.77] garnet wehrlite (?? = 3.52-3.54 g/cm3), similar to McGetchin and Smyth's (1978) estimate but containing more Ca and Al. It is nearly identical to the bulk Moon composition of Morgan et al. (1978b). The core makes up 0.19 of the planet and contains 3.5% S-much less than estimated by other models. Volatiles have nearly Moon-like abundances, being depleted relative to the Earth by factors of 0.36 (K-group, Tcond = 600-1300 K) or 0.029 (Tl group, Tcond planets (Earth, Venus, Mars, Moon, and eucrite parent body) suggests that volatile depletion correlates mainly with size rather than with radial distance from the Sun. However, the relatively high volatile content of shergottites and some chondrites shows that the correlation is not simple; other factors must also be involved. ?? 1979.

  1. Accretion and primary differentiation of Mars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Drake, M.J.


    In collecting samples from Mars to address questions such as whether Mars accreted homogeneously or heterogeneously, how Mars segregated into a metallic core and silicate mantle, and whether Mars outgassed catastrophically coincident with accretion or more serenely on a longer timescale, we must be guided by our experience in addressing these questions for the Earth, Moon, and igneous meteorite parent bodies. A key measurement to be made on any sample returned from Mars is its oxygen isotopic composition. A single measurement will suffice to bind the SNC meteorites to Mars or demonstrate that they cannot be samples of that planet. A positive identification of Mars as the SNC parent planet will permit all that has been learned from the SNC meteorites to be applied to Mars with confidence. A negative result will perhaps be more exciting in forcing us to look for another object that has been geologically active in the recent past. If the oxygen isotopic composition of Earth and Mars are established to be distinct, accretion theory must provide for different compositions for two planets now separated by only 0.5 AU

  2. Moons around Jupiter (United States)


    The New Horizons Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) took this photo of Jupiter at 20:42:01 UTC on January 9, 2007, when the spacecraft was 80 million kilometers (49.6 million miles) from the giant planet. The volcanic moon Io is to the left of the planet; the shadow of the icy moon Ganymede moves across Jupiter's northern hemisphere. Ganymede's average orbit distance from Jupiter is about 1 million kilometers (620,000 miles); Io's is 422,000 kilometers (262,000 miles). Both Io and Ganymede are larger than Earth's moon; Ganymede is larger than the planet Mercury.

  3. Using satellite imagery to identify and analyze tumuli on Earth and Mars (United States)

    Diniega, Serina; Sangha, Simran; Browne, Brandon


    Tumuli are small, dome-like features that form when magmatic pressures build within a subsurface lava pathway, causing the overlying crust to bulge upwards. As the appearance of these features has been linked to lava flow structure (e.g., underlying lava flow tubes) and conditions, there is interest in identifying such features in satellite images so they can be used to expand our understanding of lava flows within regions difficult to access (such as on other planets). Here, we define a methodology for identifying (and measuring) tumuli within satellite imagery, and validate it by comparing our results with fieldwork results of terrestrial tumuli reported in the literature and with independent measurements we made within Amboy Field, CA. In addition, we present aggregated results from the application of our methodology to satellite images of six terrestrial fields and seven martian fields (with >2100 tumuli identified, per planet). Comparisons of tumuli morphometrics on Earth and Mars yield similarities in size and overall shape, which were surprising given the many differences in the environmental and planetary conditions within which these features have formed. Given our measurements, we identify constraints for tumulus formation models and drivers that would yield similar shapes and sizes on two different planets. Furthermore, we test a published hypothesis regarding the number of tumuli that form per a square kilometer, and find it unlikely that a diagnostic "tumuli density" value exists.

  4. ISS as testbed towards food production on the Moon (United States)

    Kuebler, Ulrich; Thallemer, Axel; Kern, Peter; Schwarzwaelder, Achim

    Almost all major space faring nations are presently investigating concepts for the exploration of extra terrestrial planetary bodies, including Earth's Moon and Mars. One major objective to sustain any human exploration plans will be the provision of fresh food. Even if a delivery from Earth to Moon is still possible with regular preservation techniques as for the international space station, there will be a big psychological impact from the ability to grow fresh food on a Moon Basis. Various architectural and agricultural concepts have been proposed. A comprehensive summary of the related requirements and constraints shall be presented as a baseline for further studies. One presently unknown constraint is the question of the gravity threshold for the genetic stability of plants or more specifically the level of gravity which is needed for normal growth and reproduction of plants. This paper shall focus on a roadmap towards a food production facility a planetary surface using the International Space Station as a test bed. Presented will be 1.) The concept of a Food Research Rotor for the artificial gravity facility EMCS. This Rotor shall allow the investigation into the gravity dependence of growth and reproduction of nutritionally relevant plants like radishes, tomatoes, bell peppers or lettuce. An important answer from this research could be if the Moon Gravity of 1/6g is sufficient for a vegetative food production or if additional artificial gravity is needed for a Moon Greenhouse. 2.) An inflatable demonstrator for ATV as scaled down version of a proposed planetary greenhouse

  5. Towards A Moon Village: Vision and Opportunities (United States)

    Foing, Bernard


    . Building on previous studies (EuroMoon, lunar polar lander) ESA should develop a mid-class lunar lander (affordable in cost 300 Meu class), demonstrating the expertise at system level for a platform, that could carry innovative competitive robotic payload contributed and already with advance development from member states and international or commercial partners. With teleoperations from Earth and cis-lunar orbit, this will advance progress towards the next steps of Moon Village and beyond. Recommendations: The participants encourage the design and operations of a Moon base simulation at EAC with facility and activities in the context of SpaceShip EAC, with the support of EAC, DLR, ESTEC, ISU and other partners, and collaborations with other Lunar Research Parks worldwide. It was also proposed to have an "ESTEC Moon Village pilot project" where 20 young professional in-terns could be hosted to work concurrently on various aspects (technology, science, instruments platforms, Moon base design, human factors, programmatics, outreach, community events) with links and support activities from ESTEC senior experts, and interactions with colleagues in member states, academia and industries . The workshop finalized with some hands-on experiments, organized with some students demonstrating their work on a lunar lander with tele-operated instruments and systems, and on the measuring spectra of Moon-Mars analogue minerals. The day ended with a refreshing lunar music session, and a networking event on ESTEC ESCAPE where the last informal conversations marked a great wrap up of such exciting day. Follow up Moon Village events are planned in 2016 at ESTEC, EAC and at international community venues. New means of outreach, communications and social media must be developed. You can follow Moon Village tweets, using #MoonVillage, and contribute to the virtual discussions. ESA is really looking forward to engage all stakeholders into the discussion, no matter of their background, nationality

  6. The comparison of element composition of Venus, Earth, Mars, and chondrites in the light of the Mendeleev Periodic Law

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chuburkov, Yu.T.


    The share of free neutral atoms, N 0 , for all elements in Protoplanet nebula has been determined with the account of their abundance and physico-chemical properties. The linear dependence for the ratio of nonvolatile and volatile elements in chondrites and igneous rocks of the Earth on N 0 was obtained. The Mendeleev Periodic Law was used to obtain the proof of the existence of the hypothetical process of element magnetic separation in Protoplanet nebula. To this end the concentration ratios of element-analogous with different N 0 in the matters of Venus, Earth, Mars, and chondrites were compared. The data obtained are sufficient demonstration of the existence of the hypothetical process of element magnetic separation in Protoplanet nebula. With the account of the above said, it was shown that Shergotty and Tunguska meteorites by their relative elemental composition are close to Mars and asteroids, respectively. (author)

  7. Moon model - An offset core. (United States)

    Ransford, G.; Sjogren, W.


    The lunar model proposed helps to account for the offset of the center of gravity from the center of the optical figure, the moments of inertia of the Moon, the 'mascons,' the localization of the maria basins on the near side of the Moon, the igneous nature of rocks, and the remanent magnetism. In the proposed model the Moon has a core whose center is offset from the center of the outside spheroid towards the earth. Such a core will be formed if the Moon were entirely molten at some time in its past, and on solidification was synchronous with the earth.

  8. Time of Formation of Earth and Mars Constrained by Siderophile Element Geochemistry and the 182Hf-182W Isotope System


    Yu, Gang


    \\(^{182}Hf-^{182}W\\) chronometry is considered the most powerful tool to determine the formation timescale of the terrestrial planets. However, previous work employed oversimplified accretion and core formation models. The accretion and core formation models presented here for the \\(^{182}W \\) isotopic evolution in the mantles of the accreting Earth and Mars, can incorporate the core formation conditions constrained by siderophile element geochemistry and can be succes...

  9. Comparison of element compositions of Venus, Earth, Mars and chondrites in the light of D.I. Mendeleev's Periodic law

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chuburkov, Yu.T.


    The part of free neutral atoms N 0 of all elements being contained in protoplanet cloud is estimated with regard to their abundance and physicochemical properties. Linear dependence of ratio of volatile and nonvolatile elements in chondrites and in eruptive Earth rocks on N 0 is obtained. Ratios of concentrations of element-analogs with different N 0 in substances of Venus, Earth, Mars and chondrites are compared. Obtained data are an evidence that hypothetical process of magnetic separation in protoplanet cloud has been taken place [ru

  10. Moon (Form-Origin) (United States)

    Tsiapas, Elias; Soumelidou, Despina; Tsiapas, Christos


    When the Earth was formed, it was in a state of burning heat. As time went by, temperature on the planet's surface was falling due to radiation and heat transfer, and various components (crusts) began taking solid form at the Earth's poles. The formation of crusts took place at the Earth's poles, because the stirring of burning and fluid masses on the surface of the Earth was significantly slighter there than it was on the equator. Due to centrifugal force and Coriolis Effect, these solid masses headed towards the equator; those originating from the North Pole followed a south-western course, while those originating from the South Pole followed a north-western course and there they rotated from west to east at a lower speed than the underlying burning and liquid earth, because of their lower initial linear velocity, their solid state and inertia. Because inertia is proportional to mass, the initially larger solid body swept all new solid ones, incorporating them to its western side. The density of the new solid masses was higher, because the components on the surface would freeze and solidify first, before the underlying thicker components. As a result, the western side of the initial islet of solid rocks submerged, while the east side elevated. . As a result of the above, this initial islet began to spin in reverse, and after taking on the shape of a sphere, it formed the "heart" of the Moon. The Moon-sphere, rolling on the equator, would sink the solid rocks that continued to descend from the Earth's poles. The sinking rocks partially melted because of higher temperatures in the greater depths that the Moon descended to, while part of the rocks' mass bonded with the Moon and also served as a heat-insulating material, preventing the descended side of the sphere from melting. Combined with the Earth's liquid mass that covered its emerging eastern surface, new sphere-shaped shells were created, with increased density and very powerful structural cohesion. During the

  11. Trace Gas Measurements on Mars and Earth Using Optical Parametric Generation (United States)

    Numata, Kenji; Haris, Riris; Li, Steve; Sun, Xiaoli; Abshire, James Brice


    Trace gases and their isotopic ratios in planetary atmospheres offer important but subtle clues as to the origins of a planet's atmosphere, hydrology, geology, and potential for biology. An orbiting laser remote sensing instrument is capable of measuring trace gases on a global scale with unprecedented accuracy, and higher spatial resolution that can be obtained by passive instruments. We have developed an active sensing instrument for the remote measurement of trace gases in planetary atmospheres (including Earth). The technique uses widely tunable, seeded optical parametric generation (OPG) to measure methane, CO2, water vapor, and other trace gases in the near and mid-infrared spectral regions. Methane is a strong greenhouse gas on Earth and it is also a potential biogenic marker on Mars and other planets. Methane in the Earth's atmosphere survives for a shorter time than CO2 but its impact on climate change can be larger than CO2. Methane levels have remained relatively constant over the last decade around 1.78 parts per million (ppm) but recent observations indicate that methane levels may be on the rise. Increasing methane concentrations may trigger a positive feedback loop and a subsequent runaway greenhouse effect, where increasing temperatures result in increasing methane levels. The NRC Decadal Survey recognized the importance of global observations of greenhouse gases and called for simultaneous CH4, CO, and CO2 measurements but also underlined the technological limitations for these observations. For Mars, methane measurements are of great interest because of its potential as a strong biogenic marker. A remote sensing instrument that can measure day and night over all seasons and latitudes can identify and localize sources of biogenic gas plumes produced by subsurface chemistry or biology, and aid in the search for extra-terrestrial life. It can identify the dynamics of methane generation over time and latitude and identify future lander mission sites

  12. Tidal regime of intact planetoid capture model for the Earth-Moon system: Does it relate to the archean sedimentary rock record? (United States)

    Malcuit, Robert J.; Winters, Ronald R.


    Regardless of one's favorite model for the origin of the Earth-Moon system (fission, coformation, tidal capture, giant-impact) the early history of lunar orbital evolution would produce significant thermal and earth and ocean tidal effects on the primitive earth. Three of the above lunar origin models (fission, coformation, giant-impact) feature a circular orbit which undergoes a progressive increase in orbital radius from the time of origin to the present time. In contrast, a tidal capture model places the moon in an elliptical orbit undergoing progressive circularization from the time of capture (for model purposes about 3.9 billion years ago) for at least a few 108 years following the capture event. Once the orbit is circularized, the subsequent tidal history for a tidal capture scenario is similar to that for other models of lunar origin and features a progressive increase in orbital radius to the current state of the lunar orbit. This elliptical orbit phase, if it occurred, should have left a distinctive signature in the terrestrial and lunar rock records. Depositional events would be associated terrestrial shorelines characterized by abnormally high, but progressively decreasing, ocean tidal amplitudes and ranges associated with such an orbital evolution. Several rock units in the age range 3.6-2.5 billion years before present are reported to have a major tidal component. Examples are the Warrawoona, Fortescue, and Hamersley Groups of Western Australia and the Pangola and Witwatersand Supergroups of South Africa. Detailed study of the features of these tidal sequences may be helpful in deciphering the style of lunar orbital evolution during the Archean Eon.

  13. Tidal regime of intact planetoid capture model for the Earth-Moon system: Does it relate to the archean sedimentary rock record? (United States)

    Malcuit, Robert J.; Winters, Ronald R.


    Regardless of one's favorite model for the origin of the Earth-Moon system (fission, coformation, tidal capture, giant-impact) the early history of lunar orbital evolution would produce significant thermal and earth and ocean tidal effects on the primitive earth. Three of the above lunar origin models (fission, coformation, giant-impact) feature a circular orbit which undergoes a progressive increase in orbital radius from the time of origin to the present time. In contrast, a tidal capture model places the moon in an elliptical orbit undergoing progressive circularization from the time of capture (for model purposes about 3.9 billion years ago) for at least a few 10(exp 8) years following the capture event. Once the orbit is circularized, the subsequent tidal history for a tidal capture scenario is similar to that for other models of lunar origin and features a progressive increase in orbital radius to the current state of the lunar orbit. This elliptical orbit phase, if it occurred, should have left a distinctive signature in the terrestrial and lunar rock records. Depositional events would be associated terrestrial shorelines characterized by abnormally high, but progressively decreasing, ocean tidal amplitudes and ranges associated with such an orbital evolution. Several rock units in the age range 3.6-2.5 billion years before present are reported to have a major tidal component. Examples are the Warrawoona, Fortescue, and Hamersley Groups of Western Australia and the Pangola and Witwatersand Supergroups of South Africa. Detailed study of the features of these tidal sequences may be helpful in deciphering the style of lunar orbital evolution during the Archean Eon.

  14. The Tethered Moon (United States)

    Zahnle, Kevin; Lupu, Roxana Elena; Dubrovolskis, A. R.


    A reasonable initial condition on Earth after the Moonforming impact is that it begins as a hot global magma ocean1,2. We therefore begin our study with the mantle as a liquid ocean with a surface temperature on the order of 3000- 4000 K at a time some 100-1000 years after the impact, by which point we can hope that early transients have settled down. A 2nd initial condition is a substantial atmosphere, 100-1000 bars of H2O and CO2, supplemented by smaller amounts of CO, H2, N2, various sulfur-containing gases, and a suite of geochemical volatiles evaporated from the magma. Third, we start the Moon with its current mass at the relevant Roche limit. The 4th initial condition is the angular momentum of the Earth-Moon system. Canonical models hold this constant, whilst some recent models begin with considerably more angular momentum than is present today. Here we present a ruthlessly simplified model of Earth's cooling magmasphere based on a full-featured atmosphere and including tidal heating by the newborn Moon. Thermal blanketing by H2O-CO2 atmospheres slows cooling of a magma ocean. Geochemical volatiles - chiefly S, Na, and Cl - raise the opacity of the magma ocean's atmosphere and slow cooling still more. We assume a uniform mantle with a single internal (potential) temperature and a global viscosity. The important "freezing point" is the sharp rheological transition between a fluid carrying suspended crystals and a solid matrix through which fluids percolate. Most tidal heating takes place at this "freezing point" in a gel that is both pliable and viscous. Parameterized convection links the cooling rate to the temperature and heat generation inside the Earth. Tidal heating is a major effect. Tidal dissipation in the magma ocean is described by viscosity. The Moon is entwined with Earth by the negative feedback between thermal blanketing and tidal heating that comes from the temperature-dependent viscosity of the magma ocean. Because of this feedback, the rate

  15. New Moon water, exploration, and future habitation

    CERN Document Server

    Crotts, Arlin


    Explore Earth's closest neighbor, the Moon, in this fascinating and timely book and discover what we should expect from this seemingly familiar but strange, new frontier. What startling discoveries are being uncovered on the Moon? What will these tell us about our place in the Universe? How can exploring the Moon benefit development on Earth? Discover the role of the Moon in Earth's past and present; read about the lunar environment and how it could be made more habitable for humans; consider whether continued exploration of the Moon is justified; and view rare Apollo-era photos and film still

  16. The fluvial history of Mars. (United States)

    Carr, Michael H


    River channels and valleys have been observed on several planetary bodies in addition to the Earth. Long sinuous valleys on Venus, our Moon and Jupiter's moon Io are clearly formed by lava, and branching valleys on Saturn's moon Titan may be forming today by rivers of methane. But by far the most dissected body in our Solar System apart from the Earth is Mars. Branching valleys that in plan resemble terrestrial river valleys are common throughout the most ancient landscapes preserved on the planet. Accompanying the valleys are the remains of other indicators of erosion and deposition, such as deltas, alluvial fans and lake beds. There is little reason to doubt that water was the erosive agent and that early in Mars' history, climatic conditions were very different from the present cold conditions and such that, at least episodically, water could flow across the surface. In addition to the branching valley networks, there are large flood features, termed outflow channels. These are similar to, but dwarf, the largest terrestrial flood channels. The consensus is that these channels were also cut by water although there are other possibilities. The outflow channels mostly postdate the valley networks, although most are still very ancient. They appear to have formed at a time when surface conditions were similar to those that prevail today. There is evidence that glacial activity has modified some of the water-worn valleys, particularly in the 30-50° latitude belts, and ice may also be implicated in the formation of geologically recent, seemingly water-worn gullies on steep slopes. Mars also has had a long volcanic history, and long, sinuous lava channels similar to those on the Moon and Venus are common on and around the large volcanoes. These will not, however, be discussed further; the emphasis here is on the effects of running water on the evolution of the surface. This journal is © 2012 The Royal Society

  17. Cratering record in the inner solar system: Implications for earth

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Barlow, N.G.


    Internal and external processes have reworked the Earth's surface throughout its history. In particular, the effect of meteorite impacts on the early history of the earth is lost due to fluvial, aeolian, volcanic and plate tectonic action. The cratering record on other inner solar system bodies often provides the only clue to the relative cratering rates and intensities that the earth has experienced throughout its history. Of the five major bodies within the inner solar system, Mercury, Mars, and the Moon retain scars of an early episode of high impact rates. The heavily cratered regions on Mercury, Mars, and the Moon show crater size-frequency distribution curves similar in shape and crater density, whereas the lightly cratered plains on the Moon and Mars show distribution curves which, although similar to each other, are statistically different in shape and density from the more heavily cratered units. The similarities among crater size-frequency distribution curves for the Moon, Mercury, and Mars suggest that the entire inner solar system was subjected to the two populations of impacting objects but Earth and Venus have lost their record of heavy bombardment impactors. Thus, based on the cratering record on the Moon, Mercury, and Mars, it can be inferred that the Earth experienced a period of high crater rates and basin formation prior to about 3.8 BY ago. Recent studies have linked mass extinctions to large terrestrial impacts, so life forms were unable to establish themselves until impact rates decreased substantially and terrestrial conditions became more benign. The possible periodicity of mass extinctions has led to the theory of fluctuating impact rates due to comet showers in the post heavy bombardment period. The active erosional environment on the Earth complicates attempts to verify these showers by erasing geological evidence of older impact craters

  18. Evaporative fractionation of volatile stable isotopes and their bearing on the origin of the Moon (United States)

    Day, James M. D.; Moynier, Frederic


    The Moon is depleted in volatile elements relative to the Earth and Mars. Low abundances of volatile elements, fractionated stable isotope ratios of S, Cl, K and Zn, high μ (238U/204Pb) and long-term Rb/Sr depletion are distinguishing features of the Moon, relative to the Earth. These geochemical characteristics indicate both inheritance of volatile-depleted materials that formed the Moon and planets and subsequent evaporative loss of volatile elements that occurred during lunar formation and differentiation. Models of volatile loss through localized eruptive degassing are not consistent with the available S, Cl, Zn and K isotopes and abundance data for the Moon. The most probable cause of volatile depletion is global-scale evaporation resulting from a giant impact or a magma ocean phase where inefficient volatile loss during magmatic convection led to the present distribution of volatile elements within mantle and crustal reservoirs. Problems exist for models of planetary volatile depletion following giant impact. Most critically, in this model, the volatile loss requires preferential delivery and retention of late-accreted volatiles to the Earth compared with the Moon. Different proportions of late-accreted mass are computed to explain present-day distributions of volatile and moderately volatile elements (e.g. Pb, Zn; 5 to >10%) relative to highly siderophile elements (approx. 0.5%) for the Earth. Models of early magma ocean phases may be more effective in explaining the volatile loss. Basaltic materials (e.g. eucrites and angrites) from highly differentiated airless asteroids are volatile-depleted, like the Moon, whereas the Earth and Mars have proportionally greater volatile contents. Parent-body size and the existence of early atmospheres are therefore likely to represent fundamental controls on planetary volatile retention or loss. PMID:25114311

  19. Evaporative fractionation of volatile stable isotopes and their bearing on the origin of the Moon. (United States)

    Day, James M D; Moynier, Frederic


    The Moon is depleted in volatile elements relative to the Earth and Mars. Low abundances of volatile elements, fractionated stable isotope ratios of S, Cl, K and Zn, high μ ((238)U/(204)Pb) and long-term Rb/Sr depletion are distinguishing features of the Moon, relative to the Earth. These geochemical characteristics indicate both inheritance of volatile-depleted materials that formed the Moon and planets and subsequent evaporative loss of volatile elements that occurred during lunar formation and differentiation. Models of volatile loss through localized eruptive degassing are not consistent with the available S, Cl, Zn and K isotopes and abundance data for the Moon. The most probable cause of volatile depletion is global-scale evaporation resulting from a giant impact or a magma ocean phase where inefficient volatile loss during magmatic convection led to the present distribution of volatile elements within mantle and crustal reservoirs. Problems exist for models of planetary volatile depletion following giant impact. Most critically, in this model, the volatile loss requires preferential delivery and retention of late-accreted volatiles to the Earth compared with the Moon. Different proportions of late-accreted mass are computed to explain present-day distributions of volatile and moderately volatile elements (e.g. Pb, Zn; 5 to >10%) relative to highly siderophile elements (approx. 0.5%) for the Earth. Models of early magma ocean phases may be more effective in explaining the volatile loss. Basaltic materials (e.g. eucrites and angrites) from highly differentiated airless asteroids are volatile-depleted, like the Moon, whereas the Earth and Mars have proportionally greater volatile contents. Parent-body size and the existence of early atmospheres are therefore likely to represent fundamental controls on planetary volatile retention or loss. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  20. Mars Rover proposed for 2018 to seek signs of life and to cache samples for potential return to Earth (United States)

    Pratt, Lisa; Beaty, David; Westall, Frances; Parnell, John; Poulet, François


    Mars Rover proposed for 2018 to seek signs of life and to cache samples for potential return to Earth Lisa Pratt, David Beatty, Frances Westall, John Parnell, François Poulet, and the MRR-SAG team The search for preserved evidence of life is the keystone concept for a new generation of Mars rover capable of exploring, sampling, and caching diverse suites of rocks from outcrops. The proposed mission is conceived to address two general objectives: conduct high-priority in situ science and make concrete steps towards the possible future return of samples to Earth. We propose the name Mars Astrobiology Explorer-Cacher (MAX-C) to best reflect the dual purpose of the proposed mission. The scientific objective of the proposed MAX-C would require rover access to a site with high preservation potential for physical and chemical biosignatures in order to evaluate paleo-environmental conditions, characterize the potential for preservation of biosignatures, and access multiple sequences of geological units in a search for evidence of past life and/or prebiotic chemistry. Samples addressing a variety of high-priority scientific objectives should be collected, documented, and packaged in a manner suitable for possible return to Earth by a future mission. Relevant experience from study of ancient terrestrial strata, martian meteorites, and from the Mars exploration Rovers indicates that the proposed MAX-C's interpretive capability should include: meter to submillimeter texture (optical imaging), mineral identification, major element content, and organic molecular composition. Analytical data should be obtained by direct investigation of outcrops and should not entail acquisition of rock chips or powders. We propose, therefore, a set of arm-mounted instruments that would be capable of interrogating a relatively smooth, abraded surface by creating co-registered 2-D maps of visual texture, mineralogy and geochemical properties. This approach is judged to have particularly high

  1. Moon nature and culture

    CERN Document Server

    Williams, Edgar


    Long before a rocket hit the Man in the Moon in the eye in Georges Méliès's early film Le Voyage dans la Lune, the earth's lone satellite had entranced humans. We have worshipped it as a deity, believed it to cause madness, used it as a means of organizing time, and we now know that it manipulates the tides-our understanding of the moon continues to evolve. Following the moon from its origins to its rich cultural resonance in literature, art, religion, and politics, Moon provides a comprehensive account of the significance of our lunar companion. Edgar Williams explores the interdependence of

  2. [The reasons for the «space» of gerontology: the impact of the movements of the Earth and Moon on the performance of the human environment]. (United States)

    Shapovalov, S N


    For future gerontological research specific interest are the research results obtained at the junction of Geophysics, astronomy, and biology, and existing links pointing to indicators of living objects with cosmophysical factors. The paper presents data on basic astronomical factors, potentially on a regular basis may cause gravitational effects on the biosphere as a living environment. Among these factors are movement of the Earth and Moon described is known in astronomy equations: the equation of the equinoxes, equation of time, as well as major perturbations from the Sun (evection, variation and annual inequality) inferred from the theory of lunar motion. Based on the amount of major perturbations from the Sun, the so-called λD-functions that are carried out to study the relationship between fluctuations of the so-called «computer time», the energy of solar radiation in the range of 605-607 nm, and the concentration of hemoglobin and red blood cells with major perturbations from the Sun. The resulting conclusion about the universal nature of the impact of the movements of the Moon and the Earth on the biosphere. The tables for the period from 01.01.2015 to 31.12.2016, with the calculated values λD functions that are potentially important for analyzing their association with temporal changes of various indicators of the body. The regularities obtained in the comparison of changes in various biomarkers with the course of values λD functions from tables, can be predictive in the study of the functioning of humans and the biosphere for astronomical periods. The research was carried out in Antarctica, where excluded the influence of artificial electromagnetic fields, st. Vostok (1998-1999) and st. Novolazarevskaya (2003-2004).

  3. The Moon in Children's Literature (United States)

    Trundle, Kathy Cabe; Troland, Thomas H.


    The Moon's cycle of phases is one of the most familiar natural phenomena, yet also one of the most misunderstood. This probably comes as no surprise, but research has found that a significant segment of the population, including both elementary students and teachers, mistakenly believes that the Moon's phases are caused by the shadow of the Earth.…

  4. Origin of the Earth–Moon system

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    ence is depletion of iron content in the Moon. It is explained in the GIH by proposing that the. Moon was formed from the Earth's mantle mate- rial, after most of the iron sank to the core. Indeed, while the Earth contains about 32.5% iron, the Moon has only about 10–15%. How- ever, concentration of FeO in the Earth's man-.

  5. Modeling of atmospheric-coupled Rayleigh waves on planets with atmosphere: From Earth observation to Mars and Venus perspectives. (United States)

    Lognonné, Philippe; Karakostas, Foivos; Rolland, Lucie; Nishikawa, Yasuhiro


    Acoustic coupling between solid Earth and atmosphere has been observed since the 1960s, first from ground-based seismic, pressure, and ionospheric sensors and since 20 years with various satellite measurements, including with global positioning system (GPS) satellites. This coupling leads to the excitation of the Rayleigh surface waves by local atmospheric sources such as large natural explosions from volcanoes, meteor atmospheric air-bursts, or artificial explosions. It contributes also in the continuous excitation of Rayleigh waves and associated normal modes by atmospheric winds and pressure fluctuations. The same coupling allows the observation of Rayleigh waves in the thermosphere most of the time through ionospheric monitoring with Doppler sounders or GPS. The authors review briefly in this paper observations made on Earth and describe the general frame of the theory enabling the computation of Rayleigh waves for models of telluric planets with atmosphere. The authors then focus on Mars and Venus and give in both cases the atmospheric properties of the Rayleigh normal modes and associated surface waves compared to Earth. The authors then conclude on the observation perspectives especially for Rayleigh waves excited by atmospheric sources on Mars and for remote ionospheric observations of Rayleigh waves excited by quakes on Venus.

  6. Zinc isotopic evidence for the origin of the Moon. (United States)

    Paniello, Randal C; Day, James M D; Moynier, Frédéric


    Volatile elements have a fundamental role in the evolution of planets. But how budgets of volatiles were set in planets, and the nature and extent of volatile-depletion of planetary bodies during the earliest stages of Solar System formation remain poorly understood. The Moon is considered to be volatile-depleted and so it has been predicted that volatile loss should have fractionated stable isotopes of moderately volatile elements. One such element, zinc, exhibits strong isotopic fractionation during volatilization in planetary rocks, but is hardly fractionated during terrestrial igneous processes, making it a powerful tracer of the volatile histories of planets. Here we present high-precision zinc isotopic and abundance data which show that lunar magmatic rocks are enriched in the heavy isotopes of zinc and have lower zinc concentrations than terrestrial or Martian igneous rocks. Conversely, Earth and Mars have broadly chondritic zinc isotopic compositions. We show that these variations represent large-scale evaporation of zinc, most probably in the aftermath of the Moon-forming event, rather than small-scale evaporation processes during volcanism. Our results therefore represent evidence for volatile depletion of the Moon through evaporation, and are consistent with a giant impact origin for the Earth and Moon.

  7. The mobile GeoBus outreach project: hands-on Earth and Mars activities for secondary schools in the UK (United States)

    Robinson, Ruth; Pike, Charlotte; Roper, Kathryn


    GeoBus ( is an educational outreach project that was developed in 2012 by the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences at the University of St Andrews, and it is sponsored jointly by industry and the UK Research Councils (NERC and EPSRC). The aims of GeoBus are to support the teaching of Earth Science in secondary schools by providing teaching resources that are not readily available to educators, to inspire young learners by incorporating new science research outcomes in teaching activities, and to provide a bridge between industry, higher education institutions, research councils and schools. Since its launch, GeoBus has visited over 160 different schools across the length and breadth of Scotland. Just under 35,000 pupils have been involved in practical hands-on Earth science learning activities since the project began in 2012, including many in remote and disadvantaged regions. The resources that GeoBus brings to schools include all the materials and equipment needed to run 50 - 80 minute workshops, and half- or whole-day Enterprise Challenges and field excursions. Workshops are aimed at a class of up to 30 pupils and topics include minerals, rocks, fossils, geological time, natural resources, climate change, volcanoes, earthquakes, and geological mapping. As with all GeoBus activities, the inclusion of equipment and technology otherwise unavailable to schools substantially increases the engagement of pupils in workshops. Field excursions are increasingly popular, as many teachers have little or no field trainng and feel unable to lead this type of activity. The excursions comprise half or full day sessions for up to 30 pupils and are tailored to cover the local geology or geomorphology. Enterprise Challenge are half or full day sessions for up to 100 pupils. Topics include "Journey to Mars", "Scotland's Rocks", "Drilling for Oil", and "Renewable Energy". Both of the energy Enterprise Challenges were designed to incorporates ideas and

  8. Jupiter icy moons orbiteer mission design overview (United States)

    Sims, Jon A.


    An overview of the design of a mission to three large moons of Jupiter is presented. the Jupiter Icy Moons Orbiter (JIMO) mission uses ion thrusters powered by a nuclear reactor to transfer from Earth to Jupiter and enter a low-altitude science orbit around each of the moons.

  9. NASA Mars Conference

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Reiber, D.B.


    Papers about Mars and Mars exploration are presented, covering topics such as Martian history, geology, volcanism, channels, moons, atmosphere, meteorology, water on the planet, and the possibility of life. The unmanned exploration of Mars is discussed, including the Phobos Mission, the Mars Observer, the Mars Aeronomy Observer, the seismic network, Mars sample return missions, and the Mars Ball, an inflatable-sectored-tire rover concept. Issues dealing with manned exploration of Mars are examined, such as the reasons for exploring Mars, mission scenarios, a transportation system for routine visits, technologies for Mars expeditions, the human factors for Mars missions, life support systems, living and working on Mars, and the report of the National Commission on Space

  10. Worlds Without Moons (United States)

    Kohler, Susanna


    Many of the exoplanets that weve discovered lie in compact systems with orbits very close to their host star. These systems are especially interesting in the case of cool stars where planets lie in the stars habitable zone as is the case, for instance, for the headline-making TRAPPIST-1 system.But other factors go into determining potential habitability of a planet beyond the rough location where water can remain liquid. One possible consideration: whether the planets have moons.Supporting HabitabilityLocations of equality between the Hill and Roche radius for five different potential moon densities. The phase space allows for planets of different semi-major axes and stellar host masses. Two example systems are shown, Kepler-80 and TRAPPIST-1, with dots representing the planets within them. [Kane 2017]Earths Moon is thought to have been a critical contributor to our planets habitability. The presence of a moon stabilizes its planets axial tilt, preventing wild swings in climate as the stars radiation shifts between the planets poles and equator. But what determines if a planet can have a moon?A planet can retain a moon in a stable orbit anywhere between an outer boundary of the Hill radius (beyond which the planets gravity is too weak to retain the moon) and an inner boundary of the Roche radius (inside which the moon would be torn apart by tidal forces). The locations of these boundaries depend on both the planets and moons properties, and they can be modified by additional perturbative forces from the host star and other planets in the system.In a new study, San Francisco State University scientist Stephen R. Kane modeled these boundaries for planets specifically in compact systems, to determine whether such planets can host moons to boost their likelihood of habitability.Allowed moon density as a function of semimajor axis for the TRAPPIST-1 system, for two different scenarios with different levels of perturbations. The vertical dotted lines show the locations

  11. Soil Crystallinity As a Climate Indicator: Field Experiments on Earth and Mars (United States)

    Horgan, Briony; Scudder, Noel; Rampe, Elizabeth; Rutledge, Alicia


    Soil crystallinity is largely determined by leaching rates, as high leaching rates favor the rapid precipitation of short order or poorly-crystalline phases like the aluminosilicate allophane. High leaching rates can occur due to high precipitation rates, seasonal monsoons, or weathering of glass, but are also caused by the rapid onset of seasonal melting of snow and ice in cold environments. Thus, cold climate soils are commonly dominated by poorly crystalline phases, which mature into kaolin minerals over time. Thus, we hypothesize that, in some contexts, soils with high abundances of poorly crystalline phases could indicate formation under cold climatic conditions. This model could be helpful in interpreting the poorly-constrained paleoclimate of ancient Mars, as the crystallinity of ancient soils and soil-derived sediments appears to be highly variable in time and space. While strong signatures of crystalline phyllosilicates have been identified in possible ancient paleosols on Mars, Mars Science Laboratory rover investigations of diverse ancient sediments at Gale Crater has shown that they can contain very high abundances (40-50 wt%) of poorly crystalline phases. We hypothesize that these poorly crystalline phases could be the result of weathering by ice/snow melt, perhaps providing support for sustained cold climates on early Mars punctuated by more limited warm climates. Furthermore, such poorly crystalline soils could be highly fertile growth media for future human exploration and colonization on Mars. To test this hypothesis, we are currently using rover-like instrumentation to investigate the mineralogy and chemistry of weathering products generated by snow and ice melt in a Mars analog alpine environment: the glaciated Three Sisters volcanic complex in central Oregon. Alteration in this glacial environment generates high abundances of poorly crystalline phases, many of which have compositions distinct from those identified in previous terrestrial

  12. The key to Mars, Titan and beyond?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zubrin, R.M.


    This paper discusses the use of nuclear rockets using indigenous Mars propellants for future missions to Mars and Titan, which would drastically reduce the mass and cost of the mission while increasing its capability. Special attention is given to the CO2-powered nuclear rocket using indigenous Martian fuel (NIMF) vehicle for hopping around on Mars. If water is available on Mars, it could make a NIMF propellant yielding an exhaust velocity of 3.4 km/sec, good enough to allow a piloted NIMF spacecraft to ascent from the surface of Mars and propel itself directly to LEO; if water is available on Phobos, a NIMF spacecraft could travel to earth orbit and then back to Phobos or Mars without any additional propellant from earth. One of the many exciting missions beyond Mars that will be made possible by NIMF technology is the exploration of Saturn's moon Titan. A small automated NIMF Titan explorer, with foldout wings and a NERVA (Nuclear Engine for Rocket Vehicle Applications) engine, is proposed

  13. MAVEN-Measured Meteoritic Ions on Mars - Tracers of Lower Ionosphere Processes With and Without Analogues On Earth (United States)

    Benna, M.; Grebowsky, J. M.; Collinson, G.; Plane, J. M. C.; Mitchell, D.; Srivastava, N.


    MAVEN observations of meteoritic metal ion populations during "deep dip" campaigns at Mars have revealed unique non-Earth like behavior that are not yet understood. These deep dip campaigns (6 so far) consisted each of more than a score of repeated orbits through the Martian molecular-ion-dominated lower ionosphere, whose terrestrial parallel (Earth's E-region) has been rather sparcely surveyed in situ by sounding rockets. In regions of weak Mars magnetic fields, MAVEN found ordered exponentially decreasing metal ion concentrations above the altitude of peak meteor ablation. Such an ordered trend has never been observed on Earth. Isolated anomalous high-altitude layers in the metal ion are also encountered, typically on deep dip campaigns in the southern hemisphere where large localized surface remanent magnetic fields prevail. The source of these anomalous layers is not yet evident, although the occurrences of some high-altitude metal ion enhancements were in regions with measured perturbed magnetic fields, indicative of localized electrical currents. Further investigation shows that those currents are also sometimes associated with superthermal/energetic electron bursts offering evidence that that impact ionization of neutral metal populations persisting at high altitudes are the source of metal ion enhancement - a rather difficult assumption to accept far above the ablation region where the metal neutrals are deposited. The relationship of the anomalous layers to the coincident electron populations as well as to the orientation of the magnetic fields which can play a role in the neutral wind generated ion convergences as on Earth is investigated.

  14. Moons of the solar system from giant Ganymede to dainty Dactyl

    CERN Document Server

    Hall III, James A


    This book captures the complex world of planetary moons, which are more diverse than Earth's sole satellite might lead you to believe. New missions continue to find more of these planetary satellites, making an up to date guide more necessary than ever.  Why do Mercury and Venus have no moons at all? Earth's  Moon, of course, is covered in the book with highly detailed maps. Then we move outward to the moons of Mars, then on to many of the more notable asteroid moons, and finally to a list of less-notable ones. All the major moons of the gas giant planets are covered in great detail, while the lesser-known satellites of these worlds are also touched on.  Readers will learn of the remarkable trans-Neptunian Objects – Pluto, Eris, Sedna, Quaoar –including many of those that have been given scant attention in the literature. More than just objects to read about, the planets' satellites provide us with important information about the history of the solar system. Projects to help us learn more abo...

  15. Technology driven Robotic-Moon-Mission 2016


    Bozic, Ognjan; Longo, Jose M. A.


    Summary The paper proposes a concept mission to Moon including a space-tug-vehicle in Moon orbit, a transfer surveillance/relay satellite into low lunar orbit, a Moon lander equipped with a rover for miscellaneous challenges and an Earth return spacecraft transporting Moon samples. To guaranty a low mission cost, trajectories of low impulse has been selected in combination of technologies like combined chemical-electrical propulsion; broad Ka–band/ X–band/ S-band transponder communication...

  16. Lagrange L4/L5 points and the origin of our Moon and Saturn's moons and rings. (United States)

    Gott, J Richard


    The current standard theory of the origin of the Moon is that the Earth was hit by a giant impactor the size of Mars causing ejection of debris from its mantle that coalesced to form the moon; but where did this Mars-sized impactor come from? Isotopic evidence suggests that it came from 1 AU radius in the solar nebula, and computer simulations are consistent with its approaching Earth on a zero-energy parabolic trajectory. How could such a large object form at 1 AU in a quiescent disk of planetesimals without having already collided with the Earth at an earlier epoch before having the chance to grow large? Belbruno and Gott propose that the giant impactor could have formed in a stable orbit from debris at the Earth's Lagrange point L(5) (or L(4)). It would grow quietly by accretion at L(5) (or L(4)), but eventually gravitational perturbations by other growing planetesimals would kick it out into a horseshoe orbit and finally into a chaotic creeping orbit, which Belbruno and Gott show would, with high probability, hit the Earth on a near zero-energy parabolic trajectory. We can see other examples of this phenomenon occurring in the solar system. Asteroid 2002AA29 is in a horseshoe orbit relative to the Earth that looks exactly like the horseshoe orbits that Belbruno and Gott found for objects that had been perturbed from L(4)/L(5). The regular moons of Saturn are made of ice and have the same albedo as the ring particles (ice chunks, plus some dust). We (J. R. Gott, R. Vanderbei, and E. Belbruno) propose that the regular icy moons of Saturn (out to the orbit of Titan), which are all in nearly circular orbits, formed out of a thin disk of planetesimals (ice chunks) rather like the rings of Saturn today only larger in extent. In such a situation formation of objects at L(4)/L(5) might be expected. Indeed, Saturn's moon Dione is accompanied by moons (Helene and Polydeuces) at both L(4) and L(5) Lagrange points, and Saturn's moon Tethys is also accompanied by moons

  17. Correlations Between Variations in Solar EUV and Soft X-Ray Irradiance and Photoelectron Energy Spectra Observed on Mars and Earth (United States)

    Peterson, W. K.; Brain, D. A.; Mitchell, D. L.; Bailey, S. M.; Chamberlin, P. C.


    Solar extreme ultraviolet (EUV; 10-120 nm) and soft X-ray (XUV; 0-10 nm) radiation are major heat sources for the Mars thermosphere as well as the primary source of ionization that creates the ionosphere. In investigations of Mars thermospheric chemistry and dynamics, solar irradiance models are used to account for variations in this radiation. Because of limited proxies, irradiance models do a poor job of tracking the significant variations in irradiance intensity in the EUV and XUV ranges over solar rotation time scales when the Mars-Sun-Earth angle is large. Recent results from Earth observations show that variations in photoelectron energy spectra are useful monitors of EUV and XUV irradiance variability. Here we investigate photoelectron energy spectra observed by the Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Electron Reflectometer (ER) and the FAST satellite during the interval in 2005 when Earth, Mars, and the Sun were aligned. The Earth photoelectron data in selected bands correlate well with calculations based on 1 nm resolution observations above 27 nm supplemented by broadband observations and a solar model in the 0-27 nm range. At Mars, we find that instrumental and orbital limitations to the identifications of photoelectron energy spectra in MGS/ER data preclude their use as a monitor of solar EUV and XUV variability. However, observations with higher temporal and energy resolution obtained at lower altitudes on Mars might allow the separation of the solar wind and ionospheric components of electron energy spectra so that they could be used as reliable monitors of variations in solar EUV and XUV irradiance than the time shifted, Earth-based, F(10.7) index currently used.

  18. Chemical Alteration of Soils on Earth as a Function of Precipitation: Insights Into Weathering Processes Relevant to Mars (United States)

    Amundson, R.; Chadwick, O.; Ewing, S.; Sutter, B.; Owen, J.; McKay, C.


    Soils lie at the interface of the atmosphere and lithosphere, and the rates of chemical and physical processes that form them hinge on the availability of water. Here we quantify the effect of these processes on soil volume and mass in different rainfall regimes. We then use the results of this synthesis to compare with the growing chemical dataset for soils on Mars in order to identify moisture regimes on Earth that may provide crude analogues for past Martian weathering conditions. In this synthesis, the rates of elemental gains/losses, and corresponding volumetric changes, were compared for soils in nine soil chronosequences (sequences of soils of differing ages) - sequences formed in climates ranging from ~1 to ~4500 mm mean annual precipitation (MAP). Total elemental chemistry of soils and parent materials were determined via XRF, ICP-MS, and/or ICP-OES, and the absolute elemental gains or losses (and volume changes) were determined by normalizing data to an immobile index element. For the chronosequences examined, the initial stages of soil formation (103^ to 104^ yr), regardless of climate, generally show volumetric expansion due to (1) reduction in bulk density by biological/physical turbation, (2) addition of organic matter, (3) accumulation of water during clay mineral synthesis, and/or (4) accumulation of atmospheric salts and dust. Despite large differences in parent materials (basalt, sandstone, granitic alluvium), there was a systematic relationship between long-term (105^ to 106^ yr) volumetric change and rainfall, with an approximate cross-over point between net expansion (and accumulation of atmospheric solutes and dust) and net collapse (net losses of Si, Al, and alkaline earths and alkali metals) between approximately 20 and 100 mm MAP. Recently published geochemical data of soils at Gusev Crater (Gellert et al. 2004. Science 305:829), when normalized to Ti, show apparent net losses of Si and Al that range between 5 and 50% of values relative to

  19. A Planetary Park system for the Moon and beyond (United States)

    Cockell, Charles; Horneck, Gerda

    Deutschland International space exploration programs foresee the establishment of human settlements on the Moon and on Mars within the next decades, following a series of robotic precursor missions. These increasing robotic visits and eventual human exploration and settlements may have an environmental impact on scientifically important sites and sites of natural beauty in the form of contamination with microorganisms and spacecraft parts, or even pollution as a consequence of in situ resource use. This concern has already been reflected in the Moon Treaty, "The Agreement Governing the Activities of States on the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies" of the United Nations, which follows the Outer Space Treaty of the UN. However, so far, the Moon Treaty has not been ratified by any nation which engages in human space programs or has plans to do so. Planetary protection guidelines as formulated by the Committee on Space Research (COSPAR) are based on the Outer Space Treaty and follow the objectives: (i) to prevent contamination by terrestrial microorganisms if this might jeopardize scientific investi-gations of possible extraterrestrial life forms, and (ii) to protect the Earth from the potential hazard posed by extraterrestrial material brought back to the Earth. As a consequence, they group exploratory missions according to the type of mission and target body in five different categories, requesting specific means of cleaning and sterilization. However, the protection of extraterrestrial environments might also encompass ethical and other non-instrumental reasons. In order to allow intense scientific research and exploitation, and on the other hand to preserve regions of the Moon for research and use by future generations, we proposed the introduction of a planetary (or lunar) park system, which would protect areas of scientific, historic and intrinsic value under a common scheme. A similar placePlaceNamePlanetary PlaceTypePark system could be established on Mars well

  20. A dynamical study on the origin of the Moon (United States)

    Loibnegger, B.; Dvorak, R.; Burger, C.; Maindl, T. I.; Schäfer, C.; Speith, R.


    The process of the formation of the Moon still yields many open questions. The generally accepted scenario proposes a giant impact of a Mars-sized body onto the proto-Earth between 70 to 100 million years after the formation of the terrestrial planets. According to popular theories the Moon formed from the debris disk generated by this giant impact. The goal of our dynamical studies is to find the initial orbit of the Mars-sized impactor (Theia) by investigating the regarding probability of a collision with Earth. Due to previous studies it is assumed that Theia formed between Earth and Mars at the same time as the other terrestrial planets did. Then the planet has to stay on a stable orbit for tens of millions of years till it may collide with the Earth leaving the rest of the inner solar system almost unaffected. In order to investigate the most probable origin of Theia we did n-body simulations starting a Mars-sized object with semi-major axis between 1.085 AU to 1.119 AU at low inclination altering the mean anomaly for each starting position from 0-360 deg. Additionally, simulations with an initial position of Theia inside the orbit of Earth (semi-major axis between 0.875 AU and 0.940 AU) were carried out. In total up to 10000 scenarios were calculated. The used model consists of an inner solar system with Venus, Earth and Mars at their known positions and the additional Theia as well as Jupiter and Saturn at their present orbits. The system was calculated up to 100 million years finding three possible outcomes namely collision with Earth, ejection or stability for the whole calculation period for Theia. Our results place the possible origin of Theia at 1.17 AU where most collisions happen after more than 70 million years. Additionally, the results of the dynamical n-body studies provide important data of the impact such as impact velocity and impact angle which will serve as basis for further detailed investigation of the impact itself by SPH (Smooth Particle

  1. Earth Analog Seismic Deployment for InSight's Mars seismic installation (United States)

    Kedar, S.; Bradford, S. C.; Clayton, R. W.; Davis, P. M.; Ervin, J.; Kawamura, T.; Lognonne, P. H.; Lorenz, R. D.; Mimoun, D.; Murdoch, N.; Roberson, T.; Stubailo, I.; Van Buren, D.


    InSight (Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport) is a NASA Discovery Program mission that will place a single geophysical lander on Mars to study its deep interior. InSight's main experiment is the Seismic Experiment for Interior Structure (SEIS), which will robotically place a broadband seismometer provided by the French Space Agency (CNES) on the Martian surface. SEIS will operate on the surface for a full Mars year. Installing and operating a seismometer on Mars imposes constraints rarely considered in terrestrial seismic installations. The InSight project has therefore conducted a terrestrial analog field deployment exercise to better understand and prepare for the distinctive challenges that placing a broadband seismometer in a Mars-like configuration and environment would pose. The exercise was conducted in two phases at NASA's Goldstone facility in the Southern California Mojave desert. In the first phase we have installed a surface geophysical station including a broadband seismometer, a microbarometer, anemometer, and thermal sensors in a configuration resembling the InSight's geophysical station. The site was located in an exposed location with rough surface and subsurface terrain. It was in close proximity to Goldstone permanent seismic station (GSC) that provided a ground-truth measurement. In the second phase, the installation was moved to a dry lakebed where the geophysical conditions mimic the expected geophysical environment of InSight's target landing site on Mars. We will present a summary of lessons learned so far from our analog deployment exercise. The data analysis emphasizes several aspects of key importance to the InSight mission: (1) Exploring strategies to mitigate environmental noise sources; (2) Recognizing noise sources that might be introduced by the InSight lander (solar panel flutter); (3) Identifying weak geophysical signals with low SNR above the environmental noise; (4) Using non tectonic

  2. Alteration of immature sedimentary rocks on Earth and Mars. Recording Aqueous and Surface-atmosphere Processes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cannon, Kenneth M. [Brown Univ., Providence, RI (United States); Mustard, John F. [Brown Univ., Providence, RI (United States); Salvatore, Mark R. [Arizona State Univ., Mesa, AZ (United States)


    The rock alteration and rind formation in analog environments like Antarctica may provide clues to rock alteration and therefore paleoclimates on Mars. Clastic sedimentary rocks derived from basaltic sources have been studied in situ by martian rovers and are likely abundant on the surface of Mars. Moreover, how such rock types undergo alteration when exposed to different environmental conditions is poorly understood compared with alteration of intact basaltic flows. Here we characterize alteration in the chemically immature Carapace Sandstone from Antarctica, a terrestrial analog for martian sedimentary rocks. We employ a variety of measurements similar to those used on previous and current Mars missions. Laboratory techniques included bulk chemistry, powder X-ray diffraction (XRD), hyperspectral imaging and X-ray absorption spectroscopy. Through these methods we find that primary basaltic material in the Carapace Sandstone is pervasively altered to hydrated clay minerals and palagonite as a result of water–rock interaction. A thick orange rind is forming in current Antarctic conditions, superimposing this previous aqueous alteration signature. The rind exhibits a higher reflectance at visible-near infrared wavelengths than the rock interior, with an enhanced ferric absorption edge likely due to an increase in Fe3+ of existing phases or the formation of minor iron (oxy)hydroxides. This alteration sequence in the Carapace Sandstone results from decreased water–rock interaction over time, and weathering in a cold, dry environment, mimicking a similar transition early in martian history. This transition may be recorded in sedimentary rocks on Mars through a similar superimposition mechanism, capturing past climate changes at the hand sample scale. These results also suggest that basalt-derived sediments could have sourced significant volumes of hydrated minerals on early Mars due to their greater permeability compared with intact igneous rocks.

  3. Origin of the Moon Unveiled by its Heavy Iron Isotope Composition (United States)

    Poitrasson, F.; Halliday, A. N.; Lee, D.; Levasseur, S.; Teutsch, N.


    The origin of the Moon has long been of interest and although the Giant Impact theory is currently the preferred explanation, unequivocal supporting evidence has been lacking. We have measured the iron isotope compositions of Shergotty-Nakhla-Chassigny meteorites and eucrites thought to come from Mars and Vesta, as well as samples from the Moon and the mafic Earth using high precision plasma source mass spectrometry. The mean iron isotope composition of the lunar samples, expressed in the conventional delta notation (d57Fe/54Fe) with respect to the IRMM-14 isotopic standard, is heavier (0.221 per mil (0.041: one standard deviation, 10 samples)) than those of the Earth (0.119 per mil (0.044, 7 samples)), which themselves are heavier than Martian meteorites (0.009 per mil (0.024, 6 samples)) and the eucrites measured (0.033 per mil (0.038, 7 samples)). Student's t-test calculations show that the Moon and Earth means are different from each other and from those of the other planetary bodies at >99% level of significance. The iron isotope compositions show no simple relationship with planetary heliocentric position, mantle oxygen fugacity, volatile content, or planet size. Similarly, these results do not support an origin of the Moon through co-accretion with the Earth, or as a fragment ejected from the Earth's mantle, or as another planet captured by the early Earth. In contrast, these data can be explained if the Earth, and especially the Moon, went through partial vaporisation and condensation leading to kinetic iron isotopic fractionation. Our data are also consistent with the suggested levels of enrichment of refractory elements for the bulk Earth and Moon. These new iron isotope results thus provide strong support for the origin of the Moon through a giant impact between the proto-Earth and another planet. Raleigh kinetic fractionation calculations indicate that only 1% loss of the current Fe budget of the Moon is required to explain its heavier isotopic

  4. Helioseismology on the moon (United States)

    Rhodes, E. J., Jr.


    The prospect of a future manned lunar base presents an interesting challenge for helioseismology-a field in which observations have been obtained from the Earth's surface, from near-earth satellites, and from interplanetary spacecraft. Similar observations from the Moon would possess several advantages over those from other sites. Advantages over the Earth would include the absence of the terrestrial atmosphere and the lower lunar surface gravity, both of which would allow for larger-aperture telescopes with which the highest-degree solar oscillations could be studied. Compared with the .99 AU halo orbit of the upcoming Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) mission a lunar base would have less-restrictive weight, power, and telemetry restrictions. An instrument there could also be repaired in-place and could be operated for at least one solar cycle. Disadvantages compared to SOHO would include interruptions from the lunar night and during lunar eclipses. Temporal sidelobes of frequency spacing comparable to that due to solar surface rotation would be introduced unless a network of lunar stations were operated. FInally, solar Doppler measurements made from the Moon would have to allow for the orbital velocity of the Moon around the Earth, but this should not pose a problem for such measurements.

  5. Earth analogs for Martian life - Microbes in evaporites, a new model system for life on Mars (United States)

    Rothschild, Lynn J.


    It is suggested that 'oases' in which life forms may persist on Mars could occur, by analogy with terrestrial cases, in (1) rocks, as known in endolithic microorganisms, (2) polar ice caps, as seen in snow and ice algae, and (3) volcanic regions, as witnessed in the chemoautotrophs which live in ocean-floor hydrothermal vents. Microorganisms, moreover, have been known to survive in salt crystals, and it has even been shown that organisms can metabolize while encrusted in evaporites. Evaporites which may occur on Mars would be able to attenuate UV light, while remaining more transparent to the 400-700 nm radiation useful in photosynthesis. Suggestions are made for the selection of Martian exobiological investigation sites.

  6. Exploration of the Moon to Enable Lunar and Planetary Science (United States)

    Neal, C. R.


    The Moon represents an enabling Solar System exploration asset because of its proximity, resources, and size. Its location has facilitated robotic missions from 5 different space agencies this century. The proximity of the Moon has stimulated commercial space activity, which is critical for sustainable space exploration. Since 2000, a new view of the Moon is coming into focus, which is very different from that of the 20th century. The documented presence of volatiles on the lunar surface, coupled with mature ilmenite-rich regolith locations, represent known resources that could be used for life support on the lunar surface for extended human stays, as well as fuel for robotic and human exploration deeper into the Solar System. The Moon also represents a natural laboratory to explore the terrestrial planets and Solar System processes. For example, it is an end-member in terrestrial planetary body differentiation. Ever since the return of the first lunar samples by Apollo 11, the magma ocean concept was developed and has been applied to both Earth and Mars. Because of the small size of the Moon, planetary differentiation was halted at an early (primary?) stage. However, we still know very little about the lunar interior, despite the Apollo Lunar Surface Experiments, and to understand the structure of the Moon will require establishing a global lunar geophysical network, something Apollo did not achieve. Also, constraining the impact chronology of the Moon allows the surfaces of other terrestrial planets to be dated and the cratering history of the inner Solar System to be constrained. The Moon also represents a natural laboratory to study space weathering of airless bodies. It is apparent, then, that human and robotic missions to the Moon will enable both science and exploration. For example, the next step in resource exploration is prospecting on the surface those deposits identified from orbit to understand the yield that can be expected. Such prospecting will also

  7. Overview of a Preliminary Destination Mission Concept for a Human Orbital Mission to the Martial Moons (United States)

    Mazanek, D. D.; Abell, P. A.; Antol, J.; Barbee, B. W.; Beaty, D. W.; Bass, D. S.; Castillo-Rogez, J. C.; Coan, D. A.; Colaprete, A.; Daugherty, K. J.; hide


    The National Aeronautics and Space Administration s Human Spaceflight Architecture Team (HAT) has been developing a preliminary Destination Mission Concept (DMC) to assess how a human orbital mission to one or both of the Martian moons, Phobos and Deimos, might be conducted as a follow-on to a human mission to a near-Earth asteroid (NEA) and as a possible preliminary step prior to a human landing on Mars. The HAT Mars-Phobos-Deimos (MPD) mission also permits the teleoperation of robotic systems by the crew while in the Mars system. The DMC development activity provides an initial effort to identify the science and exploration objectives and investigate the capabilities and operations concepts required for a human orbital mission to the Mars system. In addition, the MPD Team identified potential synergistic opportunities via prior exploration of other destinations currently under consideration.

  8. Meteoroids Impact the Moon (United States)

    Moser, D. E.


    Most meteoroids are broken up by Earth's atmosphere before they reach the ground. The Moon, however, has little-to-no atmosphere to prevent meteoroids from impacting the lunar surface. Upon impact they excavate a crater and generate a plume of debris. A flash of light at the moment of impact can also be seen. Meteoroids striking the Moon create an impact flash observable by telescopes here on Earth. NASA observers use telescopes at the Automated Lunar and Meteor Observatory (ALaMO) to routinely monitor the Moon for impact flashes each month when the lunar phase is right. Flashes recorded by two telescope simultaneously rule out false signals from cosmic rays and satellites. Over 400 impact flashes have been observed by NASA since 2005. This map shows the location of each flash. No observations are made near the poles or center line. On average, one impact is observed every two hours. The brightest and longest-lasting impact flash was observed in Mare Imbrium on March 17, 2013. The imaging satellite Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, in orbit around the Moon, discovered the fresh crater created by this impact. The crater is 60 across and was caused by a meteoroid 9 inches in diameter likely traveling at a speed of 57,000 mph!

  9. Rare Earth Elements as Potential Biosignatures on Mars in SuperCam Time Resolved Laser Fluorescence Spectroscopy Data (United States)

    Ollila, A.; Beyssac, O.; Sharma, S. K.; Misra, A. K.; Clegg, S. M.; Gauthier, M.; Wiens, R. C.; Maurice, S.; Gasnault, O.; Lanza, N.


    The rare earth elements (REE, La to Lu) are a group of elements with similar chemical properties that are generally present in geologic materials at trace concentrations. REEs may be concentrated via processes such as igneous fractional crystallization in accessory minerals, e.g. apatite, zircon, and titanite. Additionally, however, concentrations of REE may serve to identify regions of high astrobiological interest. For example, Fe-oxyhydroxide deposits in hydrothermal vent systems and biologically related manganese nodules may be enriched in REEs. REEs have not been measured in situ on Mars, therefore their prevalence and distribution on Mars is as yet unknown, except as observed in martian meteorites. SuperCam is a survey instrument that will analyze materials around the Mars 2020 rover using a variety of spectral techniques including laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS), Raman, VIS-IR, and time-resolved laser fluorescence (TRLF) spectroscopy. Recently, the SuperCam Engineering Development Unit was tested at the Los Alamos National Laboratory for its capabilities to detect REEs in minerals using TRLF spectroscopy. While this instrument was not designed to precisely replicate the flight model, the spectral resolution and light transmission was sufficient to obtain TRLF spectra on a number of minerals demonstrating a variety of REE luminescent centers. These include apatite (Sm3+, Nd3+, Eu3+, Dy3+), fluorite (Ho3+, Sm3+, Dy3+, Nd3+), and zircon (Er3+, Pr3+, Nd3+). Future work includes expanding this suite to include minerals associated with biological activities, for example Mn-oxides (desert varnish and manganese nodules), hydrothermal Fe-oxides, and stromatolite-associated carbonates. In this way and in combination with its other techniques, SuperCam may direct the rover team to perform further analyses of similar samples by the in situ chemical and mineralogical suite of instruments, or aid in prioritization for sample return.

  10. Moon Phase as a Context for Teaching Scale Factor (United States)

    Wallace, Ann; Dickerson, Daniel; Hopkins, Sara


    The Sun and the Moon are our most visible neighbors in space, yet their distance and size relative to the Earth are often misunderstood. Science textbooks fuel this misconception because they regularly depict linear images of Moon phases without respect to the actual sizes of the Sun, Earth, and Moon, nor their correlated distances from one…

  11. The moments of inertia of mars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bills, B.G.


    The mean moment of inertia of Mars is, at present, very poorly constrained. The generally accepted value of 0.365 MR 2 is obtained by assuming that the observed second degree gravity field can be decomposed into a hydrostatic oblate spheroid and a nonhydrostatic prolate spheroid with an equatorial axis of symmetry. An alternative decomposition is advocated in the present analysis. If the nonhydrostatic component is a maximally triaxial ellipsoid (intermediate moment midway between greatest and least) the hydrostatic component is consistent with a mean moment of 0.345 MR 2 . The plausibility of this decomposition is supported by statistical arguments and comparison with the Earth, Moon and Venus. If confirmed, this new value would have significant implications for the inferred composition and climatic history of Mars. The Mars Observer mission may help resolve this issue

  12. Visible to Short Wavelength Infrared Spectroscopy on Rovers: Why We Need it on Mars and What We Need to do on Earth (United States)

    Blaney, D. L.


    The next stage of Mars exploration will include the use of rovers to seek out specific mineralogies. Understanding the mineralogical diversity of the locale will be used to determining which targets should be investigated with the full suite of in situ capability on the rover. Visible to Short Wavelength Infrared (VSWIR) spectroscopy is critical in evaluating the mineralogical diversity and to validate the global remote sensing data sets to be collected by Mars Express and the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. However, spectroscopy on mobile platforms present challenges in both the design of instruments and in the efficient operation of the instrument and mission. Field-testing and validation on Earth can be used to develop instrument requirements analysis tools needed for used on Mars.

  13. Soil and crop management experiments in the Laboratory Biosphere: An analogue system for the Mars on Earth ® facility (United States)

    Silverstone, S.; Nelson, M.; Alling, A.; Allen, J. P.

    During the years 2002 and 2003, three closed system experiments were carried out in the "Laboratory Biosphere" facility located in Santa Fe, New Mexico. The program involved experimentation of "Hoyt" Soy Beans, (experiment #1) USU Apogee Wheat (experiment #2) and TU-82-155 sweet potato (experiment #3) using a 5.37 m 2 soil planting bed which was 30 cm deep. The soil texture, 40% clay, 31% sand and 28% silt (a clay loam), was collected from an organic farm in New Mexico to avoid chemical residues. Soil management practices involved minimal tillage, mulching, returning crop residues to the soil after each experiment and increasing soil biota by introducing worms, soil bacteria and mycorrhizae fungi. High soil pH of the original soil appeared to be a factor affecting the first two experiments. Hence, between experiments #2 and #3, the top 15 cm of the soil was amended using a mix of peat moss, green sand, humates and pumice to improve soil texture, lower soil pH and increase nutrient availability. This resulted in lowering the initial pH of 8.0-6.7 at the start of experiment #3. At the end of the experiment, the pH was 7.6. Soil nitrogen and phosphorus has been adequate, but some chlorosis was evident in the first two experiments. Aphid infestation was the only crop pest problem during the three experiments and was handled using an introduction of Hyppodamia convergens. Experimentation showed there were environmental differences even in this 1200 cubic foot ecological system facility, such as temperature and humidity gradients because of ventilation and airflow patterns which resulted in consequent variations in plant growth and yield. Additional humidifiers were added to counteract low humidity and helped optimize conditions for the sweet potato experiment. The experience and information gained from these experiments are being applied to the future design of the Mars On Earth ® facility (Silverstone et al., Development and research program for a soil

  14. The Earth's revolution, Moon phase, Syzygy astronomy events, their effect in disturbances of the Earth's geomagnetic field, and the ``Magnetic Storm Double Time Method'' for predicting the occurrence time, magnitude and epicenter location of earthquakes (United States)

    Chen, I. W.


    An increasing number of geomagnetic observation stations were established and operated in China since 1966 to the 1980s (and until present), effectively covering a large area of the nation. Close relativity between magnetic storms and earthquakes, as well as close relativity between the regional differences of magnetic disturbance recorded by these stations and the epicenter location of earthquakes, was discovered and observed by Tie-zheng Zhang during1966 - 1969. On such basis during 1969/1970, Zhang developed the “Magnetic Storm Double Time Method” for predicting the occurrence time, magnitude and epicenter location of EQs. By this method,.Zhang successfully predicted the Yunnan Tonghai Ms7.7 EQ Jan. 5, 1970 (occurrence date only), the Bohai ML5.2 EQ, Feb. 12, 1970 and other EQs, including the Haicheng Ms7.3 EQ Feb. 4, 1975, and the Tangshan Ms7.8 EQ July 28, 1976. On the basis of this method, Z.P. Shen developed the “Geomagnetic Deflection Angle Double Time Method” in 1970, and later developed the “Magnetic Storm - Moon Phase Double Time Method” in 1990s. With this method, Shen is able to predict the occurrence dates of most of the strongest EQs Ms37.5 on the Earth since 1991. Zhang also discovered that strong EQs often correspond with a number of sets of magnetic storms. Z.Q. Ren discovered close relativity exists between Syzygy astronomy events and such sets of magnetic storm as well as the occurrence dates of strong EQs. Computerized calculation of historical magnetic storm and EQ data proves the effectiveness of this method. Over 3,000 days of geomagnetic isoline images are computer processed by the Author from over 400,000 geomagnetic field data obtained by Zhang from over 100 geomagnetic observation stations during 1966 - 1984. Clear relativity is shown between the Earth’s revolution, Moon phases, Syzygy astronomy events related to the Earth, and their disturbance effect on the Earth’s geomagnetic field and the occurrence of EQs.

  15. Continuous Planetary Polar Observation from Hybrid Pole-Sitters at Venus, Earth, and Mars

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heiligers, M.J.; van den Oever (student TUDelft), Tom; Ceriotti, M.; Mulligan, P.; McInnes, CR


    A pole-sitter is a satellite that is stationed along the polar axis of the Earth, or any other planet, to generate a continuous, hemispherical view of the planet’s polar regions. In order to maintain such a vantage point, a low-thrust propulsion system is required to counterbalance the gravitational

  16. Biota and biomolecules in extreme environments on Earth: implications for life detection on Mars.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aerts, J.W.; Roling, W.F.M.; Elsaesser, A.; Ehrenfreund, P.


    The three main requirements for life as we know it are the presence of organic compounds, liquid water, and free energy. Several groups of organic compounds (e.g., amino acids, nucleobases, lipids) occur in all life forms on Earth and are used as diagnostic molecules, i.e., biomarkers, for the

  17. RITD — Adapting Mars Entry, Descent and Landing System for Earth (United States)

    Heilimo, J.; Harri, A.-M.; Aleksashkin, S.; Koryanov, V.; Arruego, I.; Schmidt, W.; Haukka, H.; Finchenko, V.; Martynov, M.; Ostresko, B.; Ponomarenko, A.; Kazakovtsev, V.; Martin, S.; Siili, T.


    The EDLS applicability to Earth’s atmosphere is studied by the EU/RITD project. Project focuses to the analysis and tests of the transonic behaviour of this compact and light weight payload entry system at the Earth re-entry.

  18. Habitability & Astrobiology Research in Mars Terrestrial Analogues (United States)

    Foing, Bernard


    We performed a series of field research campaigns (ILEWG EuroMoonMars) in the extreme Utah desert relevant to Mars environments, and in order to help in the interpretation of Mars missions measurements from orbit (MEX, MRO) or from the surface (MER, MSL), or Moon geochemistry (SMART-1, LRO). We shall give an update on the sample analysis in the context of habitability and astrobiology. Methods & Results: In the frame of ILEWG EuroMoonMars campaigns (2009 to 2013) we deployed at Mars Desert Research station, near Hanksville Utah, a suite of instruments and techniques [A, 1, 2, 9-11] including sample collection, context imaging from remote to local and microscale, drilling, spectrometers and life sensors. We analyzed how geological and geochemical evolution affected local parameters (mineralogy, organics content, environment variations) and the habitability and signature of organics and biota. Among the important findings are the diversity in the composition of soil samples even when collected in close proximity, the low abundances of detectable PAHs and amino acids and the presence of biota of all three domains of life with significant heterogeneity. An extraordinary variety of putative extremophiles was observed [3,4,9]. A dominant factor seems to be soil porosity and lower clay-sized particle content [6-8]. A protocol was developed for sterile sampling, contamination issues, and the diagnostics of biodiversity via PCR and DGGE analysis in soils and rocks samples [10, 11]. We compare the 2009 campaign results [1-9] to new measurements from 2010-2013 campaigns [10-12] relevant to: comparison between remote sensing and in-situ measurements; the study of minerals; the detection of organics and signs of life. Keywords: field analogue research, astrobiology, habitability, life detection, Earth-Moon-Mars, organics References [A] Foing, Stoker & Ehrenfreund (Editors, 2011) "Astrobiology field Research in Moon/Mars Analogue Environments", Special Issue of International

  19. Non-Chondritic Stable Strontium (δ88Sr vs. δ84Sr) in the Earth, the Moon and Some Differentiated Asteroids (United States)

    Charlier, B. L.; Parkinson, I. J.; Burton, K. W.; Grady, M. M.


    The determination of isotopic anomalies in early solar system materials provides important constraints on the nucleosynthetic origin and isotopic fractionation of elements during nebular condensation and subsequent processing in the protoplanetary disk. Several recent studies involving high-precision Sr isotope measurements have pointed towards the possibility of small excesses in the minor p-process isotope 84Sr in chondritic meteorites. However, these data remain equivocal because of the reliance on internal normalization to a fixed value of 0.1194 for the 86Sr/88Sr in order to correct for instrumental mass fractionation. On the basis of such data alone, it is not possible to determine with certainty which isotopes have anomalous abundances. Here, we present new high-precision 84Sr-87Sr double spike data that return the true isotopic composition for all the Sr isotope ratios, free from any assumptions about normalization values. Our new data demonstrate that the Earth, the Moon, eucrites and diogenites plus several angrites lie on a single mass-dependent fractionation trend in three isotope space (δ88Sr vs δ84Sr). In contrast, bulk CI, CM and CV3 carbonaceous chondrites have highly variable δ88Sr but lie on a separate mass-dependent fractionation line of identical slope which is offset towards excess 84Sr by ca. 100 ppm. Several aliquots of the angrite Sahara 99555 yield high δ84Sr values, but with 'normal' δ88Sr similar to other angrites. Stable Sr variations in chondritic meteorites most probably reflect primary Sr isotope nucleosynthetic heterogeneity in the early solar system, whilst those for Sahara 99555 indicate later addition of distinct chondritic material. Our new Sr double-spike data clearly demonstrate fundamental differences between materials forming the asteroids and terrestrial planets versus chondritic materials (in particular CI meteorites) thought to be the closest representative of solar photosphere composition.

  20. Convective thinning of the lithosphere: A mechanism for rifting and mid-plate volcanism on Earth, Venus, and Mars (United States)

    Spohn, T.; Schubert, G.


    Thinning of the Earth's lithosphere by heat advected to its base is a possible mechanism for continental rifting and continental and oceanic mid-plate volcanism. It might also account for continental rifting-like processes and volcanism on Venus and Mars. Earth's continental lithosphere can be thinned to the crust in a few tens of million years by heat advected at a rate of 5 to 10 times the normal basal heat flux. This much heat is easily carried to the lithosphere by mantle plumes. The continent is not required to rest over the mantle hot spot but may move at tens of millimeters per year. Because of the constant level of crustal radioactive heat production, the ratio of the final to the initial surface heat flow increases much less than the ratio of the final to initial basal heat flow. For large increases in asthenospheric heat flow, the lithosphere is almost thinned to the crust before any significant change in surface heat flow occurs. Uplift due to thermal expansion upon thinning is a few kilometers. The oceanic lithosphere can be thinned to the crust in less than 10 million years if the heat advection is at a rate around 5 or more times the basal heat flow into 100 Ma old lithosphere. Uplift upon thinning can compensate the subsidence of spreading and cooling lithosphere.

  1. Shepherd Moons (United States)


    [figure removed for brevity, see original site] Click on the image for movie of Shepherd Moons The New Horizons spacecraft took the best images of Jupiter's charcoal-black rings as it approached and then looked back at Jupiter in February 2007. This sequence of pictures from the Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) shows the well-defined lanes of gravel- to boulder-sized material composing the bulk of the rings; labels point out how these narrow rings are confined in their orbits by small 'shepherding' moons (Metis and Adrastea).

  2. Moon-tracking orbits using motorized tethers for continuous earth–moon payload exchanges


    Murray, C.; Cartmell, M.P.


    For human colonization of the moon to become reality, an efficient and regular means of exchanging resources between the Earth and the moon must be established. One possibility is to pass and receive payloads at regular intervals between a symmetrically laden motorized momentum-exchange tether orbiting about Earth and a second orbiting about the moon. There are significant challenges associated with this method, among the greatest of which is the development of a system that incorporates the ...

  3. Earth Entry Requirements for Mars, Europa and Enceladus Sample Return Missions: A Thermal Protection System Perspective (United States)

    Venkatapathy, Ethiraj; Gage, Peter; Ellerby, Don; Mahzari, Milad; Peterson, Keith; Stackpoole, Mairead; Young, Zion


    This oral presentation will be given at the 13th International Planetary Probe Workshop on June 14th, 2016 and will cover the drivers for reliability and the challenges faced in selecting and designing the thermal protection system (TPS). In addition, an assessment is made on new emerging TPS related technologies that could help with designs to meet the planetary protection requirements to prevent backward (Earth) contamination by biohazardous samples.

  4. Defining the Mars Ascent Problem for Sample Return

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Whitehead, J


    Lifting geology samples off of Mars is both a daunting technical problem for propulsion experts and a cultural challenge for the entire community that plans and implements planetary science missions. The vast majority of science spacecraft require propulsive maneuvers that are similar to what is done routinely with communication satellites, so most needs have been met by adapting hardware and methods from the satellite industry. While it is even possible to reach Earth from the surface of the moon using such traditional technology, ascending from the surface of Mars is beyond proven capability for either solid or liquid propellant rocket technology. Miniature rocket stages for a Mars ascent vehicle would need to be over 80 percent propellant by mass. It is argued that the planetary community faces a steep learning curve toward nontraditional propulsion expertise, in order to successfully accomplish a Mars sample return mission. A cultural shift may be needed to accommodate more technical risk acceptance during the technology development phase.

  5. sanghoon moon

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Home; Journals; Journal of Genetics. SANGHOON MOON. Articles written in Journal of Genetics. Volume 96 Issue 6 December 2017 pp 1041-1046 Research article. Genome-based exome sequencing analysis identifies GYG1, DIS3L and DDRGK1 are associated with myocardial infarction in Koreans · JI-YOUNG LEE ...

  6. Extreme Halophiles and Carbon Monoxide: Looking Through Windows at Earth's Past and Towards a Future on Mars (United States)

    King, G.


    Carbon monoxide, which is ubiquitous on Earth, is the 2nd most abundant molecule in the universe. Members of the domain Bacteria have long been known to oxidize it, and activities of CO oxidizers in soils have been known for several decades to contribute to tropospheric CO regulation. Nonetheless, the diversity of CO oxidizers and their evolutionary history remain largely unknown. A molybdenum-dependent dehydrogenase (Mo-CODH) couples CO oxidation by most terrestrial and marine bacteria to either O2 or nitrate. Molybdenum dependence, the requirement for O2 and previous phylogenetic inferences have all supported a relatively late evolution for "aerobic" CO oxidation, presumably after the Great Oxidation Event (GOE) about 2.3 Gya. Although conundrums remain, recent discoveries suggest that Mo-CODH might have evolved before the GOE, and prior to the Bacteria-Archaea split. New phylogenetic analyses incorporating sequences from extremely halophilic CO-oxidizing Euryarchaeota isolated from salterns in the Atacama Desert, brines on Hawai`i and from the Bonneville Salt Flat suggest that Mo-CODH was present in an ancestor shared by Bacteria and Archaea. This observation is consistent with results of phylogenetic histories of genes involved in Mo-cofactor synthesis, and findings by others that Mo-nitrogenase was likely active > 3 Gya. Thus, analyses of Mo-dependent CO oxidizers provide a window on the past by raising questions about the availability of Mo and non-O2 electron acceptors. Extremely halophilic CO oxidizers also provide insights relevant for understanding the potential for extraterrestrial life. CO likely occurred at high concentrations in Mars' early atmosphere, and it occurs presently at about 800 ppm. At such high concentrations, CO represents one of the most abundant energy sources available for near-surface regolith. However, use of CO by an extant or transplanted Mars microbiota would require tolerance of low water potentials and high salt concentrations

  7. What Will We Actually Do On the Moon? (United States)

    Sherwood, Brent


    Descriptions are provided for eleven specific, representative lunar activity scenarios selected from among hundreds that arose in 2006 from the NASA-sponsored development of a "global lunar strategy." The scenarios are: pave for dust control; establish a colony of continuously active robots; kitchen science; designer biology; tend the machinery; search for pieces of ancient Earth; build simple observatories that open new wavelength regimes; establish a virtual real-time network to enable public engagement; institute a public-private lunar development corporation; rehearse planetary protection protocols for Mars; and expand life and intelligence beyond Earth through settlement of the Moon. Evocative scenarios such as these are proposed as a communications tool to help win public understanding and support of the Vision for Space Exploration.

  8. Protecting the Planets from Biological Contamination: The Strange Case of Mars Exploration (United States)

    Rummel, J. D.; Conley, C. A.


    Beyond the Earth's Moon, Mars is the most studied and to some the most compelling target in the solar system. Mars has the potential to have its own native life, and it has environments that appear quite capable of supporting Earth life. As such, Mars is subject to policies intended to keep Earth organisms from growing on Mars, and missions to Mars are controlled to ensure that we know that no Mars life gets to Earth onboard a returning spacecraft. It seems odd, then, that Mars is also the planet on which we have crashed the most (the Moon still owns the overall title), and is still the only body that has had positive results from a life-detection experiment soft-landed on its surface. Mars has very little water, yet it snows on Mars and we have seen regular night-time frosts and near-surface ice on more than half of the planet. Despite strong UV insolation, Mars also has regular dust storms and winds that can cover spacecraft surfaces with dust that itself may be poisonous, but also can protect microbial life from death by UV light. In spite of surface features and minerals that provide ample evidence of surface water in the past, on today's Mars only relatively short, thin lines that lengthen and retract with the seasons provide a hint that there may be water near the surface of Mars today, but the subsurface is almost totally unexplored by instruments needed to detect water, itself. In the face of these contradictions, the implementation of planetary protection requirements to prevent cross contamination has to proceed with the best available knowledge, and in spite of sometimes substantial costs to spacecraft development and operations. In this paper we will review the status of Mars as a potential (hopefully not inadvertent) abode for life, and describe the measures taken in the past and the present to safeguard the astrobiological study of Mars, and project the requirements for Mars planetary protection in a possible future that involves both sample return

  9. Absolute band structure determination on naturally occurring rutile with complex chemistry: Implications for mineral photocatalysis on both Earth and Mars (United States)

    Li, Yan; Xu, Xiaoming; Li, Yanzhang; Ding, Cong; Wu, Jing; Lu, Anhuai; Ding, Hongrui; Qin, Shan; Wang, Changqiu


    Rutile is the most common and stable form of TiO2 that ubiquitously existing on Earth and other terrestrial planets like Mars. Semiconducting mineral such as rutile-based photoredox reactions have been considered to play important roles in geological times. However, due to the inherent complexity in chemistry, the precision determination on band structure of natural rutile and the theoretical explanation on its solar-driven photochemistry have been hardly seen yet. Considering the multiple minor and trace elements in natural rutile, we firstly obtained the single-crystal crystallography, mineralogical composition and defects characteristic of the rutile sample by using both powder and single crystal X-ray diffraction, electron microprobe analysis and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. Then, the band gap was accurately determined by synchrotron-based O K-edge X-ray absorption and emission spectra, which was firstly applied to natural rutile due to its robustness on compositions and defects. The absolute band edges of the rutile sample was calculated by considering the electronegativity of the atoms, band gap and point of zero charge. Besides, after detecting the defect energy levels by photoluminescence spectra, we drew the schematic band structure of natural rutile. The band gap (2.7 eV) of natural rutile was narrower than that of synthetic rutile (3.0 eV), and the conduction and valence band edges of natural rutile at pH = pHPZC were determined to be -0.04 V and 2.66 V (vs. NHE), respectively. The defect energy levels located at nearly the middle position of the forbidden band. Further, we used theoretical calculations to verify the isomorphous substitution of Fe and V for Ti gave rise to the distortion of TiO6 octahedron and created vacancy defects in natural rutile. Based on density functional theory, the narrowed band gap was interpreted to the contribution of Fe-3d and V-3d orbits, and the defect energy state was formed by hybridization of O-2p and Fe/V/Ti-3d

  10. Cuatro Ciénegas Basin an analog of precambrian Earth and possible early mars scenario. (Invited) (United States)

    Souza, V.; Eguiarte, L. E.; Sierfert, J.


    Mol/l) inhibited the growth of algae and other opportunistic lineages, hence, the microbial mats is at CCB the base of the food web. Moreover, CCB pure gypsum and its extensive evaporites also represent a good model for Mars, a planet were intensive volcanisms in an ancient ocean originated similar deposits rich in sulfur and poor in phosphorites. Stromatolites at Cuatro Cienegas a time capsule to precambrian earth

  11. Fluvial geomorphology on Earth-like planetary surfaces: A review. (United States)

    Baker, Victor R; Hamilton, Christopher W; Burr, Devon M; Gulick, Virginia C; Komatsu, Goro; Luo, Wei; Rice, James W; Rodriguez, J A P


    Morphological evidence for ancient channelized flows (fluvial and fluvial-like landforms) exists on the surfaces of all of the inner planets and on some of the satellites of the Solar System. In some cases, the relevant fluid flows are related to a planetary evolution that involves the global cycling of a volatile component (water for Earth and Mars; methane for Saturn's moon Titan). In other cases, as on Mercury, Venus, Earth's moon, and Jupiter's moon Io, the flows were of highly fluid lava. The discovery, in 1972, of what are now known to be fluvial channels and valleys on Mars sparked a major controversy over the role of water in shaping the surface of that planet. The recognition of the fluvial character of these features has opened unresolved fundamental questions about the geological history of water on Mars, including the presence of an ancient ocean and the operation of a hydrological cycle during the earliest phases of planetary history. Other fundamental questions posed by fluvial and fluvial-like features on planetary bodies include the possible erosive action of large-scale outpourings of very fluid lavas, such as those that may have produced the remarkable canali forms on Venus; the ability of exotic fluids, such as methane, to create fluvial-like landforms, as observed on Saturn's moon, Titan; and the nature of sedimentation and erosion under different conditions of planetary surface gravity. Planetary fluvial geomorphology also illustrates fundamental epistemological and methodological issues, including the role of analogy in geomorphological/geological inquiry.

  12. Biomedical Aspects of Lunar and Mars Exploration Missions (United States)

    Charles, John B.


    Recent long-range planning for exploration-class missions has emphasized the need for anticipating the medical and human factors aspects of such expeditions. Missions returning Americans to the moon for stays of up to 6 months at a time will provide the opportunity to demonstrate the means to function safely and efficiently on another planet. Details of mission architectures are still under study, but a typical Mars design reference mission comprises a six-month transit from Earth to Mars, eighteen months in residence on Mars, and a six-month transit back to Earth. Physiological stresses will come from environmental factors such as prolonged exposure to radiation, weightlessness en route to Mars and then back to Earth, and low gravity and a toxic atmosphere while on Mars. Psychological stressors will include remoteness from Earth, confinement, and potential interpersonal conflicts, all complicated by circadian alterations. Medical risks including trauma must be considered. The role of such risk-modifying influences as artificial gravity and improved propulsion technologies to shorten round-trip time will also be discussed. Results of planning for assuring human health and performance will be presented.

  13. Moons Around Saturn (United States)


    This series of 10 Hubble Space Telescope images captures several small moons orbiting Saturn. Hubble snapped the five pairs of images while the Earth was just above the ring plane and the Sun below it. The telescope captured a pair of images every 97 minutes as it circled the Earth. Moving out from Saturn, the visible rings are: the broad C Ring, the Cassini Division, and the narrow F Ring.The first pair of images shows the large, bright moon Dione, near the middle of the frames. Two smaller moons, Pandora (the brighter one closer to Saturn) and Prometheus, appear as if they're touching the F Ring. In the second frame, Mimas emerges from Saturn's shadow and appears to be chasing Prometheus.In the second image pair, Mimas has moved towards the tip of the F Ring. Rhea, another bright moon, has just emerged from behind Saturn. Prometheus, the closest moon to Saturn, has rounded the F Ring's tip and is approaching the planet. The slightly larger moon Epimetheus has appeared.The third image pair shows Epimetheus, as a tiny dot just beyond the tip of the F Ring. Prometheus is in the lower right corner. An elongated clump or arc of debris in the F ring is seen as a slight brightening on the far side of this thin ring.In the fourth image pair, Epimetheus, in the lower right corner, streaks towards Saturn. The long ring arc can be seen in both frames.The fifth image pair again captures Mimas, beyond the tip of the F Ring. The same ring arc is still visible.In addition to the satellites, a pair of stars can be seen passing behind the rings, appearing to move towards the lower left due to Saturn's motion across the sky.The images were taken Nov. 21, 1995 with Wide Field Planetary Camera-2.The Wide Field/Planetary Camera 2 was developed by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and managed by the Goddard Spaced Flight Center for NASA's Office of Space Science.This image and other images and data received from the Hubble Space Telescope are posted on the World Wide Web on the Space

  14. Production of nitrogen oxides by lightning and coronae discharges in simulated early Earth, Venus and Mars environments. (United States)

    Nna Mvondo, D; Navarro-Gonzalez, R; McKay, C P; Coll, P; Raulin, F


    We present measurements for the production of nitrogen oxides (NO and N2O) in CO2-N2 mixtures that simulate different stages of the evolution of the atmospheres of the Earth, Venus and Mars. The nitrogen fixation rates by two different types of electrical discharges, namely lightning and coronae, were studied over a wide range in CO2 and N2 mixing ratios. Nitric oxide (NO) is formed with a maximum energy yield estimated to be ~1.3 x 10(16) molecule J-1 at 80% CO2 and ~1.3 x 10(14) molecule J-1 at 50% CO2 for lightning and coronae discharges, respectively. Nitrous oxide (N2O) is only formed by coronae discharge with a maximum energy yield estimated to be ~1.2 x 10(13) molecule J-1 at 50% CO2. The pronounced difference in NO production in lightning and coronae discharges and the lack of formation of N2O in lightning indicate that the physics and chemistry involved in nitrogen fixation differs substantially in these two forms of electric energy. c2001 COSPAR. Published by Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Stability of Basalt plus Anhydrite plus Calcite at HP-HT: Implications for Venus, the Earth and Mars (United States)

    Martin, A. M.; Righter, K.; Treiman, A. H.


    "Canali" observed at Venus surface by Magellan are evidence for very long melt flows, but their composition and origin remain uncertain. The hypothesis of water-rich flow is not reasonable regarding the temperature at Venus surface. The length of these channels could not be explained by a silicate melt composition but more likely, by a carbonate-sulfate melt which has a much lower viscosity (Kargel et al 1994). One hypothesis is that calcite CaCO3 and anhydrite CaSO4 which are alteration products of basalts melted during meteorite impacts. A famous example recorded on the Earth (Chicxulub) produced melt and gas rich in carbon and sulfur. Calcite and sulfate evaporites are also present on Mars surface, associated with basalts. An impact on these materials might release C- and S-rich melt or fluid. Another type of planetary phenomenon (affecting only the Earth) might provoke a high pressure destabilization of basalt+anhydrite+calcite. Very high contents of C and S are measured in some Earth s magmas, either dissolved or in the form of crystals (Luhr 2008). As shown by the high H content and high fO2 of primary igneous anhydrite-bearing lavas, the high S content in their source may be explained by subduction of an anhydrite-bearing oceanic crust, either directly (by melting followed by eruption) or indirectly (by release of S-rich melt or fluid that metasomatize the mantle) . Calcite is a major product of oceanic sedimentation and alteration of the crust. Therefore, sulfate- and calcite-rich material may be subducted to high pressures and high temperatures (HP-HT) and release S- and C-rich melts or fluids which could influence the composition of subduction zone lavas or gases. Both phenomena - meteorite impact and subduction - imply HP-HT conditions - although the P-T-time paths are different. Some HP experimental/theoretical studies have been performed on basalt/eclogite, calcite and anhydrite separately or on a combination of two. In this study we performed piston

  16. Global Martian volcanism as a new interpretation of geological past of terrestrial bodies and moons in the Solar System (United States)

    Zalewska, N.


    When we look at the volcanic cones and the various other volcanic forms on Earth, we also notice that craters, especially those that are inactive for millions of years, are strikingly similar to the conically formed domes and caldera craters on Mars and terrestrial planets, additionally including moons of Jupiter and moons of other large planets as well as our Moon. The difference between the impact crater and the volcanic crater on terrestrial bodies can be very difficult to recognize because of close similarity between them, especially in morphology as well as the geometric distortion of images made by spectrometers in the nadir. In this case, the geochemistry and the degree of melting or lack there at the moment of impact must be taken into account. Whether shocked varieties of quartz are found in the crater or not, will tell us which phenomenon occurred. This would require precise on site research using rovers.

  17. Toward a mineral physics reference model for the Moon's core. (United States)

    Antonangeli, Daniele; Morard, Guillaume; Schmerr, Nicholas C; Komabayashi, Tetsuya; Kri