WorldWideScience

Sample records for returned mars samples

  1. Sustainable Mars Sample Return

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alston, Christie; Hancock, Sean; Laub, Joshua; Perry, Christopher; Ash, Robert

    2011-01-01

    The proposed Mars sample return mission will be completed using natural Martian resources for the majority of its operations. The system uses the following technologies: In-Situ Propellant Production (ISPP), a methane-oxygen propelled Mars Ascent Vehicle (MAV), a carbon dioxide powered hopper, and a hydrogen fueled balloon system (large balloons and small weather balloons). The ISPP system will produce the hydrogen, methane, and oxygen using a Sabatier reactor. a water electrolysis cell, water extracted from the Martian surface, and carbon dioxide extracted from the Martian atmosphere. Indigenous hydrogen will fuel the balloon systems and locally-derived methane and oxygen will fuel the MAV for the return of a 50 kg sample to Earth. The ISPP system will have a production cycle of 800 days and the estimated overall mission length is 1355 days from Earth departure to return to low Earth orbit. Combining these advanced technologies will enable the proposed sample return mission to be executed with reduced initial launch mass and thus be more cost efficient. The successful completion of this mission will serve as the next step in the advancement of Mars exploration technology.

  2. Mars Sample Return Architecture Overview

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, C. D.; Vijendran, S.

    2018-04-01

    NASA and ESA are exploring potential concepts for a Sample Retrieval Lander and Earth Return Orbiter that could return samples planned to be collected and cached by the Mars 2020 rover mission. We provide an overview of the Mars Sample Return architecture.

  3. Mars Sample Return Architecture Assessment Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Centuori, S.; Hermosín, P.; Martín, J.; De Zaiacomo, G.; Colin, S.; Godfrey, A.; Myles, J.; Johnson, H.; Sachdev, T.; Ahmed, R.

    2018-04-01

    Current paper presents the results of ESA funded activity "Mars Sample Return Architecture Assessment Study" carried-out by DEIMOS Space, Lockheed Martin UK Ampthill, and MDA Corporation, where more than 500 mission design options have been studied.

  4. Mars Sample Return: Mars Ascent Vehicle Mission and Technology Requirements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowles, Jeffrey V.; Huynh, Loc C.; Hawke, Veronica M.; Jiang, Xun J.

    2013-01-01

    A Mars Sample Return mission is the highest priority science mission for the next decade recommended by the recent Decadal Survey of Planetary Science, the key community input process that guides NASAs science missions. A feasibility study was conducted of a potentially simple and low cost approach to Mars Sample Return mission enabled by the use of developing commercial capabilities. Previous studies of MSR have shown that landing an all up sample return mission with a high mass capacity lander is a cost effective approach. The approach proposed is the use of an emerging commercially available capsule to land the launch vehicle system that would return samples to Earth. This paper describes the mission and technology requirements impact on the launch vehicle system design, referred to as the Mars Ascent Vehicle (MAV).

  5. Mars Sample Return Landed with Red Dragon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoker, Carol R.; Lemke, Lawrence G.

    2013-01-01

    A Mars Sample Return (MSR) mission is the highest priority science mission for the next decade as recommended by the recent Decadal Survey of Planetary Science. However, an affordable program to carry this out has not been defined. This paper describes a study that examined use of emerging commercial capabilities to land the sample return elements, with the goal of reducing mission cost. A team at NASA Ames examined the feasibility of the following scenario for MSR: A Falcon Heavy launcher injects a SpaceX Dragon crew capsule and trunk onto a Trans Mars Injection trajectory. The capsule is modified to carry all the hardware needed to return samples collected on Mars including a Mars Ascent Vehicle (MAV), an Earth Return Vehicle (ERV) and Sample Collection and Storage hardware. The Dragon descends to land on the surface of Mars using SuperSonic Retro Propulsion (SSRP) as described by Braun and Manning [IEEEAC paper 0076, 2005]. Samples are acquired and deliverd to the MAV by a prelanded asset, possibly the proposed 2020 rover. After samples are obtained and stored in the ERV, the MAV launches the sample-containing ERV from the surface of Mars. We examined cases where the ERV is delivered to either low Mars orbit (LMO), C3 = 0 (Mars escape), or an intermediate energy state. The ERV then provides the rest of the energy (delta V) required to perform trans-Earth injection (TEI), cruise, and insertion into a Moon-trailing Earth Orbit (MTEO). A later mission, possibly a crewed Dragon launched by a Falcon Heavy (not part of the current study) retrieves the sample container, packages the sample, and performs a controlled Earth re-entry to prevent Mars materials from accidentally contaminating Earth. The key analysis methods used in the study employed a set of parametric mass estimating relationships (MERs) and standard aerospace analysis software codes modified for the MAV class of launch vehicle to determine the range of performance parameters that produced converged

  6. Low Cost Mars Sample Return Utilizing Dragon Lander Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoker, Carol R.

    2014-01-01

    We studied a Mars sample return (MSR) mission that lands a SpaceX Dragon Capsule on Mars carrying sample collection hardware (an arm, drill, or small rover) and a spacecraft stack consisting of a Mars Ascent Vehicle (MAV) and Earth Return Vehicle (ERV) that collectively carry the sample container from Mars back to Earth orbit.

  7. Mars Sample Return Using Solar Sail Propulsion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Les; Macdonald, Malcolm; Mcinnes, Colin; Percy, Tom

    2012-01-01

    Many Mars Sample Return (MSR) architecture studies have been conducted over the years. A key element of them is the Earth Return Stage (ERS) whose objective is to obtain the sample from the Mars Ascent Vehicle (MAV) and return it safely to the surface of the Earth. ERS designs predominantly use chemical propulsion [1], incurring a significant launch mass penalty due to the low specific impulse of such systems coupled with the launch mass sensitivity to returned mass. It is proposed to use solar sail propulsion for the ERS, providing a high (effective) specific impulse propulsion system in the final stage of the multi-stage system. By doing so to the launch mass of the orbiter mission can be significantly reduced and hence potentially decreasing mission cost. Further, solar sailing offers a unique set of non-Keplerian low thrust trajectories that may enable modifications to the current approach to designing the Earth Entry Vehicle by potentially reducing the Earth arrival velocity. This modification will further decrease the mass of the orbiter system. Solar sail propulsion uses sunlight to propel vehicles through space by reflecting solar photons from a large, mirror-like surface made of a lightweight, reflective material. The continuous photonic pressure provides propellantless thrust to conduct orbital maneuvering and plane changes more efficiently than conventional chemical propulsion. Because the Sun supplies the necessary propulsive energy, solar sails require no onboard propellant, thus reducing system mass. This technology is currently at TRL 7/8 as demonstrated by the 2010 flight of the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency, JAXA, IKAROS mission. [2

  8. Mars Sample Return: Do Australians trust NASA?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joyce, S.; Tomkins, C. S.; Weinstein, P.

    2008-09-01

    Mars Sample Return (MSR) represents an important scientific goal in space exploration. Any sample return mission will be extremely challenging from a scientific, economic and technical standpoint. But equally testing, will be communicating with a public that may have a very different perception of the mission. A MSR mission will generate international publicity and it is vital that NASA acknowledge the nature and extent of public concern about the mission risks and, perhaps equally importantly, the public’s confidence in NASA’s ability to prepare for and manage these risks. This study investigated the level of trust in NASA in an Australian population sample, and whether this trust was dependent on demographic variables. Participants completed an online survey that explored their attitudes towards NASA and a MSR mission. The results suggested that people believe NASA will complete the mission successfully but have doubts as to whether NASA will be honest when communicating with the public. The most significant finding to emerge from this study was that confidence in NASA was significantly (p communication.

  9. Precautionary Principle and Mars Sample Return

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnould, Jacques

    Many space missions have today as an aim the exploration and the knowledge of the planet Mars; consequently, the return of Martian samples seems one of the next possible stages, at the horizon of about fifteen years. Devoted in the search of traces of life, passed or presents, such a mission presents a true stake not only from the scientific point of view but also from the ethical. Right now, the COSPAR specified the precautions to be taken to avoid or, at the very least, to limit the risk of contamination of the terrestrial biosphere by pathogenic the hitherto unknown ones. Are these recommendations sufficient? Do they concern only the scientific prudence or take truly counts of the good of humanity and the life on Earth? In the final analysis, is the incurred risk, even weak, to endanger this life worth the sorrow of it? Hitherto confined with the scientific circles of astronomy and astrobiology, this questioning could move the public opinion and this one would undoubtedly call some with the principle of precaution. In what this recourse would be relevant? The precaution aims indeed the hypothetical risks, not yet confirmed scientifically, but of which the possibility can be identified starting from empirical and scientific knowledge; such is well the case. But is it for as much possible to apply this principle to the case of the Martian samples, insofar as the objective of such a mission remains for the strictly scientific moment? Is it possible to manage the risks in the same manner when it is a question of appropriation and exploitation of the natural resources and energy (GMO, nuclear energy, etc.) and when it acts, in the case of Mars, that only search of the knowledge? How to manage the fundamental difference between the risks voluntarily taken and arbitrarily imposed, clarified and keep silent? The case of the return of the samples leads to the borders of the contemporary interrogations on the stakes and the benefits of science, on the share of risk

  10. Paleomagnetic Studies of Returned Samples from Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weiss, B. P.; Beaty, D. W.; McSween, H. Y.; Carrier, B. L.; Czaja, A. D.; Goreva, Y. S.; Hausrath, E.; Herd, C. D. K.; Humayun, M.; McCubbin, F. M.; McLennan, S. M.; Pratt, L. M.; Sephton, M. A.; Steele, A.

    2018-04-01

    Magnetic measurements of returned samples could transform our understanding of the martian dynamo and its connection to climatic and planetary thermal evolution and provide powerful constraints on the preservation state of sample biosignatures.

  11. Spatial Mapping of Organic Carbon in Returned Samples from Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siljeström, S.; Fornaro, T.; Greenwalt, D.; Steele, A.

    2018-04-01

    To map organic material spatially to minerals present in the sample will be essential for the understanding of the origin of any organics in returned samples from Mars. It will be shown how ToF-SIMS may be used to map organics in samples from Mars.

  12. Cleaning and Cleanliness Verification Techniques for Mars Returned Sample Handling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mickelson, E. T.; Lindstrom, D. J.; Allton, J. H.; Hittle, J. D.

    2002-01-01

    Precision cleaning and cleanliness verification techniques are examined as a subset of a comprehensive contamination control strategy for a Mars sample return mission. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  13. Potential High Priority Subaerial Environments for Mars Sample Return

    Science.gov (United States)

    iMOST Team; Bishop, J. L.; Horgan, B.; Benning, L. G.; Carrier, B. L.; Hausrath, E. M.; Altieri, F.; Amelin, Y.; Ammannito, E.; Anand, M.; Beaty, D. W.; Borg, L. E.; Boucher, D.; Brucato, J. R.; Busemann, H.; Campbell, K. A.; Czaja, A. D.; Debaille, V.; Des Marais, D. J.; Dixon, M.; Ehlmann, B. L.; Farmer, J. D.; Fernandez-Remolar, D. C.; Fogarty, J.; Glavin, D. P.; Goreva, Y. S.; Grady, M. M.; Hallis, L. J.; Harrington, A. D.; Herd, C. D. K.; Humayun, M.; Kleine, T.; Kleinhenz, J.; Mangold, N.; Mackelprang, R.; Mayhew, L. E.; McCubbin, F. M.; Mccoy, J. T.; McLennan, S. M.; McSween, H. Y.; Moser, D. E.; Moynier, F.; Mustard, J. F.; Niles, P. B.; Ori, G. G.; Raulin, F.; Rettberg, P.; Rucker, M. A.; Schmitz, N.; Sefton-Nash, E.; Sephton, M. A.; Shaheen, R.; Shuster, D. L.; Siljestrom, S.; Smith, C. L.; Spry, J. A.; Steele, A.; Swindle, T. D.; ten Kate, I. L.; Tosca, N. J.; Usui, T.; Van Kranendonk, M. J.; Wadhwa, M.; Weiss, B. P.; Werner, S. C.; Westall, F.; Wheeler, R. M.; Zipfel, J.; Zorzano, M. P.

    2018-04-01

    The highest priority subaerial environments for Mars Sample Return include subaerial weathering (paleosols, periglacial/glacial, and rock coatings/rinds), wetlands (mineral precipitates, redox environments, and salt ponds), or cold spring settings.

  14. OHB's Exploration Capabilities Overview Relevant to Mars Sample Return Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jaime, A.; Gerth, I.; Rohrbeck, M.; Scheper, M.

    2018-04-01

    The presentation will give an overview to all the OHB past and current projects that are relevant to the Mars Sample Return (MSR) mission, including some valuable lessons learned applicable to the upcoming MSR mission.

  15. International cooperation for Mars exploration and sample return

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levy, Eugene H.; Boynton, William V.; Cameron, A. G. W.; Carr, Michael H.; Kitchell, Jennifer H.; Mazur, Peter; Pace, Norman R.; Prinn, Ronald G.; Solomon, Sean C.; Wasserburg, Gerald J.

    1990-01-01

    The National Research Council's Space Studies Board has previously recommended that the next major phase of Mars exploration for the United States involve detailed in situ investigations of the surface of Mars and the return to earth for laboratory analysis of selected Martian surface samples. More recently, the European space science community has expressed general interest in the concept of cooperative Mars exploration and sample return. The USSR has now announced plans for a program of Mars exploration incorporating international cooperation. If the opportunity becomes available to participate in Mars exploration, interest is likely to emerge on the part of a number of other countries, such as Japan and Canada. The Space Studies Board's Committee on Cooperative Mars Exploration and Sample Return was asked by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to examine and report on the question of how Mars sample return missions might best be structured for effective implementation by NASA along with international partners. The committee examined alternatives ranging from scientific missions in which the United States would take a substantial lead, with international participation playing only an ancillary role, to missions in which international cooperation would be a basic part of the approach, with the international partners taking on comparably large mission responsibilities. On the basis of scientific strategies developed earlier by the Space Studies Board, the committee considered the scientific and technical basis of such collaboration and the most mutually beneficial arrangements for constructing successful cooperative missions, particularly with the USSR.

  16. A Draft Science Management Plan for Returned Samples from Mars: Recommendations from the International Mars Architecture for the Return of Samples (iMARS) Phase II Working Group

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haltigin, T.; Lange, C.; Mugnuolo, R.; Smith, C.

    2018-04-01

    This paper summarizes the findings and recommendations of the International Mars Architecture for the Return of Samples (iMARS) Phase II Working Group, an international team comprising 38 members from 16 countries and agencies.

  17. The Rosetta Stones of Mars — Should Meteorites be Considered as Samples of Opportunity for Mars Sample Return?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tait, A. W.; Schröder, C.; Ashley, J. W.; Velbel, M. A.; Boston, P. J.; Carrier, B. L.; Cohen, B. A.; Bland, P. A.

    2018-04-01

    We summarize insights about Mars gained from investigating meteorites found on Mars. Certain types of meteorites can be considered standard probes inserted into the martian environment. Should they be considered for Mars Sample Return?

  18. The CanMars Analogue Mission: Lessons Learned for Mars Sample Return

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osinski, G. R.; Beaty, D.; Battler, M.; Caudill, C.; Francis, R.; Haltigin, T.; Hipkin, V.; Pilles, E.

    2018-04-01

    We present an overview and lessons learned for Mars Sample Return from CanMars — an analogue mission that simulated a Mars 2020-like cache mission. Data from 39 sols of operations conducted in the Utah desert in 2015 and 2016 are presented.

  19. A core handling device for the Mars Sample Return Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gwynne, Owen

    1989-01-01

    A core handling device for use on Mars is being designed. To provide a context for the design study, it was assumed that a Mars Rover/Sample Return (MRSR) Mission would have the following characteristics: a year or more in length; visits by the rover to 50 or more sites; 100 or more meter-long cores being drilled by the rover; and the capability of returning about 5 kg of Mars regolith to Earth. These characteristics lead to the belief that in order to bring back a variegated set of samples that can address the range of scientific objetives for a MRSR mission to Mars there needs to be considerable analysis done on board the rover. Furthermore, the discrepancy between the amount of sample gathered and the amount to be returned suggests that there needs to be some method of choosing the optimal set of samples. This type of analysis will require pristine material-unaltered by the drilling process. Since the core drill thermally and mechanically alters the outer diameter (about 10 pct) of the core sample, this outer area cannot be used. The primary function of the core handling device is to extract subsamples from the core and to position these subsamples, and the core itself if needed, with respect to the various analytical instruments that can be used to perform these analyses.

  20. Mars Sample Return - Launch and Detection Strategies for Orbital Rendezvous

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woolley, Ryan C.; Mattingly, Richard L.; Riedel, Joseph E.; Sturm, Erick J.

    2011-01-01

    This study sets forth conceptual mission design strategies for the ascent and rendezvous phase of the proposed NASA/ESA joint Mars Sample Return Campaign. The current notional mission architecture calls for the launch of an acquisition/cache rover in 2018, an orbiter with an Earth return vehicle in 2022, and a fetch rover and ascent vehicle in 2024. Strategies are presented to launch the sample into a coplanar orbit with the Orbiter which facilitate robust optical detection, orbit determination, and rendezvous. Repeating ground track orbits exist at 457 and 572 km which provide multiple launch opportunities with similar geometries for detection and rendezvous.

  1. Mars Sample Return: Launch and Detection Strategies for Orbital Rendezvous

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woolley, Ryan C.; Mattingly, Richard L.; Riedel, Joseph E.; Sturm, Erick J.

    2011-01-01

    This study sets forth conceptual mission design strategies for the ascent and rendezvous phase of the proposed NASA/ESA joint Mars Sample Return Campaign. The current notional mission architecture calls for the launch of an acquisition/ caching rover in 2018, an Earth return orbiter in 2022, and a fetch rover with ascent vehicle in 2024. Strategies are presented to launch the sample into a nearly coplanar orbit with the Orbiter which would facilitate robust optical detection, orbit determination, and rendezvous. Repeating ground track orbits existat 457 and 572 km which would provide multiple launch opportunities with similar geometries for detection and rendezvous.

  2. Mars Rover Sample Return aerocapture configuration design and packaging constraints

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawson, Shelby J.

    1989-01-01

    This paper discusses the aerodynamics requirements, volume and mass constraints that lead to a biconic aeroshell vehicle design that protects the Mars Rover Sample Return (MRSR) mission elements from launch to Mars landing. The aerodynamic requirements for Mars aerocapture and entry and packaging constraints for the MRSR elements result in a symmetric biconic aeroshell that develops a L/D of 1.0 at 27.0 deg angle of attack. A significant problem in the study is obtaining a cg that provides adequate aerodynamic stability and performance within the mission imposed constraints. Packaging methods that relieve the cg problems include forward placement of aeroshell propellant tanks and incorporating aeroshell structure as lander structure. The MRSR missions developed during the pre-phase A study are discussed with dimensional and mass data included. Further study is needed for some missions to minimize MRSR element volume so that launch mass constraints can be met.

  3. Overview of the Mars Sample Return Earth Entry Vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dillman, Robert; Corliss, James

    2008-01-01

    NASA's Mars Sample Return (MSR) project will bring Mars surface and atmosphere samples back to Earth for detailed examination. Langley Research Center's MSR Earth Entry Vehicle (EEV) is a core part of the mission, protecting the sample container during atmospheric entry, descent, and landing. Planetary protection requirements demand a higher reliability from the EEV than for any previous planetary entry vehicle. An overview of the EEV design and preliminary analysis is presented, with a follow-on discussion of recommended future design trade studies to be performed over the next several years in support of an MSR launch in 2018 or 2020. Planned topics include vehicle size for impact protection of a range of sample container sizes, outer mold line changes to achieve surface sterilization during re-entry, micrometeoroid protection, aerodynamic stability, thermal protection, and structural materials selection.

  4. Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) and Mars Organic Molecule Analyzer (MOMA) as Critical In Situ Investigation for Targeting Mars Returned Samples

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freissinet, C.; Glavin, D. P.; Mahaffy, P. R.; Szopa, C.; Buch, A.; Goesmann, F.; Goetz, W.; Raulin, F.; SAM Science Team; MOMA Science Team

    2018-04-01

    SAM (Curiosity) and MOMA (ExoMars) Mars instruments, seeking for organics and biosignatures, are essential to establish taphonomic windows of preservation of molecules, in order to target the most interesting samples to return from Mars.

  5. Is Mars Sample Return Required Prior to Sending Humans to Mars?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carr, Michael; Abell, Paul; Allwood, Abigail; Baker, John; Barnes, Jeff; Bass, Deborah; Beaty, David; Boston, Penny; Brinkerhoff, Will; Budney, Charles; hide

    2012-01-01

    Prior to potentially sending humans to the surface of Mars, it is fundamentally important to return samples from Mars. Analysis in Earth's extensive scientific laboratories would significantly reduce the risk of human Mars exploration and would also support the science and engineering decisions relating to the Mars human flight architecture. The importance of measurements of any returned Mars samples range from critical to desirable, and in all cases these samples will would enhance our understanding of the Martian environment before potentially sending humans to that alien locale. For example, Mars sample return (MSR) could yield information that would enable human exploration related to 1) enabling forward and back planetary protection, 2) characterizing properties of Martian materials relevant for in situ resource utilization (ISRU), 3) assessing any toxicity of Martian materials with respect to human health and performance, and 4) identifying information related to engineering surface hazards such as the corrosive effect of the Martian environment. In addition, MSR would be engineering 'proof of concept' for a potential round trip human mission to the planet, and a potential model for international Mars exploration.

  6. Role of impact cratering for Mars sample return

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schultz, P.H.

    1988-01-01

    The preserved cratering record of Mars indicates that impacts play an important role in deciphering Martian geologic history, whether as a mechanism to modify the lithosphere and atmosphere or as a tool to sample the planet. The various roles of impact cratering in adding a broader understanding of Mars through returned samples are examined. Five broad roles include impact craters as: (1) a process in response to a different planetary localizer environment; (2) a probe for excavating crustal/mantle materials; (3) a possible localizer of magmatic and hydrothermal processes; (4) a chronicle of changes in the volcanic, sedimentary, atmospheric, and cosmic flux history; and (5) a chronometer for extending the geologic time scale to unsampled regions. The evidence for Earth-like processes and very nonlunar styles of volcanism and tectonism may shift the emphasis of a sampling strategy away from equally fundamental issues including crustal composition, unit ages, and climate history. Impact cratering not only played an important active role in the early Martian geologic history, it also provides an important tool for addressing such issues

  7. Constraining the Source Craters of the Martian Meteorites: Implications for Prioritiziation of Returned Samples from Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herd, C. D. K.; Tornabene, L. L.; Bowling, T. J.; Walton, E. L.; Sharp, T. G.; Melosh, H. J.; Hamilton, J. S.; Viviano, C. E.; Ehlmann, B. L.

    2018-04-01

    We have made advances in constraining the potential source craters of the martian meteorites to a relatively small number. Our results have implications for Mars chronology and the prioritization of samples for Mars Sample Return.

  8. Mars Sample Return: The Critical Need for Planning a Meaningful and Participatory Public Engagement Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klug Boonstra, S.

    2018-04-01

    The Mars Sample Return campaign offers the prospect of an historical leap forward in the understanding of the science of Mars, and an unprecedented opportunity to engage our citizenry in one of the enduring questions of humanity, "Are we alone?".

  9. A Rover Mobility Platform with Autonomous Capability to Enable Mars Sample Return

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fulford, P.; Langley, C.; Shaw, A.

    2018-04-01

    The next step in understanding Mars is sample return. In Fall 2016, the CSA conducted an analogue deployment using the Mars Exploration Science Rover. An objective was to demonstrate the maturity of the rover's guidance, navigation, and control.

  10. Mars ascent propulsion options for small sample return vehicles

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Whitehead, J. C.

    1997-01-01

    An unprecedented combination of high propellant fraction and small size is required for affordable-scale Mars return, regardless of the number of stages, or whether Mars orbit rendezvous or in-situ propellant options are used. Conventional space propulsion technology is too heavy, even without structure or other stage subsystems. The application of launch vehicle design principles to the development of new hardware on a tiny scale is therefore suggested. Miniature pump-fed rocket engines fed by low pressure tanks can help to meet this challenge. New concepts for engine cycles using piston pumps are described, and development issues are outlined

  11. Sample Return - at hente en sten på Mars

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kinch, Kjartan Münster

    2017-01-01

    Lige siden de første rumsonder landede på Mars i 1970'erne har planetforskere drømt om en såkaldt Sample Returnmission. Det vil sige en mission, som skal hente prøver af planetens sten, jord og atmosfære og flyve dem tilbage til Jorden. Med NASAs næste store rover-mission til Mars, som bliver sendt...

  12. Advanced Curation Protocols for Mars Returned Sample Handling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bell, M.; Mickelson, E.; Lindstrom, D.; Allton, J.

    Introduction: Johnson Space Center has over 30 years experience handling precious samples which include Lunar rocks and Antarctic meteorites. However, we recognize that future curation of samples from such missions as Genesis, Stardust, and Mars S mple Return, will require a high degree of biosafety combined witha extremely low levels of inorganic, organic, and biological contamination. To satisfy these requirements, research in the JSC Advanced Curation Lab is currently focused toward two major areas: preliminary examination techniques and cleaning and verification techniques . Preliminary Examination Techniques : In order to minimize the number of paths for contamination we are exploring the synergy between human &robotic sample handling in a controlled environment to help determine the limits of clean curation. Within the Advanced Curation Laboratory is a prototype, next-generation glovebox, which contains a robotic micromanipulator. The remotely operated manipulator has six degrees-of- freedom and can be programmed to perform repetitive sample handling tasks. Protocols are being tested and developed to perform curation tasks such as rock splitting, weighing, imaging, and storing. Techniques for sample transfer enabling more detailed remote examination without compromising the integrity of sample science are also being developed . The glovebox is equipped with a rapid transfer port through which samples can be passed without exposure. The transfer is accomplished by using a unique seal and engagement system which allows passage between containers while maintaining a first seal to the outside environment and a second seal to prevent the outside of the container cover and port door from becoming contaminated by the material being transferred. Cleaning and Verification Techniques: As part of the contamination control effort, innovative cleaning techniques are being identified and evaluated in conjunction with sensitive cleanliness verification methods. Towards this

  13. An Efficient Approach for Mars Sample Return Using Emerging Commercial Capabilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonzales, Andrew A; Stoker, Carol R

    2016-06-01

    Mars Sample Return is the highest priority science mission for the next decade as recommended by the 2011 Decadal Survey of Planetary Science [1]. This article presents the results of a feasibility study for a Mars Sample Return mission that efficiently uses emerging commercial capabilities expected to be available in the near future. The motivation of our study was the recognition that emerging commercial capabilities might be used to perform Mars Sample Return with an Earth-direct architecture, and that this may offer a desirable simpler and lower cost approach. The objective of the study was to determine whether these capabilities can be used to optimize the number of mission systems and launches required to return the samples, with the goal of achieving the desired simplicity. All of the major element required for the Mars Sample Return mission are described. Mission system elements were analyzed with either direct techniques or by using parametric mass estimating relationships. The analysis shows the feasibility of a complete and closed Mars Sample Return mission design based on the following scenario: A SpaceX Falcon Heavy launch vehicle places a modified version of a SpaceX Dragon capsule, referred to as "Red Dragon", onto a Trans Mars Injection trajectory. The capsule carries all the hardware needed to return to Earth Orbit samples collected by a prior mission, such as the planned NASA Mars 2020 sample collection rover. The payload includes a fully fueled Mars Ascent Vehicle; a fueled Earth Return Vehicle, support equipment, and a mechanism to transfer samples from the sample cache system onboard the rover to the Earth Return Vehicle. The Red Dragon descends to land on the surface of Mars using Supersonic Retropropulsion. After collected samples are transferred to the Earth Return Vehicle, the single-stage Mars Ascent Vehicle launches the Earth Return Vehicle from the surface of Mars to a Mars phasing orbit. After a brief phasing period, the Earth Return

  14. Seeking Signs of Life on Mars: The Importance of Sedimentary Suites as Part of Mars Sample Return

    Science.gov (United States)

    iMOST Team; Mangold, N.; McLennan, S. M.; Czaja, A. D.; Ori, G. G.; Tosca, N. J.; Altieri, F.; Amelin, Y.; Ammannito, E.; Anand, M.; Beaty, D. W.; Benning, L. G.; Bishop, J. L.; Borg, L. E.; Boucher, D.; Brucato, J. R.; Busemann, H.; Campbell, K. A.; Carrier, B. L.; Debaille, V.; Des Marais, D. J.; Dixon, M.; Ehlmann, B. L.; Farmer, J. D.; Fernandez-Remolar, D. C.; Fogarty, J.; Glavin, D. P.; Goreva, Y. S.; Grady, M. M.; Hallis, L. J.; Harrington, A. D.; Hausrath, E. M.; Herd, C. D. K.; Horgan, B.; Humayun, M.; Kleine, T.; Kleinhenz, J.; Mackelprang, R.; Mayhew, L. E.; McCubbin, F. M.; McCoy, J. T.; McSween, H. Y.; Moser, D. E.; Moynier, F.; Mustard, J. F.; Niles, P. B.; Raulin, F.; Rettberg, P.; Rucker, M. A.; Schmitz, N.; Sefton-Nash, E.; Sephton, M. A.; Shaheen, R.; Shuster, D. L.; Siljestrom, S.; Smith, C. L.; Spry, J. A.; Steele, A.; Swindle, T. D.; ten Kate, I. L.; Usui, T.; Van Kranendonk, M. J.; Wadhwa, M.; Weiss, B. P.; Werner, S. C.; Westall, F.; Wheeler, R. M.; Zipfel, J.; Zorzano, M. P.

    2018-04-01

    Sedimentary, and especially lacustrine, depositional environments are high-priority geological/astrobiological settings for Mars Sample Return. We review the detailed investigations, measurements, and sample types required to evaluate such settings.

  15. A Method for Choosing the Best Samples for Mars Sample Return.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gordon, Peter R; Sephton, Mark A

    2018-05-01

    Success of a future Mars Sample Return mission will depend on the correct choice of samples. Pyrolysis-FTIR can be employed as a triage instrument for Mars Sample Return. The technique can thermally dissociate minerals and organic matter for detection. Identification of certain mineral types can determine the habitability of the depositional environment, past or present, while detection of organic matter may suggest past or present habitation. In Mars' history, the Theiikian era represents an attractive target for life search missions and the acquisition of samples. The acidic and increasingly dry Theiikian may have been habitable and followed a lengthy neutral and wet period in Mars' history during which life could have originated and proliferated to achieve relatively abundant levels of biomass with a wide distribution. Moreover, the sulfate minerals produced in the Theiikian are also known to be good preservers of organic matter. We have used pyrolysis-FTIR and samples from a Mars analog ferrous acid stream with a thriving ecosystem to test the triage concept. Pyrolysis-FTIR identified those samples with the greatest probability of habitability and habitation. A three-tier scoring system was developed based on the detection of (i) organic signals, (ii) carbon dioxide and water, and (iii) sulfur dioxide. The presence of each component was given a score of A, B, or C depending on whether the substance had been detected, tentatively detected, or not detected, respectively. Single-step (for greatest possible sensitivity) or multistep (for more diagnostic data) pyrolysis-FTIR methods informed the assignments. The system allowed the highest-priority samples to be categorized as AAA (or A*AA if the organic signal was complex), while the lowest-priority samples could be categorized as CCC. Our methods provide a mechanism with which to rank samples and identify those that should take the highest priority for return to Earth during a Mars Sample Return mission. Key Words

  16. O2/CO Ignition System for Mars Sample Return Missions, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Returning a geological sample from the surface of Mars will require an ascent propulsion system with a comparatively large velocity change (delta-V) capability due...

  17. Multiple Smaller Missions as a Direct Pathway to Mars Sample Return

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niles, P. B.; Draper, D. S.; Evans, C. A.; Gibson, E. K.; Graham, L. D.; Jones, J. H.; Lederer, S. M.; Ming, D.; Seaman, C. H.; Archer, P. D.; hide

    2012-01-01

    Recent discoveries by the Mars Exploration Rovers, Mars Express, Mars Odyssey, and Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft include multiple, tantalizing astrobiological targets representing both past and present environments on Mars. The most desirable path to Mars Sample Return (MSR) would be to collect and return samples from that site which provides the clearest examples of the variety of rock types considered a high priority for sample return (pristine igneous, sedimentary, and hydrothermal). Here we propose an MSR architecture in which the next steps (potentially launched in 2018) would entail a series of smaller missions, including caching, to multiple landing sites to verify the presence of high priority sample return targets through in situ analyses. This alternative architecture to one flagship-class sample caching mission to a single site would preserve a direct path to MSR as stipulated by the Planetary Decadal Survey, while permitting investigation of diverse deposit types and providing comparison of the site of returned samples to other aqueous environments on early Mars

  18. An integrated and accessible sample data library for Mars sample return science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tuite, M. L., Jr.; Williford, K. H.

    2015-12-01

    Over the course of the next decade or more, many thousands of geological samples will be collected and analyzed in a variety of ways by researchers at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (California Institute of Technology) in order to facilitate discovery and contextualize observations made of Mars rocks both in situ and here on Earth if samples are eventually returned. Integration of data from multiple analyses of samples including petrography, thin section and SEM imaging, isotope and organic geochemistry, XRF, XRD, and Raman spectrometry is a challenge and a potential obstacle to discoveries that require supporting lines of evidence. We report the development of a web-accessible repository, the Sample Data Library (SDL) for the sample-based data that are generated by the laboratories and instruments that comprise JPL's Center for Analysis of Returned Samples (CARS) in order to facilitate collaborative interpretation of potential biosignatures in Mars-analog geological samples. The SDL is constructed using low-cost, open-standards-based Amazon Web Services (AWS), including web-accessible storage, relational data base services, and a virtual web server. The data structure is sample-centered with a shared registry for assigning unique identifiers to all samples including International Geo-Sample Numbers. Both raw and derived data produced by instruments and post-processing workflows are automatically uploaded to online storage and linked via the unique identifiers. Through the web interface, users are able to find all the analyses associated with a single sample or search across features shared by multiple samples, sample localities, and analysis types. Planned features include more sophisticated search and analytical interfaces as well as data discoverability through NSF's EarthCube program.

  19. An Internationally Coordinated Science Management Plan for Samples Returned from Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haltigin, T.; Smith, C. L.

    2015-12-01

    Mars Sample Return (MSR) remains a high priority of the planetary exploration community. Such an effort will undoubtedly be too large for any individual agency to conduct itself, and thus will require extensive global cooperation. To help prepare for an eventual MSR campaign, the International Mars Exploration Working Group (IMEWG) chartered the international Mars Architecture for the Return of Samples (iMARS) Phase II working group in 2014, consisting of representatives from 17 countries and agencies. The overarching task of the team was to provide recommendations for progressing towards campaign implementation, including a proposed science management plan. Building upon the iMARS Phase I (2008) outcomes, the Phase II team proposed the development of an International MSR Science Institute as part of the campaign governance, centering its deliberations around four themes: Organization: including an organizational structure for the Institute that outlines roles and responsibilities of key members and describes sample return facility requirements; Management: presenting issues surrounding scientific leadership, defining guidelines and assumptions for Institute membership, and proposing a possible funding model; Operations & Data: outlining a science implementation plan that details the preliminary sample examination flow, sample allocation process, and data policies; and Curation: introducing a sample curation plan that comprises sample tracking and routing procedures, sample sterilization considerations, and long-term archiving recommendations. This work presents a summary of the group's activities, findings, and recommendations, highlighting the role of international coordination in managing the returned samples.

  20. A Review of New and Developing Technology to Significantly Improve Mars Sample-Return Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carsey, F.; Brophy, J.; Gilmore, M.; Rodgers, D.; Wilcox, B.

    2000-07-01

    A JPL development activity was initiated in FY 1999 for the purpose of examining and evaluating technologies that could materially improve future (i.e., beyond the 2005 launch) Mars sample return missions. The scope of the technology review was comprehensive and end-to-end; the goal was to improve mass, cost, risk, and scientific return. A specific objective was to assess approaches to sample return with only one Earth launch. While the objective of the study was specifically for sample-return, in-situ missions can also benefit from using many of the technologies examined.

  1. Planning for the Collection and Analysis of Samples of Martian Granular Materials Potentially to be Returned by Mars Sample Return

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carrier, B. L.; Beaty, D. W.

    2017-12-01

    NASA's Mars 2020 rover is scheduled to land on Mars in 2021 and will be equipped with a sampling system capable of collecting rock cores, as well as a specialized drill bit for collecting unconsolidated granular material. A key mission objective is to collect a set of samples that have enough scientific merit to justify returning to Earth. In the case of granular materials, we would like to catalyze community discussion on what we would do with these samples if they arrived in our laboratories, as input to decision-making related to sampling the regolith. Numerous scientific objectives have been identified which could be achieved or significantly advanced via the analysis of martian rocks, "regolith," and gas samples. The term "regolith" has more than one definition, including one that is general and one that is much more specific. For the purpose of this analysis we use the term "granular materials" to encompass the most general meaning and restrict "regolith" to a subset of that. Our working taxonomy includes the following: 1) globally sourced airfall dust (dust); 2) saltation-sized particles (sand); 3) locally sourced decomposed rock (regolith); 4) crater ejecta (ejecta); and, 5) other. Analysis of martian granular materials could serve to advance our understanding areas including habitability and astrobiology, surface-atmosphere interactions, chemistry, mineralogy, geology and environmental processes. Results of these analyses would also provide input into planning for future human exploration of Mars, elucidating possible health and mechanical hazards caused by the martian surface material, as well as providing valuable information regarding available resources for ISRU and civil engineering purposes. Results would also be relevant to matters of planetary protection and ground-truthing orbital observations. We will present a preliminary analysis of the following, in order to generate community discussion and feedback on all issues relating to: What are the

  2. X-Ray Computed Tomography: The First Step in Mars Sample Return Processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Welzenbach, L. C.; Fries, M. D.; Grady, M. M.; Greenwood, R. C.; McCubbin, F. M.; Zeigler, R. A.; Smith, C. L.; Steele, A.

    2017-01-01

    The Mars 2020 rover mission will collect and cache samples from the martian surface for possible retrieval and subsequent return to Earth. If the samples are returned, that mission would likely present an opportunity to analyze returned Mars samples within a geologic context on Mars. In addition, it may provide definitive information about the existence of past or present life on Mars. Mars sample return presents unique challenges for the collection, containment, transport, curation and processing of samples [1] Foremost in the processing of returned samples are the closely paired considerations of life detection and Planetary Protection. In order to achieve Mars Sample Return (MSR) science goals, reliable analyses will depend on overcoming some challenging signal/noise-related issues where sparse martian organic compounds must be reliably analyzed against the contamination background. While reliable analyses will depend on initial clean acquisition and robust documentation of all aspects of developing and managing the cache [2], there needs to be a reliable sample handling and analysis procedure that accounts for a variety of materials which may or may not contain evidence of past or present martian life. A recent report [3] suggests that a defined set of measurements should be made to effectively inform both science and Planetary Protection, when applied in the context of the two competing null hypotheses: 1) that there is no detectable life in the samples; or 2) that there is martian life in the samples. The defined measurements would include a phased approach that would be accepted by the community to preserve the bulk of the material, but provide unambiguous science data that can be used and interpreted by various disciplines. Fore-most is the concern that the initial steps would ensure the pristine nature of the samples. Preliminary, non-invasive techniques such as computed X-ray tomography (XCT) have been suggested as the first method to interrogate and

  3. Strategies for Distinguishing Abiotic Chemistry from Martian Biochemistry in Samples Returned from Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glavin, D. P.; Burton, A. S.; Callahan, M. P.; Elsila, J. E.; Stern, J. C.; Dworkin, J. P.

    2012-01-01

    A key goal in the search for evidence of extinct or extant life on Mars will be the identification of chemical biosignatures including complex organic molecules common to all life on Earth. These include amino acids, the monomer building blocks of proteins and enzymes, and nucleobases, which serve as the structural basis of information storage in DNA and RNA. However, many of these organic compounds can also be formed abiotically as demonstrated by their prevalence in carbonaceous meteorites [1]. Therefore, an important challenge in the search for evidence of life on Mars will be distinguishing between abiotic chemistry of either meteoritic or martian origin from any chemical biosignatures from an extinct or extant martian biota. Although current robotic missions to Mars, including the 2011 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) and the planned 2018 ExoMars rovers, will have the analytical capability needed to identify these key classes of organic molecules if present [2,3], return of a diverse suite of martian samples to Earth would allow for much more intensive laboratory studies using a broad array of extraction protocols and state-of-theart analytical techniques for bulk and spatially resolved characterization, molecular detection, and isotopic and enantiomeric compositions that may be required for unambiguous confirmation of martian life. Here we will describe current state-of-the-art laboratory analytical techniques that have been used to characterize the abundance and distribution of amino acids and nucleobases in meteorites, Apollo samples, and comet- exposed materials returned by the Stardust mission with an emphasis on their molecular characteristics that can be used to distinguish abiotic chemistry from biochemistry as we know it. The study of organic compounds in carbonaceous meteorites is highly relevant to Mars sample return analysis, since exogenous organic matter should have accumulated in the martian regolith over the last several billion years and the

  4. Technology Development and Advanced Planning for Curation of Returned Mars Samples

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindstrom, David J.; Allen, Carlton C.

    2002-01-01

    NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC) curates extraterrestrial samples, providing the international science community with lunar rock and soil returned by the Apollo astronauts, meteorites collected in Antarctica, cosmic dust collected in the stratosphere, and hardware exposed to the space environment. Curation comprises initial characterization of new samples, preparation and allocation of samples for research, and clean, secure long-term storage. The foundations of this effort are the specialized cleanrooms (class 10 to 10,000) for each of the four types of materials, the supporting facilities, and the people, many of whom have been doing detailed work in clean environments for decades. JSC is also preparing to curate the next generation of extraterrestrial samples. These include samples collected from the solar wind, a comet, and an asteroid. Early planning and R\\&D are underway to support post-mission sample handling and curation of samples returned from Mars. One of the strong scientific reasons for returning samples from Mars is to search for evidence of current or past life in the samples. Because of the remote possibility that the samples may contain life forms that are hazardous to the terrestrial biosphere, the National Research Council has recommended that all samples returned from Mars be kept under strict biological containment until tests show that they can safely be released to other laboratories. It is possible that Mars samples may contain only scarce or subtle traces of life or prebiotic chemistry that could readily be overwhelmed by terrestrial contamination . Thus, the facilities used to contain, process, and analyze samples from Mars must have a combination of high-level biocontainment and organic / inorganic chemical cleanliness that is unprecedented. JSC has been conducting feasibility studies and developing designs for a sample receiving facility that would offer biocontainment at least the equivalent of current maximum containment BSL-4 (Bio

  5. Mars Sample Return as a Feed-Forward into Planetary Protection for Crewed Missions to the Martian Surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spry, J. A.; Siegel, B.

    2018-04-01

    PP implementation is a required part of crewed exploration of Mars. Determining how PP is achieved is contingent on improved knowledge of Mars, best obtained in part by analysis of martian material of known provenance, as part of a Mars Sample Return mission.

  6. Planetary Protection Requirements for Mars Sample Return Missions: Recommendations from a 2009 NRC Report

    Science.gov (United States)

    Race, Margaret; Farmer, Jack

    A 2009 report by the National Research Council (NRC) reviewed a previous study on Mars Sample Return (1997) and provided updated recommendations for future sample return mis-sions based on our current understanding about Mars and its biological potential, as well as advances in technology and analytical capabilities. The committee* made 12 specific recommen-dations that fall into three general categories—one related to current scientific understanding, ten based on changes in the technical and/or policy environment, and one aimed at public com-munication. Substantive changes from the 1997 report relate mainly to protocols and methods, technology and infrastructure, and general oversight. This presentation provides an overview of the 2009 report and its recommendations and analyzes how they may impact mission designs and plans. The full report, Assessment of Planetary Protection Requirements for Mars Sample Return Missions is available online at: http://www.nap.edu/catalog.php?recordi d = 12576 * Study participants: Jack D. Farmer, Arizona State University (chair) James F. Bell III, Cornell University Kathleen C. Benison, Central Michigan University William V. Boynton, University of Arizona Sherry L. Cady, Portland State University F. Grant Ferris, University of Toronto Duncan MacPherson, Jet Propulsion Laboratory Margaret S. Race, SETI Institute Mark H. Thiemens, University of California, San Diego Meenakshi Wadhwa, Arizona State University

  7. The Opera Instrument: An Advanced Curation Development for Mars Sample Return Organic Contamination Monitoring

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fries, M. D.; Fries, W. D.; McCubbin, F. M.; Zeigler, R. A.

    2018-01-01

    Mars Sample Return (MSR) requires strict organic contamination control (CC) and contamination knowledge (CK) as outlined by the Mars 2020 Organic Contamination Panel (OCP). This includes a need to monitor surficial organic contamination to a ng/sq. cm sensitivity level. Archiving and maintaining this degree of surface cleanliness may be difficult but has been achieved. MSR's CK effort will be very important because all returned samples will be studied thoroughly and in minute detail. Consequently, accurate CK must be collected and characterized to best interpret scientific results from the returned samples. The CK data are not only required to make accurate measurements and interpretations for carbon-depleted martian samples, but also to strengthen the validity of science investigations performed on the samples. The Opera instrument prototype is intended to fulfill a CC/CK role in the assembly, cleaning, and overall contamination history of hardware used in the MSR effort, from initial hardware assembly through post-flight sample curation. Opera is intended to monitor particulate and organic contamination using quartz crystal microbalances (QCMs), in a self-contained portable package that is cleanroom-compliant. The Opera prototype is in initial development capable of approximately 100 ng/sq. cm organic contamination sensitivity, with additional development planned to achieve 1 ng/sq. cm. The Opera prototype was funded by the 2017 NASA Johnson Space Center Innovation Charge Account (ICA), which provides funding for small, short-term projects.

  8. Heating and thermal control of brazing technique to break contamination path for potential Mars sample return

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bao, Xiaoqi; Badescu, Mircea; Sherrit, Stewart; Bar-Cohen, Yoseph; Campos, Sergio

    2017-04-01

    The potential return of Mars sample material is of great interest to the planetary science community, as it would enable extensive analysis of samples with highly sensitive laboratory instruments. It is important to make sure such a mission concept would not bring any living microbes, which may possibly exist on Mars, back to Earth's environment. In order to ensure the isolation of Mars microbes from Earth's Atmosphere, a brazing sealing and sterilizing technique was proposed to break the Mars-to-Earth contamination path. Effectively, heating the brazing zone in high vacuum space and controlling the sample temperature for integrity are key challenges to the implementation of this technique. The break-thechain procedures for container configurations, which are being considered, were simulated by multi-physics finite element models. Different heating methods including induction and resistive/radiation were evaluated. The temperature profiles of Martian samples in a proposed container structure were predicted. The results show that the sealing and sterilizing process can be controlled such that the samples temperature is maintained below the level that may cause damage, and that the brazing technique is a feasible approach to breaking the contamination path.

  9. Elemental Composition of Mars Return Samples Using X-Ray Fluorescence Imaging at the National Synchrotron Light Source II

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thieme, J.; Hurowitz, J. A.; Schoonen, M. A.; Fogelqvist, E.; Gregerson, J.; Farley, K. A.; Sherman, S.; Hill, J.

    2018-04-01

    NSLS-II at BNL provides a unique and critical capability to perform assessments of the elemental composition and the chemical state of Mars returned samples using synchrotron radiation X-ray fluorescence imaging and X-ray absorption spectroscopy.

  10. The Mars Sample Return Lab(s) - Lessons from the Past and Implications for the Future

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Carlton

    2012-01-01

    It has been widely understood for many years that an essential component of a Mars Sample Return mission is a Sample Receiving Facility (SRF). The purpose of such a facility would be to take delivery of the flight hardware that lands on Earth, open the spacecraft and extract the sample container and samples, and conduct an agreed upon test protocol, while ensuring strict containment and contamination control of the samples while in the SRF. Any samples that are found to be non-hazardous (or are rendered non-hazardous by sterilization) would then be transferred to long-term curation. Although the general concept of an SRF is relatively straightforward, there has been considerable discussion about implementation planning.

  11. Mars Sample Handling Functionality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, M. A.; Mattingly, R. L.

    2018-04-01

    The final leg of a Mars Sample Return campaign would be an entity that we have referred to as Mars Returned Sample Handling (MRSH.) This talk will address our current view of the functional requirements on MRSH, focused on the Sample Receiving Facility (SRF).

  12. Mars Sample Return: The Next Step Required to Revolutionize Knowledge of Martian Geological and Climatological History

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mittlefehldt, D. W.

    2012-01-01

    The capability of scientific instrumentation flown on planetary orbiters and landers has made great advances since the signature Viking mission of the seventies. At some point, however, the science return from orbital remote sensing, and even in situ measurements, becomes incremental, rather than revolutionary. This is primarily caused by the low spatial resolution of such measurements, even for landed instrumentation, the incomplete mineralogical record derived from such measurements, the inability to do the detailed textural, mineralogical and compositional characterization needed to demonstrate equilibrium or reaction paths, and the lack of chronological characterization. For the foreseeable future, flight instruments will suffer from this limitation. In order to make the next revolutionary breakthrough in understanding the early geological and climatological history of Mars, samples must be available for interrogation using the full panoply of laboratory-housed analytical instrumentation. Laboratory studies of samples allow for determination of parageneses of rocks through microscopic identification of mineral assemblages, evaluation of equilibrium through electron microbeam analyses of mineral compositions and structures, determination of formation temperatures through secondary ion or thermal ionization mass spectrometry (SIMS or TIMS) analyses of stable isotope compositions. Such details are poorly constrained by orbital data (e.g. phyllosilicate formation at Mawrth Vallis), and incompletely described by in situ measurements (e.g. genesis of Burns formation sediments at Meridiani Planum). Laboratory studies can determine formation, metamorphism and/or alteration ages of samples through SIMS or TIMS of radiogenic isotope systems; a capability well-beyond flight instrumentation. Ideally, sample return should be from a location first scouted by landers such that fairly mature hypotheses have been formulated that can be tested. However, samples from clastic

  13. Hydrated Minerals and Evaporites as Key Targets for a Mars Sample Return Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adeli, S.; Hauber, E.; Jaumann, R.

    2018-04-01

    Here we focus on hydrated minerals and evaporites as paleo-environment indicators with preservation capacity. Thus, samples from these materials would increase our knowledge about the past aqueous activities of Mars and its habitability potentials.

  14. Trajectory Options for a Potential Mars Mission Combining Orbiting Science, Relay and a Sample Return Rendezvous Demonstration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guinn, Joseph R.; Kerridge, Stuart J.; Wilson, Roby S.

    2012-01-01

    Mars sample return is a major scientific goal of the 2011 US National Research Council Decadal Survey for Planetary Science. Toward achievement of this goal, recent architecture studies have focused on several mission concept options for the 2018/2020 Mars launch opportunities. Mars orbiters play multiple roles in these architectures such as: relay, landing site identification/selection/certification, collection of on-going or new measurements to fill knowledge gaps, and in-orbit collection and transportation of samples from Mars to Earth. This paper reviews orbiter concepts that combine these roles and describes a novel family of relay orbits optimized for surface operations support. Additionally, these roles provide an intersection of objectives for long term NASA science, human exploration, technology development and international collaboration.

  15. The Proposed Mars Astrobiology Explorer - Cacher [MAX-C] Rover: First Step in a Potential Sample Return Campaign

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Carlton C.; Beaty, David W.

    2010-01-01

    Sample return from Mars has been advocated by numerous scientific advisory panels for over 30 years, most prominently beginning with the National Research Council s [1] strategy for the exploration of the inner solar system, and most recently by the Mars Exploration Program Analysis Group (MEPAG s) Next Decade Science Analysis Group [2]. Analysis of samples here on Earth would have enormous advantages over in situ analyses in producing the data quality needed to address many of the complex scientific questions the community has posed about Mars. Instead of a small, predetermined set of analytical techniques, state of the art preparative and instrumental resources of the entire scientific community could be applied to the samples. The analytical emphasis could shift as the meaning of each result becomes better appreciated. These arguments apply both to igneous rocks and to layered sedimentary materials, either of which could contain water and other volatile constituents. In 2009 MEPAG formed the Mid-Range Rover Science Analysis Group (MRR-SAG) to formulate a mission concept that would address two general objectives: (1) conduct high-priority in situ science and (2) make concrete steps towards the potential return of samples to Earth. This analysis resulted in a mission concept named the Mars Astrobiology Explorer-Cacher (MAX-C), which was envisioned for launch in the 2018 opportunity. After extensive discussion, this group concluded that by far the most definitive contribution to sample return by this mission would be to collect and cache, in an accessible location, a suite of compelling samples that could potentially be recovered and returned by a subsequent mission. This would have the effect of separating two of the essential functions of MSR, the acquisition of the sample collection and its delivery to martian orbit, into two missions.

  16. Sample Return in Preparation for Human Mission on the Surface of Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yun, P.

    2018-04-01

    Returned samples of martian regolith will help the science community make an informed decision in choosing the final human landing site and develop a better human mission plan to meet science criteria and IRSU and civil engineering criteria.

  17. The Use of Returned Martian Samples to Evaluate the Possibility of Extant Life on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    iMOST Team; ten Kate, I. L.; Mackelprang, R.; Rettberg, P.; Smith, C. L.; Altieri, F.; Amelin, Y.; Ammannito, E.; Anand, M.; Beaty, D. W.; Benning, L. G.; Bishop, J. L.; Borg, L. E.; Boucher, D.; Brucato, J. R.; Busemann, H.; Campbell, K. A.; Carrier, B. L.; Czaja, A. D.; Debaille, V.; Des Marais, D. J.; Dixon, M.; Ehlmann, B. L.; Farmer, J. D.; Fernandez-Remolar, D. C.; Fogarty, J.; Glavin, D. P.; Goreva, Y. S.; Grady, M. M.; Hallis, L. J.; Harrington, A. D.; Hausrath, E. M.; Herd, C. D. K.; Horgan, B.; Humayun, M.; Kleine, T.; Kleinhenz, J.; Mangold, N.; Mayhew, L. E.; McCoy, J. T.; McCubbin, F. M.; McLennan, S. M.; McSween, H. Y.; Moser, D. E.; Moynier, F.; Mustard, J. F.; Niles, P. B.; Ori, G. G.; Raulin, F.; Rucker, M. A.; Schmitz, N.; Sefton-Nash, E.; Sephton, M. A.; Shaheen, R.; Shuster, D. L.; Siljestrom, S.; Spry, J. A.; Steele, A.; Swindle, T. D.; Tosca, N. J.; Usui, T.; Van Kranendonk, M. J.; Wadhwa, M.; Weiss, B. P.; Werner, S. C.; Westall, F.; Wheeler, R. M.; Zipfel, J.; Zorzano, M. P.

    2018-04-01

    The astrobiological community is highly interested in interrogating returned martian samples for evidence of extant life. A single observation with one method will not constitute evidence of extant life — it will require a suite of investigations.

  18. The Importance of Contamination Knowledge in Curation - Insights into Mars Sample Return

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harrington, A. D.; Calaway, M. J.; Regberg, A. B.; Mitchell, J. L.; Fries, M. D.; Zeigler, R. A.; McCubbin, F. M.

    2018-01-01

    The Astromaterials Acquisition and Curation Office at NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC), in Houston, TX (henceforth Curation Office) manages the curation of extraterrestrial samples returned by NASA missions and shared collections from international partners, preserving their integrity for future scientific study while providing the samples to the international community in a fair and unbiased way. The Curation Office also curates flight and non-flight reference materials and other materials from spacecraft assembly (e.g., lubricants, paints and gases) of sample return missions that would have the potential to cross-contaminate a present or future NASA astromaterials collection.

  19. The Importance of Sample Return in Establishing Chemical Evidence for Life on Mars or Other Solar System Bodies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glavin, D. P.; Conrad, P.; Dworkin, J. P.; Eigenbrode, J.; Mahaffy, P. R.

    2011-01-01

    The search for evidence of life on Mars and elsewhere will continue to be one of the primary goals of NASA s robotic exploration program over the next decade. NASA and ESA are currently planning a series of robotic missions to Mars with the goal of understanding its climate, resources, and potential for harboring past or present life. One key goal will be the search for chemical biomarkers including complex organic compounds important in life on Earth. These include amino acids, the monomer building blocks of proteins and enzymes, nucleobases and sugars which form the backbone of DNA and RNA, and lipids, the structural components of cell membranes. Many of these organic compounds can also be formed abiotically as demonstrated by their prevalence in carbonaceous meteorites [1], though, their molecular characteristics may distinguish a biological source [2]. It is possible that in situ instruments may reveal such characteristics, however, return of the right sample (i.e. one with biosignatures or having a high probability of biosignatures) to Earth would allow for more intensive laboratory studies using a broad array of powerful instrumentation for bulk characterization, molecular detection, isotopic and enantiomeric compositions, and spatially resolved chemistry that may be required for confirmation of extant or extinct Martian life. Here we will discuss the current analytical capabilities and strategies for the detection of organics on the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) using the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument suite and how sample return missions from Mars and other targets of astrobiological interest will help advance our understanding of chemical biosignatures in the solar system.

  20. Mars Earth Return Vehicle (MERV) Propulsion Options

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oleson, Steven R.; McGuire, Melissa L.; Burke, Laura; Fincannon, James; Warner, Joe; Williams, Glenn; Parkey, Thomas; Colozza, Tony; Fittje, Jim; Martini, Mike; hide

    2010-01-01

    The COMPASS Team was tasked with the design of a Mars Sample Return Vehicle. The current Mars sample return mission is a joint National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and European Space Agency (ESA) mission, with ESA contributing the launch vehicle for the Mars Sample Return Vehicle. The COMPASS Team ran a series of design trades for this Mars sample return vehicle. Four design options were investigated: Chemical Return /solar electric propulsion (SEP) stage outbound, all-SEP, all chemical and chemical with aerobraking. The all-SEP and Chemical with aerobraking were deemed the best choices for comparison. SEP can eliminate both the Earth flyby and the aerobraking maneuver (both considered high risk by the Mars Sample Return Project) required by the chemical propulsion option but also require long low thrust spiral times. However this is offset somewhat by the chemical/aerobrake missions use of an Earth flyby and aerobraking which also take many months. Cost and risk analyses are used to further differentiate the all-SEP and Chemical/Aerobrake options.

  1. What We Might Know About Gusev Crater if the Mars Exploration Rover Spirit Mission were Coupled with a Mars Sample Return Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morris, Richard V.

    2008-01-01

    The science instruments on the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Spirit have provided an enormous amount of chemical and mineralogical data during more than 1450 sols of exploration at Gusev crater. The Moessbauer (MB) instrument identified 10 Fe-bearing phases at Gusev Crater: olivine, pyroxene, ilmenite, chromite, and magnetite as primary igneous phases and nanophase ferric oxide (npOx), goethite, hematite, a ferric sulfate, and pyrite/marcusite as secondary phases. The Miniature Thermal Emission Spectrometer (Mini-TES) identified some of these Fe-bearing phases (olivine and pyroxene), non- Fe-bearing phases (e.g., feldspar), and an amorphous high-SiO2 phase near Home Plate. Chemical data from the Alpha Particle X-Ray Spectrometer (APXS) provided the framework for rock classification, chemical weathering/alteration, and mineralogical constraints. APXS-based mineralogical constraints include normative calculations (with Fe(3+)/FeT from MB), elemental associations, and stoichiometry (e.g., 90% SiO2 implicates opalline silica). If Spirit had cached a set of representative samples and if those samples were returned to the Earth for laboratory analysis, what value is added by Mars Sample return (MSR) over and above the mineralogical and chemical data provided by MER?

  2. Solid Rocket Motor for Ultralow Temperature Operation During the Mars Sample Return Mission, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — A small Mars (or other celestial body) ascent vehicle is unlikely to achieve the necessary propellant fraction required to achieve orbit. Scaling down of liquid...

  3. Thermal Protection for Mars Sample Return Earth Entry Vehicle: A Grand Challenge for Design Methodology and Reliability Verification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venkatapathy, Ethiraj; Gage, Peter; Wright, Michael J.

    2017-01-01

    Mars Sample Return is our Grand Challenge for the coming decade. TPS (Thermal Protection System) nominal performance is not the key challenge. The main difficulty for designers is the need to verify unprecedented reliability for the entry system: current guidelines for prevention of backward contamination require that the probability of spores larger than 1 micron diameter escaping into the Earth environment be lower than 1 million for the entire system, and the allocation to TPS would be more stringent than that. For reference, the reliability allocation for Orion TPS is closer to 11000, and the demonstrated reliability for previous human Earth return systems was closer to 1100. Improving reliability by more than 3 orders of magnitude is a grand challenge indeed. The TPS community must embrace the possibility of new architectures that are focused on reliability above thermal performance and mass efficiency. MSR (Mars Sample Return) EEV (Earth Entry Vehicle) will be hit with MMOD (Micrometeoroid and Orbital Debris) prior to reentry. A chute-less aero-shell design which allows for self-righting shape was baselined in prior MSR studies, with the assumption that a passive system will maximize EEV robustness. Hence the aero-shell along with the TPS has to take ground impact and not break apart. System verification will require testing to establish ablative performance and thermal failure but also testing of damage from MMOD, and structural performance at ground impact. Mission requirements will demand analysis, testing and verification that are focused on establishing reliability of the design. In this proposed talk, we will focus on the grand challenge of MSR EEV TPS and the need for innovative approaches to address challenges in modeling, testing, manufacturing and verification.

  4. Clay catalyzed RNA synthesis under Martian conditions: Application for Mars return samples.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joshi, Prakash C; Dubey, Krishna; Aldersley, Michael F; Sausville, Meaghen

    2015-06-26

    Catalysis by montmorillonites clay minerals is regarded as a feasible mechanism for the abiotic production and polymerization of key biomolecules on early Earth. We have investigated a montmorillonite-catalyzed reaction of the 5'-phosphorimidazolide of nucleosides as a model to probe prebiotic synthesis of RNA-type oligomers. Here we show that this model is specific for the generation of RNA oligomers despite deoxy-mononucleotides adsorbing equally well onto the montmorillonite catalytic surfaces. Optimum catalytic activity was observed over a range of pH (6-9) and salinity (1 ± 0.2 M NaCl). When the weathering steps of early Earth that generated catalytic montmorillonite were modified to meet Martian soil conditions, the catalytic activity remained intact without altering the surface layer charge. Additionally, the formation of oligomers up to tetramer was detected using as little as 0.1 mg of Na⁺-montmorillonite, suggesting that the catalytic activity of a Martian clay return sample can be investigated with sub-milligram scale samples. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. A LIBS Boroscope for Evaluation of Mars Sample Return Core Candidates

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The leading recommendation of the Decadal Survey [National Research Council, 2011] is &taking the first critical steps toward returning carefully selected...

  6. Spacecraft Actuator Diagnosis with Principal Component Analysis: Application to the Rendez-Vous Phase of the Mars Sample Return Mission

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Othman Nasri

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a fault detection and isolation (FDI approach in order to detect and isolate actuators (thrusters and reaction wheels faults of an autonomous spacecraft involved in the rendez-vous phase of the Mars Sample Return (MSR mission. The principal component analysis (PCA has been adopted to estimate the relationships between the various variables of the process. To ensure the feasibility of the proposed FDI approach, a set of data provided by the industrial “high-fidelity” simulator of the MSR and representing the opening (resp., the rotation rates of the spacecraft thrusters (resp., reaction wheels has been considered. The test results demonstrate that the fault detection and isolation are successfully accomplished.

  7. Phobos Sample Return: Next Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zelenyi, Lev; Martynov, Maxim; Zakharov, Alexander; Korablev, Oleg; Ivanov, Alexey; Karabadzak, George

    The Martian moons still remain a mystery after numerous studies by Mars orbiting spacecraft. Their study cover three major topics related to (1) Solar system in general (formation and evolution, origin of planetary satellites, origin and evolution of life); (2) small bodies (captured asteroid, or remnants of Mars formation, or reaccreted Mars ejecta); (3) Mars (formation and evolution of Mars; Mars ejecta at the satellites). As reviewed by Galimov [2010] most of the above questions require the sample return from the Martian moon, while some (e.g. the characterization of the organic matter) could be also answered by in situ experiments. There is the possibility to obtain the sample of Mars material by sampling Phobos: following to Chappaz et al. [2012] a 200-g sample could contain 10-7 g of Mars surface material launched during the past 1 mln years, or 5*10-5 g of Mars material launched during the past 10 mln years, or 5*1010 individual particles from Mars, quantities suitable for accurate laboratory analyses. The studies of Phobos have been of high priority in the Russian program on planetary research for many years. Phobos-88 mission consisted of two spacecraft (Phobos-1, Phobos-2) and aimed the approach to Phobos at 50 m and remote studies, and also the release of small landers (long-living stations DAS). This mission implemented the program incompletely. It was returned information about the Martian environment and atmosphere. The next profect Phobos Sample Return (Phobos-Grunt) initially planned in early 2000 has been delayed several times owing to budget difficulties; the spacecraft failed to leave NEO in 2011. The recovery of the science goals of this mission and the delivery of the samples of Phobos to Earth remain of highest priority for Russian scientific community. The next Phobos SR mission named Boomerang was postponed following the ExoMars cooperation, but is considered the next in the line of planetary exploration, suitable for launch around 2022. A

  8. Development of the RANCOR Rotary-Percussive Coring System for Mars Sample Return

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paulsen, Gale; Indyk, Stephen; Zacny, Kris

    2014-01-01

    A RANCOR drill was designed to fit a Mars Exploration Rover (MER) class vehicle. The low mass of 3 kg was achieved by using the same actuator for three functions: rotation, percussions, and core break-off. Initial testing of the drill exposed an unexpected behavior of an off-the-shelf sprag clutch used to couple and decouple rotary-percussive function from the core break off function. Failure of the sprag was due to the vibration induced during percussive drilling. The sprag clutch would back drive in conditions where it was expected to hold position. Although this did not affect the performance of the drill, it nevertheless reduced the quality of the cores produced. Ultimately, the sprag clutch was replaced with a custom ratchet system that allowed for some angular displacement without advancing in either direction. Replacing the sprag with the ratchet improved the collected core quality. Also, premature failure of a 300-series stainless steel percussion spring was observed. The 300-series percussion spring was ultimately replaced with a music wire spring based on performances of previously designed rotary-percussive drill systems.

  9. Western Eos Chaos on Mars: A Potential Site for Future Landing and Returning Samples

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asif Iqbal Kakkassery; Rajesh, V. J.

    2018-04-01

    Introducing Eos Chaos as a potential area for collecting samples. Eos Chaos contains a number of aqueous minerals. We have detected zoisite — a least reported low-grade metamorphic mineral from this area.

  10. Plans for Selection and In-Situ Investigation of Return Samples by the Supercam Instrument Onboard the Mars 2020 Rover

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiens, R. C.; Maurice, S.; Mangold, N.; Anderson, R.; Beyssac, O.; Bonal, L.; Clegg, S.; Cousin, A.; DeFlores, L.; Dromart, G.; Fisher, W.; Forni, O.; Fouchet, T.; Gasnault, O.; Grotzinger, J.; Johnson, J.; Martinez-Frias, J.; McLennan, S.; Meslin, P.-Y.; Montmessin, F.; Poulet, F.; Rull, F.; Sharma, S.

    2018-04-01

    The SuperCam instrument onboard Rover 2020 still provides a complementary set of analyses with IR reflectance and Raman spectroscopy for mineralogy, LIBS for chemistry, and a color imager in order to investigate in-situ samples to return.

  11. Laboratory simulations of prebiotic molecule stability in the jarosite mineral group; end member evaluation of detection and decomposition behavior related to Mars sample return

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    J. Michelle Kotler; Nancy W. Hinman; C. Doc Richardson; Andrew G. Conly; Jill R. Scott

    2009-10-01

    Recently, the prebiotic amino acid glycine has been found associated with natural jarosite samples from various locations around the world. Since the discovery of jarosite on Mars, extensive research focuses on linking this mineral group with possible detection of biosignatures in the geologic record on Earth and Mars. Multiple analytical methods, including extraction and mass spectrometry techniques have identified glycine and other biomolecules in jarosite samples. The jarosite end members jarosite (sensu stricto-potassium jarosite), natrojarosite (sodium jarosite), and ammoniojarosite (ammonium jarosite) have different thermodynamic stabilities, decompose at different rates, and have potentially different susceptibilities to substitution. Planetary protection issues have led to the suggestion that samples returned from Mars would need to be heat-treated before they could be analyzed on Earth. Although heat treatment of the samples would in theory destroy any potential biosignatures, valuable information can be obtained during thermal treatment by employing gravimetric techniques. The relationship between the thermodynamic stability of the jarosite end members and the effect that glycine has on the thermal decomposition behavior of each end member was investigated using thermal gravimetric analysis. Thermal gravimetric analysis has been suggested as a method capable of providing the heat treatment necessary to provide planetary protection while still providing useful information about the original state and composition of the potentially returned materials. Introducing glycine into the synthesis procedure of the potassium, sodium and ammonium jarosite end-member has elucidated the effects that glycine has on the thermal stability of the mineral group. Potassium jarosite appears to be the least susceptible to the effects of glycine, with the sodium and ammonium end members showing marked changes in thermal decomposition behavior and decomposition rates. In

  12. Seeking Signs of Life on Mars: A Strategy for Selecting and Analyzing Returned Samples from Hydrothermal Deposits

    Science.gov (United States)

    iMOST Team; Campbell, K. A.; Farmer, J. D.; Van Kranendonk, M. J.; Fernandez-Remolar, D. C.; Czaja, A. D.; Altieri, F.; Amelin, Y.; Ammannito, E.; Anand, M.; Beaty, D. W.; Benning, L. G.; Bishop, J. L.; Borg, L. E.; Boucher, D.; Brucato, J. R.; Busemann, H.; Carrier, B. L.; Debaille, V.; Des Marais, D. J.; Dixon, M.; Ehlmann, B. L.; Fogarty, J.; Glavin, D. P.; Goreva, Y. S.; Grady, M. M.; Hallis, L. J.; Harrington, A. D.; Hausrath, E. M.; Herd, C. D. K.; Horgan, B.; Humayun, M.; Kleine, T.; Kleinhenz, J.; Mangold, N.; Mackelprang, R.; Mayhew, L. E.; McCubbin, F. M.; McCoy, J. T.; McLennan, S. M.; McSween, H. Y.; Moser, D. E.; Moynier, F.; Mustard, J. F.; Niles, P. B.; Ori, G. G.; Raulin, F.; Rettberg, P.; Rucker, M. A.; Schmitz, N.; Sefton-Nash, E.; Sephton, M. A.; Shaheen, R.; Shuster, D. L.; Siljestrom, S.; Smith, C. L.; Spry, J. A.; Steele, A.; Swindle, T. D.; ten Kate, I. L.; Tosca, N. J.; Usui, T.; Wadhwa, M.; Weiss, B. P.; Werner, S. C.; Westall, F.; Wheeler, R. M.; Zipfel, J.; Zorzano, M. P.

    2018-04-01

    The iMOST hydrothermal deposits sub-team has identified key samples and investigations required to delineate the character and preservational state of potential biosignatures in ancient hydrothermal deposits.

  13. Commercial Mars Sample Return Architecture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenard, R.-X.

    2018-04-01

    Zodiac Planetary Services is a newly-formed company whose three founders together have over 80 years of space and high technology development and legal experience. The company uses IP created by the author covered by patent # 62/523432.

  14. 21st century early mission concepts for Mars delivery and earth return

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cruz, Manuel I.; Ilgen, Marc R.

    1990-01-01

    In the 21st century, the early missions to Mars will entail unmanned Rover and Sample Return reconnaissance missions to be followed by manned exploration missions. High performance leverage technologies will be required to reach Mars and return to earth. This paper describes the mission concepts currently identified for these early Mars missions. These concepts include requirements and capabilities for Mars and earth aerocapture, Mars surface operations and ascent, and Mars and earth rendezvous. Although the focus is on the unmanned missions, synergism with the manned missions is also discussed.

  15. Sample Return Robot

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This Challenge requires demonstration of an autonomous robotic system to locate and collect a set of specific sample types from a large planetary analog area and...

  16. Comet coma sample return instrument

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albee, A. L.; Brownlee, Don E.; Burnett, Donald S.; Tsou, Peter; Uesugi, K. T.

    1994-01-01

    The sample collection technology and instrument concept for the Sample of Comet Coma Earth Return Mission (SOCCER) are described. The scientific goals of this Flyby Sample Return are to return to coma dust and volatile samples from a known comet source, which will permit accurate elemental and isotopic measurements for thousands of individual solid particles and volatiles, detailed analysis of the dust structure, morphology, and mineralogy of the intact samples, and identification of the biogenic elements or compounds in the solid and volatile samples. Having these intact samples, morphologic, petrographic, and phase structural features can be determined. Information on dust particle size, shape, and density can be ascertained by analyzing penetration holes and tracks in the capture medium. Time and spatial data of dust capture will provide understanding of the flux dynamics of the coma and the jets. Additional information will include the identification of cosmic ray tracks in the cometary grains, which can provide a particle's process history and perhaps even the age of the comet. The measurements will be made with the same equipment used for studying micrometeorites for decades past; hence, the results can be directly compared without extrapolation or modification. The data will provide a powerful and direct technique for comparing the cometary samples with all known types of meteorites and interplanetary dust. This sample collection system will provide the first sample return from a specifically identified primitive body and will allow, for the first time, a direct method of matching meteoritic materials captured on Earth with known parent bodies.

  17. Martian Chemical and Isotopic Reference Standards in Earth-based Laboratories — An Invitation for Geochemical, Astrobiological, and Engineering Dialog on Considering a Weathered Chondrite for Mars Sample Return.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ashley, J. W.; Tait, A. W.; Velbel, M. A.; Boston, P. J.; Carrier, B. L.; Cohen, B. A.; Schröder, C.; Bland, P.

    2017-12-01

    Exogenic rocks (meteorites) found on Mars 1) have unweathered counterparts on Earth; 2) weather differently than indigenous rocks; and 3) may be ideal habitats for putative microorganisms and subsequent biosignature preservation. These attributes show the potential of meteorites for addressing hypothesis-driven science. They raise the question of whether chondritic meteorites, of sufficient weathering intensity, might be considered as candidates for sample return in a potential future mission. Pursuant to this discussion are the following questions. A) Is there anything to be learned from the laboratory study of a martian chondrite that cannot be learned from indigenous materials; and if so, B) is the science value high enough to justify recovery? If both A and B answer affirmatively, then C) what are the engineering constraints for sample collection for Mars 2020 and potential follow-on missions; and finally D) what is the likelihood of finding a favorable sample? Observations relevant to these questions include: i) Since 2005, 24 candidate and confirmed meteorites have been identified on Mars at three rover landing sites, demonstrating their ubiquity and setting expectations for future finds. All have been heavily altered by a variety of physical and chemical processes. While the majority of these are irons (not suitable for recovery), several are weathered stony meteorites. ii) Exogenic reference materials provide the only chemical/isotope standards on Mars, permitting quantification of alteration rates if residence ages can be attained; and possibly enabling the removal of Late Amazonian weathering overprints from other returned samples. iii) Recent studies have established the habitability of chondritic meteorites with terrestrial microorganisms, recommending their consideration when exploring astrobiological questions. High reactivity, organic content, and permeability show stony meteorites to be more attractive for colonization and subsequent biosignature

  18. The Importance of Mars Samples in Constraining the Geological and Geophysical Processes on Mars and the Nature of its Crust, Mantle, and Core

    Science.gov (United States)

    iMOST Team; Herd, C. D. K.; Ammannito, E.; Anand, M.; Debaille, V.; Hallis, L. J.; McCubbin, F. M.; Schmitz, N.; Usui, T.; Weiss, B. P.; Altieri, F.; Amelin, Y.; Beaty, D. W.; Benning, L. G.; Bishop, J. L.; Borg, L. E.; Boucher, D.; Brucato, J. R.; Busemann, H.; Campbell, K. A.; Carrier, B. L.; Czaja, A. D.; Des Marais, D. J.; Dixon, M.; Ehlmann, B. L.; Farmer, J. D.; Fernandez-Remolar, D. C.; Fogarty, J.; Glavin, D. P.; Goreva, Y. S.; Grady, M. M.; Harrington, A. D.; Hausrath, E. M.; Horgan, B.; Humayun, M.; Kleine, T.; Kleinhenz, J.; Mangold, N.; Mackelprang, R.; Mayhew, L. E.; McCoy, J. T.; McLennan, S. M.; McSween, H. Y.; Moser, D. E.; Moynier, F.; Mustard, J. F.; Niles, P. B.; Ori, G. G.; Raulin, F.; Rettberg, P.; Rucker, M. A.; Sefton-Nash, E.; Sephton, M. A.; Shaheen, R.; Shuster, D. L.; Siljestrom, S.; Smith, C. L.; Spry, J. A.; Steele, A.; Swindle, T. D.; ten Kate, I. L.; Tosca, N. J.; Van Kranendonk, M. J.; Wadhwa, M.; Werner, S. C.; Westall, F.; Wheeler, R. M.; Zipfel, J.; Zorzano, M. P.

    2018-04-01

    We present the main sample types from any potential Mars Sample Return landing site that would be required to constrain the geological and geophysical processes on Mars, including the origin and nature of its crust, mantle, and core.

  19. Autonomous Mars ascent and orbit rendezvous for earth return missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, H. C.; Balmanno, W. F.; Cruz, Manuel I.; Ilgen, Marc R.

    1991-01-01

    The details of tha assessment of autonomous Mars ascent and orbit rendezvous for earth return missions are presented. Analyses addressing navigation system assessments, trajectory planning, targeting approaches, flight control guidance strategies, and performance sensitivities are included. Tradeoffs in the analysis and design process are discussed.

  20. Enabling Global Lunar Sample Return and Life-Detection Studies Using a Deep-Space Gateway

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, B. A.; Eigenbrode, J. A.; Young, K. E.; Bleacher, J. E.; Trainer, M. E.

    2018-02-01

    The Deep Space Gateway could uniquely enable a lunar robotic sampling campaign that would provide incredible science return as well as feed forward to Mars and Europa by testing instrument sterility and ability to distinguish biogenic signals.

  1. Advanced Ignition System for Hybrid Rockets for Sample Return Missions, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — To return a sample from the surface of Mars or any of the larger moons in the solar system will require a propulsion system with a comparatively large delta-V...

  2. Planning Related to the Curation and Processing of Returned Martian Samples

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCubbin, F. M.; Harrington, A. D.

    2018-04-01

    Many of the planning activities in the NASA Astromaterials Acquisition and Curation Office at JSC are centered around Mars Sample Return. The importance of contamination knowledge and the benefits of a mobile/modular receiving facility are discussed.

  3. Sample Return Systems for Extreme Environments

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — In Phase I we were able to demonstrate that sample return missions utilizing high velocity penetrators (0.1- 1 km/s) could provide substantial new capabilities for...

  4. Sample Return Systems for Extreme Environments

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The proposed work seeks to design, develop and test a hard impact penetrator/sampler that can withstand the hard impact and enable the sample to be returned to...

  5. Mars Sample Return Orbiter Rapid Architecture Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Godfrey, A.; Johnson, M.; Stroud, C.

    2018-04-01

    An overview of rapid systems analysis (mass, risk, and schedule) on 1000s of MSRO configurations to understand key technologies and feasible options. Can we generate enough power? Can we aerobrake in time? Are some technology elements just too risky?

  6. The Nature, Origin, and Importance of Carbonate-Bearing Samples at the Final Three Candidate Mars 2020 Landing Sites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horgan, B.; Anderson, R. B.; Ruff, S. W.

    2018-04-01

    All three candidate Mars 2020 landing sites contain similar regional olivine/carbonate units, and a carbonate unit of possible lacustrine origin is also present at Jezero. Carbonates are critical for Mars Sample Return as records of climate and biosignatures.

  7. Phobos/Deimos sample return via solar sail.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matloff, Gregory L; Taylor, Travis; Powell, Conley; Moton, Tryshanda

    2005-12-01

    A sample-return mission to the Martian satellites using a con-temporary solar sail for all post-Earth-escape propulsion is proposed. The 0.015 kg/m(2) areal mass-thickness sail unfurls after launch and injection onto a Mars-bound Hohmann-transfer ellipse. Structure and payload increase spacecraft areal mass thickness to 0.028 kg/m(2). During the Mars encounter, the sail functions as a parachute in the outer atmosphere of Mars to accomplish aerocapture. On-board thrusters or the sail maneuver the spacecraft into an orbit with periapsis near Mars and apoapsis near Phobos. The orbit is circularized for Phobos-rendezvous; surface samples are collected. The sail then raises the orbit for Deimos-rendezvous and sample collection. The sail next places the spacecraft on an Earth-bound Hohmann-transfer ellipse. During Earth encounter, the sail accomplishes Earth-aerocapture or partially decelerates the sample container for entry into the Earth's atmosphere. Mission mass budget is about 218 grams and mission duration is less than five years.

  8. Planetary protection considerations for sample-return missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rummel, J.

    The analysis on Earth of materials returned from other solar system bodies, and beyond, is likely one of the most effective ways for us to learn about the origins, history, and present state of the universe outside of our home planet. In the past, the Apollo missions were able to return large quantities of material from the Moon, while missions currently flying (Genesis and Stardust) intend to return much smaller quantities of material. Planned and conceptualized future missions (cf., MUSES-C) intend to return a wide variety of samples such as those from a near-Earth asteroid, the surface and atmosphere of Mars , and perhaps once more from the Earth's Moon. In some cases, the bodies targeted for sample return missions may have the capability of harboring indigenous life, while in other cases there is scant possibility of that. Considerations in determining the potential for extraterrestrial contamination from sample return missions have been studied, and include such factors as the availability of liquid water in or on the target body, the availability of m tabolicallye useful energy sources, the likelihood that organic matter was available, and the overall temperature and radiation history of the sampled areas. Also of note is the potential that the natural influx to Earth of that materials in question (e.g., meteorites, etc.) might overwhelm the ability of a targeted sample-return mission to contribute something novel to the Earth's environment. Missions thought to pose a risk of extraterrestrial biological contamination are subject to a containment provision that may be very difficult to implement on a single, moderate-cost mission, but such steps are necessary to protect both our own planet and the health of solar-system exploration missions and the science they can do.

  9. Advanced Curation: Solving Current and Future Sample Return Problems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fries, M.; Calaway, M.; Evans, C.; McCubbin, F.

    2015-01-01

    Advanced Curation is a wide-ranging and comprehensive research and development effort at NASA Johnson Space Center that identifies and remediates sample related issues. For current collections, Advanced Curation investigates new cleaning, verification, and analytical techniques to assess their suitability for improving curation processes. Specific needs are also assessed for future sample return missions. For each need, a written plan is drawn up to achieve the requirement. The plan draws while upon current Curation practices, input from Curators, the analytical expertise of the Astromaterials Research and Exploration Science (ARES) team, and suitable standards maintained by ISO, IEST, NIST and other institutions. Additionally, new technologies are adopted on the bases of need and availability. Implementation plans are tested using customized trial programs with statistically robust courses of measurement, and are iterated if necessary until an implementable protocol is established. Upcoming and potential NASA missions such as OSIRIS-REx, the Asteroid Retrieval Mission (ARM), sample return missions in the New Frontiers program, and Mars sample return (MSR) all feature new difficulties and specialized sample handling requirements. The Mars 2020 mission in particular poses a suite of challenges since the mission will cache martian samples for possible return to Earth. In anticipation of future MSR, the following problems are among those under investigation: What is the most efficient means to achieve the less than 1.0 ng/sq cm total organic carbon (TOC) cleanliness required for all sample handling hardware? How do we maintain and verify cleanliness at this level? The Mars 2020 Organic Contamination Panel (OCP) predicts that organic carbon, if present, will be present at the "one to tens" of ppb level in martian near-surface samples. The same samples will likely contain wt% perchlorate salts, or approximately 1,000,000x as much perchlorate oxidizer as organic carbon

  10. MarsVac: Pneumatic Sampling System for Planetary Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zacny, K.; Mungas, G.; Chu, P.; Craft, J.; Davis, K.

    2008-12-01

    We are proposing a Mars Sample Return scheme whereby a sample of regolith is acquired directly into a Mars Ascent Vehicle using a pneumatic system. Unlike prior developments that used suction to collect fines, the proposed system uses positive pressure to move the regolith. We envisage 3 pneumatic tubes to be embedded inside the 3 legs of the lander. Upon landing, the legs will burry themselves into the regolith and the tubes will fill up with regolith. With one puff of gas, the regolith can be lifted into a sampling chamber onboard of the Mars Ascent Vehicle. An additional chamber can be opened to acquire atmospheric gas and dust. The entire MSR will require 1) an actuator to open/close sampling chamber and 2) a valve to open gas cylinder. In the most recent study related to lunar excavation and funded under the NASA SBIR program we have shown that it is possible lift over 3000 grams of soil with only 1 gram of gas at 1atm. Tests conducted under Mars atmospheric pressure conditions (5 torr). In September of 2008, we will be performing tests at 1/6thg (Moon) and 1/3g (Mars) to determine mass lifting efficiencies in reduced gravities.

  11. Poor Man's Asteroid Sample Return Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landis, R. R.; Graham, L. D.

    2018-02-01

    A cislunar platform at a Near-Rectilinear [Halo] Orbit in the vicinity of the Moon could provide an opportunity for a small NEA sample return mission at relatively low cost. There are a couple potential small ( 1m) object target dynamical groups.

  12. Rapid habitability assessment of Mars samples by pyrolysis-FTIR

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gordon, Peter R.; Sephton, Mark A.

    2016-02-01

    Pyrolysis Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (pyrolysis FTIR) is a potential sample selection method for Mars Sample Return missions. FTIR spectroscopy can be performed on solid and liquid samples but also on gases following preliminary thermal extraction, pyrolysis or gasification steps. The detection of hydrocarbon and non-hydrocarbon gases can reveal information on sample mineralogy and past habitability of the environment in which the sample was created. The absorption of IR radiation at specific wavenumbers by organic functional groups can indicate the presence and type of any organic matter present. Here we assess the utility of pyrolysis-FTIR to release water, carbon dioxide, sulfur dioxide and organic matter from Mars relevant materials to enable a rapid habitability assessment of target rocks for sample return. For our assessment a range of minerals were analyzed by attenuated total reflectance FTIR. Subsequently, the mineral samples were subjected to single step pyrolysis and multi step pyrolysis and the products characterised by gas phase FTIR. Data from both single step and multi step pyrolysis-FTIR provide the ability to identify minerals that reflect habitable environments through their water and carbon dioxide responses. Multi step pyrolysis-FTIR can be used to gain more detailed information on the sources of the liberated water and carbon dioxide owing to the characteristic decomposition temperatures of different mineral phases. Habitation can be suggested when pyrolysis-FTIR indicates the presence of organic matter within the sample. Pyrolysis-FTIR, therefore, represents an effective method to assess whether Mars Sample Return target rocks represent habitable conditions and potential records of habitation and can play an important role in sample triage operations.

  13. In Situ Pre-Selection of Return Samples with Bio-Signatures by Combined Laser Mass Spectrometry and Optical Microscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiesendanger, R.; Wurz, P.; Tulej, M.; Wacey, D.; Neubeck, A.; Grimaudo, V.; Riedo, A.; Moreno, P.; Cedeño-López, A.; Ivarsson, M.

    2018-04-01

    The University of Bern developed instrument prototypes that allow analysis of samples on Mars prior to bringing them back to Earth, allowing to maximize the scientific outcome of the returned samples. We will present the systems and first results.

  14. Description of European Space Agency (ESA) Double Walled Isolator (DWI) Breadboard Currently Under Development for Demonstration of Critical Technology Foreseen to be Used in the Mars Sample Receiving Facility (MSRF)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vrublevskis, J.; Berthoud, L.; McCulloch, Y.; Bowman, P.; Holt, J.; Bridges, J.; Bennett, A.; Gaubert, F.; Duvet, L.

    2018-04-01

    The need for biocontainment from Planetary Protection Policy and the need for cleanliness for scientific investigation requires that the samples returned from Mars by the Mars Sample Return (MSR) mission must be handled in a Double Walled Isolator (DWI).

  15. PlanetVac: Sample Return with a Puff of Gas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zacny, K.; Mueller, R.; Betts, B. H.

    2014-12-01

    PlanetVac is a regolith sample acquisition mission concept that uses compressed gas to blow material from the surface up a pneumatic tube and directly into a sample return container. The PlanetVac sampling device is built into the lander legs to eliminate cost and complexity associated with robotic arms and scoops. The pneumatic system can effectively capture fine and coarse regolith, including small pebbles. It is well suited for landed missions to Mars, asteroids, or the Moon. Because of the low pressures on all those bodies, the technique is extremely efficient. If losses are kept to minimum, 1 gram of compressed gas could efficiently lift 6000 grams of soil. To demonstrate this approach, the PlanetVac lander with four legs and two sampling tubes has been designed, integrated, and tested. Vacuum chamber testing was performed using two well-known planetary regolith simulants: Mars Mojave Simulant (MMS) and lunar regolith simulant JSC-1A. One of the two sampling systems was connected to a mockup of an earth return rocket while the second sampling system was connected to a lander deck mounted instrument (clear box for easy viewing). The tests included a drop from a height of approximately 50 cm onto the bed of regolith, deployment of sampling tubes into the regolith, pneumatic acquisition of sample into an instrument (sample container) and the rocket, and the launch of the rocket. The demonstration has been successful and can be viewed here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DjJXvtQk6no. In most of the tests, 20 grams or more of sample was delivered to the 'instrument' and approximately 5 grams of regolith was delivered into a sampling chamber within the rocket. The gas lifting efficiency was calculated to be approximately 1000:1; that is 1 gram of gas lofted 1000 grams of regolith. Efficiencies in lower gravity environments are expected to be much higher. This successful, simple and lightweight sample capture demonstration paves the way to using such sampling system

  16. System for Packaging Planetary Samples for Return to Earth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Badescu, Mircea; Bar-Cohen, Yoseph; Backes, paul G.; Sherrit, Stewart; Bao, Xiaoqi; Scott, James S.

    2010-01-01

    A system is proposed for packaging material samples on a remote planet (especially Mars) in sealed sample tubes in preparation for later return to Earth. The sample tubes (Figure 1) would comprise (1) tubes initially having open tops and closed bottoms; (2) small, bellows-like collapsible bodies inside the tubes at their bottoms; and (3) plugs to be eventually used to close the tops of the tubes. The top inner surface of each tube would be coated with solder. The side of each plug, which would fit snugly into a tube, would feature a solder-filled ring groove. The system would include equipment for storing, manipulating, filling, and sealing the tubes. The containerization system (see Figure 2) will be organized in stations and will include: the storage station, the loading station, and the heating station. These stations can be structured in circular or linear pattern to minimize the manipulator complexity, allowing for compact design and mass efficiency. The manipulation of the sample tube between stations is done by a simple manipulator arm. The storage station contains the unloaded sample tubes and the plugs before sealing as well as the sealed sample tubes with samples after loading and sealing. The chambers at the storage station also allow for plug insertion into the sample tube. At the loading station the sample is poured or inserted into the sample tube and then the tube is topped off. At the heating station the plug is heated so the solder ring melts and seals the plug to the sample tube. The process is performed as follows: Each tube is filled or slightly overfilled with sample material and the excess sample material is wiped off the top. Then, the plug is inserted into the top section of the tube packing the sample material against the collapsible bellowslike body allowing the accommodation of the sample volume. The plug and the top of the tube are heated momentarily to melt the solder in order to seal the tube.

  17. Advances in Astromaterials Curation: Supporting Future Sample Return Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evans, C. A.; Zeigler, R. A.; Fries, M. D..; Righter, K.; Allton, J. H.; Zolensky, M. E.; Calaway, M. J.; Bell, M. S.

    2015-01-01

    NASA's Astromaterials, curated at the Johnson Space Center in Houston, are the most extensive, best-documented, and leastcontaminated extraterrestrial samples that are provided to the worldwide research community. These samples include lunar samples from the Apollo missions, meteorites collected over nearly 40 years of expeditions to Antarctica (providing samples of dozens of asteroid bodies, the Moon, and Mars), Genesis solar wind samples, cosmic dust collected by NASA's high altitude airplanes, Comet Wild 2 and interstellar dust samples from the Stardust mission, and asteroid samples from JAXA's Hayabusa mission. A full account of NASA's curation efforts for these collections is provided by Allen, et al [1]. On average, we annually allocate about 1500 individual samples from NASA's astromaterials collections to hundreds of researchers from around the world, including graduate students and post-doctoral scientists; our allocation rate has roughly doubled over the past 10 years. The curation protocols developed for the lunar samples returned from the Apollo missions remain relevant and are adapted to new and future missions. Several lessons from the Apollo missions, including the need for early involvement of curation scientists in mission planning [1], have been applied to all subsequent sample return campaigns. From the 2013 National Academy of Sciences report [2]: "Curation is the critical interface between sample return missions and laboratory research. Proper curation has maintained the scientific integrity and utility of the Apollo, Antarctic meteorite, and cosmic dust collections for decades. Each of these collections continues to yield important new science. In the past decade, new state-of-the-art curatorial facilities for the Genesis and Stardust missions were key to the scientific breakthroughs provided by these missions." The results speak for themselves: research on NASA's astromaterials result in hundreds of papers annually, yield fundamental

  18. Sample Return Mission to the South Pole Aitken Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duke, M. B.; Clark, B. C.; Gamber, T.; Lucey, P. G.; Ryder, G.; Taylor, G. J.

    1999-01-01

    affected all of the planets of the inner solar system, and in particular, could have been critical to the history of life on Earth. If the SPA is significantly older, a more orderly cratering history may be inferred. Secondly, melt-rock compositions and clasts in melt rocks or breccias may yield evidence of the composition of the lunar mantle, which could have been penetrated by the impact or exposed by the rebound process that occurred after the impact. Thirdly, study of mare and cryptomare basalts could yield further constraints on the age of SPA and the thermal history of the crust and mantle in that region. The integration of these data may allow inferences to be made on the nature of the impacting body. Secondary science objectives in samples from the SPA could include analysis of the regolith for the latitudinal effects of solar wind irradiation, which should be reduced from its equatorial values; possible remnant magnetization of very old basalts; and evidence for Imbrium Basin ejecta and KREEP materials. If a sampling site is chosen close enough to the poles, it is possible that indirect evidence of polar-ice deposits may be found in the form of oxidized or hydrated regolith constituents. A sample return mission to the Moon may be possible within the constraints of NASA's Discovery Program. Recent progress in the development of sample return canisters for Genesis, Stardust, and Mars Sample Return missions suggests that a small capsule can be returned directly to the ground without a parachute, thus reducing its mass and complexity. Return of a 1-kg sample from the lunar surface would appear to be compatible with a Delta 11 class launch from Earth, or possibly with a piggyback opportunity on a commercial launch to GEO. A total mission price tag on the order of 100 million would be a goal. Target date would be late 2002. Samples would be returned to the curatorial facility at the Johnson Space Center for description and allocation for investigations. Concentration of

  19. The Viking X ray fluorescence experiment - Sampling strategies and laboratory simulations. [Mars soil sampling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baird, A. K.; Castro, A. J.; Clark, B. C.; Toulmin, P., III; Rose, H., Jr.; Keil, K.; Gooding, J. L.

    1977-01-01

    Ten samples of Mars regolith material (six on Viking Lander 1 and four on Viking Lander 2) have been delivered to the X ray fluorescence spectrometers as of March 31, 1977. An additional six samples at least are planned for acquisition in the remaining Extended Mission (to January 1979) for each lander. All samples acquired are Martian fines from the near surface (less than 6-cm depth) of the landing sites except the latest on Viking Lander 1, which is fine material from the bottom of a trench dug to a depth of 25 cm. Several attempts on each lander to acquire fresh rock material (in pebble sizes) for analysis have yielded only cemented surface crustal material (duricrust). Laboratory simulation and experimentation are required both for mission planning of sampling and for interpretation of data returned from Mars. This paper is concerned with the rationale for sample site selections, surface sampler operations, and the supportive laboratory studies needed to interpret X ray results from Mars.

  20. First Sample Delivery to Mars Microscope

    Science.gov (United States)

    2008-01-01

    The Robotic Arm on NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander has just delivered the first sample of dug-up soil to the spacecraft's microscope station in this image taken by the Surface Stereo Imager during the mission's Sol 17 (June 12), or 17th Martian day after landing. The scoop is positioned above the box containing key parts of Phoenix's Microscopy, Electrochemistry and Conductivity Analyzer, or MECA, instrument suite. It has sprinkled a small amount of soil into a notch in the MECA box where the microscope's sample wheel is exposed. The wheel turns to present sample particles on various substrates to the Optical Microscope for viewing. The scoop is about 8.5 centimeters (3.3 inches) wide. The top of the MECA box is 20 centimeters (7.9 inches) wide. This image has been lightened to make details more visible. The Phoenix Mission is led by the University of Arizona, Tucson, on behalf of NASA. Project management of the mission is by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. Spacecraft development is by Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver.

  1. EURO-CARES: European Roadmap for a Sample Return Curation Facility and Planetary Protection Implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brucato, John Robert

    2016-07-01

    A mature European planetary exploration program and evolving sample return mission plans gathers the interest of a wider scientific community. The interest is generated from studying extraterrestrial samples in the laborato-ry providing new opportunities to address fundamental issues on the origin and evolution of the Solar System, on the primordial cosmochemistry, and on the nature of the building blocks of terrestrial planets and on the origin of life. Major space agencies are currently planning for missions that will collect samples from a variety of Solar Sys-tem environments, from primitive (carbonaceous) small bodies, from the Moon, Mars and its moons and, final-ly, from icy moons of the outer planets. A dedicated sample return curation facility is seen as an essential re-quirement for the receiving, assessment, characterization and secure preservation of the collected extraterrestrial samples and potentially their safe distribution to the scientific community. EURO-CARES is a European Commission study funded under the Horizon-2020 program. The strategic objec-tive of EURO-CARES is to create a roadmap for the implementation of a European Extraterrestrial Sample Cu-ration Facility. The facility has to provide safe storage and handling of extraterrestrial samples and has to enable the preliminary characterization in order to achieve the required effectiveness and collaborative outcomes for the whole international scientific community. For example, samples returned from Mars could pose a threat on the Earth's biosphere if any living extraterrestrial organism are present in the samples. Thus planetary protection is an essential aspect of all Mars sample return missions that will affect the retrival and transport from the point of return, sample handling, infrastructure methodology and management of a future curation facility. Analysis of the state of the art of Planetary Protection technology shows there are considerable possibilities to define and develop

  2. The Importance of Meteorite Collections to Sample Return Missions: Past, Present, and Future Considerations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Welzenbach, L. C.; McCoy, T. J.; Glavin, D. P.; Dworkin, J. P.; Abell, P. A.

    2012-01-01

    While much of the scientific community s current attention is drawn to sample return missions, it is the existing meteorite and cosmic dust collections that both provide the paradigms to be tested by these missions and the context for interpreting the results. Recent sample returns from the Stardust and Hayabusa missions provided us with new materials and insights about our Solar System history and processes. As an example, Stardust sampled CAIs among the population of cometary grains, requiring extensive and unexpected radial mixing in the early solar nebula. This finding would not have been possible, however, without extensive studies of meteoritic CAIs that established their high-temperature, inner Solar System formation. Samples returned by Stardust also revealed the first evidence of a cometary amino acid, a discovery that would not have been possible with current in situ flight instrument technology. The Hayabusa mission provided the final evidence linking ordinary chondrites and S asteroids, a hypothesis that developed from centuries of collection and laboratory and ground-based telescopic studies. In addition to these scientific findings, studies of existing meteorite collections have defined and refined the analytical techniques essential to studying returned samples. As an example, the fortuitous fall of the Allende CV3 and Murchison CM2 chondrites within months before the return of Apollo samples allowed testing of new state-of-the-art analytical facilities. The results of those studies not only prepared us to better study lunar materials, but unanticipated discoveries changed many of our concepts about the earliest history and processes of the solar nebula. This synergy between existing collections and future space exploration is certainly not limited to sample return missions. Laboratory studies confirmed the existence of meteorites from Mars and raised the provocative possibility of preservation of ancient microbial life. The laboratory studies in

  3. Backward Planetary Protection Issues and Possible Solutions for Icy Plume Sample Return Missions from Astrobiological Targets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yano, Hajime; McKay, Christopher P.; Anbar, Ariel; Tsou, Peter

    The recent report of possible water vapor plumes at Europa and Ceres, together with the well-known Enceladus plume containing water vapor, salt, ammonia, and organic molecules, suggests that sample return missions could evolve into a generic approach for outer Solar System exploration in the near future, especially for the benefit of astrobiology research. Sampling such plumes can be accomplished via fly-through mission designs, modeled after the successful Stardust mission to capture and return material from Comet Wild-2 and multiple, precise trajectory controls of the Cassini mission to fly through Enceladus’ plume. The proposed LIFE (Life Investigation For Enceladus) mission to Enceladus, which would sample organic molecules from the plume of that apparently habitable world, provides one example of the appealing scientific return of such missions. Beyond plumes, the upper atmosphere of Titan could also be sampled in this manner. The SCIM mission to Mars, also inspired by Stardust, would sample and return aerosol dust in the upper atmosphere of Mars and thus extends this concept even to other planetary bodies. Such missions share common design needs. In particular, they require large exposed sampler areas (or sampler arrays) that can be contained to the standards called for by international planetary protection protocols that COSPAR Planetary Protection Policy (PPP) recommends. Containment is also needed because these missions are driven by astrobiologically relevant science - including interest in organic molecules - which argues against heat sterilization that could destroy scientific value of samples. Sample containment is a daunting engineering challenge. Containment systems must be carefully designed to appropriate levels to satisfy the two top requirements: planetary protection policy and the preserving the scientific value of samples. Planning for Mars sample return tends to center on a hermetic seal specification (i.e., gas-tight against helium escape

  4. Search for Chemical Biomarkers on Mars Using the Sample Analysis at Mars Instrument Suite on the Mars Science Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glavin, D. P.; Conrad, P.; Dworkin, J. P.; Eigenbrode, J.; Mahaffy, P. R.

    2011-01-01

    One key goal for the future exploration of Mars is the search for chemical biomarkers including complex organic compounds important in life on Earth. The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument suite on the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) will provide the most sensitive measurements of the organic composition of rocks and regolith samples ever carried out in situ on Mars. SAM consists of a gas chromatograph (GC), quadrupole mass spectrometer (QMS), and tunable laser spectrometer to measure volatiles in the atmosphere and released from rock powders heated up to 1000 C. The measurement of organics in solid samples will be accomplished by three experiments: (1) pyrolysis QMS to identify alkane fragments and simple aromatic compounds; pyrolysis GCMS to separate and identify complex mixtures of larger hydrocarbons; and (3) chemical derivatization and GCMS extract less volatile compounds including amino and carboxylic acids that are not detectable by the other two experiments.

  5. Catching Stardust and Bringing it Home: The Astronomical Importance of Sample Return

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brownlee, D.

    2002-12-01

    The return of lunar samples by the Apollo program provided the first opportunity to perform detailed laboratory studies of ancient solid materials from a known astronomical body. The highly detailed study of the samples, using the best available laboratory instruments and techniques, revolutionized our understanding of the Moon and provided fundamental insight into the remarkable and violent processes that occur early in the history of moons and terrestrial planets. This type of astronomical paleontology is only possible with samples and yet the last US sample return was made by Apollo 17- over thirty years ago! The NASA Stardust mission, began a new era of sample missions with its 1999 launch to retrieve samples from the short period comet Wild 2. Genesis (a solar wind collector) was launched in 2001, the Japanese MUSES-C asteroid sample return mission will launch in 2003 and Mars sample return missions are under study. All of these missions will use sophisticated ground-based instrumentation to provide types of information that cannot be obtained by astronomical and spacecraft remote sensing methods. In the case of Stardust, the goal is to determine the fundamental nature of the initial solid building blocks of solar systems at atomic-scale spatial resolution. The samples returned by the mission will be samples from the Kuiper Belt region and they are probably composed of submicron silicate and organic materials of both presolar and nebular origin. Unlocking the detailed records contained in the elemental, chemical, isotopic and mineralogical composition of these tiny components can only be appropriately explored with full power, precision and flexibility of laboratory instrumentation. Laboratory instrumentation has the advantage that is state-of-the-art and is not limited by serious considerations of power, mass, cost or even reliability. The comparison of the comet sample, accumulated beyond Neptune, with asteroidal meteorites that accumulated just beyond the

  6. Triple F - A Comet Nucleus Sample Return Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kueppers, Michael; Keller, Horst Uwe; Kuhrt, Ekkehard; A'Hearn, Michael; Altwegg, Kathrin; Betrand, Regis; Busemann, Henner; Capria, Maria Teresa; Colangeli, Luigi

    2008-01-01

    The Triple F (Fresh From the Fridge) mission, a Comet Nucleus Sample Return, has been proposed to ESA s Cosmic Vision program. A sample return from a comet enables us to reach the ultimate goal of cometary research. Since comets are the least processed bodies in the solar system, the proposal goes far beyond cometary science topics (like the explanation of cometary activity) and delivers invaluable information about the formation of the solar system and the interstellar molecular cloud from which it formed. The proposed mission would extract three samples of the upper 50 cm from three locations on a cometary nucleus and return them cooled to Earth for analysis in the laboratory. The simple mission concept with a touch-and-go sampling by a single spacecraft was proposed as an M-class mission in collaboration with the Russian space agency ROSCOSMOS.

  7. APXS Data from Mars and MSR Samples: How Can They Be Combined and Benefit from Each Other?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gellert, R.

    2018-04-01

    The APXS has returned the chemical composition of more than 1000 samples on four rover missions along the combined traverse of >70km. Combining Mars data with terrestrial lab results of martian samples will be important, but it has to be done right.

  8. 78 FR 49296 - Centennial Challenges 2014 Sample Return Robot Challenge

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-08-13

    ... NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION [Notice 13-093] Centennial Challenges 2014 Sample... Centennial Challenges 2014 Sample Return Robot Challenge. SUMMARY: This notice is issued in accordance with... compete may register. Centennial Challenges is a program of prize competitions to stimulate innovation in...

  9. CHOMIK -Sampling Device of Penetrating Type for Russian Phobos Sample Return Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seweryn, Karol; Grygorczuk, Jerzy; Rickmann, Hans; Morawski, Marek; Aleksashkin, Sergey; Banaszkiewicz, Marek; Drogosz, Michal; Gurgurewicz, Joanna; Kozlov, Oleg E.; Krolikowska-Soltan, Malgorzata; Sutugin, Sergiej E.; Wawrzaszek, Roman; Wisniewski, Lukasz; Zakharov, Alexander

    Measurements of physical properties of planetary bodies allow to determine many important parameters for scientists working in different fields of research. For example effective heat conductivity of the regolith can help with better understanding of processes occurring in the body interior. Chemical and mineralogical composition gives us a chance to better understand the origin and evolution of the moons. In principle such parameters of the planetary bodies can be determined based on three different measurement techniques: (i) in situ measurements (ii) measurements of the samples in laboratory conditions at the Earth and (iii) remote sensing measurements. Scientific missions which allow us to perform all type of measurements, give us a chance for not only parameters determination but also cross calibration of the instruments. Russian Phobos Sample Return (PhSR) mission is one of few which allows for all type of such measurements. The spacecraft will be equipped with remote sensing instruments like: spectrometers, long wave radar and dust counter, instruments for in-situ measurements -gas-chromatograph, seismometer, thermodetector and others and also robotic arm and sampling device. PhSR mission will be launched in November 2011 on board of a launch vehicle Zenit. About a year later (11 months) the vehicle will reach the Martian orbit. It is anticipated that it will land on Phobos in the beginning of 2013. A take off back will take place a month later and the re-entry module containing a capsule that will hold the soil sample enclosed in a container will be on its way back to Earth. The 11 kg re-entry capsule with the container will land in Kazakhstan in mid-2014. A unique geological penetrator CHOMIK dedicated for the Phobos Sample Return space mis-sion will be designed and manufactured at the Space Mechatronics and Robotics Laboratory, Space Research Centre Polish Academy of Sciences (SRC PAS) in Warsaw. Functionally CHOMIK is based on the well known MUPUS

  10. The initial exploration of Mars - Rationale for a return mission to Chryse Planitia and the Viking 1 Lander

    Science.gov (United States)

    Craddock, Robert A.

    1992-01-01

    A discussion of the concepts behind planning a landing site on Mars is presented. On the basis of the engineering constraints and the scientific objectives which are likely to be imposed on the first few missions to the surface, reasons for supporting a return to Chryse Planitia and the Viking 1 landing site are given. Samples from the Hesperian ridged plains would be useful in establishing an absolute age for the present crater chronology, and samples of soils from the vicinity of the Viking 1 lander would be useful in determining the significance of the results from the Viking biological experiments. Soil samples would provide consistency between unmanned and manned missions, may contain fossil microorganisms, and could be useful in determining the mechanism responsible for outflow channel formation.

  11. Reduction of Martian Sample Return Mission Launch Mass with Solar Sail Propulsion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Russell, Tiffany E.; Heaton, Andrew; Thomas, Scott; Thomas, Dan; Young, Roy; Baysinger, Mike; Capizzo, Pete; Fabisinski, Leo; Hornsby, Linda; Maples, Dauphne; hide

    2013-01-01

    Solar sails have the potential to provide mass and cost savings for spacecraft traveling within the inner solar system. Companies like L'Garde have demonstrated sail manufacturability and various in-space deployment methods. The purpose of this study was to evaluate a current Mars sample return architecture and to determine how cost and mass would be reduced by incorporating a solar sail propulsion system. The team validated the design proposed by L'Garde, and scaled the design based on a trajectory analysis. Using the solar sail design reduced the required mass, eliminating one of the three launches required in the original architecture.

  12. Sample Handling Considerations for a Europa Sample Return Mission: An Overview

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fries, M. D.; Calaway, M. L.; Evans, C. A.; McCubbin, F. M.

    2015-01-01

    The intent of this abstract is to provide a basic overview of mission requirements for a generic Europan plume sample return mission, based on NASA Curation experience in NASA sample return missions ranging from Apollo to OSIRIS-REx. This should be useful for mission conception and early stage planning. We will break the mission down into Outbound and Return legs and discuss them separately.

  13. 77 FR 70835 - Centennial Challenges 2013 Sample Return Robot Challenge

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-11-27

    ... NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION Centennial Challenges 2013 Sample Return Robot... Challenge is scheduled and teams that wish to compete may register. Centennial Challenges is a program of... Challenge, please visit: http://challenge.wpi.edu . For general information on the NASA Centennial...

  14. The Sample Analysis at Mars Investigation and Instrument Suite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahaffy, Paul; Webster, Christopher R.; Conrad, Pamela G.; Arvey, Robert; Bleacher, Lora; Brinckerhoff, William B.; Eigenbrode, Jennifer L.; Chalmers, Robert A.; Dworkin, Jason P.; Errigo, Therese; hide

    2012-01-01

    The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) investigation of the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) addresses the chemical and isotopic composition of the atmosphere and volatiles extracted from solid samples. The SAM investigation is designed to contribute substantially to the mission goal of quantitatively assessing the habitability of Mars as an essential step in the search for past or present life on Mars. SAM is a 40 kg instrument suite located in the interior of MSL's Curiosity rover. The SAM instruments are a quadrupole mass spectrometer, a tunable laser spectrometer, and a 6-column gas chromatograph all coupled through solid and gas processing systems to provide complementary information on the same samples. The SAM suite is able to measure a suite of light isotopes and to analyze volatiles directly from the atmosphere or thermally released from solid samples. In addition to measurements of simple inorganic compounds and noble gases SAM will conduct a sensitive search for organic compounds with either thermal or chemical extraction from sieved samples delivered by the sample processing system on the Curiosity rover's robotic arm,

  15. Planetary Protection for LIFE-Sample Return from Enceladus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsou, Peter; Yano, Hajime; Takano, Yoshinori; McKay, David; Takai, Ken; Anbar, Ariel; Baross, J.

    Introduction: We are seeking a balanced approach to returning Enceladus plume samples to state-of-the-art terrestrial laboratories to search for signs of life. NASA, ESA, JAXA and other space agencies are seeking habitable worlds and life beyond Earth. Enceladus, an icy moon of Saturn, is the first known body in the Solar System besides Earth to emit liquid water from its interior. Enceladus is the most accessible body in our Solar System for a low cost flyby sample return mission to capture aqueous based samples, to determine its state of life development, and shed light on how life can originate on wet planets/moons. LIFE combines the unique capabilities of teams of international exploration expertise. These returned Enceladus plume samples will determine if this habitable body is in fact inhabited [McKay et al, 2014]. This paper describes an approach for the LIFE mission to capture and return samples from Enceladus while meeting NASA and COSPAR planetary protection requirements. Forward planetary protection requirements for spacecraft missions to icy solar system bodies have been defined, however planetary protection requirements specific to an Earth return of samples collected from Enceladus or other Outer Planet Icy Moons, have yet to be defined. Background: From the first half century of space exploration, we have returned samples only from the Moon, comet Wild 2, the Solar Wind and the asteroid Itokawa. The in-depth analyses of these samples in terrestrial laboratories have yielded detailed chemical information that could not have been obtained otherwise. While obtaining samples from Solar System bodies is trans-formative science, it is rarely performed due to cost and complexity. The discovery by Cassini of geysers on Enceladus and organic materials in the ejected plume indicates that there is an exceptional opportunity and strong scientific rationale for LIFE. The earliest low-cost possible flight opportunity is the next Discovery Mission [Tsou et al 2012

  16. Electron Spin Resonance (ESR) studies of returned comet nucleus samples

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tsay, Fundow; Kim, S.S.; Liang, R.H.

    1989-01-01

    The most important objective of the Comet Nucleus Sample Returm Mission is to return samples which could reflect formation conditions and evolutionary processes in the early solar nebula. It is expected that the returned samples will consist of fine-grained silicate materials mixed with ices composed of simple molecules such as H 2 O, NH 3 , CH 4 as well as organics and/or more complex compounds. Because of the exposure to ionizing radiation from cosmic-ray, gamma-ray, and solar wind protons at low temperature, free radicals are expected to be formed and trapped in the solid ice matrices. The kind of trapped radical species together with their concentration and thermal stability can be used as a dosimeter as well as a geothermometer to determine thermal and radiation histories as well as outgassing and other possible alternation effects since the nucleus material was formed. Since free radicals that are known to contain unpaired electrons are all paramagnetic in nature, they can be readily detected and characterized in their native form by the Electron Spin Resonance (ESR) method. In fact, ESR has been shown to be a non-destructive, highly sensitive tool for the detection and characterization of paramagnetic, ferromagnetic, and radiation damage centers in terrestrial and extraterrestrial geological samples. The potential use of ESR as an effective method in the study of returned comet nucleus samples, in particular, in the analysis of fine-grained solid state icy samples is discussed

  17. Building on the Cornerstone: Destinations for Nearside Sample Return

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawrence, S. J.; Jolliff, B. L.; Draper, D.; Stopar, J. D.; Petro, N. E.; Cohen, B. A.; Speyerer, E. J.; Gruener, J. E.

    2016-01-01

    Discoveries from LRO (Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter) have transformed our knowledge of the Moon, but LRO's instruments were originally designed to collect the measurements required to enable future lunar surface exploration. Compelling science questions and critical resources make the Moon a key destination for future human and robotic exploration. Lunar surface exploration, including rovers and other landed missions, must be part of a balanced planetary science and exploration portfolio. Among the highest planetary exploration priorities is the collection of new samples and their return to Earth for more comprehensive analysis than can be done in-situ. The Moon is the closest and most accessible location to address key science questions through targeted sample return. The Moon is the only other planet from which we have contextualized samples, yet critical issues need to be addressed: we lack important details of the Moon's early and recent geologic history, the full compositional and age ranges of its crust, and its bulk composition.

  18. NASA Mars Conference

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Reiber, D.B.

    1988-01-01

    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

  19. OSIRIS-REx: Sample Return from Asteroid (101955) Bennu

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lauretta, D. S.; Balram-Knutson, S. S.; Beshore, E.; Boynton, W. V.; Drouet d'Aubigny, C.; DellaGiustina, D. N.; Enos, H. L.; Golish, D. R.; Hergenrother, C. W.; Howell, E. S.; Bennett, C. A.; Morton, E. T.; Nolan, M. C.; Rizk, B.; Roper, H. L.; Bartels, A. E.; Bos, B. J.; Dworkin, J. P.; Highsmith, D. E.; Lorenz, D. A.; Lim, L. F.; Mink, R.; Moreau, M. C.; Nuth, J. A.; Reuter, D. C.; Simon, A. A.; Bierhaus, E. B.; Bryan, B. H.; Ballouz, R.; Barnouin, O. S.; Binzel, R. P.; Bottke, W. F.; Hamilton, V. E.; Walsh, K. J.; Chesley, S. R.; Christensen, P. R.; Clark, B. E.; Connolly, H. C.; Crombie, M. K.; Daly, M. G.; Emery, J. P.; McCoy, T. J.; McMahon, J. W.; Scheeres, D. J.; Messenger, S.; Nakamura-Messenger, K.; Righter, K.; Sandford, S. A.

    2017-10-01

    In May of 2011, NASA selected the Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, and Security- Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) asteroid sample return mission as the third mission in the New Frontiers program. The other two New Frontiers missions are New Horizons, which explored Pluto during a flyby in July 2015 and is on its way for a flyby of Kuiper Belt object 2014 MU69 on January 1, 2019, and Juno, an orbiting mission that is studying the origin, evolution, and internal structure of Jupiter. The spacecraft departed for near-Earth asteroid (101955) Bennu aboard an United Launch Alliance Atlas V 411 evolved expendable launch vehicle at 7:05 p.m. EDT on September 8, 2016, on a seven-year journey to return samples from Bennu. The spacecraft is on an outbound-cruise trajectory that will result in a rendezvous with Bennu in November 2018. The science instruments on the spacecraft will survey Bennu to measure its physical, geological, and chemical properties, and the team will use these data to select a site on the surface to collect at least 60 g of asteroid regolith. The team will also analyze the remote-sensing data to perform a detailed study of the sample site for context, assess Bennu's resource potential, refine estimates of its impact probability with Earth, and provide ground-truth data for the extensive astronomical data set collected on this asteroid. The spacecraft will leave Bennu in 2021 and return the sample to the Utah Test and Training Range (UTTR) on September 24, 2023.

  20. Recent Accomplishments in Mars Exploration: The Rover Perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    McLennan, S. M.; McSween, H. Y.

    2018-04-01

    Mobile rovers have revolutionized our understanding of Mars geology by identifying habitable environments and addressing critical questions related to Mars science. Both the advances and limitations of rovers set the scene for Mars Sample Return.

  1. Moon-Mars simulation campaign in volcanic Eifel: Remote science support and sample analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-07-01

    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

  2. Quantitative Planetary Protection for Sample Return from Ocean Worlds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neveu, Marc; Takano, Yoshinori; Porco, Carolyn; McKay, Christopher P.; Glavin, Daniel; Anbar, Ariel; Sherwood, Brent; Yano, Hajime

    2016-07-01

    Volcanism on ocean worlds [1,2] facilitates ocean sample return missions, enabling uniquely flexible, sensitive, and specific laboratory analyses on Earth to study how far chemistry has evolved in presumably habitable oceans [3,4]. Such mission concepts have yet to quantitatively address planetary protection (PP) for ocean worlds [3,4]. These harbor liquid water [5,6], metabolically useful energy [7], and organic matter to support life [8]. Ocean temperatures may not exceed the limit for life as we know it [9,10], they are shielded from exogenic radiation by kilometers of ice, and their material has likely not been naturally exchanged with Earth [11]. The above factors would place sample return missions in Cat. V - Restricted Earth Return [12,13]. Forward PP requirements for Europa [13] and other ocean worlds [14] require that the probability of "introduction of a single viable terrestrial microorganism into a liquid-water environment" be lower than 10 ^{-4}. This probability should be estimated from (F1) "bioburden at launch," (F2) "cruise survival for contaminating organisms," (F3) "organism survival in the radiation environment adjacent to the target," (F4) "the probability of encountering […] the target," (F5) "the probability of surviving landing/impact on the target," (F6) "mechanisms and timescales of transport to the subsurface," and (F7) "survival […] after subsurface transfer" [13,14]. The compliance of specific designs of known cost could be evaluated from measurements of molecular contaminants as robust and universal proxies for microbial particulates [15] (F1); known microbial radiation tolerance [16] and planetary radiation budgets [17] (F2-F3); trajectory design (F4); projected impact velocities [18] (F5); ice transport timescales [19] (F6), and biomass growth rates in ice [20] (F7). In contrast, current backward PP requirements are only qualitative. Current policy [13,15] prohibits "destructive impact upon return," and requires that (B1) "unless

  3. Spectral Characterization of H2020/PTAL Mineral Samples: Implications for In Situ Martian Exploration and Mars Sample Selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lantz, C.; Pilorget, C.; Poulet, F.; Riu, L.; Dypvik, H.; Hellevang, H.; Rull Perez, F.; Veneranda, M.; Cousin, A.; Viennet, J.-C.; Werner, S. C.

    2018-04-01

    We present combined analysis performed in the framework of the Planetary Terrestrial Analogues Library (H2020 project). XRD, NIR, Raman, and LIBS spectroscopies are used to characterise samples to prepare ExoMars/ESA and Mars2020/NASA observations.

  4. OSIRIS-REx Asteroid Sample Return Mission Image Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chevres Fernandez, Lee Roger; Bos, Brent

    2018-01-01

    NASA’s Origins Spectral Interpretation Resource Identification Security-Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) mission constitutes the “first-of-its-kind” project to thoroughly characterize a near-Earth asteroid. The selected asteroid is (101955) 1999 RQ36 (a.k.a. Bennu). The mission launched in September 2016, and the spacecraft will reach its asteroid target in 2018 and return a sample to Earth in 2023. The spacecraft that will travel to, and collect a sample from, Bennu has five integrated instruments from national and international partners. NASA's OSIRIS-REx asteroid sample return mission spacecraft includes the Touch-And-Go Camera System (TAGCAMS) three camera-head instrument. The purpose of TAGCAMS is to provide imagery during the mission to facilitate navigation to the target asteroid, confirm acquisition of the asteroid sample and document asteroid sample stowage. Two of the TAGCAMS cameras, NavCam 1 and NavCam 2, serve as fully redundant navigation cameras to support optical navigation and natural feature tracking. The third TAGCAMS camera, StowCam, provides imagery to assist with and confirm proper stowage of the asteroid sample. Analysis of spacecraft imagery acquired by the TAGCAMS during cruise to the target asteroid Bennu was performed using custom codes developed in MATLAB. Assessment of the TAGCAMS in-flight performance using flight imagery was done to characterize camera performance. One specific area of investigation that was targeted was bad pixel mapping. A recent phase of the mission, known as the Earth Gravity Assist (EGA) maneuver, provided images that were used for the detection and confirmation of “questionable” pixels, possibly under responsive, using image segmentation analysis. Ongoing work on point spread function morphology and camera linearity and responsivity will also be used for calibration purposes and further analysis in preparation for proximity operations around Bennu. Said analyses will provide a broader understanding

  5. Planning Considerations for a Mars Sample Receiving Facility: Summary and Interpretation of Three Design Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beaty, David W.; Allen, Carlton C.; Bass, Deborah S.; Buxbaum, Karen L.; Campbell, James K.; Lindstrom, David J.; Miller, Sylvia L.; Papanastassiou, Dimitri A.

    2009-10-01

    It has been widely understood for many years that an essential component of a Mars Sample Return mission is a Sample Receiving Facility (SRF). The purpose of such a facility would be to take delivery of the flight hardware that lands on Earth, open the spacecraft and extract the sample container and samples, and conduct an agreed-upon test protocol, while ensuring strict containment and contamination control of the samples while in the SRF. Any samples that are found to be non-hazardous (or are rendered non-hazardous by sterilization) would then be transferred to long-term curation. Although the general concept of an SRF is relatively straightforward, there has been considerable discussion about implementation planning. The Mars Exploration Program carried out an analysis of the attributes of an SRF to establish its scope, including minimum size and functionality, budgetary requirements (capital cost, operating costs, cost profile), and development schedule. The approach was to arrange for three independent design studies, each led by an architectural design firm, and compare the results. While there were many design elements in common identified by each study team, there were significant differences in the way human operators were to interact with the systems. In aggregate, the design studies provided insight into the attributes of a future SRF and the complex factors to consider for future programmatic planning.

  6. The Laser Ablation Ion Funnel: Sampling for in situ Mass Spectrometry on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Paul V.; Hodyss, Robert; Tang, Keqi; Brinckerhoff, William B.; Smith, Richard D.

    2011-01-01

    A considerable investment has been made by NASA and other space agencies to develop instrumentation suitable for in situ analytical investigation of extra terrestrial bodies including various mass spectrometers (time-of-flight, quadrupole ion trap, quadrupole mass filters, etc.). However, the front-end sample handling that is needed to collect and prepare samples for interrogation by such instrumentation remains underdeveloped. Here we describe a novel approach tailored to the exploration of Mars where ions are created in the ambient atmosphere via laser ablation and then efficiently transported into a mass spectrometer for in situ analysis using an electrodynamic ion funnel. This concept would enable elemental and isotopic analysis of geological samples with the analysis of desorbed organic material a possibility as well. Such an instrument would be suitable for inclusion on all potential missions currently being considered such as the Mid-Range Rover, the Astrobiology Field Laboratory, and Mars Sample Return (i.e., as a sample pre-selection triage instrument), among others.

  7. Communications Relay and Human-Assisted Sample Return from the Deep Space Gateway

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cichan, T.; Hopkins, J. B.; Bierhaus, B.; Murrow, D. W.

    2018-02-01

    The Deep Space Gateway can enable or enhance exploration of the lunar surface through two capabilities: 1. communications relay, opening up access to the lunar farside, and 2. sample return, enhancing the ability to return large sample masses.

  8. Strategic Map for Enceladus Plume Biosignature Sample Return

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sherwood, B.

    2014-12-01

    The discovery of jets emitting salty water from the interior of Saturn's small moon Enceladus is one of the most astounding results of the Cassini mission to date. The measured presence of organic species in the resulting plume, the finding that the jet activity is valved by tidal stretching at apocrone, the modeled lifetime of E-ring particles, and gravitational inference of a long-lived, deep, large water reservoir all indicate that the textbook conditions for habitability are met at Enceladus today: liquid water, biologically available elements, source of energy, and longevity of conducive conditions. Enceladus may be the best place in our solar system to search for direct evidence of biomarkers, and the plume provides a way to sample, analyze, and even return them to Earth for detailed analysis. For example, it is straightforward to define a Stardust-like, fly-through, plume ice-particle, dust, and gas collection mission. Concept engineering and evaluation indicate that the associated technical, programmatic, regulatory, and cost issues are quite unlike the Stardust precedent however, not least because of such a mission's Category-V, Restricted Earth Return, classification. The poster presents a strategic framework for systematic integration of the enabling issues: cultivation of science advocacy, resolution of diverse stakeholder concerns, development of verifiable and affordable technical solutions, validation of cost estimation methods, alignment with other candidate astrobiology missions, complementarity of international agency goals, and finally the identification of appropriate research and flight-mission opportunities. A strategic approach is essential if we are to know the astrobiological state of Enceladus in our lifetime, and two international teams are already dedicated to implementing key steps on this roadmap.

  9. Description of European Space Agency (ESA) Remote Manipulator (RM) System Breadboard Currently Under Development for Demonstration of Critical Technology Foreseen to be Used in the Mars Sample Receiving Facility (MSRF)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vrublevskis, J.; Duncan, S.; Berthoud, L.; Bowman, P.; Hills, R.; McCulloch, Y.; Pisla, D.; Vaida, C.; Gherman, B.; Hofbaur, M.; Dieber, B.; Neythalath, N.; Smith, C.; van Winnendael, M.; Duvet, L.

    2018-04-01

    In order to avoid the use of 'double walled' gloves, a haptic feedback Remote Manipulation (RM) system rather than a gloved isolator is needed inside a Double Walled Isolator (DWI) to handle a sample returned from Mars.

  10. Rock pushing and sampling under rocks on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, H.J.; Liebes, S.; Crouch, D.S.; Clark, L.V.

    1978-01-01

    Viking Lander 2 acquired samples on Mars from beneath two rocks, where living organisms and organic molecules would be protected from ultraviolet radiation. Selection of rocks to be moved was based on scientific and engineering considerations, including rock size, rock shape, burial depth, and location in a sample field. Rock locations and topography were established using the computerized interactive video-stereophotogrammetric system and plotted on vertical profiles and in plan view. Sampler commands were developed and tested on Earth using a full-size lander and surface mock-up. The use of power by the sampler motor correlates with rock movements, which were by plowing, skidding, and rolling. Provenance of the samples was determined by measurements and interpretation of pictures and positions of the sampler arm. Analytical results demonstrate that the samples were, in fact, from beneath the rocks. Results from the Gas Chromatograph-Mass Spectrometer of the Molecular Analysis experiment and the Gas Exchange instrument of the Biology experiment indicate that more adsorbed(?) water occurs in samples under rocks than in samples exposed to the sun. This is consistent with terrestrial arid environments, where more moisture occurs in near-surface soil un- der rocks than in surrounding soil because the net heat flow is toward the soil beneath the rock and the rock cap inhibits evaporation. Inorganic analyses show that samples of soil from under the rocks have significantly less iron than soil exposed to the sun. The scientific significance of analyses of samples under the rocks is only partly evaluated, but some facts are clear. Detectable quantities of martian organic molecules were not found in the sample from under a rock by the Molecular Analysis experiment. The Biology experiments did not find definitive evidence for Earth-like living organisms in their sample. Significant amounts of adsorbed water may be present in the martian regolith. The response of the soil

  11. The Sample Handling System for the Mars Icebreaker Life Mission: from Dirt to Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dave, Arwen; Thompson, Sarah J.; McKay, Christopher P.; Stoker, Carol R.; Zacny, Kris; Paulsen, Gale; Mellerowicz, Bolek; Glass, Brian J.; Wilson, David; Bonaccorsi, Rosalba; hide

    2013-01-01

    The Mars icebreaker life mission will search for subsurface life on mars. It consists of three payload elements: a drill to retrieve soil samples from approx. 1 meter below the surface, a robotic sample handling system to deliver the sample from the drill to the instruments, and the instruments themselves. This paper will discuss the robotic sample handling system.

  12. The genesis solar-wind sample return mission

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wiens, Roger C.

    2009-01-01

    The compositions of the Earth's crust and mantle, and those of the Moon and Mars, are relatively well known both isotopically and elementally. The same is true of our knowledge of the asteroid belt composition, based on meteorite analyses. Remote measurements of Venus, the Jovian atmosphere, and the outer planet moons, have provided some estimates of their compositions. The Sun constitutes a large majority, > 99%, of all the matter in the solar system. The elemental composition of the photosphere, the visible 'surface' of the Sun, is constrained by absorption lines produced by particles above the surface. Abundances for many elements are reported to the ±10 or 20% accuracy level. However, the abundances of other important elements, such as neon, cannot be determined in this way due to a relative lack of atomic states at low excitation energies. Additionally and most importantly, the isotopic composition of the Sun cannot be determined astronomically except for a few species which form molecules above sunspots, and estimates derived from these sources lack the accuracy desired for comparison with meteoritic and planetary surface samples measured on the Earth. The solar wind spreads a sample of solar particles throughout the heliosphere, though the sample is very rarified: collecting a nanogram of oxygen, the third most abundant element, in a square centimeter cross section at the Earth's distance from the Sun takes five years. Nevertheless, foil collectors exposed to the solar wind for periods of hours on the surface of the Moon during the Apollo missions were used to determine the helium and neon solar-wind compositions sufficiently to show that the Earth's atmospheric neon was significantly evolved relative to the Sun. Spacecraft instruments developed subsequently have provided many insights into the composition of the solar wind, mostly in terms of elemental composition. These instruments have the advantage of observing a number of parameters simultaneously

  13. Probabilistic Round Trip Contamination Analysis of a Mars Sample Acquisition and Handling Process Using Markovian Decompositions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hudson, Nicolas; Lin, Ying; Barengoltz, Jack

    2010-01-01

    A method for evaluating the probability of a Viable Earth Microorganism (VEM) contaminating a sample during the sample acquisition and handling (SAH) process of a potential future Mars Sample Return mission is developed. A scenario where multiple core samples would be acquired using a rotary percussive coring tool, deployed from an arm on a MER class rover is analyzed. The analysis is conducted in a structured way by decomposing sample acquisition and handling process into a series of discrete time steps, and breaking the physical system into a set of relevant components. At each discrete time step, two key functions are defined: The probability of a VEM being released from each component, and the transport matrix, which represents the probability of VEM transport from one component to another. By defining the expected the number of VEMs on each component at the start of the sampling process, these decompositions allow the expected number of VEMs on each component at each sampling step to be represented as a Markov chain. This formalism provides a rigorous mathematical framework in which to analyze the probability of a VEM entering the sample chain, as well as making the analysis tractable by breaking the process down into small analyzable steps.

  14. A Storable, Hybrid Mars Ascent Vehicle Technology Demonstrator for the 2020 Launch Opportunity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chandler, A. A.; Karabeyoglu, M. A.; Cantwell, B. J.; Reeve, R.; Goldstein, B. G.; Hubbard, G. S.

    2012-06-01

    A Phoenix sized mission including a reduced payload, two-stage, hybrid Mars Ascent Vehicle technology demonstrator is proposed for the 2020 opportunity. The hybrid MAV is storable on Mars and would retire risk for a Mars Sample Return campaign.

  15. Mars Ascent Vehicle Needs Technology Development with a Focus on High Propellant Fractions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whitehead, J. C.

    2018-04-01

    Launching from Mars to orbit requires a miniature launch vehicle, beyond any known spacecraft propulsion. The Mars Ascent Vehicle (MAV) needs an unusually high propellant mass fraction. MAV mass has high leverage for the cost of Mars Sample Return.

  16. Sample Curation in Support of the OSIRIS-REx Asteroid Sample Return Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Righter, Kevin; Nakamura-Messenger, Keiko

    2017-01-01

    The OSIRIS-REx asteroid sample return mission launched to asteroid Bennu Sept. 8, 2016. The spacecraft will arrive at Bennu in late 2019, orbit and map the asteroid, and perform a touch and go (TAG) sampling maneuver in July 2020. After sample is stowed and confirmed the spacecraft will return to Earth, and the sample return capsule (SRC) will land in Utah in September 2023. Samples will be recovered from Utah [2] and then transported and stored in a new sample cleanroom at NASA Johnson Space Center in Houston [3]. The materials curated for the mission are described here. a) Materials Archive and Witness Plate Collection: The SRC and TAGSAM were built between March 2014 and Summer of 2015, and instruments (OTES,OVIRS, OLA, OCAMS, REXIS) were integrated from Summer 2015 until May 2016. A total of 395 items were received for the materials archive at NASA-JSC, with archiving finishing 30 days after launch (with the final archived items being related to launch operations)[4]. The materials fall into several general categories including metals (stainless steel, aluminum, titanium alloys, brass and BeCu alloy), epoxies, paints, polymers, lubricants, non-volatile-residue samples (NVR), sapphire, and various miscellaneous materials. All through the ATLO process (from March 2015 until late August 2016) contamination knowledge witness plates (Si wafer and Al foil) were deployed in the various cleanrooms in Denver and KSC to provide an additional record of particle counts and volatiles that is archived for current and future scientific studies. These plates were deployed in roughly monthly increments with each unit containing 4 Si wafers and 4 Al foils. We archived 128 individual witness plates (64 Si wafers and 64 Al foils); one of each witness plate (Si and Al) was analyzed immediately by the science team after archiving, while the remaining 3 of each are archived indefinitely. Information about each material archived is stored in an extensive database at NASA-JSC, and key

  17. What should we look for when we return to Mars?. [possibility of extraterrestrial life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soffen, G. A.

    1988-01-01

    The current state of knowledge about Mars is examined, and the details of current planned missions (Phobos and the Mars Orbiter) are considered. Speculations on some of the major future avenues of Mars research are presented; particular attention is given to questions relating to the early geological processes that resulted in Martian surface features, the effect liquid water has had on the planet, the volatile dynamics and chemistry, the chemistry of the iron-rich clays, the organic-compound mystery, and the biological issue.

  18. Analysis of the Touch-And-Go Surface Sampling Concept for Comet Sample Return Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mandic, Milan; Acikmese, Behcet; Bayard, David S.; Blackmore, Lars

    2012-01-01

    This paper studies the Touch-and-Go (TAG) concept for enabling a spacecraft to take a sample from the surface of a small primitive body, such as an asteroid or comet. The idea behind the TAG concept is to let the spacecraft descend to the surface, make contact with the surface for several seconds, and then ascend to a safe location. Sampling would be accomplished by an end-effector that is active during the few seconds of surface contact. The TAG event is one of the most critical events in a primitive body sample-return mission. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the dynamic behavior of a representative spacecraft during the TAG event, i.e., immediately prior, during, and after surface contact of the sampler. The study evaluates the sample-collection performance of the proposed sampling end-effector, in this case a brushwheel sampler, while acquiring material from the surface during the contact. A main result of the study is a guidance and control (G&C) validation of the overall TAG concept, in addition to specific contributions to demonstrating the effectiveness of using nonlinear clutch mechanisms in the sampling arm joints, and increasing the length of the sampling arms to improve robustness.

  19. Basalt-trachybasalt samples in Gale Crater, Mars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Edwards, Peter H.; Anderson, Ryan B.; Dyar, Darby

    2017-01-01

    The ChemCam instrument on the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) rover, Curiosity, observed numerous igneous float rocks and conglomerate clasts, reported previously. A new statistical analysis of single-laser-shot spectra of igneous targets observed by ChemCam shows a strong peak at ~55 wt% SiO 2 and 6 wt% total alkalis, with a minor secondary maximum at 47–51 wt% SiO 2 and lower alkali content. The centers of these distributions, together with the rock textures, indicate that many of the ChemCam igneous targets are trachybasalts, Mg# = 27 but with a secondary concentration of basaltic material, with a focus of compositions around Mg# = 54. We suggest that all of these igneous rocks resulted from low-pressure, olivine-dominated fractionation of Adirondack (MER) class-type basalt compositions. This magmatism has subalkaline, tholeiitic affinities. The similarity of the basalt endmember to much of the Gale sediment compositions in the first 1000 sols of the MSL mission suggests that this type of Fe-rich, relatively low-Mg#, olivine tholeiite is the dominant constituent of the Gale catchment that is the source material for the fine-grained sediments in Gale. The similarity to many Gusev igneous compositions suggests that it is a major constituent of ancient Martian magmas, and distinct from the shergottite parental melts thought to be associated with Tharsis and the Northern Lowlands. Finally, the Gale Crater catchment sampled a mixture of this tholeiitic basalt along with alkaline igneous material, together giving some analogies to terrestrial intraplate magmatic provinces.

  20. Organic Contaminants Library for the Sample Analysis at Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Misra, P.; Garcia-Sanchez, R.; Canham, J.; Mahaffy, P. R.

    2012-12-01

    A library containing mass spectra for Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) materials has been developed with the purpose of contamination identification and control. Based on analysis of the Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometric (GCMS) data through thermal desorption, organic compounds were successfully identified from material samples, such as polymers, paints and adhesives. The library contains the spectra for all the compounds found in each of these analyzed files and is supplemented by a file information spreadsheet, a spreadsheet-formatted library for easy searching, and a Perfluorotributylamine (PFTBA) based normalization protocol to make corrections to SAM data in order to meet the standard set by commercial libraries. An example of the library in use can be seen in Figure 1, where the abundances match closely, the spectral shape is retained, and the library picks up on it with an 88% identification probability. Of course, there are also compounds that have not been identified and are retained as unknowns. The library we have developed, along with its supplemental materials, is useful from both organizational and practical viewpoints. Through them we are able to organize large volumes of GCMS data, while at the same time breaking down the components that each material sample is made of. This approach in turn allows us straightforward and fast access to information that will be critical while performing analysis on the data recorded by the SAM instrumentation. In addition, the normalization protocol dramatically increased the identification probability. In SAM GCMS, PFTBA signals were obfuscated, resulting in library matches far away from PFTBA; by using the normalization protocol we were able to transform it into a 92% probable spectral match for PFTBA. The project has demonstrated conclusively that the library is successful in identifying unknown compounds utilizing both the Automated Mass Spectral Deconvolution & Identification System (AMDIS) and the Ion

  1. Evolved Gas Analysis of Mars Analog Samples from the Arctic Mars Analog Svalbard Expedition: Implications for Analyses by the Mars Science Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    McAdam, A.; Stern, J. C.; Mahaffy, P. R.; Blake, D. F.; Bristow, T.; Steele, A.; Amundsen, H. E. F.

    2012-01-01

    The 2011 Arctic Mars Analog Svalbard Expedition (AMASE) investigated several geologic settings on Svalbard, using methodologies and techniques being developed or considered for future Mars missions, such as the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL). The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument suite on MSL consists of a quadrupole mass spectrometer (QMS), a gas chromatograph (GC), and a tunable laser spectrometer (TLS), which analyze gases created by pyrolysis of samples. During AMASE, a Hiden Evolved Gas Analysis-Mass Spectrometer (EGA-MS) system represented the EGA-QMS capability of SAM. Another MSL instrument, CheMin, will use x-ray diffraction (XRD) and x-ray fluorescence (XRF) to perform quantitative mineralogical characterization of samples. Field-portable versions of CheMin were used during AMASE. AMASE 2011 sites spanned a range of environments relevant to understanding martian surface materials, processes and habitability. They included the basaltic Sverrefjell volcano, which hosts carbonate globules, cements and coatings, carbonate and sulfate units at Colletth0gda, Devonian sandstone redbeds in Bockfjorden, altered basaltic lava delta deposits at Mt. Scott Keltie, and altered dolerites and volcanics at Botniahalvoya. Here we focus on SAM-like EGA-MS of a subset of the samples, with mineralogy comparisons to CheMin team results. The results allow insight into sample organic content as well as some constraints on sample mineralogy.

  2. 76 FR 56819 - Centennial Challenges 2012 Sample Return Robot Challenge

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-09-14

    ... NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION [Notice (11-079)] Centennial Challenges 2012 Sample... Challenge is scheduled and teams that wish to compete may register. Centennial Challenges is a program of... Challenge, please visit: http://wp.wpi.edu/challenge/ . For general information on the NASA Centennial...

  3. Mars

    CERN Document Server

    Day, Trevor

    2006-01-01

    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.

  4. The Search for Sustainable Subsurface Habitats on Mars, and the Sampling of Impact Ejecta

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paula Lindgren

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available On Earth, the deep subsurface biosphere of both the oceanic and the continental crust is well known for surviving harsh conditions and environments characterized by high temperatures, high pressures, extreme pHs, and the absence of sunlight. The microorganisms of the terrestrial deep biosphere have an excellent capacity for adapting to changing geochemistry, as the alteration of the crust proceeds and the conditions of their habitats slowly change. Despite an almost complete isolation from surface conditions and the surface biosphere, the deep biosphere of the crustal rocks has endured over geologic time. This indicates that the deep biosphere is a self-sufficient system, independent of the global events that occur at the surface, such as impacts, glaciations, sea level fluctuations, and climate changes. With our sustainable terrestrial subsurface biosphere in mind, the subsurface on Mars has often been suggested as the most plausible place to search for fossil Martian life, or even present Martian life. Since the Martian surface is more or less sterile, subsurface settings are the only place on Mars where life could have been sustained over geologic time. To detect a deep biosphere in the Martian basement, drilling is a requirement. However, near future Mars sample return missions are limited by the mission’s payload, which excludes heavy drilling equipment and restrict the missions to only dig the topmost meter of the Martian soil. Therefore, the sampling and analysis of Martian impact ejecta has been suggested as a way of accessing the deeper Martian subsurface without using heavy drilling equipment. Impact cratering is a natural geological process capable of excavating and exposing large amounts of rock material from great depths up to the surface. Several studies of terrestrial impact deposits show the preservation of pre-impact biosignatures, such as fossilized organisms and chemical biological markers. Therefore, if the Martian

  5. Description of European Space Agency (ESA) Concept Development for a Mars Sample Receiving Facility (MSRF)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vrublevskis, J.; Berthoud, L.; Guest, M.; Smith, C.; Bennett, A.; Gaubert, F.; Schroeven-Deceuninck, H.; Duvet, L.; van Winnendael, M.

    2018-04-01

    This presentation gives an overview of the several studies conducted for the European Space Agency (ESA) since 2007, which progressively developed layouts for a potential implementation of a Mars Sample Receiving Facility (MSRF).

  6. Mars

    CERN Document Server

    Payment, Simone

    2017-01-01

    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

  7. Detection of cometary amines in samples returned by Stardust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glavin, D. P.; Dworkin, J. P.; Sandford, S. A.

    2008-02-01

    The abundances of amino acids and amines, as well as their enantiomeric compositions, were measured in samples of Stardust comet-exposed aerogel and foil using liquid chromatography with UV fluorescence detection and time of flight mass spectrometry (LC-FD/ToF-MS). A suite of amino acids and amines including glycine, L-alanine, β-alanine (BALA), γ-amino-n-butyric acid (GABA), ɛ-amino-n-caproic acid (EACA), ethanolamine (MEA), methylamine (MA), and ethylamine (EA) were identified in acid-hydrolyzed, hot-water extracts of these Stardust materials above background levels. With the exception of MA and EA, all other primary amines detected in cometexposed aerogel fragments C2054,4 and C2086,1 were also present in the flight aerogel witness tile that was not exposed to the comet, indicating that most amines are terrestrial in origin. The enhanced relative abundances of MA and EA in comet-exposed aerogel compared to controls, coupled with MA to EA ratios (C2054,4: 1.0 ± 0.2; C2086,1: 1.8 ± 0.2) that are distinct from preflight aerogels (E243-13C and E243-13F: 7 ± 3), suggest that these volatile amines were captured from comet Wild 2. MA and EA were present predominantly in an acid-hydrolyzable bound form in the aerogel, rather than as free primary amines, which is consistent with laboratory analyses of cometary ice analog materials. It is possible that Wild 2 MA and EA were formed on energetically processed icy grains containing ammonia and approximately equal abundances of methane and ethane. The presence of cometary amines in Stardust material supports the hypothesis that comets were an important source of prebiotic organic carbon and nitrogen on the early Earth.

  8. The effects of self-generated and applied magnetic fields on the computation of flow over a Mars return aerobrake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palmer, Grant

    1991-01-01

    A CFD technique is developed to calculate the electromagnetic phenomena simultaneously with the fluid flow in the shock layer over an axisymmetric blunt body in a thermal-equilibrium chemical-nonequilibrium environment. The flowfield is solved using an explicit time-marching, first-order spatially accurate scheme. The electromagnetic phenomena are coupled to the real-gas flow solver through an iterative procedure. The electromagnetic terms introduce a strong stiffness, which was overcome by using significantly smaller time steps for the electromagnetic conservation equation. The technique is applied in calculating the flow over a Mars return aerobrake vehicle entering the Earth's atmosphere. For the case where no external field is applied, the electromagnetic effects have little impact on the flowfield.

  9. Report of the Workshop for Life Detection in Samples from Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kminek, Gerhard; Conley, Catherine; Allen, Carlton C.; Bartlett, Douglas H.; Beaty, David W.; Benning, Liane G.; Bhartia, Rohit; Boston, Penelope J.; Duchaine, Caroline; Farmer, Jack D.; hide

    2014-01-01

    The question of whether there is or was life on Mars has been one of the most pivotal since Schiaparellis' telescopic observations of the red planet. With the advent of the space age, this question can be addressed directly by exploring the surface of Mars and by bringing samples to Earth for analysis. The latter, however, is not free of problems. Life can be found virtually everywhere on Earth. Hence the potential for contaminating the Mars samples and compromising their scientific integrity is not negligible. Conversely, if life is present in samples from Mars, this may represent a potential source of extraterrestrial biological contamination for Earth. A range of measures and policies, collectively termed 'planetary protection', are employed to minimise risks and thereby prevent undesirable consequences for the terrestrial biosphere. This report documents discussions and conclusions from a workshop held in 2012, which followed a public conference focused on current capabilities for performing life-detection studies on Mars samples. The workshop focused on the evaluation of Mars samples that would maximise scientific productivity and inform decision making in the context of planetary protection. Workshop participants developed a strong consensus that the same measurements could be employed to effectively inform both science and planetary protection, when applied in the context of two competing hypotheses: 1) that there is no detectable life in the samples; or 2) that there is martian life in the samples. Participants then outlined a sequence for sample processing and defined analytical methods that would test these hypotheses. They also identified critical developments to enable the analysis of samples from Mars.

  10. COMPASS Final Report: Near Earth Asteroids Rendezvous and Sample Earth Returns (NEARER)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oleson, Steven R.; McGuire, Melissa L.

    2009-01-01

    In this study, the Collaborative Modeling for Parametric Assessment of Space Systems (COMPASS) team completed a design for a multi-asteroid (Nereus and 1996 FG3) sample return capable spacecraft for the NASA In-Space Propulsion Office. The objective of the study was to support technology development and assess the relative benefits of different electric propulsion systems on asteroid sample return design. The design uses a single, heritage Orion solar array (SA) (approx.6.5 kW at 1 AU) to power a single NASA Evolutionary Xenon Thruster ((NEXT) a spare NEXT is carried) to propel a lander to two near Earth asteroids. After landing and gathering science samples, the Solar Electric Propulsion (SEP) vehicle spirals back to Earth where it drops off the first sample s return capsule and performs an Earth flyby to assist the craft in rendezvousing with a second asteroid, which is then sampled. The second sample is returned in a similar fashion. The vehicle, dubbed Near Earth Asteroids Rendezvous and Sample Earth Returns (NEARER), easily fits in an Atlas 401 launcher and its cost estimates put the mission in the New Frontier s (NF's) class mission.

  11. Curiosity's Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) Investigation: Overview of Results from the First 120 Sols on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahaffy, P. R.; Cabane, M.; Webster, C. R.; Archer, P. D.; Atreya, S. K.; Benna, M.; Brinckerhoff, W. B.; Brunner, A. E.; Buch, A.; Coll, P.; hide

    2013-01-01

    During the first 120 sols of Curiosity s landed mission on Mars (8/6/2012 to 12/7/2012) SAM sampled the atmosphere 9 times and an eolian bedform named Rocknest 4 times. The atmospheric experiments utilized SAM s quadrupole mass spectrometer (QMS) and tunable laser spectrometer (TLS) while the solid sample experiments also utilized the gas chromatograph (GC). Although a number of core experiments were pre-programmed and stored in EEProm, a high level SAM scripting language enabled the team to optimize experiments based on prior runs.

  12. JSC Advanced Curation: Research and Development for Current Collections and Future Sample Return Mission Demands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fries, M. D.; Allen, C. C.; Calaway, M. J.; Evans, C. A.; Stansbery, E. K.

    2015-01-01

    Curation of NASA's astromaterials sample collections is a demanding and evolving activity that supports valuable science from NASA missions for generations, long after the samples are returned to Earth. For example, NASA continues to loan hundreds of Apollo program samples to investigators every year and those samples are often analyzed using instruments that did not exist at the time of the Apollo missions themselves. The samples are curated in a manner that minimizes overall contamination, enabling clean, new high-sensitivity measurements and new science results over 40 years after their return to Earth. As our exploration of the Solar System progresses, upcoming and future NASA sample return missions will return new samples with stringent contamination control, sample environmental control, and Planetary Protection requirements. Therefore, an essential element of a healthy astromaterials curation program is a research and development (R&D) effort that characterizes and employs new technologies to maintain current collections and enable new missions - an Advanced Curation effort. JSC's Astromaterials Acquisition & Curation Office is continually performing Advanced Curation research, identifying and defining knowledge gaps about research, development, and validation/verification topics that are critical to support current and future NASA astromaterials sample collections. The following are highlighted knowledge gaps and research opportunities.

  13. Scientific guidelines for preservation of samples collected from Mars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gooding, J.L.

    1990-04-01

    The maximum scientific value of Martian geologic and atmospheric samples is retained when the samples are preserved in the conditions that applied prior to their collection. Any sample degradation equates to loss of information. Based on detailed review of pertinent scientific literature, and advice from experts in planetary sample analysis, number values are recommended for key parameters in the environmental control of collected samples with respect to material contamination, temperature, head-space gas pressure, ionizing radiation, magnetic fields, and acceleration/shock. Parametric values recommended for the most sensitive geologic samples should also be adequate to preserve any biogenic compounds or exobiological relics

  14. Extension of the quantum-kinetic model to lunar and Mars return physics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liechty, D. S. [Aerothermodynamics Branch, NASA Langley Research Center, Hampton, Virginia 23681 (United States); Lewis, M. J. [Department of Aerospace Engineering, University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland 20742 (United States)

    2014-02-15

    The ability to compute rarefied, ionized hypersonic flows is becoming more important as missions such as Earth reentry, landing high-mass payloads on Mars, and the exploration of the outer planets and their satellites are being considered. A recently introduced molecular-level chemistry model, the quantum-kinetic, or Q-K, model that predicts reaction rates for gases in thermal equilibrium and non-equilibrium using only kinetic theory and fundamental molecular properties, is extended in the current work to include electronic energy level transitions and reactions involving charged particles. Like the Q-K procedures for neutral species chemical reactions, these new models are phenomenological procedures that aim to reproduce the reaction/transition rates but do not necessarily capture the exact physics. These engineering models are necessarily efficient due to the requirement to compute billions of simulated collisions in direct simulation Monte Carlo (DSMC) simulations. The new models are shown to generally agree within the spread of reported transition and reaction rates from the literature for near equilibrium conditions.

  15. Model Complexity and Out-of-Sample Performance: Evidence from S&P 500 Index Returns

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kaeck, Andreas; Rodrigues, Paulo; Seeger, Norman J.

    We apply a range of out-of-sample specification tests to more than forty competing stochastic volatility models to address how model complexity affects out-of-sample performance. Using daily S&P 500 index returns, model confidence set estimations provide strong evidence that the most important model

  16. Investigating the Geological History of Asteroid 101955 Bennu Through Remote Sensing and Returned Sample Analyses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Messenger, S.; Connolly, H. C., Jr.; Lauretta, D. S.; Bottke, W. F.

    2014-01-01

    The NASA New Frontiers Mission OSRIS-REx will return surface regolith samples from near-Earth asteroid 101955 Bennu in September 2023. This target is classified as a B-type asteroid and is spectrally similar to CI and CM chondrite meteorites [1]. The returned samples are thus expected to contain primitive ancient Solar System materials that formed in planetary, nebular, interstellar, and circumstellar environments. Laboratory studies of primitive astromaterials have yielded detailed constraints on the origins, properties, and evolutionary histories of a wide range of Solar System bodies. Yet, the parent bodies of meteorites and cosmic dust are generally unknown, genetic and evolutionary relationships among asteroids and comets are unsettled, and links between laboratory and remote observations remain tenuous. The OSIRIS-REx mission will offer the opportunity to coordinate detailed laboratory analyses of asteroidal materials with known and well characterized geological context from which the samples originated. A primary goal of the OSIRIS-REx mission will be to provide detailed constraints on the origin and geological and dynamical history of Bennu through coordinated analytical studies of the returned samples. These microanalytical studies will be placed in geological context through an extensive orbital remote sensing campaign that will characterize the global geological features and chemical diversity of Bennu. The first views of the asteroid surface and of the returned samples will undoubtedly bring remarkable surprises. However, a wealth of laboratory studies of meteorites and spacecraft encounters with primitive bodies provides a useful framework to formulate priority scientific questions and effective analytical approaches well before the samples are returned. Here we summarize our approach to unraveling the geological history of Bennu through returned sample analyses.

  17. Carbon Isotopic Ratios of Amino Acids in Stardust-Returned Samples

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elsila, Jamie E.; Glavin, Daniel P.; Dworkin, Jason P.

    2009-01-01

    NASA's Stardust spacecraft returned to Earth samples from comet 81P/Wild 2 in January 2006. Preliminary examinations revealed the presence of a suite of organic compounds including several amines and amino acids, but the origin of these compounds could not be identified. Here. we present the carbon isotopic ratios of glycine and E-aminocaproic acid (EACH), the two most abundant amino acids observed, in Stardust-returned foil samples measured by gas chromatography-combustion-isotope ratio crass spectrometry coupled with quadrupole mass spectrometry (GC-QMS/IRMS).

  18. Sample Handling and Processing on Mars for Future Astrobiology Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beegle, Luther; Kirby, James P.; Fisher, Anita; Hodyss, Robert; Saltzman, Alison; Soto, Juancarlos; Lasnik, James; Roark, Shane

    2011-01-01

    In most analytical investigations, there is a need to process complex field samples for the unique detection of analytes especially when detecting low concentration organic molecules that may identify extraterrestrial life. Sample processing for analytical instruments is time, resource and manpower consuming in terrestrial laboratories. Every step in this laborious process will have to be automated for in situ life detection. We have developed, and are currently demonstrating, an automated wet chemistry preparation system that can operate autonomously on Earth and is designed to operate under Martian ambient conditions. This will enable a complete wet chemistry laboratory as part of future missions. Our system, namely the Automated Sample Processing System (ASPS) receives fines, extracts organics through solvent extraction, processes the extract by removing non-organic soluble species and delivers sample to multiple instruments for analysis (including for non-organic soluble species).

  19. Calibration and Sequence Development Status for the Sample Analysis at Mars Investigation on the Mars Science Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahaffy, Paul R.

    2012-01-01

    The measurement goals of the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument suite on the "Curiosity" Rover of the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) include chemical and isotopic analysis of organic and inorganic volatiles for both atmospheric and solid samples [1,2]. SAM directly supports the ambitious goals of the MSL mission to provide a quantitative assessment of habitability and preservation in Gale crater by means of a range of chemical and geological measurements [3]. The SAM FM combined calibration and environmental testing took place primarily in 2010 with a limited set of tests implemented after integration into the rover in January 2011. The scope of SAM FM testing was limited both to preserve SAM consumables such as life time of its electromechanical elements and to minimize the level of terrestrial contamination in the SAM instrument. A more comprehensive calibration of a SAM-like suite of instruments will be implemented in 2012 with calibration runs planned for the SAM testbed. The SAM Testbed is nearly identical to the SAM FM and operates in a ambient pressure chamber. The SAM Instrument Suite: SAM's instruments are a Quadrupole Mass Spectrometer (QMS), a 6-column Gas Chromatograph (GC), and a 2-channel Tunable Laser Spectrometer (TLS). Gas Chromatography Mass Spectrometry is designed for identification of even trace organic compounds. The TLS [5] secures the C, H, and O isotopic composition in carbon dioxide, water, and methane. Sieved materials are delivered from the MSL sample acquisition and processing system to one of68 cups of the Sample Manipulation System (SMS). 59 of these cups are fabricated from inert quartz. After sample delivery, a cup is inserted into one of 2 ovens for evolved gas analysis (EGA ambient to >9500C) by the QMS and TLS. A portion of the gas released can be trapped and subsequently analyzed by GCMS. Nine sealed cups contain liquid solvents and chemical derivatization or thermochemolysis agents to extract and transform polar molecules

  20. Robotic traverse and sample return strategies for a lunar farside mission to the Schrodinger basin

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Potts, N.J.; Gullikson, A.L.; Curran, N.M.; Dhaliwal, J.K.; Leader, M.K.; Rege, R.N.; Klaus, K.K.; Kring, D.A.

    2015-01-01

    Most of the highest priority objectives for lunar science and exploration (e.g.; NRC, 2007) require sample return. Studies of the best places to conduct that work have identified Schrödinger basin as a geologically rich area, able to address a significant number of these scientific concepts. In this

  1. Lower-Cost, Relocatable Lunar Polar Lander and Lunar Surface Sample Return Probes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amato, G. Michael; Garvin, James B.; Burt, I. Joseph; Karpati, Gabe

    2011-01-01

    Key science and exploration objectives of lunar robotic precursor missions can be achieved with the Lunar Explorer (LEx) low-cost, robotic surface mission concept described herein. Selected elements of the LEx concept can also be used to create a lunar surface sample return mission that we have called Boomerang

  2. Fatty Acid Detection in Mars-Analogous Rock Samples with the TMAH Wet Chemistry Experiment on the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) Instrument

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, A. J.; Eigenbrode, J. L.; Wilhelm, M. B.; Johnson, S. S.; Craft, K.; O'Reilly, S.; Lewis, J. M. T.; Williams, R.; Summons, R. E.; Benison, K. C.; Mahaffy, P. R.

    2017-12-01

    The Curiosity rover is exploring sedimentary rock sequences in Gale Crater for evidence of habitability and searching for organic compounds using the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument suite. SAM includes a gas chromatograph mass spectrometer (GC-MS) and pyrolysis ovens. SAM has the ability to perform wet chemistry experiments, one of which uses tetramethylammonium hydroxide (TMAH) thermochemolysis to liberate bound lipids, making them sufficiently volatile for detection by GC-MS. To determine the effectiveness of the SAM-like TMAH experiment on fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) biomarker identification, rock and sediment samples were collected from a variety of Mars analog environments including iron oxides from a modern mineral precipitate and older surface gossan at Iron Mountain, CA, as well as modern acid salt and neutral lake sediments with mixed iron oxides and clays from Western Australia; siliceous sinter from recently inactive and modern near-vent Icelandic hot springs deposits; modern carbonate ooids from The Bahamas, and organic-rich shale from Germany. Samples underwent pyrolysis with TMAH. Fatty acids were analyzed by pyro-GC-MS using a SAM-like heating ramp (35°C/min) as well as a 500°C flash on a Frontier pyrolyzer and Agilent GC-MS instrument. Results reveal that FAMEs were detectable with the TMAH experiment in nearly all samples. Low molecular weight (MW) C6:0-C10:0 FAMEs were present in all samples, medium MW C11:0-C18:2 FAMEs were present in select samples, and high MW (HMW) C20:0-C30:0 FAMEs were present in the shale sample. Many of these samples exhibited an even-over-odd carbon number preference, indicating biological production. These experiments demonstrate that TMAH thermochemolysis with SAM-like pyro-GC-MS is effective in fatty acid analysis from natural Mars-analog samples that vary in mineralogy, age, and microbial community input. HMW FAMEs are not detected in iron-dominated samples, and may not be detectable at low

  3. Dynamic Acquisition and Retrieval Tool (DART) for Comet Sample Return : Session: 2.06.Robotic Mobility and Sample Acquisition Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Badescu, Mircea; Bonitz, Robert; Kulczycki, Erick; Aisen, Norman; Dandino, Charles M.; Cantrell, Brett S.; Gallagher, William; Shevin, Jesse; Ganino, Anthony; Haddad, Nicolas; hide

    2013-01-01

    The 2011 Decadal Survey for planetary science released by the National Research Council of the National Academies identified Comet Surface Sample Return (CSSR) as one of five high priority potential New Frontiers-class missions in the next decade. The main objectives of the research described in this publication are: develop a concept for an end-to-end system for collecting and storing a comet sample to be returned to Earth; design, fabricate and test a prototype Dynamic Acquisition and Retrieval Tool (DART) capable of collecting 500 cc sample in a canister and eject the canister with a predetermined speed; identify a set of simulants with physical properties at room temperature that suitably match the physical properties of the comet surface as it would be sampled. We propose the use of a dart that would be launched from the spacecraft to impact and penetrate the comet surface. After collecting the sample, the sample canister would be ejected at a speed greater than the comet's escape velocity and captured by the spacecraft, packaged into a return capsule and returned to Earth. The dart would be composed of an inner tube or sample canister, an outer tube, a decelerator, a means of capturing and retaining the sample, and a mechanism to eject the canister with the sample for later rendezvous with the spacecraft. One of the significant unknowns is the physical properties of the comet surface. Based on new findings from the recent Deep Impact comet encounter mission, we have limited our search of solutions for sampling materials to materials with 10 to 100 kPa shear strength in loose or consolidated form. As the possible range of values for the comet surface temperature is also significantly different than room temperature and testing at conditions other than the room temperature can become resource intensive, we sought sample simulants with physical properties at room temperature similar to the expected physical properties of the comet surface material. The chosen

  4. Integrated science and engineering for the OSIRIS-REx asteroid sample return mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lauretta, D.

    2014-07-01

    Introduction: The Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, and Security-Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) asteroid sample return mission will survey near-Earth asteroid (101955) Bennu to understand its physical, mineralogical, and chemical properties, assess its resource potential, refine the impact hazard, and return a sample of this body to the Earth [1]. This mission is scheduled for launch in 2016 and will rendezvous with the asteroid in 2018. Sample return to the Earth follows in 2023. The OSIRIS-REx mission has the challenge of visiting asteroid Bennu, characterizing it at global and local scales, then selecting the best site on the asteroid surface to acquire a sample for return to the Earth. Minimizing the risk of exploring an unknown world requires a tight integration of science and engineering to inform flight system and mission design. Defining the Asteroid Environment: We have performed an extensive astronomical campaign in support of OSIRIS-REx. Lightcurve and phase function observations were obtained with UA Observatories telescopes located in southeastern Arizona during the 2005--2006 and 2011--2012 apparitions [2]. We observed Bennu using the 12.6-cm radar at the Arecibo Observatory in 1999, 2005, and 2011 and the 3.5-cm radar at the Goldstone tracking station in 1999 and 2005 [3]. We conducted near-infrared measurements using the NASA Infrared Telescope Facility at the Mauna Kea Observatory in Hawaii in September 2005 [4]. Additional spectral observations were obtained in July 2011 and May 2012 with the Magellan 6.5-m telescope [5]. We used the Spitzer space telescope to observe Bennu in May 2007 [6]. The extensive knowledge gained as a result of our telescopic characterization of Bennu was critical in the selection of this object as the OSIRIS-REx mission target. In addition, we use these data, combined with models of the asteroid, to constrain over 100 different asteroid parameters covering orbital, bulk, rotational, radar

  5. Detection of Reduced Nitrogen Compounds at Rocknest Using the Sample Analysis At Mars (SAM) Instrument on the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, J. C.; Steele, A.; Brunner, A.; Coll, P.; Eigenbrode, J.; Franz, H. B.; Freissinet, C.; Glavin, D.; Jones, J. H.; Navarro-Gonzalez, R.; hide

    2013-01-01

    The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument suite on the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Curiosity Rover detected nitrogen-bearing compounds during the pyrolysis of Rocknest material at Gale Crater. Hydrogen cyanide and acetonitrile were identified by the quadrupole mass spectrometer (QMS) both in direct evolved gas analysis (EGA). SAM carried out four separate analyses from Rocknest Scoop 5. A significant low temperature release was present in Rocknest runs 1-4, while a smaller high temperature release was also seen in Rocknest runs 1-3. Here we evaluate whether these compounds are indigenous to Mars or a pyrolysis product resulting from known terrestrial materials that are part of the SAM derivatization.

  6. LIFE: Life Investigation For Enceladus A Sample Return Mission Concept in Search for Evidence of Life.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsou, Peter; Brownlee, Donald E; McKay, Christopher P; Anbar, Ariel D; Yano, Hajime; Altwegg, Kathrin; Beegle, Luther W; Dissly, Richard; Strange, Nathan J; Kanik, Isik

    2012-08-01

    Life Investigation For Enceladus (LIFE) presents a low-cost sample return mission to Enceladus, a body with high astrobiological potential. There is ample evidence that liquid water exists under ice coverage in the form of active geysers in the "tiger stripes" area of the southern Enceladus hemisphere. This active plume consists of gas and ice particles and enables the sampling of fresh materials from the interior that may originate from a liquid water source. The particles consist mostly of water ice and are 1-10 μ in diameter. The plume composition shows H(2)O, CO(2), CH(4), NH(3), Ar, and evidence that more complex organic species might be present. Since life on Earth exists whenever liquid water, organics, and energy coexist, understanding the chemical components of the emanating ice particles could indicate whether life is potentially present on Enceladus. The icy worlds of the outer planets are testing grounds for some of the theories for the origin of life on Earth. The LIFE mission concept is envisioned in two parts: first, to orbit Saturn (in order to achieve lower sampling speeds, approaching 2 km/s, and thus enable a softer sample collection impact than Stardust, and to make possible multiple flybys of Enceladus); second, to sample Enceladus' plume, the E ring of Saturn, and the Titan upper atmosphere. With new findings from these samples, NASA could provide detailed chemical and isotopic and, potentially, biological compositional context of the plume. Since the duration of the Enceladus plume is unpredictable, it is imperative that these samples are captured at the earliest flight opportunity. If LIFE is launched before 2019, it could take advantage of a Jupiter gravity assist, which would thus reduce mission lifetimes and launch vehicle costs. The LIFE concept offers science returns comparable to those of a Flagship mission but at the measurably lower sample return costs of a Discovery-class mission.

  7. Preparation, Characterization, and UV Irradiation of Mars Soil Analogues Under Simulated Martian Conditions to Support Detection of Molecular Biomarkers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fornaro, T.; Brucato, J. R.; ten Kate, I. L.; Siljeström, S.; Steele, A.; Cody, G. D.; Hazen, R. M.

    2018-04-01

    We present laboratory activities of preparation, characterization, and UV irradiation processing of Mars soil analogues, which are key to support both in situ exploration and sample return missions devoted to detection of molecular biomarkers on Mars.

  8. Examination of Laser Microprobe Vacuum Ultraviolet Ionization Mass Spectrometry with Application to Mapping Mars Returned Samples

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burton, A. S.; Berger, E. L.; Locke, D. R.; Lewis, E. K.; Moore, J. F.

    2018-04-01

    Laser microprobe of surfaces utilizing a two laser setup whereby the desorption laser threshold is lowered below ionization, and the resulting neutral plume is examined using 157nm Vacuum Ultraviolet laser light for mass spec surface mapping.

  9. TOPEX/El Nino Watch - El Nino Warm Water Pool Returns to Near Normal State, Mar, 14, 1998

    Science.gov (United States)

    1998-01-01

    This image of the Pacific Ocean was produced using sea surface height measurements taken by the U.S.-French TOPEX/Poseidon satellite. The image shows sea surface height relative to normal ocean conditions on Mar. 14, 1998 and sea surface height is an indicator of the heat content of the ocean. The image shows that the sea surface height along the central equatorial Pacific has returned to a near normal state. Oceanographers indicate this is a classic pattern, typical of a mature El Nino condition. Remnants of the El Nino warm water pool, shown in red and white, are situated to the north and south of the equator. These sea surface height measurements have provided scientists with a detailed view of how the 1997-98 El Nino's warm pool behaves because the TOPEX/Poseidon satellite measures the changing sea surface height with unprecedented precision. In this image, the white and red areas indicate unusual patterns of heat storage; in the white areas, the sea surface is between 14 and 32 centimeters (6 to 13 inches) above normal; in the red areas, it's about 10 centimeters (4 inches) above normal. The green areas indicate normal conditions, while purple (the western Pacific) means at least 18 centimeters (7 inches) below normal sea level. The El Nino phenomenon is thought to be triggered when the steady westward blowing trade winds weaken and even reverse direction. This change in the winds allows a large mass of warm water (the red and white area) that is normally located near Australia to move eastward along the equator until it reaches the coast of South America. The displacement of so much warm water affects evaporation, where rain clouds form and, consequently, alters the typical atmospheric jet stream patterns around the world. Using satellite imagery, buoy and ship data, and a forecasting model of the ocean-atmosphere system, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, (NOAA), has continued to issue an advisory indicating the so-called El Nino weather

  10. I. T. - R. O. C. K. S. Comet Nuclei Sample Return Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dalcher, N.

    2009-04-01

    Ices, organics and minerals recording the chemical evolution of the outer regions of the early solar nebula are the main constituents of comets. Because comets maintain the nearly pristine nature of the cloud where they formed, the analyses of their composition, structure, thermodynamics and isotope ratios will increase our understanding of the processes that occurred in the early phases of the solar system as well as the Interstellar Medium (ISM) Cloud that predated the formation of the solar nebula [1]. While the deep impact mission aimed at determining the internal structure of comet Temple1's nuclei [e.g. 3], the stardust mission sample return has dramatically increased our understanding of comets. Its first implications indicated that some of the comet material originated in the inner solar system and was later transported outward beyond the freezing line [4]. A wide range of organic compounds identified within different grains of the aerogel collectors has demonstrated the heterogeneity in their assemblages [5]. This suggests either many histories associated with these material or possibly analytical constraints imposed by capture heating of Wild2 material in silica aerogel. The current mission ROSETTA, will further expand our knowledge about comets considerably through rigorous in situ analyses of a Jupiter Family Comet (JFC). As the next generation of comet research post ROSETTA, we present the comet nuclei sample return mission IT - ROCKS (International Team - Return Of Comet's Key Samples) to return several minimally altered samples from various locations of comet 88P/Howell, a typical JFC. The mission scenario includes remote sensing of the comet's nucleus with onboard instruments similar to the ROSETTA instruments [6, 7, 8] (VIS, IR, Thermal IR, X-Ray, Radar) and gas/dust composition measurements including a plasma science package. Additionally two microprobes [9] will further investigate the physical properties of the comet's surface. Retrieving of the

  11. The sample handling system for the Mars Icebreaker Life mission: from dirt to data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davé, Arwen; Thompson, Sarah J; McKay, Christopher P; Stoker, Carol R; Zacny, Kris; Paulsen, Gale; Mellerowicz, Bolek; Glass, Brian J; Willson, David; Bonaccorsi, Rosalba; Rask, Jon

    2013-04-01

    The Mars Icebreaker Life mission will search for subsurface life on Mars. It consists of three payload elements: a drill to retrieve soil samples from approximately 1 m below the surface, a robotic sample handling system to deliver the sample from the drill to the instruments, and the instruments themselves. This paper will discuss the robotic sample handling system. Collecting samples from ice-rich soils on Mars in search of life presents two challenges: protection of that icy soil--considered a "special region" with respect to planetary protection--from contamination from Earth, and delivery of the icy, sticky soil to spacecraft instruments. We present a sampling device that meets these challenges. We built a prototype system and tested it at martian pressure, drilling into ice-cemented soil, collecting cuttings, and transferring them to the inlet port of the SOLID2 life-detection instrument. The tests successfully demonstrated that the Icebreaker drill, sample handling system, and life-detection instrument can collectively operate in these conditions and produce science data that can be delivered via telemetry--from dirt to data. Our results also demonstrate the feasibility of using an air gap to prevent forward contamination. We define a set of six analog soils for testing over a range of soil cohesion, from loose sand to basalt soil, with angles of repose of 27° and 39°, respectively. Particle size is a key determinant of jamming of mechanical parts by soil particles. Jamming occurs when the clearance between moving parts is equal in size to the most common particle size or equal to three of these particles together. Three particles acting together tend to form bridges and lead to clogging. Our experiments show that rotary-hammer action of the Icebreaker drill influences the particle size, typically reducing particle size by ≈ 100 μm.

  12. The Combustion Experiment on the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) Instrument Suite on the Curiosity Rover

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, J. C.; Malespin, C. A.; Eigenbrode, J. L.; Graham, H. V.; Archer, P. D., Jr.; Brunner, A. E.; Freissinet, C.; Franz, H. B.; Fuentes, J.; Glavin, D. P.; hide

    2014-01-01

    The combustion experiment on the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) suite on Curiosity will heat a sample of Mars regolith in the presence of oxygen and measure composition of the evolved gases using quadrupole mass spectrometry (QMS) and tunable laser spectrometry (TLS). QMS will enable detection of combustion products such as CO, CO2, NO, and other oxidized species, while TLS will enable precise measurements of the abundance and carbon isotopic composition (delta(sup 13)C) of the evolved CO2 and hydrogen isotopic composition (deltaD) of H2O. SAM will perform a two-step combustion to isolate combustible materials below approx.550 C and above approx.550 C. The combustion experiment on SAM, if properly designed and executed, has the potential to answer multiple questions regarding the origins of volatiles seen thus far in SAM evolved gas analysis (EGA) on Mars. Constraints imposed by SAM and MSL time and power resources, as well as SAM consumables (oxygen gas), will limit the number of SAM combustion experiments, so it is imperative to design an experiment targeting the most pressing science questions. Low temperature combustion experiments will primarily target the quantification of carbon (and nitrogen) contributed by SAM wet chemistry reagants MTBSTFA (N-Methyl-N-tert-butyldimethylsilyltrifluoroacetamide) and DMF (Dimethylformamide), which have been identified in the background of blank and sample runs and may adsorb to the sample while the cup is in the Sample Manipulation System (SMS). In addition, differences between the sample and "blank" may yield information regarding abundance and delta(sup 13)C of bulk (both organic and inorganic) martian carbon. High temperature combustion experiments primarily aim to detect refractory organic matter, if present in Cumberland fines, as well as address the question of quantification and deltaD value of water evolution associated with hydroxyl hydrogen in clay minerals.

  13. Evolved Gas Analyses of the Murray Formation in Gale Crater, Mars: Results of the Curiosity Rover's Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) Instrument

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutter, B.; McAdam, A. C.; Rampe, E. B.; Thompson, L. M.; Ming, D. W.; Mahaffy, P. R.; Navarro-Gonzalez, R.; Stern, J. C.; Eigenbrode, J. L.; Archer, P. D.

    2017-01-01

    The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument aboard the Mars Science Laboratory rover has analyzed 13 samples from Gale Crater. All SAM-evolved gas analyses have yielded a multitude of volatiles (e.g., H2O, SO2, H2S, CO2, CO, NO, O2, HCl) [1- 6]. The objectives of this work are to 1) Characterize recent evolved SO2, CO2, O2, and NO gas traces of the Murray formation mudstone, 2) Constrain sediment mineralogy/composition based on SAM evolved gas analysis (SAM-EGA), and 3) Discuss the implications of these results relative to understanding the geological history of Gale Crater.

  14. Evolved Gas Analyses of Sedimentary Materials in Gale Crater, Mars: Results of the Curiosity Rover's Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) Instrument from Yellowknife Bay to the Stimson Formation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutter, B.; McAdam, A. C.; Rampe, E. B.; Ming, D. W.; Mahaffy, P. R.; Navarro-Gonzalez, R.; Stern, J. C.; Eigenbrode, J. L.; Archer, P. D.

    2016-01-01

    The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument aboard the Mars Science Laboratory rover has analyzed 10 samples from Gale Crater. All SAM evolved gas analyses have yielded a multitude of volatiles (e.g, H2O, SO2, H2S, CO2, CO, NO, O2, HC1). The objectives of this work are to 1) Characterize the evolved H2O, SO2, CO2, and O2 gas traces of sediments analyzed by SAM through sol 1178, 2) Constrain sediment mineralogy/composition based on SAM evolved gas analysis (SAM-EGA), and 3) Discuss the implications of these results releative to understanding the geochemical history of Gale Crater.

  15. Sample Transport for a European Sample Curation Facility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berthoud, L.; Vrublevskis, J. B.; Bennett, A.; Pottage, T.; Bridges, J. C.; Holt, J. M. C.; Dirri, F.; Longobardo, A.; Palomba, E.; Russell, S.; Smith, C.

    2018-04-01

    This work has looked at the recovery of Mars Sample Return capsule once it arrives on Earth. It covers possible landing sites, planetary protection requirements, and transportation from the landing site to a European Sample Curation Facility.

  16. Touch And Go Camera System (TAGCAMS) for the OSIRIS-REx Asteroid Sample Return Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bos, B. J.; Ravine, M. A.; Caplinger, M.; Schaffner, J. A.; Ladewig, J. V.; Olds, R. D.; Norman, C. D.; Huish, D.; Hughes, M.; Anderson, S. K.; Lorenz, D. A.; May, A.; Jackman, C. D.; Nelson, D.; Moreau, M.; Kubitschek, D.; Getzandanner, K.; Gordon, K. E.; Eberhardt, A.; Lauretta, D. S.

    2018-02-01

    NASA's OSIRIS-REx asteroid sample return mission spacecraft includes the Touch And Go Camera System (TAGCAMS) three camera-head instrument. The purpose of TAGCAMS is to provide imagery during the mission to facilitate navigation to the target asteroid, confirm acquisition of the asteroid sample, and document asteroid sample stowage. The cameras were designed and constructed by Malin Space Science Systems (MSSS) based on requirements developed by Lockheed Martin and NASA. All three of the cameras are mounted to the spacecraft nadir deck and provide images in the visible part of the spectrum, 400-700 nm. Two of the TAGCAMS cameras, NavCam 1 and NavCam 2, serve as fully redundant navigation cameras to support optical navigation and natural feature tracking. Their boresights are aligned in the nadir direction with small angular offsets for operational convenience. The third TAGCAMS camera, StowCam, provides imagery to assist with and confirm proper stowage of the asteroid sample. Its boresight is pointed at the OSIRIS-REx sample return capsule located on the spacecraft deck. All three cameras have at their heart a 2592 × 1944 pixel complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) detector array that provides up to 12-bit pixel depth. All cameras also share the same lens design and a camera field of view of roughly 44° × 32° with a pixel scale of 0.28 mrad/pixel. The StowCam lens is focused to image features on the spacecraft deck, while both NavCam lens focus positions are optimized for imaging at infinity. A brief description of the TAGCAMS instrument and how it is used to support critical OSIRIS-REx operations is provided.

  17. Restricted by Whom? A Historical Review of Strategies and Organization for Restricted Earth Return of Samples from NASA Planetary Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pugel, Betsy

    2017-01-01

    This presentation is a review of the timeline for Apollo's approach to Planetary Protection, then known as Planetary Quarantine. Return of samples from Apollo 11, 12 and 14 represented NASA's first attempts into conducting what is now known as Restricted Earth Return, where return of samples is undertaken by the Agency with the utmost care for the impact that the samples may have on Earth's environment due to the potential presence of microbial or other life forms that originate from the parent body (in this case, Earth's Moon).

  18. Bionic Design for Mars Sampling Scoop Inspired by Himalayan Marmot Claw

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Long Xue

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Cave animals are often adapted to digging and life underground, with claw toes similar in structure and function to a sampling scoop. In this paper, the clawed toes of the Himalayan marmot were selected as a biological prototype for bionic research. Based on geometric parameter optimization of the clawed toes, a bionic sampling scoop for use on Mars was designed. Using a 3D laser scanner, the point cloud data of the second front claw toe was acquired. Parametric equations and contour curves for the claw were then built with cubic polynomial fitting. We obtained 18 characteristic curve equations for the internal and external contours of the claw. A bionic sampling scoop was designed according to the structural parameters of Curiosity’s sampling shovel and the contours of the Himalayan marmot’s claw. Verifying test results showed that when the penetration angle was 45° and the sampling speed was 0.33 r/min, the bionic sampling scoops’ resistance torque was 49.6% less than that of the prototype sampling scoop. When the penetration angle was 60° and the sampling speed was 0.22 r/min, the resistance torque of the bionic sampling scoop was 28.8% lower than that of the prototype sampling scoop.

  19. Did life exist on Mars? Search for organic and inorganic signatures, one of the goals for ``SAM'' (sample analysis at Mars)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cabane, M.; Coll, P.; Szopa, C.; Israël, G.; Raulin, F.; Sternberg, R.; Mahaffy, P.; Person, A.; Rodier, C.; Navarro-Gonzàlez, R.; Niemann, H.; Harpold, D.; Brinckerhoff, W.

    2004-01-01

    Observation of Mars shows signs of a past Earth-like climate, and, in that case, there is no objection to the possible development of life, in the underground or at the surface, as in the terrestrial primitive biosphere. Sample analysis at Mars (SAM) is an experiment which may be proposed for atmospheric, ground and underground in situ measurements. One of its goals is to bring direct or indirect information on the possibility for life to have developed on Mars, and to detect traces of past or present biological activity. With this aim, it focuses on the detection of organic molecules: volatile organics are extracted from the sample by simple heating, whereas refractory molecules are made analyzable (i.e. volatile), using derivatization technique or fragmentation by pyrolysis. Gaseous mixtures thus obtained are analyzed by gas chromatography associated to mass spectrometry. Beyond organics, carbonates and other salts are associated to the dense and moist atmosphere necessary to the development of life, and might have formed and accumulated in some places on Mars. They represent another target for SAM. Heating of the samples allows the analysis of structural gases of these minerals (CO2 from carbonates, etc.), enabling to identify them. We also show, in this paper, that it may be possible to discriminate between abiotic minerals, and minerals (shells, etc.) created by living organisms.

  20. Field Exploration and Life Detection Sampling for Planetary Analogue Research (FELDSPAR): Variability and Correlation in Biomarker and Mineralogy Measurements from Icelandic Mars Analogues

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gentry, D.; Amador, E.; Cable, M. L.; Cantrell, T.; Chaudry, N.; Cullen, T.; Duca, Z.; Jacobsen, M.; Kirby, J.; McCaig, H.; hide

    2018-01-01

    In situ exploration of planetary environments allows biochemical analysis of sub-centimeter-scale samples; however, landing sites are selected a priori based on measurable meter- to kilometer-scale geological features. Optimizing life detection mission science return requires both understanding the expected biomarker distributions across sample sites at different scales and efficiently using first-stage in situ geochemical instruments to justify later-stage biological or chemical analysis. Icelandic volcanic regions have an extensive history as Mars analogue sites due to desiccation, low nutrient availability, and temperature extremes, in addition to the advantages of geological youth and isolation from anthropogenic contamination. Many Icelandic analogue sites are also rugged and remote enough to create the same type of instrumentation and sampling constraints typically faced by robotic exploration.

  1. Fluorocarbon Contamination from the Drill on the Mars Science Laboratory: Potential Science Impact on Detecting Martian Organics by Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eigenbrode, J. L.; McAdam, A.; Franz, H.; Freissinet, C.; Bower, H.; Floyd, M.; Conrad, P.; Mahaffy, P.; Feldman, J.; Hurowitz, J.; hide

    2013-01-01

    Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE or trade name: Teflon by Dupont Co.) has been detected in rocks drilled during terrestrial testing of the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) drilling hardware. The PTFE in sediments is a wear product of the seals used in the Drill Bit Assemblies (DBAs). It is expected that the drill assembly on the MSL flight model will also shed Teflon particles into drilled samples. One of the primary goals of the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument suite on MSL is to test for the presence of martian organics in samples. Complications introduced by the potential presence of PTFE in drilled samples to the SAM evolved gas analysis (EGA or pyrolysisquadrupole mass spectrometry, pyr-QMS) and pyrolysis- gas chromatography mass spectrometry (Pyr- GCMS) experiments was investigated.

  2. Evaluation of a compact spectrograph for in-situ and stand-off Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy analyses of geological samples on Mars missions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Salle, Beatrice; Cremers, David A.; Maurice, Sylvestre; Wiens, Roger C.; Fichet, Pascal

    2005-01-01

    Laser-induced Breakdown Spectroscopy (LIBS) is actively under development for future use on surface probes to Mars. The analytical method can be deployed for in-situ and/or stand-off analysis with the latter embodiment providing the greatest advantages compared to previous and current elemental analysis methods used for planetary surface analysis. For this application, LIBS must be thoroughly investigated in terms of analytical capabilities and flight-rated instruments must be developed. Because of the low pressure of the predominantly CO 2 atmosphere on Mars, studies are needed to understand analytical requirements and to determine performance under these conditions. Stand-off analysis demands the most stringent requirements on instrumentation. Therefore, it must be determined if the high performance components that are normally used in a typical LIBS laboratory setup, which are generally not optimized for small size and weight, are essential to obtain the maximum scientific return from a mission. A key component of a LIBS apparatus is the detection system consisting of a spectrograph and a detector. Here we present an evaluation of one design of a compact spectrograph (Ocean Optics HR2000) for in-situ and stand-off LIBS analyses of geological samples under Mars atmospheric conditions

  3. Search for life on Mars in surface samples: Lessons from the 1999 Marsokhod rover field experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newsom, Horton E.; Bishop, J.L.; Cockell, C.; Roush, T.L.; Johnson, J. R.

    2001-01-01

    The Marsokhod 1999 field experiment in the Mojave Desert included a simulation of a rover-based sample selection mission. As part of this mission, a test was made of strategies and analytical techniques for identifying past or present life in environments expected to be present on Mars. A combination of visual clues from high-resolution images and the detection of an important biomolecule (chlorophyll) with visible/near-infrared (NIR) spectroscopy led to the successful identification of a rock with evidence of cryptoendolithic organisms. The sample was identified in high-resolution images (3 times the resolution of the Imager for Mars Pathfinder camera) on the basis of a green tinge and textural information suggesting the presence of a thin, partially missing exfoliating layer revealing the organisms. The presence of chlorophyll bands in similar samples was observed in visible/NIR spectra of samples in the field and later confirmed in the laboratory using the same spectrometer. Raman spectroscopy in the laboratory, simulating a remote measurement technique, also detected evidence of carotenoids in samples from the same area. Laboratory analysis confirmed that the subsurface layer of the rock is inhabited by a community of coccoid Chroococcidioposis cyanobacteria. The identification of minerals in the field, including carbonates and serpentine, that are associated with aqueous processes was also demonstrated using the visible/NIR spectrometer. Other lessons learned that are applicable to future rover missions include the benefits of web-based programs for target selection and for daily mission planning and the need for involvement of the science team in optimizing image compression schemes based on the retention of visual signature characteristics. Copyright 2000 by the American Geophysical Union.

  4. The Benefits of Sample Return: Connecting Apollo Soils and Diviner Lunar Radiometer Remote Sensing Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greenhagen, B. T.; Donaldson-Hanna, K. L.; Thomas, I. R.; Bowles, N. E.; Allen, C. C.; Pieters, C. M.; Paige, D. A.

    2014-01-01

    The Diviner Lunar Radiometer, onboard NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, has produced the first global, high resolution, thermal infrared observations of an airless body. The Moon, which is the most accessible member of this most abundant class of solar system objects, is also the only body for which we have extraterrestrial samples with known spatial context. Here we present the results of a comprehensive study to reproduce an accurate simulated lunar environment, evaluate the most appropriate sample and measurement conditions, collect thermal infrared spectra of a representative suite of Apollo soils, and correlate them with Diviner observations of the lunar surface. We find that analyses of Diviner observations of individual sampling stations and SLE measurements of returned Apollo soils show good agreement, while comparisons to thermal infrared reflectance under terrestrial conditions do not agree well, which underscores the need for SLE measurements and validates the Diviner compositional dataset. Future work includes measurement of additional soils in SLE and cross comparisons with measurements in JPL Simulated Airless Body Emission Laboratory (SABEL).

  5. Possible Detection of Perchlorates by the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) Instrument: Comparison with Previous Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Navarro-Gonzalex, Rafael; Sutter, Brad; Archer, Doug; Ming, Doug; Eigenbrode, Jennifer; Franz, Heather; Glavin, Daniel; McAdam, Amy; Stern, Jennifer; McKay, Christopher; hide

    2013-01-01

    The first chemical analysis of soluble salts in the soil was carried out by the Phoenix Lander in the Martian Arctic [1]. Surprisingly, chlorine was present as magnesium or calcium perchlorate at 0.4 to 0.6 percent. Additional support for the identification of perchlorate came from the evolved gas analysis which detected the release of molecular oxygen at 350-550C [1]. When Mars-like soils from the Atacama Desert were spiked with magnesium perchlorate (1 percent) and heated using the Viking GC-MS protocol, nearly all the organics were combusted but a small amount was chlorinated, forming chloromethane and dichloromethane [2]. These chlorohydrocarbons were detected by the Viking GC-MS experiments when the Martian soil was analyzed but they were considered to be terrestrial contaminants [3]. Reinterpretation of the Viking results suggests Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument on board the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) ran four samples from an aeolian bedform named Rocknest. The samples analyzed were portioned from the fifth scoop at this location. The samples were heated to 835C at 35C/min with a He flow. The SAM QMS detected a major oxygen release (300-500C) [5], coupled with the release of chlorinated hydrocarbons (chloromethane, dichloromethane, trichloromethane, and chloromethylpropene) detected both by SAM QMS and GC-MS derived from known Earth organic contaminants in the instrument [6]. Calcium perchlorate appears to be the best candidate for evolved O2 in the Rocknest samples at this time but other Cl species (e.g., chlorates) are possible and must be evaluated. The potential detection of perchlorates in Rocknest material adds weight to the argument that both Viking Landers measured signatures of perchlorates. Even if the source of the organic carbon detected is still unknown, the chlorine source was likely Martian. Two mechanisms have been hypothesized for the formation of soil perchlorate: (1) Atmospheric oxidation of chlorine; and (2) UV photooxidation of

  6. Aseptically Sampled Organics in Subsurface Rocks From the Mars Analog Rio Tinto Experiment: An Analog For The Search for Deep Subsurface Life on Mars.}

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonaccorsi, R.; Stoker, C. R.

    2005-12-01

    The subsurface is the key environment for searching for life on planets lacking surface life. Subsurface ecosystems are of great relevance to astrobiology including the search for past/present life on Mars. The surface of Mars has conditions preventing current life but the subsurface might preserve organics and even host some life [1]. The Mars-Analog-Rio-Tinto-Experiment (MARTE) is performing a simulation of a Mars drilling experiment. This comprises conventional and robotic drilling of cores in a volcanically-hosted-massive-pyrite deposit [2] from the Iberian Pyritic Belt (IBP) and life detection experiments applying anti-contamination protocols (e.g., ATP Luminometry assay). The RT is considered an important analog of the Sinus Meridiani site on Mars and an ideal model analog for a deep subsurface Martian environment. Former results from MARTE suggest the existence of a relatively complex subsurface life including aerobic and anaerobic chemoautotrophs and strict anaerobic methanogens sustained by Fe and S minerals in anoxic conditions. A key requirement for the analysis of a subsurface sample on Mars is a set of simple tests that can help determine if the sample contains organic material of biological origin, and its potential for retaining definitive biosignatures. We report here on the presence of bulk organic matter Corg (0.03-0.05 Wt%), and Ntot (0.01-0.04 Wt%) and amount of measured ATP (Lightning MVP, Biocontrol) in weathered rocks (tuffs, gossan, pyrite stockwork from Borehole #8; >166m). This provides key insight on the type of trophic system sustaining the subsurface biosphere (i.e., heterotrophs vs. autotrophs) at RT. ATP data (Relative-Luminosity-Units, RLU) provide information on possible contamination and distribution of viable biomass with core depth (BH#8, and BH#7, ~3m). Avg. 153 RLU, i.e., surface vs. center of core, suggest that cleaness/sterility can be maintained when using a simple sterile protocol under field conditions. Results from this

  7. Design of a sample acquistion system for the Mars exobiological penetrator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomson, Ron; Gwynne, Owen

    1988-01-01

    The Mars Exobiological Penetrator will be imbedded into several locations on the Martian surface. It contains various scientific instruments, such as an Alpha-Particle Instrument (API), Differential Scanning Calorimeter (DSC), Evolved Gas Analyzer (EGA) and accelerometers. A sample is required for analysis in the API and DSC. To avoid impact contaminated material, this sample must be taken from soil greater than 2 cm away from the penetrator shell. This study examines the design of a dedicated sampling system including deployment, suspension, fore/after body coupling, sample gathering and placement. To prevent subsurface material from entering the penetrator sampling compartment during impact, a plug is placed in the exit hole of the wall. A U-lever device is used to hold this plug in the penetrator wall. The U-lever rotates upon initial motion of the core-grinder mechanism (CGM), releasing the plug. Research points to a combination of coring and grinding as a plausible solution to the problem of dry drilling. The CGM, driven by two compressed springs, will be deployed along a tracking system. A slowly varying load i.e., springs, is favored over a fixed displacement motion because of its adaptability to different material hardness. However, to accommodate sampling in a low density soil, two dash pots set a maximum transverse velocity. In addition, minimal power use is achieved by unidirectional motion of the CGM. The sample will be transported to the scientific instruments by means of a sample placement tray that is driven by a compressed spring to avoid unnecessary power usage. This paper also explores possible modifications for size, weight, and time as well as possible future studies.

  8. Regolith X-Ray Imaging Spectrometer (REXIS) Aboard the OSIRIS-REx Asteroid Sample Return Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masterson, R. A.; Chodas, M.; Bayley, L.; Allen, B.; Hong, J.; Biswas, P.; McMenamin, C.; Stout, K.; Bokhour, E.; Bralower, H.; Carte, D.; Chen, S.; Jones, M.; Kissel, S.; Schmidt, F.; Smith, M.; Sondecker, G.; Lim, L. F.; Lauretta, D. S.; Grindlay, J. E.; Binzel, R. P.

    2018-02-01

    The Regolith X-ray Imaging Spectrometer (REXIS) is the student collaboration experiment proposed and built by an MIT-Harvard team, launched aboard NASA's OSIRIS-REx asteroid sample return mission. REXIS complements the scientific investigations of other OSIRIS-REx instruments by determining the relative abundances of key elements present on the asteroid's surface by measuring the X-ray fluorescence spectrum (stimulated by the natural solar X-ray flux) over the range of energies 0.5 to 7 keV. REXIS consists of two components: a main imaging spectrometer with a coded aperture mask and a separate solar X-ray monitor to account for the Sun's variability. In addition to element abundance ratios (relative to Si) pinpointing the asteroid's most likely meteorite association, REXIS also maps elemental abundance variability across the asteroid's surface using the asteroid's rotation as well as the spacecraft's orbital motion. Image reconstruction at the highest resolution is facilitated by the coded aperture mask. Through this operation, REXIS will be the first application of X-ray coded aperture imaging to planetary surface mapping, making this student-built instrument a pathfinder toward future planetary exploration. To date, 60 students at the undergraduate and graduate levels have been involved with the REXIS project, with the hands-on experience translating to a dozen Master's and Ph.D. theses and other student publications.

  9. The Detection of Evolved Oxygen from the Rocknest Eolian Bedform Material by the Sample Analysis at Mars(SAM) instrument at the Mars Curiosity Landing Site

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutter, B.; Archer, D.; Ming, D.; Eigenbrode, J. L.; Franz, H.; Glavin, D. P.; McAdam, A.; Mahaffy, P.; Stern, J.; Navarro-Gonzalex, R.; hide

    2013-01-01

    The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument onboard the Curiosity rover detected an O2 gas release from the Rocknest eolain bedform (Fig. 1). The detection of perchlorate (ClO4-) by the Mars Phoenix Lander s Wet Chemistry Laboratory (WCL) [1] suggests that perchlorate is a possible candidate for evolved O2 release detected by SAM. The perchlorate would also serve as a source of chlorine in the chlorinated hydrocarbons detected by the SAM quadrupole mass spectrometer (QMS) and gas chromatography/mass spectrometer (GCMS) [2,3]. Chlorates (ClO3-) [4,5] and/or superoxides [6] may also be sources of evolved O2 from the Rocknest materials. The work objectives are to 1) evaluate the O2 release temperatures from Rocknest materials, 2) compare these O2 release temperatures with a series of perchlorates and chlorates, and 3) evaluate superoxide O2- sources and possible perchlorate interactions with other Rocknest phases during QMS analysis.

  10. Microbial Habitability in Gale Crater: Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) Instrument Detection of Microbial Essential Carbon and Nitrogen

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutter, B.; Ming, D. W.; Eigenbrode, J. E.; Steele, A.; Stern, J. C.; Gonzalez, R. N.; McAdam, A. C.; Mahaffy, P. R.

    2016-01-01

    Chemical analyses of Mars soils and sediments from previous landed missions have demonstrated that Mars surface materials possessed major (e.g., P, K, Ca, Mg, S) and minor (e.g., Fe, Mn, Zn, Ni, Cl) elements essential to support microbial life. However, the detection of microbial essential organic-carbon (C) and nitrate have been more elusive until the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) rover mission. Nitrate and organic-C in Gale Crater, Mars have been detected by the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument onboard the MSL Curiosity rover. Eolian fines and drilled sedimentary rock samples were heated in the SAM oven from approximately 30 to 860 degrees Centigrade where evolved gases (e.g., nitrous oxide (NO) and CO2) were released and analyzed by SAM’s quadrupole mass spectrometer (MS). The temperatures of evolved NO was assigned to nitrate while evolved CO2 was assigned to organic-C and carbonate. The CO2 releases in several samples occurred below 450 degrees Centigrade suggesting organic-C dominated in those samples. As much as 7 micromoles NO3-N per gram and 200 micromoles CO2-C per gram have been detected in the Gale Crater materials. These N and C levels coupled with assumed microbial biomass (9 x 10 (sup -7) micrograms per cell) C (0.5 micrograms C per micrograms cell) and N (0.14 micrograms N per micrograms cell) requirements, suggests that less than 1 percent and less than 10 percent of Gale Crater C and N, respectively, would be required if available, to accommodate biomass requirements of 1 by 10 (sup 5) cells per gram sediment. While nitrogen is the limiting nutrient, the potential exists that sufficient N and organic-C were present to support limited heterotrophic microbial populations that may have existed on ancient Mars.

  11. Mars Pathfinder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murdin, P.

    2000-11-01

    First of NASA's Discovery missions. Launched in December 1996 and arrived at Mars on 4 July 1997. Mainly intended as a technology demonstration mission. Used airbags to cushion the landing on Mars. The Carl Sagan Memorial station returned images of an ancient flood plain in Ares Vallis. The 10 kg Sojourner rover used an x-ray spectrometer to study the composition of rocks and travelled about 100 ...

  12. The Investigation of Chlorates as a Possible Source of Oxygen and Chlorine Detected by the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) Instrument in Gale Crater, Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutter, B.; Archer, D. P.; Ming, D. W.; Niles, P. B.; Eigenbrode, J. L.; Franz, H.; Glavin, D. P.; McAdam, A. C.; Mahaffy, P; Stern, J. C.; hide

    2014-01-01

    The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument onboard the Curiosity rover detect-ed O2 and HCl gas releases from the Rocknest (RN) eolian bedform and the John Klein (JK) and Cumberland (CB) drill hole materials in Gale Crater. Chlorinated hydrocarbons have also been detected by the SAM quadrupole mass spectrometer (QMS) and gas chromatography/mass spectrometer (GCMS). These detections along with the detection of perchlorate (ClO4-) by the Mars Phoenix Lander’s Wet Chemistry Laboratory (WCL) suggesting perchlorate is a possible candidate for evolved O2 and chlorine species. Laboratory thermal analysis of perchlorates has yet to provide an unequivocal temperature match to the SAM O2 and HCl release data. Iron mineralogy found in the Rocknest materials when mixed with Ca-perchlorate does cause O2 release temperatures to be closer match to the SAM O2 release data but more work is required in evaluating the catalytic effects of Fe mineralogy on perchlorate decomposition. Chlorates (ClO3-) are relevant Mars materials and potential O2 and Cl sources. The objective of this work is to evaluate the thermal decomposition of select chlorate (ClO3-) salts as possible sources of the O2 and HCl releases in the Gale Crater materials.

  13. The Investigation of Perchlorate/Iron Phase Mixtures as A Possible Source of Oxygen Detected by the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) Instrument in Gale Crater, Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutter, B.; Heil, E.; Morris, R. V.; Archer, P. D.; Ming, D. W.; Niles, P. B.; Eigenbrode, J. L.; Franz, H.; Freissinet C.; Glavin, D. P.; hide

    2015-01-01

    The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument onboard the Curiosity rover detected O2 and HCl gas releases from the Rocknest (RN) eolian bedform and the John Klein (JK) and Cumberland (CB) drill hole materials in Gale Crater. Chlorinated hydrocarbons have also been detected by the SAM quadrupole mass spectrometer (QMS) and gas chromatography/mass spectrometer (GCMS). These detections along with the detection of perchlorate (ClO4-) by the Mars Phoenix Lander's Wet Chemistry Laboratory (WCL) suggesting perchlorate is a possible candidate for evolved O2 and chlorine species. Laboratory thermal analysis of individual per-chlorates has yet to provide an unequivocal temperature match to the SAM O2 and HCl release data. These detections along with the detection of perchlorate (ClO4-) by the Mars Phoenix Lander's Wet Chemistry Laboratory suggested perchlorate is a possible candidate for evolved O2 and chlorine species. Laboratory thermal analysis of pure perchlorates has yet to provide an unequivocal temperature match to the SAM O2 and HCl release data. Analog laboratory analysis of iron mineralogy detected in Gale materials that was physically mixed with Ca- and Mg-perchlorate has been shown to catalyze lower O2 release temperatures and approach some SAM O2 release data. Instead of physical mixtures used in previous work, the work presented here utilized perchlorate solutions added to Fe phases. This technique allowed for perchlorate to come in closer contact with the Fe-phase and may more closely mimic Mars conditions where humidity can increase enough to cause deliquescence of the highly hygroscopic perchlorate phases. The objective of this work is to: 1) Utilize a laboratory SAM analog instrument to evaluate the O2 release temperatures from Mg- and Ca-perchlorates solutions applied to Fephases detetected in Gale Crate; and 2) Determine if perchlorate solutions can provide improved matches with the SAM O2 temperature release profiles.

  14. Out-of-sample Forecasting Performance of Won/Dollar Exchange Rate Return Volatility Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hojin Lee

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available We compare the out-of-sample forecasting performance of volatility models using daily exchange rate for the KRW/USD during the period from 1992 to 2008. For various forecasting horizons, historical volatility models with a long memory tend to make more accurate forecasts. Especially, we carefully observe the difference between the EWMA and the GARCH(1,1 model. Our empirical finding that the GARCH model puts too much weight on recent observations relative to those in the past is consistent with prior evidence showing that asset market volatility has a long memory, such as Ding and Granger (1996. The forecasting model with the lowest MSFE and VaR forecast error among the models we consider is the EWMA model in which the forecast volatility for the coming period is a weighted average of recent squared return with exponentially declining weights. In terms of forecast accuracy, it clearly dominates the widely accepted GARCH and rolling window GARCH models. We also present a multiple comparison of the out-of-sample forecasting performance of volatility using the stationary bootstrap of Politis and Romano (1994. We find that the White's reality check for the GARCH(1,1 expanding window model and the FIGARCH(1,1 expanding window model clearly reject the null hypothesis and there exists a better model than the two benchmark models. On the other hand, when the EWMA model is the benchmark, the White's for all forecasting horizons are very high, which indicates the null hypothesis may not be rejected. The Hansen's report the same results. The GARCH(1,1 expanding window model and the FIGARCH(1,1 expanding window model are dominated by the best competing model in most of the forecasting horizons. In contrast, the RiskMetrics model seems to be the most preferred. We also consider combining the forecasts generated by averaging the six raw forecasts and a trimmed set of forecasts which calculate the mean of the four forecasts after disregarding the highest and

  15. Evaluating the biological potential in samples returned from planetary satellites and small solar system bodies: framework for decision making

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    National Research Council Staff; Space Studies Board; Division on Engineering and Physical Sciences; National Research Council; National Academy of Sciences

    ... from Planetary Satellites and Small Solar System Bodies Framework for Decision Making Task Group on Sample Return from Small Solar System Bodies Space Studies Board Commission on Physical Sciences, Mathematics, and Applications National Research Council NATIONAL ACADEMY PRESS Washington, D.C. 1998 i Copyrightthe true use are Please breaks...

  16. Biomarker Analysis of Samples Visually Identified as Microbial in the Eocene Green River Formation: An Analogue for Mars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olcott Marshall, Alison; Cestari, Nicholas A

    2015-09-01

    One of the major exploration targets for current and future Mars missions are lithofacies suggestive of biotic activity. Although such lithofacies are not confirmation of biotic activity, they provide a way to identify samples for further analyses. To test the efficacy of this approach, we identified carbonate samples from the Eocene Green River Formation as "microbial" or "non-microbial" based on the macroscale morphology of their laminations. These samples were then crushed and analyzed by gas chromatography/mass spectroscopy (GC/MS) to determine their lipid biomarker composition. GC/MS analysis revealed that carbonates visually identified as "microbial" contained a higher concentration of more diverse biomarkers than those identified as "non-microbial," suggesting that this could be a viable detection strategy for selecting samples for further analysis or caching on Mars.

  17. Radar Observations of Asteroid 101955 Bennu and the OSIRIS-REx Sample Return Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nolan, M. C.; Benner, L.; Giorgini, J. D.; Howell, E. S.; Kerr, R.; Lauretta, D. S.; Magri, C.; Margot, J. L.; Scheeres, D. J.

    2017-12-01

    On September 24, 2023, the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft will return a sample of asteroid (101955) Bennu to the Earth. We chose the target of this mission in part because of the work we did over more than a decade using the Arecibo and Goldstone planetary radars to observe this asteroid. We observed Bennu (then known as 1999 RQ36) at Arecibo and Goldstone in 1999 and 2005, and at Arecibo in 2011. Radar imaging from the first two observing epochs provided a shape and size for Bennu, which greatly simplified mission planning. We know that the spacecraft will encounter a roundish asteroid 500 m in diameter with a distinct equatorial ridge [Nolan et al., 2013]. Bennu does not have the dramatic concavities seen in Itokawa and comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, the Hayabusa and Rosetta mission targets, respectively, which would have been obvious in radar imaging. Further radar ranging in 2011 provided a detection of the Yarkovsky effect, allowing us to constrain Bennu's mass and bulk density from radar measurement of non-gravitational forces acting on its orbit [Chesley et al., 2014]. The 2011 observations were particularly challenging, occurring during a management transition at the Arecibo Observatory, and would not have been possible without significant extra cooperation between the old and new managing organizations. As a result, we can predict Bennu's position to within a few km over the next 100 years, until its close encounter with the Earth in 2135. We know its shape to within ± 10 m (1σ) on the long and intermediate axes and ± 52 m on the polar diameter, and its pole orientation to within 5 degrees. The bulk density is 1260 ± 70 kg/m3 and the rotation is retrograde with a 4.297 ± 0.002 h period The OSIRIS-REx team is using these constraints to preplan the initial stages of proximity operations and dramatically reduce risk. The Figure shows the model and Arecibo radar images from 1999 (left), 2005 (center), and 2011 (right). Bennu is the faint dot near the center of

  18. Hayabusa2 Sample Catcher and Container: Metal-Seal System for Vacuum Encapsulation of Returned Samples with Volatiles and Organic Compounds Recovered from C-Type Asteroid Ryugu

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okazaki, Ryuji; Sawada, Hirotaka; Yamanouchi, Shinji; Tachibana, Shogo; Miura, Yayoi N.; Sakamoto, Kanako; Takano, Yoshinori; Abe, Masanao; Itoh, Shoichi; Yamada, Keita; Yabuta, Hikaru; Okamoto, Chisato; Yano, Hajime; Noguchi, Takaaki; Nakamura, Tomoki; Nagao, Keisuke

    2017-07-01

    The spacecraft Hayabusa2 was launched on December 3, 2014, to collect and return samples from a C-type asteroid, 162173 Ryugu (provisional designation, 1999 JU3). It is expected that the samples collected contain organic matter and water-bearing minerals and have key information to elucidate the origin and history of the Solar System and the evolution of bio-related organics prior to delivery to the early Earth. In order to obtain samples with volatile species without terrestrial contamination, based on lessons learned from the Hayabusa mission, the sample catcher and container of Hayabusa2 were refined from those used in Hayabusa. The improvements include (1) a mirror finish of the inner wall surface of the sample catcher and the container, (2) adoption of an aluminum metal sealing system, and (3) addition of a gas-sampling interface for gas collection and evacuation. The former two improvements were made to limit contamination of the samples by terrestrial atmosphere below 1 Pa after the container is sealed. The gas-sampling interface will be used to promptly collect volatile species released from the samples in the sample container after sealing of the container. These improvements maintain the value of the returned samples.

  19. Accretion and primary differentiation of Mars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Drake, M.J.

    1988-01-01

    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

  20. Detecting Organic Compounds Released from Iron Oxidizing Bacteria using Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) Like Instrument Protocols

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glavin, D. P.; Popa, R.; Martin, M. G.; Freissinet, C.; Fisk, M. R.; Dworkin, J. P.; Mahaffy, P. R.

    2012-01-01

    Mars is a planet of great interest for Astrobiology since its past environmental conditions are thought to have been favourable for the emergence life. At present, the Red Planet is extremely cold and dry and the surface is exposed to intense UV and ionizing radiation, conditions generally considered to be incompatible with life as we know it on Earth. It was proposed that the shallow subsurface of Mars, where temperatures can be above freezing and liquid water can exist on rock surfaces, could harbor chemolithoautotrophic bacteria such as the iron oxidizing microorganism Pseudomonas sp. HerB. The Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) mission will provide the next opportunity to carry out in situ measurements for organic compounds of possible biological origin on Mars. One instrument onboard MSL, called the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument suite, will carry out a broad and sensitive search for organic compounds in surface samples using either high temperature pyrolysis or chemical extraction followed by gas chromatography mass spectrometry. We present gas chromatograph mass spectrometer (GC/MS) data on crushed olivine rock powders that have been inoculated with Pseudomonas sp. HerB at different concentrations ranging from approx 10(exp 2) to 10(exp 7) cells per gram. The inoculated olivine samples were heated under helium carrier gas flow at 500 C and the pyrolysis products concentrated using a SAM-like hydrocarbon trap set at -20 C followed by trap heating and analysis by GC/Ms. In addition, the samples were also extracted using a low temperature "one-pot" chemical extraction technique using N-methyl, N-(tert-butyldimethylsilyl) trifluoroacetamide (MTBSTFA) as the silylating agent prior to GC/MS analysis. We identified several aldehydes, thiols, and alkene nitriles after pyrolysis GC/MS analysis of the bacteria that were not found in the olivine control samples that had not been inoculated with bacteria. The distribution of pyrolysis products extracted from the

  1. Measuring Sulfur Isotope Ratios from Solid Samples with the Sample Analysis at Mars Instrument and the Effects of Dead Time Corrections

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franz, H. B.; Mahaffy, P. R.; Kasprzak, W.; Lyness, E.; Raaen, E.

    2011-01-01

    The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument suite comprises the largest science payload on the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) "Curiosity" rover. SAM will perform chemical and isotopic analysis of volatile compounds from atmospheric and solid samples to address questions pertaining to habitability and geochemical processes on Mars. Sulfur is a key element of interest in this regard, as sulfur compounds have been detected on the Martian surface by both in situ and remote sensing techniques. Their chemical and isotopic composition can belp constrain environmental conditions and mechanisms at the time of formation. A previous study examined the capability of the SAM quadrupole mass spectrometer (QMS) to determine sulfur isotope ratios of SO2 gas from a statistical perspective. Here we discuss the development of a method for determining sulfur isotope ratios with the QMS by sampling SO2 generated from heating of solid sulfate samples in SAM's pyrolysis oven. This analysis, which was performed with the SAM breadboard system, also required development of a novel treatment of the QMS dead time to accommodate the characteristics of an aging detector.

  2. A Miniaturized Variable Pressure Scanning Electron Microscope (MVP-SEM) for In-Situ Mars Surface Sample Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edmunson, J.; Gaskin, J. A.; Jerman, G. A.; Harvey, R. P.; Doloboff, I. J.; Neidholdt, E. L.

    2016-01-01

    The Miniaturized Variable Pressure Scanning Electron Microscope (MVP-SEM) project, funded by the NASA Planetary Instrument Concepts for the Advancement of Solar System Observations (PICASSO) Research Opportunities in Space and Earth Sciences (ROSES), will build upon previous miniaturized SEM designs and recent advancements in variable pressure SEM's to design and build a SEM to complete analyses of samples on the surface of Mars using the atmosphere as an imaging medium. This project is a collaboration between NASA Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC), the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), electron gun and optics manufacturer Applied Physics Technologies, and small vacuum system manufacturer Creare. Dr. Ralph Harvery and environmental SEM (ESEM) inventor Dr. Gerry Danilatos serve as advisors to the team. Variable pressure SEMs allow for fine (nm-scale) resolution imaging and micron-scale chemical study of materials without sample preparation (e.g., carbon or gold coating). Charging of a sample is reduced or eliminated by the gas surrounding the sample. It is this property of ESEMs that make them ideal for locations where sample preparation is not yet feasible, such as the surface of Mars. In addition, the lack of sample preparation needed here will simplify the sample acquisition process and allow caching of the samples for future complementary payload use.

  3. Analysis of Mars Analogue Soil Samples Using Solid-Phase Microextraction, Organic Solvent Extraction and Gas Chromatography/Mass Spectrometry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orzechowska, G. E.; Kidd, R. D.; Foing, B. H.; Kanik, I.; Stoker, C.; Ehrenfreund, P.

    2011-01-01

    Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are robust and abundant molecules in extraterrestrial environments. They are found ubiquitously in the interstellar medium and have been identified in extracts of meteorites collected on Earth. PAHs are important target molecules for planetary exploration missions that investigate the organic inventory of planets, moons and small bodies. This study is part of an interdisciplinary preparation phase to search for organic molecules and life on Mars. We have investigated PAH compounds in desert soils to determine their composition, distribution and stability. Soil samples (Mars analogue soils) were collected at desert areas of Utah in the vicinity of the Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS), in the Arequipa region in Peru and from the Jutland region of Denmark. The aim of this study was to optimize the solid-phase microextraction (SPME) method for fast screening and determination of PAHs in soil samples. This method minimizes sample handling and preserves the chemical integrity of the sample. Complementary liquid extraction was used to obtain information on five- and six-ring PAH compounds. The measured concentrations of PAHs are, in general, very low, ranging from 1 to 60 ng g(sup -1). The texture of soils is mostly sandy loam with few samples being 100% silt. Collected soils are moderately basic with pH values of 8-9 except for the Salten Skov soil, which is slightly acidic. Although the diverse and variable microbial populations of the samples at the sample sites might have affected the levels and variety of PAHs detected, SPME appears to be a rapid, viable field sampling technique with implications for use on planetary missions.

  4. Are Samples Obtained after Return to Earth Reflective of Spaceflight or Increased Gravity?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wade, C. R.; Holton, E.; Baer, L.; Moran, M.

    2001-01-01

    Upon return to Earth, following space flight, living systems are immediately exposed to an increase in gravity of 1G. It has been difficult to differentiate between changes that are residuals of the acclimation to space flight from those resulting from acute exposure to an increase in =gravity upon re-entry. We compared previously reported changes observed in male Sprague-Dawley rats upon return to Earth to those induced by centrifugation, because both paradigms result in an increase of 1G. With both treatments there was a reduction in body mass, due to reduced food intake and increased urine output. The decrease in food intake was initially greater with centrifugation. The magnitudes of the changes in food intake and urine output were similar in both treatments. However, the slightly greater initial loss in body mass with centrifugation was due to a decrease in water intake not seen after space flight. The absence of pronounced differences between these treatments suggest the responses observed after landing are not residuals of adaptation to the space flight environment, but the result of adaptation to an increase in the level of gravity.

  5. Cross Check of the Tax Base in Serbia – Informative Tax Return Sample

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raonić Ivan

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available The tax system of the Republic of Serbia is characterized by a very low level of income taxation. It is a particularly acute problem in cross-checking the tax base. The legislature tried to solve this problem by the introduction of the informative tax return (IPP. The problem is even greater because the situations encountered have not been analysed in science and tax theory, and very often have not been covered by applicable laws. A specific challenge for the tax authorities represent taxpayers whose incomes are primarily realized abroad (usually persons from the world of entertainment. This paper describes the basic forms of tax offences characteristic of income tax evasion and discusses how to solve them, with a particular focus on the implementation of cross-checking the tax base.

  6. Mars Relays Satellite Orbit Design Considerations for Global Support of Robotic Surface Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hastrup, Rolf; Cesarone, Robert; Cook, Richard; Knocke, Phillip; McOmber, Robert

    1993-01-01

    This paper discusses orbit design considerations for Mars relay satellite (MRS)support of globally distributed robotic surface missions. The orbit results reported in this paper are derived from studies of MRS support for two types of Mars robotic surface missions: 1) the mars Environmental Survey (MESUR) mission, which in its current definition would deploy a global network of up to 16 small landers, and 2)a Small Mars Sample Return (SMSR) mission, which included four globally distributed landers, each with a return stage and one or two rovers, and up to four additional sets of lander/rover elements in an extended mission phase.

  7. Detection of trace organics in Mars analog samples containing perchlorate by laser desorption/ionization mass spectrometry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xiang; Danell, Ryan M; Brinckerhoff, William B; Pinnick, Veronica T; van Amerom, Friso; Arevalo, Ricardo D; Getty, Stephanie A; Mahaffy, Paul R; Steininger, Harald; Goesmann, Fred

    2015-02-01

    Evidence from recent Mars missions indicates the presence of perchlorate salts up to 1 wt % level in the near-surface materials. Mixed perchlorates and other oxychlorine species may complicate the detection of organic molecules in bulk martian samples when using pyrolysis techniques. To address this analytical challenge, we report here results of laboratory measurements with laser desorption mass spectrometry, including analyses performed on both commercial and Mars Organic Molecule Analyzer (MOMA) breadboard instruments. We demonstrate that the detection of nonvolatile organics in selected spiked mineral-matrix materials by laser desorption/ionization (LDI) mass spectrometry is not inhibited by the presence of up to 1 wt % perchlorate salt. The organics in the sample are not significantly degraded or combusted in the LDI process, and the parent molecular ion is retained in the mass spectrum. The LDI technique provides distinct potential benefits for the detection of organics in situ on the martian surface and has the potential to aid in the search for signs of life on Mars.

  8. Mars Atmosphere Resource Verification INsitu (MARVIN) - In Situ Resource Demonstration for the Mars 2020 Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanders, Gerald B.; Araghi, Koorosh; Ess, Kim M.; Valencia, Lisa M.; Muscatello, Anthony C.; Calle, Carlos I.; Clark, Larry; Iacomini, Christie

    2014-01-01

    The making of oxygen from resources in the Martian atmosphere, known as In Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU), has the potential to provide substantial benefits for future robotic and human exploration. In particular, the ability to produce oxygen on Mars for use in propulsion, life support, and power systems can provide significant mission benefits such as a reducing launch mass, lander size, and mission and crew risk. To advance ISRU for possible incorporation into future human missions to Mars, NASA proposed including an ISRU instrument on the Mars 2020 rover mission, through an announcement of opportunity (AO). The purpose of the the Mars Atmosphere Resource Verification INsitu or (MARVIN) instrument is to provide the first demonstration on Mars of oxygen production from acquired and stored Martian atmospheric carbon dioxide, as well as take measurements of atmospheric pressure and temperature, and of suspended dust particle sizes and amounts entrained in collected atmosphere gases at different times of the Mars day and year. The hardware performance and environmental data obtained will be critical for future ISRU systems that will reduce the mass of propellants and other consumables launched from Earth for robotic and human exploration, for better understanding of Mars dust and mitigation techniques to improve crew safety, and to help further define Mars global circulation models and better understand the regional atmospheric dynamics on Mars. The technologies selected for MARVIN are also scalable for future robotic sample return and human missions to Mars using ISRU.

  9. The Sample at Mars Analysis (SAM) Detections of CO2 and CO in Sedimentary Material from Gale Crater, Mars: Implications for the Presence of Organic Carbon and Microbial Habitability on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutter, Brad; Eigenbrode, Jennifer L.; Steele, Andrew; Ming, Douglas W.

    2016-01-01

    Sedimentary rock samples heated to 860 degrees Centigrade in the SAM (Sample at Mars) instrument evolved CO2 and CO indicating the presence of organic-carbon(C) in Gale Crater materials. Martian or exogenous (meteoritic, interplanetary dust) CO2 and CO could be derived from combustion of simple organics (less than 300 degrees Centigrade), complex refractory organics/amorphous carbon (300-600 degrees Centigrade), and/or magmatic carbon (greater than 600 degrees Centigrade) as result of thermal decomposition of Gale Crater perchlorates, and sulfates present that produce O2. Oxidized organic compounds could also evolve CO2 and CO over broad temperature range (150 to 800 degrees Centigrade) and such organics are expected on Mars via exogenous sources. Alternatively, organic-C could also have been oxidized to carboxylic acids [e.g, mellitic acid (RCOOH), acetate (CH3CO2-), and oxalates (C2O42-)] by oxidative radiolytic weathering, or other oxidation processes. The presence of oxidized organics is consistent with the limited detection of reduced organic-C phases by the SAM-gas chromatography. Organic-C content as determined by CO2 and CO contents could range between 800 and 2400 parts per million C indicating that substantial organic-C component is present in Gale Crater. There are contributions from SAM background however, even in worst-case scenarios, this would only account for as much as half of the detected CO2 and CO. Nevertheless, if organic-C levels were assumed to have existed in a reduced form on ancient Mars and this was bioavailable C, then less than 1 percent of C in Gale Crater sediments could have supported an exclusively heterotrophic microbial population of 1 by 10 (sup 5) cells per gram sediment (assumes 9 by 10 (sup -7) microgram per cell and 0.5 micrograms C per microgram cell). While other essential nutrients (e.g., S and P) could be limiting, organic-C contents, may have been sufficient to support limited heterotrophic microbial populations on

  10. A Multi-Decadal Sample Return Campaign Will Advance Lunar and Solar System Science and Exploration by 2050

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neal, C. R.; Lawrence, S. J.

    2017-01-01

    There have been 11 missions to the Moon this century, 10 of which have been orbital, from 5 different space agencies. China became the third country to successfully soft-land on the Moon in 2013, and the second to successfully remotely operate a rover on the lunar surface. We now have significant global datasets that, coupled with the 1990s Clementine and Lunar Prospector missions, show that the sample collection is not representative of the lithologies present on the Moon. The M3 data from the Indian Chandrayaan-1 mission have identified lithologies that are not present/under-represented in the sample collection. LRO datasets show that volcanism could be as young as 100 Ma and that significant felsic complexes exist within the lunar crust. A multi-decadal sample return campaign is the next logical step in advancing our understanding of lunar origin and evolution and Solar System processes.

  11. Priority Science Targets for Future Sample Return Missions within the Solar System Out to the Year 2050

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCubbin, F. M.; Allton, J. H.; Barnes, J. J.; Boyce, J. W.; Burton, A. S.; Draper, D. S.; Evans, C. A.; Fries, M. D.; Jones, J. H.; Keller, L. P.; hide

    2017-01-01

    The Astromaterials Acquisition and Curation Office (henceforth referred to herein as NASA Curation Office) at NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC) is responsible for curating all of NASA's extraterrestrial samples. JSC presently curates 9 different astromaterials collections: (1) Apollo samples, (2) LUNA samples, (3) Antarctic meteorites, (4) Cosmic dust particles, (5) Microparticle Impact Collection [formerly called Space Exposed Hardware], (6) Genesis solar wind, (7) Star-dust comet Wild-2 particles, (8) Stardust interstellar particles, and (9) Hayabusa asteroid Itokawa particles. In addition, the next missions bringing carbonaceous asteroid samples to JSC are Hayabusa 2/ asteroid Ryugu and OSIRIS-Rex/ asteroid Bennu, in 2021 and 2023, respectively. The Hayabusa 2 samples are provided as part of an international agreement with JAXA. The NASA Curation Office plans for the requirements of future collections in an "Advanced Curation" program. Advanced Curation is tasked with developing procedures, technology, and data sets necessary for curating new types of collections as envisioned by NASA exploration goals. Here we review the science value and sample curation needs of some potential targets for sample return missions over the next 35 years.

  12. Sampling returns for realized variance calculations: tick time or transaction time?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Griffin, J.E.; Oomen, R.C.A.

    2008-01-01

    This article introduces a new model for transaction prices in the presence of market microstructure noise in order to study the properties of the price process on two different time scales, namely, transaction time where prices are sampled with every transaction and tick time where prices are

  13. Prompt Gamma Activation Analysis (PGAA): Technique of choice for nondestructive bulk analysis of returned comet samples

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lindstrom, D.J.; Lindstrom, R.M.

    1989-01-01

    Prompt gamma activation analysis (PGAA) is a well-developed analytical technique. The technique involves irradiation of samples in an external neutron beam from a nuclear reactor, with simultaneous counting of gamma rays produced in the sample by neutron capture. Capture of neutrons leads to excited nuclei which decay immediately with the emission of energetic gamma rays to the ground state. PGAA has several advantages over other techniques for the analysis of cometary materials: (1) It is nondestructive; (2) It can be used to determine abundances of a wide variety of elements, including most major and minor elements (Na, Mg, Al, Si, P, K, Ca, Ti, Cr, Mn, Fe, Co, Ni), volatiles (H, C, N, F, Cl, S), and some trace elements (those with high neutron capture cross sections, including B, Cd, Nd, Sm, and Gd); and (3) It is a true bulk analysis technique. Recent developments should improve the technique's sensitivity and accuracy considerably

  14. Landing site rationality scaling for subsurface sampling on Mars—Case study for ExoMars Rover-like missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kereszturi, Akos

    2012-11-01

    Subsurface sampling will be important in the robotic exploration of Mars in the future, and this activity requires a somewhat different approach in landing site selection than earlier, surface analysis focused missions. In this work theoretical argumentation for the selection of ideal sites is summarized, including various parameters that were defined as examples for the earlier four candidate landing sites of Mars Science Laboratory. The aim here was to compare interesting sites; the decision on the final site does not affect this work. Analyzing the theoretical background, to identify ideal locations for subsurface analysis, several factors could be identified by remote sensing, including the dust and dune coverage, the cap layer distribution as well as the location of probable important outcrops. Beyond the fact that image based information on the rock hardness on Mars is lacking, more work would be also useful to put the interesting sites into global context and to understand the role of secondary cratering in age estimation. More laboratory work would be also necessary to improve our knowledge on the extraction and preservation of organic materials under different conditions. Beyond the theoretical argumentation mentioned above, the size and accessibility of possible important shallow subsurface materials were analyzed at the four earlier candidate landing sites of Mars Science Laboratory. At the sample terrains, interesting but inaccessible, interesting and sideward accessible, and interesting and from above accessible outcrops were identified. Surveying these outcrop types at the sample terrains, the currently available datasets showed only 3-9% of exposed strata over the entire analyzed area is present at Eberswalde and Holden crater, and individual outcrops have an average diameter between 100 and 400 m there. For Gale crater and Mawrth Valles region, these parameters were 46-35% of exposed strata, with an average outcrop diameter of ˜300 m. In the case

  15. Processes to Open the Container and the Sample Catcher of the Hayabusa Returned Capsule in the Planetary Material Sample Curation Facility of JAXA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujimura, A.; Abe, M.; Yada, T.; Nakamura, T.; Noguchi, T.; Okazaki, R.; Ishibashi, Y.; Shirai, K.; Okada, T.; Yano, H.; hide

    2011-01-01

    Japanese spacecraft Hayabusa, which returned from near-Earth-asteroid Itokawa, successfully returned its reentry capsule to the Earth, the Woomera Prohibited Area in Australia in Jun 13th, 2010, as detailed in another paper [1]. The capsule introduced into the Planetary Material Sample Curation Facility in the Sagamihara campus of JAXA in the early morning of June 18th. Hereafter, we describe a series of processes for the returned capsule and the container to recover gas and materials in there. A transportation box of the recovered capsule was cleaned up on its outer surface beforehand and introduced into the class 10,000 clean room of the facility. Then, the capsule was extracted from the box and its plastic bag was opened and checked and photographed the outer surface of the capsule. The capsule was composed of the container, a backside ablator, a side ablator, an electronic box and a supporting frame. The container consists of an outer lid, an inner lid, a frame for latches, a container and a sample catcher, which is composed of room A and B and a rotational cylinder. After the first check, the capsule was packed in a plastic bag with N2 again, and transferred to the Chofu campus in JAXA, where the X-ray CT instrument is situated. The first X-ray CT analysis was performed on the whole returned capsule for confirming the conditions of latches and O-ring seal of the container. The analysis showed that the latches of the container should have worked normally, and that the double Orings of the container seemed to be sealed its sample catcher with no problem. After the first X-ray CT, the capsule was sent back to Sagamihara and introduced in the clean room to exclude the electronic box and the side ablator from the container by hand tools. Then the container with the backside ablator was set firmly to special jigs to fix the lid of container tightly to the container and set to a milling machine. The backside ablator was drilled by the machine to expose heads of bolts

  16. Capillary Electrophoresis Analysis of Organic Amines and Amino Acids in Saline and Acidic Samples Using the Mars Organic Analyzer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stockton, Amanda M.; Chiesl, Thomas N.; Lowenstein, Tim K.; Amashukeli, Xenia; Grunthaner, Frank; Mathies, Richard A.

    2009-11-01

    The Mars Organic Analyzer (MOA) has enabled the sensitive detection of amino acid and amine biomarkers in laboratory standards and in a variety of field sample tests. However, the MOA is challenged when samples are extremely acidic and saline or contain polyvalent cations. Here, we have optimized the MOA analysis, sample labeling, and sample dilution buffers to handle such challenging samples more robustly. Higher ionic strength buffer systems with pKa values near pH 9 were developed to provide better buffering capacity and salt tolerance. The addition of ethylaminediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA) ameliorates the negative effects of multivalent cations. The optimized protocol utilizes a 75 mM borate buffer (pH 9.5) for Pacific Blue labeling of amines and amino acids. After labeling, 50 mM (final concentration) EDTA is added to samples containing divalent cations to ameliorate their effects. This optimized protocol was used to successfully analyze amino acids in a saturated brine sample from Saline Valley, California, and a subcritical water extract of a highly acidic sample from the Río Tinto, Spain. This work expands the analytical capabilities of the MOA and increases its sensitivity and robustness for samples from extraterrestrial environments that may exhibit pH and salt extremes as well as metal ions.

  17. The Influence of Mineralogy on Recovering Organic Acids from Mars Analogue Materials Using the One-Pot Derivatization Experiment on the Sample Analysis at Mars(SAM) Instrument Suite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stalport, Fabien; Glavin, Daniel P.; Eigenbrode, J. L.; Bish, D.; Blake, D.; Coll, P.; Szopa, C.; Buch, A.; McAdam, A.; Dworkin, J. P.; hide

    2012-01-01

    The search for complex organic molecules on Mars, including important biomolecules such as amino acids and carboxylic acids, will require a chemical extraction and a derivatization step to transform these organic compounds into species that are sufficiently volatile to be detected by gas chromatography mass spectrometry (GCMS). We have developed a ''one-pot'' extraction and chemical derivatization protocol using N-methyl-N-(tert-butyldimethylsilyl) trifluoroacetamide (MTBSTFA) and dimethylformamide (DMF) for the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) experiment instrument suite on NASA's the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) mission. The temperature and duration of the derivatization reaction, pre-concentration of chemical derivatives, and gas chromatographic separation parameters have been optimized under SAM instrument design constraints. MTBSTFA/DMF extraction and derivatization at 300 1C for several minutes of a variety of terrestrial Mars analog materials facilitated the detection of amino acids and carboxylic acids in a surface soil sample collected from the Atacama Desert and a carbonate-rich stromatolite sample from Svalbard. However, the rapid reaction of MTBSTFA with water in several analog materials that contained high abundances of hydrated minerals, and the possible deactivation of derivatized compounds by iron oxides, as detected by XRD/XRF using the CheMin field unit Terra, proved to be highly problematic for the direct extraction of organics using MTBSTFA. The combination of pyrolysis and two different wet-chemical derivatization methods employed by SAM should enable a wide range of organic compounds to be detected by GCMS if present on Mars.

  18. A Vision for the Exploration of Mars: Robotic Precursors Followed by Humans to Mars Orbit in 2033

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sellers, Piers J.; Garvin, James B.; Kinney, Anne L.; Amato, Michael J.; White, Nicholas E.

    2012-01-01

    The reformulation of the Mars program gives NASA a rare opportunity to deliver a credible vision in which humans, robots, and advancements in information technology combine to open the deep space frontier to Mars. There is a broad challenge in the reformulation of the Mars exploration program that truly sets the stage for: 'a strategic collaboration between the Science Mission Directorate (SMD), the Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate (HEOMD) and the Office of the Chief Technologist, for the next several decades of exploring Mars'.Any strategy that links all three challenge areas listed into a true long term strategic program necessitates discussion. NASA's SMD and HEOMD should accept the President's challenge and vision by developing an integrated program that will enable a human expedition to Mars orbit in 2033 with the goal of returning samples suitable for addressing the question of whether life exists or ever existed on Mars

  19. Nonablative lightweight thermal protection system for Mars Aeroflyby Sample collection mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suzuki, Toshiyuki; Aoki, Takuya; Ogasawara, Toshio; Fujita, Kazuhisa

    2017-07-01

    In this study, the concept of a nonablative lightweight thermal protection system (NALT) were proposed for a Mars exploration mission currently under investigation in Japan. The NALT consists of a carbon/carbon (C/C) composite skin, insulator tiles, and a honeycomb sandwich panel. Basic thermal characteristics of the NALT were obtained by conducting heating tests in high-enthalpy facilities. Thermal conductivity values of the insulator tiles as well as the emissivity values of the C/C skin were measured to develop a numerical analysis code for predicting NALT's thermal performance in flight environments. Finally, a breadboard model of a 600-mm diameter NALT aeroshell was developed and qualified through vibration and thermal vacuum tests.

  20. Spearman's "law of diminishing returns" and the role of test reliability investigated in a large sample of Danish military draftees

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Teasdale, Thomas William; Hartmann, P.

    2005-01-01

    The present article investigates Spearman's "Law of Diminishing Returns" (SLODR), which hypothesizes that the g saturation for cognitive tests is lower for high ability subjects than for low ability subjects. This hypothesis was tested in a large sample of Danish military draftees (N = 6757) who...... were representative of the young adult male population, aged 18-19, and tested with a group-administered intelligence test comprised of four subtests. The aim of the study was twofold. The first was to reproduce previous SLODR findings by the present authors. This was done by replicating...... in reliability could account for the difference in g saturation across ability groups. The results showed that the reliability was larger for the High ability group, thereby not explaining the present findings....

  1. Officine Galileo for Mars Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Battistelli, E.; Tacconi, M.

    1999-09-01

    The interest for Mars's exploration is continuously increasing. Officine Galileo is engaged in this endeavor with several programmes. The exobiology is, of course, a stimulating field; presently Officine Galileo is leading a team with Dasa and Tecnospazio, under ESA contract, for the definition of a facility for the search of extinct life on Mars through the detection of indicators of life. The system, to be embarked on a Mars lander, is based on a drill to take rock samples underneath the oxidised soil layer, on a sample preparation and distribution system devoted to condition and bring the sample to a set of analytical instruments to carry out in-situ chemical and mineralogical investigations. The facility benefits of the presence of optical microscope, gas chromatograph, several spectrometers (Raman, Mass, Mossbauer, APX-Ray), and further instruments. In the frame of planetology, Officine Galileo is collaborating with several Principal Investigators to the definition of a set of instruments to be integrated on the Mars 2003 Lander (a NASA-ASI cooperation). A drill (by Tecnospazio), with the main task to collect Mars soil samples for the subsequent storage and return to Earth, will have the capability to perform several soil analyses, e.g. temperature and near infrared reflectivity spectra down to 50 cm depth, surface thermal and electrical conductivity, sounding of electromagnetic properties down to a few hundreds meter, radioactivity. Moreover a kit of instruments for in-situ soil samples analyses if foreseen; it is based on a dust analyser, an IR spectrometer, a thermofluorescence sensor, and a radioactivity analyser. The attention to the Red Planet is growing, in parallel with the findings of present and planned missions. In the following years the technology of Officine Galileo will carry a strong contribution to the science of Mars.

  2. Detection of Evolved Carbon Dioxide in the Rocknest Eolian Bedform by the Sample Analysis at Mars(SAM) Instrument at the Mars Curiosity Landing Site

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutter, B.; Archer, D.; McAdam, A.; Franz, H.; Ming, D. W.; Eigenbrode, J. L.; Glavin, D. P.; Mahaffy, P.; Stern, J.; Navarro-Gonzalez, R.

    2013-01-01

    The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument detected four releases of carbon dioxide (CO2) that ranged from 100 to 700 C from the Rocknest eolian bedform material (Fig. 1). Candidate sources of CO2 include adsorbed CO2, carbonate(s), combusted organics that are either derived from terrestrial contamination and/or of martian origin, occluded or trapped CO2, and other sources that have yet to be determined. The Phoenix Lander s Thermal Evolved Gas Analyzer (TEGA) detected two CO2 releases (400-600, 700-840 C) [1,2]. The low temperature release was attributed to Fe- and/or Mg carbonates [1,2], per-chlorate interactions with carbonates [3], nanophase carbonates [4] and/or combusted organics [1]. The high temperature CO2 release was attributed to a calcium bearing carbonate [1,2]. No evidence of a high temperature CO2 release similar to the Phoenix material was detected in the Rocknest materials by SAM. The objectives of this work are to evaluate the temperature and total contribution of each Rocknest CO2 release and their possible sources. Four CO2 releases from the Rocknest material were detected by SAM. Potential sources of CO2 are adsorbed CO2, (peak 1) and Fe/Mg carbonates (peak 4). Only a fraction of peaks 2 and 3 (0.01 C wt.%) may be partially attributed to combustion of organic contamination. Meteoritic organics mixed in the Rocknest bedform could be present, but the peak 2 and 3 C concentration (approx.0.21 C wt. %) is likely too high to be attributed solely to meteoritic organic C. Other inorganic sources of C such as interactions of perchlorates and carbonates and sources yet to be identified will be evaluated to account for CO2 released from the thermal decomposition of Rocknest material.

  3. Planetary protection issues linked to human missions to Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Debus, A.

    According to United Nations Treaties and handled presently by the Committee of Space Research COSPAR the exploration of the Solar System has to comply with planetary protection requirements The goal of planetary protection is to protect celestial bodies from terrestrial contamination and also to protect the Earth environment from an eventual biocontamination carried by return samples or by space systems returning to the Earth Mars is presently one of the main target at exobiology point of view and a lot of missions are operating on travel or scheduled for its exploration Some of them include payload dedicated to the search of life or traces of life and one of the goals of these missions is also to prepare sample return missions with the ultimate objective to walk on Mars Robotic missions to Mars have to comply with planetary protection specifications well known presently and planetary protection programs are implemented with a very good reliability taking into account an experience of 40 years now For sample return missions a set of stringent requirements have been approved by the COSPAR and technical challenges have now to be won in order to preserve Earth biosphere from an eventual contamination risk Sending astronauts on Mars will gather all these constraints added with the human dimension of the mission The fact that the astronauts are huge contamination sources for Mars and that they are also potential carrier of a contamination risk back to Earth add also ethical considerations to be considered For the preparation of a such

  4. A Mission Concept: Re-Entry Hopper-Aero-Space-Craft System on-Mars (REARM-Mars)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davoodi, Faranak

    2013-01-01

    Future missions to Mars that would need a sophisticated lander, hopper, or rover could benefit from the REARM Architecture. The mission concept REARM Architecture is designed to provide unprecedented capabilities for future Mars exploration missions, including human exploration and possible sample-return missions, as a reusable lander, ascend/descend vehicle, refuelable hopper, multiple-location sample-return collector, laboratory, and a cargo system for assets and humans. These could all be possible by adding just a single customized Re-Entry-Hopper-Aero-Space-Craft System, called REARM-spacecraft, and a docking station at the Martian orbit, called REARM-dock. REARM could dramatically decrease the time and the expense required to launch new exploratory missions on Mars by making them less dependent on Earth and by reusing the assets already designed, built, and sent to Mars. REARM would introduce a new class of Mars exploration missions, which could explore much larger expanses of Mars in a much faster fashion and with much more sophisticated lab instruments. The proposed REARM architecture consists of the following subsystems: REARM-dock, REARM-spacecraft, sky-crane, secure-attached-compartment, sample-return container, agile rover, scalable orbital lab, and on-the-road robotic handymen.

  5. Respiratory health as a predictor of questionnaire return in a sample of United States underground coal miners

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Trent, R B; Ames, R G

    1987-06-01

    A logistic model was used to analyse questionnaire return in a postal survey of 311 coalminers, who had left their place of employment between 1977 and 1982. Three measures of respiratory health, obstruction, restriction, and presence of chronic bronchitis symptoms, were included in the model as predictors together with the possibly confounding factors of age, education and marital and smoking status. Age was positively associated with questionnaire return (p<0.001). Speed of return, and whether the return was in response to a prompt, were not predicted by either the respiratory health measures or any of the other possibly confounding variables. 47 refs., 2 tabs.

  6. Fluvial processes on Mars: Erosion and sedimentation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Squyres, Steven W.

    1988-01-01

    One of the most important discoveries of the Mariner 9 and Viking missions to Mars was evidence of change of the Martian surface by the action of liquid water. From the standpoint of a Mars Rover/Sample Return Mission, fluvial activity on Mars is important in two ways: (1) channel formation has deeply eroded the Martian crust, providing access to relatively undisturbed subsurface units; and (2) much of the material eroded from channels may have been deposited in standing bodies of liquid water. The most striking fluvial erosion features on Mars are the outflow channels. A second type of channel apparently caused by flow of liquid water is the valley systems. These are similar to terrestial drainage systems. The sedimentary deposits of outflow channels are often difficult to identfy. No obvious deposits such as deltaic accumulations are visible in Viking images. Another set of deposits that may be water lain and that date approx. from the epoch of outflow channels are the layered deposits in the Valles Marineris. From the standpoint of a Mars Rover/Sample Return mission, the problem with all of these water-lain sediments is their age, or rather the lack of it.

  7. Increased Science Instrumentation Funding Strengthens Mars Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graham, Lee D.; Graff, T. G.

    2012-01-01

    As the strategic knowledge gaps mature for the exploration of Mars, Mars sample return (MSR), and Phobos/Deimos missions, one approach that becomes more probable involves smaller science instrumentation and integrated science suites. Recent technological advances provide the foundation for a significant evolution of instrumentation; however, the funding support is currently too small to fully utilize these advances. We propose that an increase in funding for instrumentation development occur in the near-term so that these foundational technologies can be applied. These instruments would directly address the significant knowledge gaps for humans to Mars orbit, humans to the Martian surface, and humans to Phobos/ Deimos. They would also address the topics covered by the Decadal Survey and the Mars scientific goals, objectives, investigations and priorities as stated by the MEPAG. We argue that an increase of science instrumentation funding would be of great benefit to the Mars program as well as the potential for human exploration of the Mars system. If the total non-Earth-related planetary science instrumentation budget were increased 100% it would not add an appreciable amount to the overall NASA budget and would provide the real potential for future breakthroughs. If such an approach were implemented in the near-term, NASA would benefit greatly in terms of science knowledge of the Mars, Phobos/Deimos system, exploration risk mitigation, technology development, and public interest.

  8. Educational Attainment and Smoking Status in a National Sample of American Adults; Evidence for the Blacks’ Diminished Return

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shervin Assari

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Background: Although higher socioeconomic status (SES indicators such as educational attainment are linked with health behaviors, the Blacks’ Diminished Return theory posits that the protective effects of SES are systemically smaller for Blacks than Whites. Aims: To explore the Black/White differences in the association between education and smoking. Methods: This cross-sectional study used the Health Information National Trends Survey (HINTS 2017 (n = 3217. HINTS is a national survey of American adults. The current analysis included 2277 adults who were either Whites (n = 1868; 82% or Blacks (n = 409; 18%. The independent variable was educational attainment, and the dependent variables were ever and current (past 30-day smoking. Demographic factors (age and gender were covariates. Race was the focal moderator. Results: In the pooled sample, higher educational attainment was associated with lower odds of ever and current smoking. Race interacted with the effects of higher educational attainment on current smoking, suggesting a stronger protective effect of higher education against current smoking for Whites than Blacks. Race did not interact with the effect of educational attainment on odds of ever smoking. Conclusions: In line with previous research in the United States, education is more strongly associated with health and health behaviors in Whites than Blacks. Smaller protective effects of education on health behaviors may be due to the existing racism across institutions such as the education system and labor market.

  9. Educational Attainment and Smoking Status in a National Sample of American Adults; Evidence for the Blacks' Diminished Return.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Assari, Shervin; Mistry, Ritesh

    2018-04-16

    Although higher socioeconomic status (SES) indicators such as educational attainment are linked with health behaviors, the Blacks’ Diminished Return theory posits that the protective effects of SES are systemically smaller for Blacks than Whites. To explore the Black/White differences in the association between education and smoking. This cross-sectional study used the Health Information National Trends Survey (HINTS) 2017 ( n = 3217). HINTS is a national survey of American adults. The current analysis included 2277 adults who were either Whites ( n = 1868; 82%) or Blacks ( n = 409; 18%). The independent variable was educational attainment, and the dependent variables were ever and current (past 30-day) smoking. Demographic factors (age and gender) were covariates. Race was the focal moderator. In the pooled sample, higher educational attainment was associated with lower odds of ever and current smoking. Race interacted with the effects of higher educational attainment on current smoking, suggesting a stronger protective effect of higher education against current smoking for Whites than Blacks. Race did not interact with the effect of educational attainment on odds of ever smoking. In line with previous research in the United States, education is more strongly associated with health and health behaviors in Whites than Blacks. Smaller protective effects of education on health behaviors may be due to the existing racism across institutions such as the education system and labor market.

  10. Pollen deposition in tauber traps and surface soil samples in the Mar Chiquita coastal lagoon area, pampa grasslands (Argentina

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabiana Latorre

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Estimations of airborne pollen loadings deposited in Tauber traps were studied in a coastal lagoon from south-eastern Pampa grasslands, Argentina, in order to assess their relationship with surface samples and to interpret the representativeness of local, regional and extraregional vegetation. Three different environments were considered: a coastal dune barrier with a psammophytic community, a salt marsh with a halophytic community in Mar Chiquita lagoon, and a freshwater community at Hinojales freshwater lake. Based on a record of surface samples taken from a previous paper, a parametric model was built to classify Tauber samples gathered from the natural vegetation communities of the study area. Results revealed that just like their surface counterparts, Tauber trap records qualitatively reflect the predominant vegetation types, although ecological groups feature different quantitative representations depending on the record type. Pollen loadings showed that airborne pollen transport was predominantly of local range, in accordance with previous results from the same study area. Airborne - surface samples relationships enrich our knowledge of the present environment that could be useful to improve paleoecological interpretations of the area.Se estimó el depósito polínico atmosférico de trampas Tauber en una laguna costera del sudeste de la estepa pampeana argentina, con el objetivo de analizar su relación con muestras de polen superficial e interpretar la representatividad de la vegetación local, regional y extraregional. Se consideraron tres ambientes diferentes: una barrera costera de dunas con vegetación psamofítica, la marisma de la laguna costera Mar Chiquita, con vegetación halofítica, y la laguna continental Hinojales, con vegetación hidrofítica. En base a las muestras de superficie y análisis de un trabajo previo, se construyó un modelo paramétrico para clasificar las muestras Tauber tomadas en la vegetación natural del

  11. A Comparison of Measures of Abnormal Performance on a Sample of Monthly Mutual Fund Returns, formerly titled; The Evaluation of Mutual Fund Performance: An Analysis of Monthly Returns

    OpenAIRE

    Grinblatt, Mark

    1989-01-01

    This paper empirically examines the Jensen Measure, the Positive Period Weighting Measure, developed in Grinblatt and Titman (1987a), measures developed from the Treynor-Mazuy (1966) quadratic regression on a sample 179 mutual funds, using a variety of benchmark portfolios. We find that the measures generally yield similar inferences when using the same benchmark and that inferences can vary, even from the same measure, when using different benchmarks. Several benchmarks, developed here, appe...

  12. Optical properties of (162173) 1999 JU3: in preparation for the JAXA Hayabusa 2 sample return mission

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ishiguro, Masateru [Department of Physics and Astronomy, Seoul National University, Gwanak, Seoul 151-742 (Korea, Republic of); Kuroda, Daisuke [Okayama Astrophysical Observatory, National Astronomical Observatory of Japan, Asakuchi, Okayama 719-0232 (Japan); Hasegawa, Sunao; Abe, Masanao; Yoshikawa, Makoto [Institute of Space and Astronautical Science, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, Sagamihara, Kanagawa 252-5210 (Japan); Kim, Myung-Jin [Department of Astronomy, Yonsei University, 50 Yonsei-ro, Seodaemun-gu, Seoul 120-749 (Korea, Republic of); Choi, Young-Jun [Korea Astronomy and Space Science Institute, 776 Daedeokdae-ro, Yuseong-gu, Daejeon 305-348 (Korea, Republic of); Moskovitz, Nicholas [Lowell Observatory, 1400 W. Mars Hill Road, Flagstaff, AZ 86001 (United States); Abe, Shinsuke [Department of Aerospace Engineering, Nihon University, 7-24-1 Narashinodai Funabashi, Chiba 274-8501 (Japan); Pan, Kang-Sian [Institute of Astronomy, National Central University, 300 Jhongda Road, Jhongli, Taoyuan 32001, Taiwan (China); Takahashi, Jun; Takagi, Yuhei; Arai, Akira [Nishi-Harima Astronomical Observatory, Center for Astronomy, University of Hyogo, Sayo, Hyogo 679-5313 (Japan); Tokimasa, Noritaka [Sayo Town Office, 2611-1 Sayo, Sayo-cho, Sayo, Hyogo 679-5380 (Japan); Hsieh, Henry H. [Academia Sinica Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics, Roosevelt Road, Taipei 10617, Taiwan (China); Thomas-Osip, Joanna E.; Osip, David J. [The Observatories of the Carnegie Institute of Washington, Las Campanas Observatory, Colina El Pino, Casilla 601, La Serena (Chile); Urakawa, Seitaro [Bisei Spaceguard Center, Japan Spaceguard Association, 1716-3 Okura, Bisei-cho, Ibara, Okayama 714-1411 (Japan); Hanayama, Hidekazu [Ishigakijima Astronomical Observatory, National Astronomical Observatory of Japan, 1024-1 Arakawa, Ishigaki, Okinawa 907-0024 (Japan); Sekiguchi, Tomohiko [Department of Teacher Training, Hokkaido University of Education, 9 Hokumon, Asahikawa 070-8621 (Japan); and others

    2014-09-01

    We investigated the magnitude-phase relation of (162173) 1999 JU3, a target asteroid for the JAXA Hayabusa 2 sample return mission. We initially employed the International Astronomical Union's H-G formalism but found that it fits less well using a single set of parameters. To improve the inadequate fit, we employed two photometric functions: the Shevchenko and Hapke functions. With the Shevchenko function, we found that the magnitude-phase relation exhibits linear behavior in a wide phase angle range (α = 5°-75°) and shows weak nonlinear opposition brightening at α < 5°, providing a more reliable absolute magnitude of H {sub V} = 19.25 ± 0.03. The phase slope (0.039 ± 0.001 mag deg{sup –1}) and opposition effect amplitude (parameterized by the ratio of intensity at α = 0.°3 to that at α = 5°, I(0.°3)/I(5°) = 1.31 ± 0.05) are consistent with those of typical C-type asteroids. We also attempted to determine the parameters for the Hapke model, which are applicable for constructing the surface reflectance map with the Hayabusa 2 onboard cameras. Although we could not constrain the full set of Hapke parameters, we obtained possible values, w = 0.041, g = –0.38, B {sub 0} = 1.43, and h = 0.050, assuming a surface roughness parameter θ-bar = 20°. By combining our photometric study with a thermal model of the asteroid, we obtained a geometric albedo of p {sub v} = 0.047 ± 0.003, phase integral q = 0.32 ± 0.03, and Bond albedo A {sub B} = 0.014 ± 0.002, which are commensurate with the values for common C-type asteroids.

  13. Optical properties of (162173) 1999 JU3: in preparation for the JAXA Hayabusa 2 sample return mission

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ishiguro, Masateru; Kuroda, Daisuke; Hasegawa, Sunao; Abe, Masanao; Yoshikawa, Makoto; Kim, Myung-Jin; Choi, Young-Jun; Moskovitz, Nicholas; Abe, Shinsuke; Pan, Kang-Sian; Takahashi, Jun; Takagi, Yuhei; Arai, Akira; Tokimasa, Noritaka; Hsieh, Henry H.; Thomas-Osip, Joanna E.; Osip, David J.; Urakawa, Seitaro; Hanayama, Hidekazu; Sekiguchi, Tomohiko

    2014-01-01

    We investigated the magnitude-phase relation of (162173) 1999 JU3, a target asteroid for the JAXA Hayabusa 2 sample return mission. We initially employed the International Astronomical Union's H-G formalism but found that it fits less well using a single set of parameters. To improve the inadequate fit, we employed two photometric functions: the Shevchenko and Hapke functions. With the Shevchenko function, we found that the magnitude-phase relation exhibits linear behavior in a wide phase angle range (α = 5°-75°) and shows weak nonlinear opposition brightening at α < 5°, providing a more reliable absolute magnitude of H V = 19.25 ± 0.03. The phase slope (0.039 ± 0.001 mag deg –1 ) and opposition effect amplitude (parameterized by the ratio of intensity at α = 0.°3 to that at α = 5°, I(0.°3)/I(5°) = 1.31 ± 0.05) are consistent with those of typical C-type asteroids. We also attempted to determine the parameters for the Hapke model, which are applicable for constructing the surface reflectance map with the Hayabusa 2 onboard cameras. Although we could not constrain the full set of Hapke parameters, we obtained possible values, w = 0.041, g = –0.38, B 0 = 1.43, and h = 0.050, assuming a surface roughness parameter θ-bar = 20°. By combining our photometric study with a thermal model of the asteroid, we obtained a geometric albedo of p v = 0.047 ± 0.003, phase integral q = 0.32 ± 0.03, and Bond albedo A B = 0.014 ± 0.002, which are commensurate with the values for common C-type asteroids.

  14. Energy storage considerations for a robotic Mars surface sampler

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    O'Donnell, P.M.; Cataldo, R.L.; Gonzalez-Sanabria, O.D.

    1988-01-01

    Manned exploration of Mars is being proposed by the National Commission on Space for the next century. To accomplish this task with minimal resupply cost for extended stay times, use of Mars' resources is essential. Methods must be developed to manufacture or extract water and oxygen from elements indigenous to Mars before they send explorers to the planet. Therefore, they must send precursor surveying equipment to determine Mars' resources to a greater extent than is now known from Viking 1 and Viking 2 data. A 1992 launch is planned for the Mars Observer that will contribute greater mapping resolution and expand the scientific data base. The proposed rover will provide scientists with the necessary information about abundant resources that would guide the required technology development needed to support a manned Mars infrastructure. The actual rover operations plan for both the sample return and extended mission will have a large impact on rover capabilities and the power system supplying power for traversing and scientific instrumentation. POWER SOURCE AND CONVERSION. Several power source/conversion options for the rover have been identified. These include power generation on the lander, Entry Vehicle (EV), Mars Orbiter Vehicle (MOV) and on the rover itself. Power from the lander would require the rover to return to landing site to recharge the energy storage systems, which limits rover excursions to one-half the range of the storage capacity. For on-board rover power, a Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (RTG) has been considered with the appropriate energy storage to handle peak power demands

  15. Planning Considerations Related to Collecting and Analyzing Samples of the Martian Soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yang; Mellon, Mike T.; Ming, Douglas W.; Morris, Richard V.; Noble, Sarah K.; Sullivan, Robert J.; Taylor, Lawrence A.; Beaty, David W.

    2014-01-01

    The Mars Sample Return (MSR) End-to-End International Science Analysis Group (E2E-iSAG [1]) established scientific objectives associ-ated with Mars returned-sample science that require the return and investigation of one or more soil samples. Soil is defined here as loose, unconsolidated materials with no implication for the presence or absence of or-ganic components. The proposed Mars 2020 (M-2020) rover is likely to collect and cache soil in addition to rock samples [2], which could be followed by future sample retrieval and return missions. Here we discuss key scientific consid-erations for sampling and caching soil samples on the proposed M-2020 rover, as well as the state in which samples would need to be preserved when received by analysts on Earth. We are seeking feedback on these draft plans as input to mission requirement formulation. A related planning exercise on rocks is reported in an accompanying abstract [3].

  16. Analysis of Organic Molecules Extracted from Mars Analogues and Influence of Their Mineralogy Using N-Methyl-N-(tert-butyldimethylsilyl)Trifluoroacetamide Derivatization Coupled with Gas Chromatography Mass Spectrometry in Preparation for the Sample Analysis at Mars Derivatization Experiment on the Mars Science Laboratory Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stalport, F.; Glavin, D. P.; Eigenbrode, J. L.; Bish, D.; Blake, D.; Coll, P.; Szopa, C.; Buch, A.; McAdam, A.; Dworkin, J. P.; hide

    2012-01-01

    The search for complex organic molecules on Mars, including important biomolecules such as amino acids and carboxylic acids will require a chemical extraction and derivatization step to transform these organic compounds into species that are sufficiently volatile to be detected by gas chromatography mass spectrometry (GCMS). We have developed, a one-pot extraction and chemical derivatization protocol using N-methyl-N-(tert-butyldimethylsilyl)trifluoroacetamide (MTBSTFA) and dimethylformamide (DMF) for the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) experiment on the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL). The temperature and duration the derivatization reaction, pre-concentration of chemical derivatives, and gas chromatographic separation parameters have been optimized under SAM instrument design constraints. MTBSTFA/DMF extraction and derivatization at 300 C for several minutes of a variety of terrestrial Mars analogue materials facilitated the detection of amino acids and carboxylic acids in a surface soil sample collected from the Atacama Desert and a carbonate-rich stromatolite sample from Svalbard. However, the rapid reaction of MTBSTFA with water in several analogue materials that contained high abundances of hydrated minerals and the possible deactivation of derivatized compounds by iron oxides, as detected by XRD/XRF using the CheMin field unit Terra, proved to be highly problematic for the direct extraction of organics using MTBSTFA, The combination of pyrolysis and two different chemical derivatization methods employed by SAM should enable a wide range of organic compounds to be detected by GCMS if present on Mars,

  17. Onboard autonomous mineral detectors for Mars rovers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilmore, M. S.; Bornstein, B.; Castano, R.; Merrill, M.; Greenwood, J.

    2005-12-01

    Mars rovers and orbiters currently collect far more data than can be downlinked to Earth, which reduces mission science return; this problem will be exacerbated by future rovers of enhanced capabilities and lifetimes. We are developing onboard intelligence sufficient to extract geologically meaningful data from spectrometer measurements of soil and rock samples, and thus to guide the selection, measurement and return of these data from significant targets at Mars. Here we report on techniques to construct mineral detectors capable of running on current and future rover and orbital hardware. We focus on carbonate and sulfate minerals which are of particular geologic importance because they can signal the presence of water and possibly life. Sulfates have also been discovered at the Eagle and Endurance craters in Meridiani Planum by the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Opportunity and at other regions on Mars by the OMEGA instrument aboard Mars Express. We have developed highly accurate artificial neural network (ANN) and Support Vector Machine (SVM) based detectors capable of identifying calcite (CaCO3) and jarosite (KFe3(SO4)2(OH)6) in the visible/NIR (350-2500 nm) spectra of both laboratory specimens and rocks in Mars analogue field environments. To train the detectors, we used a generative model to create 1000s of linear mixtures of library end-member spectra in geologically realistic percentages. We have also augmented the model to include nonlinear mixing based on Hapke's models of bidirectional reflectance spectroscopy. Both detectors perform well on the spectra of real rocks that contain intimate mixtures of minerals, rocks in natural field environments, calcite covered by Mars analogue dust, and AVIRIS hyperspectral cubes. We will discuss the comparison of ANN and SVM classifiers for this task, technical challenges (weathering rinds, atmospheric compositions, and computational complexity), and plans for integration of these detectors into both the Coupled Layer

  18. Combining meteorites and missions to explore Mars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCoy, Timothy J; Corrigan, Catherine M; Herd, Christopher D K

    2011-11-29

    Laboratory studies of meteorites and robotic exploration of Mars reveal scant atmosphere, no evidence of plate tectonics, past evidence for abundant water, and a protracted igneous evolution. Despite indirect hints, direct evidence of a martian origin came with the discovery of trapped atmospheric gases in one meteorite. Since then, the study of martian meteorites and findings from missions have been linked. Although the meteorite source locations are unknown, impact ejection modeling and spectral mapping of Mars suggest derivation from small craters in terrains of Amazonian to Hesperian age. Whereas most martian meteorites are young ( 4.5 Ga and formation of enriched and depleted reservoirs. However, the history inferred from martian meteorites conflicts with results from recent Mars missions, calling into doubt whether the igneous histor y inferred from the meteorites is applicable to Mars as a whole. Allan Hills 84001 dates to 4.09 Ga and contains fluid-deposited carbonates. Accompanying debate about the mechanism and temperature of origin of the carbonates came several features suggestive of past microbial life in the carbonates. Although highly disputed, the suggestion spurred interest in habitable extreme environments on Earth and throughout the Solar System. A flotilla of subsequent spacecraft has redefined Mars from a volcanic planet to a hydrologically active planet that may have harbored life. Understanding the history and habitability of Mars depends on understanding the coupling of the atmosphere, surface, and subsurface. Sample return that brings back direct evidence from these diverse reservoirs is essential.

  19. Mars rover local navigation and hazard avoidance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilcox, B. H.; Gennery, D. B.; Mishkin, A. H.

    1989-01-01

    A Mars rover sample return mission has been proposed for the late 1990's. Due to the long speed-of-light delays between earth and Mars, some autonomy on the rover is highly desirable. JPL has been conducting research in two possible modes of rover operation, Computer-Aided Remote Driving and Semiautonomous Navigation. A recently-completed research program used a half-scale testbed vehicle to explore several of the concepts in semiautonomous navigation. A new, full-scale vehicle with all computational and power resources on-board will be used in the coming year to demonstrate relatively fast semiautonomous navigation. The computational and power requirements for Mars rover local navigation and hazard avoidance are discussed.

  20. Mars Surface Mobility Leading to Sustainable Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linne, Diane L.; Barsi, Stephen J.; Sjauw En Wa, Waldy K.; Landis, Geoffrey A.

    2012-01-01

    A Mars rocket-propelled hopper concept was evaluated for feasibility through analysis and experiments. The approach set forth in this paper is to combine the use of in-situ resources in a new Mars mobility concept that will greatly enhance the science return while providing the first opportunity towards reducing the risk of incorporating ISRU into the critical path for the highly coveted, but currently unaffordable, sample return mission. Experimental tests were performed on a high-pressure, self-throttling gaseous oxygen/methane propulsion system to simulate a two-burn-with-coast hop profile. Analysis of the trajectory, production plant requirements, and vehicle mass indicates that a small hopper vehicle could hop 2 km every 30 days with an initial mass of less than 60 kg. A larger vehicle can hop 15 km every 30 to 60 days with an initial mass of 300 to 430 kg.

  1. A spreadsheet template compatible with Microsoft Excel and iWork Numbers that returns the simultaneous confidence intervals for all pairwise differences between multiple sample means.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Angus M

    2010-04-01

    The objective of the method described in this paper is to develop a spreadsheet template for the purpose of comparing multiple sample means. An initial analysis of variance (ANOVA) test on the data returns F--the test statistic. If F is larger than the critical F value drawn from the F distribution at the appropriate degrees of freedom, convention dictates rejection of the null hypothesis and allows subsequent multiple comparison testing to determine where the inequalities between the sample means lie. A variety of multiple comparison methods are described that return the 95% confidence intervals for differences between means using an inclusive pairwise comparison of the sample means. 2009 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Experimental simulations of oxidizing conditions and organic decomposition on the surface of Mars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stoker, C.R.; Mancinelli, R.L.; Mckay, C.P.

    1988-01-01

    One important scientific objective of a Mars Rover Sample Return mission would be to look for traces of living and extinct life on Mars. An instrument to search for organic carbon may be the simplest instrument that could screen samples which are interesting from a biological point of view. An experimental program is described which would help to understand the nature of the oxidizing soil on Mars and the mechanism responsible for organic degradation on the Martian surface. This is approached by lab simulations of the actual conditions that occur on Mars, particularly the oxidant production by atmospheric photochemistry, and the combined effects of UV light and oxidants in decomposing organic compounds. The results will be used to formulate models of the photochemistry of the atmospheric, the atmosphere-soil interaction, and the diffusion of reactive compounds into the soils. This information will provide insights and constraints on the design of a sampling strategy to search for organic compounds on Mars

  3. NASA Mars 2020 Rover Mission: New Frontiers in Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calle, Carlos I.

    2014-01-01

    The Mars 2020 rover mission is the next step in NASAs robotic exploration of the red planet. The rover, based on the Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover now on Mars, will address key questions about the potential for life on Mars. The mission would also provide opportunities to gather knowledge and demonstrate technologies that address the challenges of future human expeditions to Mars.Like the Mars Science Laboratory rover, which has been exploring Mars since 2012, the Mars 2020 spacecraft will use a guided entry, descent, and landing system which includes a parachute, descent vehicle, and, during the provides the ability to land a very large, heavy rover on the surface of Mars in a more precise landing area. The Mars 2020 mission is designed to accomplish several high-priority planetary science goals and will be an important step toward meeting NASAs challenge to send humans to Mars in the 2030s. The mission will conduct geological assessments of the rover's landing site, determine the habitability of the environment, search for signs of ancient Martian life, and assess natural resources and hazards for future human explorers. The science instruments aboard the rover also will enable scientists to identify and select a collection of rock and soil samples that will be stored for potential return to Earth in the future. The rover also may help designers of a human expedition understand the hazards posed by Martian dust and demonstrate how to collect carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, which could be a valuable resource for producing oxygen and rocket fuel.

  4. Advanced Communication and Networking Technologies for Mars Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhasin, Kul; Hayden, Jeff; Agre, Jonathan R.; Clare, Loren P.; Yan, Tsun-Yee

    2001-01-01

    Next-generation Mars communications networks will provide communications and navigation services to a wide variety of Mars science vehicles including: spacecraft that are arriving at Mars, spacecraft that are entering and descending in the Mars atmosphere, scientific orbiter spacecraft, spacecraft that return Mars samples to Earth, landers, rovers, aerobots, airplanes, and sensing pods. In the current architecture plans, the communication services will be provided using capabilities deployed on the science vehicles as well as dedicated communication satellites that will together make up the Mars network. This network will evolve as additional vehicles arrive, depart or end their useful missions. Cost savings and increased reliability will result from the ability to share communication services between missions. This paper discusses the basic architecture that is needed to support the Mars Communications Network part of NASA's Space Science Enterprise (SSE) communications architecture. The network may use various networking technologies such as those employed in the terrestrial Internet, as well as special purpose deep-space protocols to move data and commands autonomously between vehicles, at disparate Mars vicinity sites (on the surface or in near-Mars space) and between Mars vehicles and earthbound users. The architecture of the spacecraft on-board local communications is being reconsidered in light of these new networking requirements. The trend towards increasingly autonomous operation of the spacecraft is aimed at reducing the dependence on resource scheduling provided by Earth-based operators and increasing system fault tolerance. However, these benefits will result in increased communication and software development requirements. As a result, the envisioned Mars communications infrastructure requires both hardware and protocol technology advancements. This paper will describe a number of the critical technology needs and some of the ongoing research

  5. Implementing a Science-driven Mars Exploration Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garvin, J. B.

    2001-12-01

    NASA's newly restructured Mars Exploration Program (MEP) was developed on the basis of the goals, objectives, investigations, and prioritizations established by the Mars Exploration Payload Analysis Group (as summarized previously by Greeley et al., 2001). The underlying scientific strategy is linked to common threads which include the many roles water has played on and within Mars as a "system". The implementation strategy that has been adopted relies heavily on an ever-sharpening program of reconnaissance, beginning with the legacy of the Mars Global Surveyor, continuing with the multispectral and compositional observations of the Mars Odyssey orbiter, and extending to a first step in surface-based reconnaissance with the 2003 Mars Exploration Rovers. The results of MGS and Odyssey will serve to focus the trade space of localities where the record, for example, of persistent surface water may have been preserved in a mineralogical sense. The 2005 Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter will further downselect the subset of sites on Mars where evidence of depositional patterns and aqueous mineralogies (i.e., diagenetic minerals) are most striking at scales as fine as tens to hundreds of meters. Reconnaissance will move to the surface and shallow subsurface in 2007 with the Mars "Smart Lander" (MSL), at which time an extensive array of mobile scientific exploration tools will be used to examine a locality at 10km traverse scales, ultimately asking scientific questions which can be classed as paleobiological (i.e., life inference). Further orbital reconnaissance may be undertaken in 2009, perhaps involving targeted multi-wavelength SAR imaging, in anticipation of a precisely targeted Mars Sample Return mission as early as 2011. This sequence of core program MEP missions will be amplified by the selection of PI-led SCOUT missions, starting in 2007, and continuing every other Mars launch opportunity.

  6. Evolved Gas Measurements Planned for the Lower Layers of the Gale Crater Mound with the Sample Analysis at Mars Instrument Suite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahaffy, P. R.; Franz, H.; McAdam, A.; Conrad, P. G.; Brunner, A.; Cabane, M.; Webster, C. R.

    2011-12-01

    The lower mound strata of Gale Crater provide a diverse set of chemical environments for exploration by the varied tools of the Curiosity Rover of the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Mission. Orbital imaging and spectroscopy clearly reveal distinct layers of hydrated minerals, sulfates, and clays with abundant evidence of a variety of fluvial processes. The three instruments of the MSL Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) investigation, the Quadrupole Mass Spectrometer (QMS), the Tunable Laser Spectrometer (TLS), and the Gas Chromatograph (GC) are designed to analyze either atmospheric gases or volatiles thermally evolved or chemically extracted from powdered rock or soil. The presence or absence of organic compounds in these layers is of great interest since such an in situ search for this type of record has not been successfully implemented since the mid-70s Viking GCMS experiments. However, regardless of the outcome of the analysis for organics, the abundance and isotopic composition of thermally evolved inorganic compounds should also provide a rich data set to complement the mineralogical and elemental information provided by other MSL instruments. In addition, these evolved gas analysis (EGA) experiments will help test sedimentary models proposed by Malin and Edgett (2000) and then further developed by Milliken et al (2010) for Gale Crater. In the SAM EGA experiments the evolution temperatures of H2O, CO2, SO2, O2, or other simple compounds as the samples are heated in a helium stream to 1000C provides information on mineral types and their associations. The isotopic composition of O, H, C, and S can be precisely determined in several evolved compounds and compared with the present day atmosphere. Such SAM results might be able to test mineralogical evidence of changing sedimentary and alteration processes over an extended period of time. For example, Bibring et al (2006) have suggested such a major shift from early nonacidic to later acidic alteration. We will

  7. Wet Mars, Dry Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fillingim, M. O.; Brain, D. A.; Peticolas, L. M.; Yan, D.; Fricke, K. W.; Thrall, L.

    2012-12-01

    The magnetic fields of the large terrestrial planets, Venus, Earth, and Mars, are all vastly different from each other. These differences can tell us a lot about the interior structure, interior history, and even give us clues to the atmospheric history of these planets. This poster highlights the third in a series of presentations that target school-age audiences with the overall goal of helping the audience visualize planetary magnetic field and understand how they can impact the climatic evolution of a planet. Our first presentation, "Goldilocks and the Three Planets," targeted to elementary school age audiences, focuses on the differences in the atmospheres of Venus, Earth, and Mars and the causes of the differences. The second presentation, "Lost on Mars (and Venus)," geared toward a middle school age audience, highlights the differences in the magnetic fields of these planets and what we can learn from these differences. Finally, in the third presentation, "Wet Mars, Dry Mars," targeted to high school age audiences and the focus of this poster, the emphasis is on the long term climatic affects of the presence or absence of a magnetic field using the contrasts between Earth and Mars. These presentations are given using visually engaging spherical displays in conjunction with hands-on activities and scientifically accurate 3D models of planetary magnetic fields. We will summarize the content of our presentations, discuss our lessons learned from evaluations, and show (pictures of) our hands-on activities and 3D models.

  8. Low-Latency Teleoperations for Human Exploration and Evolvable Mars Campaign

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lupisella, Mark; Wright, Michael; Arney, Dale; Gershman, Bob; Stillwagen, Fred; Bobskill, Marianne; Johnson, James; Shyface, Hilary; Larman, Kevin; Lewis, Ruthan; hide

    2015-01-01

    NASA has been analyzing a number of mission concepts and activities that involve low-latency telerobotic (LLT) operations. One mission concept that will be covered in this presentation is Crew-Assisted Sample Return which involves the crew acquiring samples (1) that have already been delivered to space, and or acquiring samples via LLT from orbit to a planetary surface and then launching the samples to space to be captured in space and then returned to the earth with the crew. Both versions of have key roles for low-latency teleoperations. More broadly, the NASA Evolvable Mars Campaign is exploring a number of other activities that involve LLT, such as: (a) human asteroid missions, (b) PhobosDeimos missions, (c) Mars human landing site reconnaissance and site preparation, and (d) Mars sample handling and analysis. Many of these activities could be conducted from Mars orbit and also with the crew on the Mars surface remotely operating assets elsewhere on the surface, e.g. for exploring Mars special regions and or teleoperating a sample analysis laboratory both of which may help address planetary protection concerns. The operational and technology implications of low-latency teleoperations will be explored, including discussion of relevant items in the NASA Technology Roadmap and also how previously deployed robotic assets from any source could subsequently be used by astronauts via LLT.

  9. Psychometric investigation of the abbreviated concussion symptom inventory in a sample of U.S. Marines returning from combat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, Justin S; Pulos, Steven; Haran, F Jay; Tsao, Jack W; Alphonso, Aimee L

    2015-01-01

    This study describes the psychometric investigation of an 11-item symptom checklist, the Abbreviated Concussion Symptom Inventory (ACSI). The ACSI is a dichotomously scored list of postconcussive symptoms associated with mild traumatic brain injury. The ACSI was administered to Marines (N = 1,435) within the 1st month of their return from combat deployments to Afghanistan. Psychometric analyses based upon nonparametric item response theory supported scoring the ACSI via simple summation of symptom endorsements; doing so produced a total score with good reliability (α = .802). Total scores were also found to significantly differentiate between different levels of head injury complexity during deployment, F(3, 1,431) = 100.75, p < .001. The findings support the use of the ASCI in research settings requiring a psychometrically reliable measure of postconcussion symptoms.

  10. Mars aqueous chemistry experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Benton C.; Mason, Larry W.

    1994-06-01

    Mars Aqueous Chemistry Experiment (MACE) is designed to conduct a variety of measurements on regolith samples, encompassing mineral phase analyses, chemical interactions with H2O, and physical properties determinations. From these data, much can be learned or inferred regarding the past weathering environment, the contemporaneous soil micro-environments, and the general chemical and physical state of the Martian regolith. By analyzing both soil and duricrust samples, the nature of the latter may become more apparent. Sites may be characterized for comparative purposes and criteria could be set for selection of high priority materials on future sample return missions. The second year of the MACE project has shown significant progress in two major areas. MACE Instrument concept definition is a baseline design that has been generated for the complete MACE instrument, including definition of analysis modes, mass estimates and thermal model. The design includes multiple reagent reservoirs, 10 discrete analysis cells, sample manipulation capability, and thermal control. The MACE Measurement subsystems development progress is reported regarding measurement capabilities for aqueous ion sensing, evolved gas sensing, solution conductivity measurement, reagent addition (titration) capabilities, and optical sensing of suspended particles.

  11. Mars aqueous chemistry experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Benton C.; Mason, Larry W.

    1994-01-01

    Mars Aqueous Chemistry Experiment (MACE) is designed to conduct a variety of measurements on regolith samples, encompassing mineral phase analyses, chemical interactions with H2O, and physical properties determinations. From these data, much can be learned or inferred regarding the past weathering environment, the contemporaneous soil micro-environments, and the general chemical and physical state of the Martian regolith. By analyzing both soil and duricrust samples, the nature of the latter may become more apparent. Sites may be characterized for comparative purposes and criteria could be set for selection of high priority materials on future sample return missions. The second year of the MACE project has shown significant progress in two major areas. MACE Instrument concept definition is a baseline design that has been generated for the complete MACE instrument, including definition of analysis modes, mass estimates and thermal model. The design includes multiple reagent reservoirs, 10 discrete analysis cells, sample manipulation capability, and thermal control. The MACE Measurement subsystems development progress is reported regarding measurement capabilities for aqueous ion sensing, evolved gas sensing, solution conductivity measurement, reagent addition (titration) capabilities, and optical sensing of suspended particles.

  12. NASA Curiosity rover hits organic pay dirt on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Voosen, Paul

    2018-06-01

    Since NASA's Curiosity rover landed on Mars in 2012, it has sifted samples of soil and ground-up rock for signs of organic molecules—the complex carbon chains that on Earth form the building blocks of life. Past detections have been so faint that they could be just contamination. Now, samples taken from two different drill sites on an ancient lakebed have yielded complex organic macromolecules that look strikingly similar to kerogen, the goopy fossilized building blocks of oil and gas on Earth. At a few dozen parts per million, the detected levels are 100 times higher than previous finds, but scientists still cannot say whether they have origins in biology or geology. The discovery positions scientists to begin searching for direct evidence of past life on Mars and bolsters the case for returning rock samples from the planet, an effort that begins with the Mars 2020 rover.

  13. Sealed Planetary Return Canister (SPRC), Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Sample return missions have primary importance in future planetary missions. A basic requirement is that samples be returned in pristine, uncontaminated condition,...

  14. Preservation of Reduced Carbon on Mars: Implications for Understanding Habitability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conrad, Pamela; Fogel, Marilyn; Steele, Andrew; Summons, Roger E.

    2007-01-01

    Upcoming Mars missions (e.g., Mars Science Laboratory, ExoMars, Astrobiology Field Laboratory, and Mars Sample Return) will search for evidence of extant and fossil microbial habitats and the potential for future habitation. Understanding the distribution and composition of reduced carbon (or organic carbon) is critical for unraveling the Martian carbon cycle, potential for life, and possible biosignature record. Reduced carbon may be produced from biological, geochemical, or interstellar processes; however, evidence for reduced carbon on Mars is lacking with the exception of parts per billion of atmospheric methane. In contrast, abundant atmospheric carbon dioxide may reflect surface oxidation of reduced carbon and accumulation over geological timescales. This suggests that there is an undetected or lost pool of reduced carbon - a pool that may host molecular biosignatures, a characteristic of extant or extinct habitability. In this presentation, we will evaluate factors influencing the preservation potential for organic molecules in rocks on Earth and Martian. We,draw examples from organic molecules in sulfates, basalts, and ancient shales from Mars-analog settings to show how the distribution of organics and their structural patterns will aid Mars habitability studies.

  15. Mars Mission Concepts: SAR and Solar Electric Propulsion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elsperman, M.; Klaus, K.; Smith, D. B.; Clifford, S. M.; Lawrence, S. J.

    2012-12-01

    Introduction: The time has come to leverage technology advances (including advances in autonomous operation and propulsion technology) to reduce the cost and increase the flight rate of planetary missions, while actively developing a scientific and engineering workforce to achieve national space objectives. Mission Science at Mars: A SAR imaging radar offers an ability to conduct high resolution investigations of the shallow (Models uniquely useful for exploration planning and science purposes. Since the SAR and the notional high-resolution stereo imaging system would be huge data volume producers - to maximize the science return we are currently considering the usage of laser communications systems; this notional spacecraft represents one pathway to evaluate the utility of laser communications in planetary exploration while providing useful science return.. Mission Concept: Using a common space craft for multiple missions reduces costs. Solar electric propulsion (SEP) provides the flexibility required for multiple mission objectives. SEP provides the greatest payload advantage albeit at the sacrifice of mission time. Our concept involves using a SEP enabled space craft (Boeing 702SP) with a highly capable SAR imager that also conducts autonomous rendezvous and docking experiments accomplished from Mars orbit. Our concept of operations is to launch on May 5, 2018 using a launch vehicle with 2000kg launch capacity with a C3 of 7.4. After reaching Mars it takes 145 days to spiral down to a 250 km orbit above the surface of Mars when Mars SAR operations begin. Summary/Conclusions: A robust and compelling Mars mission can be designed to meet the 2018 Mars launch window opportunity. Using advanced in-space power and propulsion technologies like High Power Solar Electric Propulsion provides enormous mission flexibility to execute the baseline science mission and conduct necessary Mars Sample Return Technology Demonstrations in Mars orbit on the same mission. An

  16. STS 131 Return Samples: Assessment of Air Quality Aboard the Shuttle (STS-131) and International Space Station (19A)

    Science.gov (United States)

    James, John T.

    2010-01-01

    The toxicological assessments of 1 grab sample canister (GSC) from the Shuttle are reported in Table 1. Analytical methods have not changed from earlier reports. The recoveries of the 3 surrogates (C-13-acetone, fluorobenzene, and chlorobenzene) from the Shuttle GSC were 100%, 93%, and 101%, respectively. Based on the historical experience using end-of-mission samples, the Shuttle atmosphere was acceptable for human respiration.

  17. Carbide-metal assemblages in a sample returned from asteroid 25143 Itokawa: Evidence for methane-rich fluids during metamorphism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harries, Dennis; Langenhorst, Falko

    2018-02-01

    We found that the particle RA-QD02-0115 returned by the Hayabusa spacecraft from near-Earth asteroid 25143 Itokawa contains the iron carbide haxonite (Fe21.9-22.7Co0.2-0.3Ni0.2-0.8)C6 and several Fe,Ni alloys, including multi-domain tetrataenite and spinodally decomposed taenite. Ellipsoidal to nearly spherical voids occur throughout the particle and suggest the presence of a fluid phase during textural and chemical equilibration of the host rock within the parent asteroid of 25143 Itokawa. The calculated solubility of carbon in Fe,Ni metal indicates that the carbide formed at temperatures larger than 600 °C during thermal metamorphism of the LL-chondritic mineral assemblage. Haxonite formed metastably with respect to graphite and cohenite, probably due to its high degree of lattice match with neighboring taenite, a low cooling rate at peak metamorphic temperatures, and the hindered nucleation of graphite. Thermodynamic equilibrium calculations indicate that the fluid present was dry (H2O-poor) and dominated by methane. The reactive fluid most plausibly had an atomic H/C ratio of 4-5 and was derived from the reduction of macromolecular, insoluble organic matter (IOM) that initially co-accreted with water ice. The initial presence of water is a necessary assumption to provide sufficient hydrogen for the formation of methane from hydrolyzed IOM. Metallic iron was in turn partially oxidized and incorporated into the ferromagnesian silicates during the high-temperature stage of metamorphism. An exemplary bulk reaction from unequilibrated material on the left to an equilibrated assemblage on the right may be written as: 330 CH0.8O0.2(IOM) + 500 H2O(ice/g) + 681 Fe(in alloy) + 566 FeSiO3(in Opx) → 300 CH4(g) + 32 H2(g) + 5 Fe23C6(in Hx) + 566 Fe2SiO4(in Ol) (Opx = orthopyroxene, Hx = haxonite, Ol = olivine, g = fluid species). The best estimate of the fluid/rock ratio in the region of the LL parent body where RA-QD02-0115 formed is about 3 × 10-3 and corresponds to

  18. Predictable return distributions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Thomas Quistgaard

    trace out the entire distribution. A univariate quantile regression model is used to examine stock and bond return distributions individually, while a multivariate model is used to capture their joint distribution. An empirical analysis on US data shows that certain parts of the return distributions......-of-sample analyses show that the relative accuracy of the state variables in predicting future returns varies across the distribution. A portfolio study shows that an investor with power utility can obtain economic gains by applying the empirical return distribution in portfolio decisions instead of imposing...

  19. SEP Mission Design Space for Mars Orbiters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woolley, Ryan C.; Nicholas, Austin K.

    2015-01-01

    The advancement of solar-electric propulsion (SEP) technologies and larger, light-weight solar arrays offer a tremendous advantage to Mars orbiters in terms of both mass and timeline flexibility. These advantages are multiplied for round-trip orbiters (e.g. potential Mars sample return) where a large total Delta V would be required. In this paper we investigate the mission design characteristics of mission concepts utilizing various combinations and types of SEP thrusters, solar arrays, launch vehicles, launch dates, arrival dates, etc. SEP allows for greater than 50% more mass delivered and launch windows of months to years. We also present the SEP analog to the ballistic Porkchop plot - the "Bacon" plot.

  20. Finding the right rocks on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hargraves, R. B.; Knudsen, J. M.; Madsen, M. B.; Bertelsen, P.

    Locating a rock on the surface of Mars that bears unambiguous evidence of the existence—prior or present—of life on that planet is, understandably, the “Holy Grail” of NASAs sample return missions. Remote recognition of such a rock on Mars will not be easy. We do know, however, that present in the Martian crust—especially in the “Southern highlands”—is rock carrying strong natural remanent magnetization (NRM). Characterization of such magnetized rock has profound implications for adding to our knowledge about the origin and early evolution of the Martian interior, lithosphere, atmosphere, and possibly even Martian life forms [Ward and Brownlee, 2000]. Moreover, it should be possible to recognize such rocks by use of a simple magnetic compass mounted on a Rover.

  1. Protecting the Planets from Biological Contamination: The Strange Case of Mars Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rummel, J. D.; Conley, C. A.

    2015-12-01

    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

  2. Flashline Mars Arctic Research Station (FMARS) 2009 Expedition Crew Perspectives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cusack, Stacy; Ferrone, Kristine; Garvin, Christy; Kramer, W. Vernon; Palaia, Joseph, IV; Shiro, Brian

    2009-01-01

    The Flashline Mars Arctic Research Station (FMARS), located on the rim of the Haughton Crater on Devon Island in the Canadian Arctic, is a simulated Mars habitat that provides operational constraints similar to those which will be faced by future human explorers on Mars. In July 2009, a six-member crew inhabited the isolated habitation module and conducted the twelfth FMARS mission. The crew members conducted frequent EVA operations wearing mock space suits to conduct field experiments under realistic Mars-like conditions. Their scientific campaign spanned a wide range of disciplines and included many firsts for Mars analog research. Among these are the first use of a Class IV medical laser during a Mars simulation, helping to relieve crew stress injuries during the mission. Also employed for the first time in a Mars simulation at FMARS, a UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) was used by the space-suited explorers, aiding them in their search for mineral resources. Sites identified by the UAV were then visited by geologists who conducted physical geologic sampling. For the first time, explorers in spacesuits deployed passive seismic equipment to monitor earthquake activity and characterize the planet's interior. They also conducted the first geophysical electromagnetic survey as analog Mars pioneers to search for water and characterize geological features under the surface. The crew collected hydrated minerals and attempted to produce drinkable water from the rocks. A variety of equipment was field tested as well, including new cameras that automatically geotag photos, data-recording GPS units, a tele-presence rover (operated from Florida), as well as MIT-developed mission planning software. As plans develop to return to the Moon and go on to Mars, analog facilities like FMARS can provide significant benefit to NASA and other organizations as they prepare for robust human space exploration. The authors will present preliminary results from these studies as well as their

  3. NASA's New Mars Exploration Program: The Trajectory of Knowledge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garvin, James B.; Figueroa, Orlando; Naderi, Firouz M.

    2001-12-01

    NASA's newly restructured Mars Exploration Program (MEP) is finally on the way to Mars with the successful April 7 launch of the 2001 Mars Odyssey Orbiter. In addition, the announcement by the Bush Administration that the exploration of Mars will be a priority within NASA's Office of Space Science further cements the first decade of the new millennium as one of the major thrusts to understand the "new" Mars. Over the course of the past year and a half, an integrated team of managers, scientists, and engineers has crafted a revamped MEP to respond to the scientific as well as management and resource challenges associated with deep space exploration of the Red Planet. This article describes the new program from the perspective of its guiding philosophies, major events, and scientific strategy. It is intended to serve as a roadmap to the next 10-15 years of Mars exploration from the NASA viewpoint. [For further details, see the Mars Exploration Program web site (URL): http://mars.jpl.nasa.gov]. The new MEP will certainly evolve in response to discoveries, to successes, and potentially to setbacks as well. However, the design of the restructured strategy is attentive to risks, and a major attempt to instill resiliency in the program has been adopted. Mars beckons, and the next decade of exploration should provide the impetus for a follow-on decade in which multiple sample returns and other major program directions are executed. Ultimately the vision to consider the first human scientific expeditions to the Red Planet will be enabled. By the end of the first decade of this program, we may know where and how to look for the elusive clues associated with a possible martian biological record, if any was every preserved, even if only as "chemical fossils."

  4. Thermal and Evolved Gas Analysis of Calcite Under Reduced Operating Pressures: Implications for the 2011 MSL Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) Instrument

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lauer, H. V. Jr.; Ming, D. W.; Sutter, B.; Mahaffy, P. R.

    2010-01-01

    The Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) is scheduled for launch in 2011. The science objectives for MSL are to assess the past or present biological potential, to characterize the geology, and to investigate other planetary processes that influence habitability at the landing site. The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) is a key instrument on the MSL payload that will explore the potential habitability at the landing site [1]. In addition to searching for organic compounds, SAM will have the capability to characterized evolved gases as a function of increasing temperature and provide information on the mineralogy of volatile-bearing phases such as carbonates, sulfates, phyllosilicates, and Fe-oxyhydroxides. The operating conditions in SAM ovens will be maintained at 30 mb pressure with a He carrier gas flowing at 1 sccm. We have previously characterized the thermal and evolved gas behaviors of volatile-bearing species under reduced pressure conditions that simulated operating conditions of the Thermal and Evolved Gas Analyzer (TEGA) that was onboard the 2007 Mars Phoenix Scout Mission [e.g., 2-8]. TEGA ovens operated at 12 mb pressure with a N2 carrier gas flowing at 0.04 sccm. Another key difference between SAM and TEGA is that TEGA was able to perform differential scanning calorimetry whereas SAM only has a pyrolysis oven. The operating conditions for TEGA and SAM have several key parameter differences including operating pressure (12 vs 30 mb), carrier gas (N2 vs. He), and carrier gas flow rate (0.04 vs 1 sccm). The objectives of this study are to characterize the thermal and evolved gas analysis of calcite under SAM operating conditions and then compare it to calcite thermal and evolved gas analysis under TEGA operating conditions.

  5. Effects of Kapton Sample Cell Windows on the Detection Limit of Smectite: Implications for CheMin on the Mars Science Laboratory Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Achilles, C. N.; Ming, Douglas W.; Morris, R. V.; Blake, D. F.

    2012-01-01

    The CheMin instrument on the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) rover Curiosity is an X-ray diffraction (XRD) and X-ray fluorescence (XRF) instrument capable of providing the mineralogical and chemical compositions of rocks and soils on the surface of Mars. CheMin uses a microfocus X-ray tube with a Co target, transmission geometry, and an energy-discriminating X-ray sensitive CCD to produce simultaneous 2-D XRD patterns and energy-dispersive X-ray histograms from powdered samples. CheMin has two different window materials used for sample cells -- Mylar and Kapton. Instrument details are provided elsewhere. Fe/Mg-smectite (e.g., nontronite) has been identified in Gale Crater, the MSL future landing site, by CRISM spectra. While large quantities of phyllosilicate minerals will be easily detected by CheMin, it is important to establish detection limits of such phases to understand capabilities and limitations of the instrument. A previous study indicated that the (001) peak of smectite at 15 Ang was detectable in a mixture of 1 wt.% smectite with olivine when Mylar is the window material for the sample cell. Complications arise when Kapton is the window material because Kapton itself also has a diffraction peak near 15 Ang (6.8 deg 2 Theta). This study presents results of mineral mixtures of smectite and olivine to determine smectite detection limits for Kapton sample cells. Because the intensity and position of the smectite (001) peak depends on the hydration state, we also analyzed mixtures with "hydrated" and "dehydrated"h smectite to examine the effects of hydration state on detection limits.

  6. Red Dragon drill missions to Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heldmann, Jennifer L.; Stoker, Carol R.; Gonzales, Andrew; McKay, Christopher P.; Davila, Alfonso; Glass, Brian J.; Lemke, Larry L.; Paulsen, Gale; Willson, David; Zacny, Kris

    2017-12-01

    We present the concept of using a variant of a Space Exploration Technologies Corporation (SpaceX) Dragon space capsule as a low-cost, large-capacity, near-term, Mars lander (dubbed ;Red Dragon;) for scientific and human precursor missions. SpaceX initially designed the Dragon capsule for flight near Earth, and Dragon has successfully flown many times to low-Earth orbit (LEO) and successfully returned the Dragon spacecraft to Earth. Here we present capsule hardware modifications that are required to enable flight to Mars and operations on the martian surface. We discuss the use of the Dragon system to support NASA Discovery class missions to Mars and focus in particular on Dragon's applications for drilling missions. We find that a Red Dragon platform is well suited for missions capable of drilling deeper on Mars (at least 2 m) than has been accomplished to date due to its ability to land in a powered controlled mode, accommodate a long drill string, and provide payload space for sample processing and analysis. We show that a Red Dragon drill lander could conduct surface missions at three possible targets including the ice-cemented ground at the Phoenix landing site (68 °N), the subsurface ice discovered near the Viking 2 (49 °N) site by fresh impact craters, and the dark sedimentary subsurface material at the Curiosity site (4.5 °S).

  7. Lidar 2009 - All Returns

    Data.gov (United States)

    Kansas Data Access and Support Center — LIDAR-derived binary (.las) files containing classified points of all returns. We have 3 classifications Unclassified, Ground, Low points. The average Ground Sample...

  8. How relevant is heterogeneous chemistry on Mars? Strong tests via global mapping of water and ozone (sampled via O2 dayglow)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villanueva, Geronimo Luis; Mumma, Michael J.; Novak, Robert E.

    2015-11-01

    Ozone and water are powerful tracers of photochemical processes on Mars. Considering that water is a condensable with a multifaceted hydrological cycle and ozone is continuously being produced / destroyed on short-time scales, their maps can test the validity of current 3D photochemical and dynamical models. Comparisons of modern GCM models (e.g., Lefèvre et al. 2004) with certain datasets (e.g., Clancy et al. 2012; Bertaux et al. 2012) point to significant disagreement, which in some cases have been related to heterogeneous (gas-dust) chemistry beyond the classical gas-gas homogeneous reactions.We address these concerns by acquiring full 2D maps of water and ozone (via O2 dayglow) on Mars, employing high spectral infrared spectrometers at ground-based telescopes (CRIRES/VLT and CSHELL/NASA-IRTF). By performing a rotational analysis on the O2 lines, we derive molecular temperature maps that we use to derive the vertical level of the emission (e.g., Novak et al. 2002). Our maps sample the full observable disk of Mars on March/25/2008 (Ls=50°, northern winter) and on Jan/29/2014 (Ls=83°, northern spring). The maps reveal a strong dependence of the O2 emission and water burden on local orography, while the temperature maps are in strong disagreement with current models. Could this be the signature of heterogeneous chemistry? We will present the global maps and will discuss possible scenarios to explain the observations.This work was partially funded by grants from NASA's Planetary Astronomy Program (344-32-51-96), NASA’s Mars Fundamental Research Program (203959.02.02.20.29), NASA’s Astrobiology Program (344-53-51), and the NSF-RUI Program (AST-805540). We thank the administration and staff of the European Southern Observatory/VLT and NASA-IRTF for awarding observing time and coordinating our observations.Bertaux, J.-L., Gondet, B., Lefèvre, F., et al. 2012. J. Geophys. Res. Pl. 117. pp. 1-9.Clancy, R.T., Sandor, B.J., Wolff, M.J., et al. 2012. J. Geophys. Res

  9. Preparing for Mars: The Evolvable Mars Campaign 'Proving Ground' Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bobskill, Marianne R.; Lupisella, Mark L.; Mueller, Rob P.; Sibille, Laurent; Vangen, Scott; Williams-Byrd, Julie

    2015-01-01

    provide the foundation required to enable a variety of possible destinations and missions consistent with the Evolvable Mars Campaign.. The International Space Station will be used to the greatest extent possible for exploration capability and technology development. Beyond this, NASA is evaluating a number of options for Proving Ground missions. An "Asteroid Redirect Mission" will demonstrate needed capabilities (e.g., Solar Electric Propulsion) and transportation systems for the crew (i.e., Space Launch System and Orion) and for cargo (i.e., Asteroid Redirect Vehicle). The Mars 2020 mission and follow-on robotic precursor missions will gather Mars surface environment information and will mature technologies. NASA is considering emplacing a small pressurized module in cis-lunar space to support crewed operations of increasing duration and to serve as a platform for critical exploration capabilities testing (e.g., radiation mitigation; extended duration deep space habitation). In addition, "opportunistic mission operations" could demonstrate capabilities not on the Mars critical path that may, nonetheless, enhance exploration operations (e.g., teleoperations, crew assisted Mars sample return). The Proving Ground may also include "pathfinder" missions to test and demonstrate specific capabilities at Mars (e.g., entry, descent, and landing). This paper describes the (1) process used to conduct an architecture-driven technology development assessment, (2) exploration mission critical and supporting capabilities, and (3) approach for addressing test and demonstration opportunities encompassing the spectrum of flight elements and destinations consistent with the Evolvable Mars Campaign.

  10. Visible-near infrared point spectrometry of drill core samples from Río Tinto, Spain: results from the 2005 Mars Astrobiology Research and Technology Experiment (MARTE) drilling exercise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutter, Brad; Brown, Adrian J; Stoker, Carol R

    2008-10-01

    Sampling of subsurface rock may be required to detect evidence of past biological activity on Mars. The Mars Astrobiology Research and Technology Experiment (MARTE) utilized the Río Tinto region, Spain, as a Mars analog site to test dry drilling technologies specific to Mars that retrieve subsurface rock for biological analysis. This work examines the usefulness of visible-near infrared (VNIR) (450-1000 nm) point spectrometry to characterize ferric iron minerals in core material retrieved during a simulated Mars drilling mission. VNIR spectrometry can indicate the presence of aqueously precipitated ferric iron minerals and, thus, determine whether biological analysis of retrieved rock is warranted. Core spectra obtained during the mission with T1 (893-897 nm) and T2 (644-652 nm) features indicate goethite-dominated samples, while relatively lower wavelength T1 (832-880 nm) features indicate hematite. Hematite/goethite molar ratios varied from 0 to 1.4, and within the 880-898 nm range, T1 features were used to estimate hematite/goethite molar ratios. Post-mission X-ray analysis detected phyllosilicates, which indicates that examining beyond the VNIR (e.g., shortwave infrared, 1000-2500 nm) will enhance the detection of other minerals formed by aqueous processes. Despite the limited spectral range of VNIR point spectrometry utilized in the MARTE Mars drilling simulation project, ferric iron minerals could be identified in retrieved core material, and their distribution served to direct core subsampling for biological analysis.

  11. The Search for Organic Compounds of Martian Origin in Gale Crater by the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) Instrument on Curiosity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glavin, Daniel; Freissinet, Caroline; Mahaffy, Paul; Miller, Kristen; Eigenbrode, Jennifer; Summons, Roger; Archer, Douglas, Jr.; Brunner, Anna; Martin, Mildred; Buch, Arrnaud; hide

    2014-01-01

    One of the key objectives of the Mars Science Laboratory rover and the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument suite is to determine the inventory of organic and inorganic volatiles in the atmosphere and surface regolith and rocks to help assess the habitability potential of Gale Crater. The SAM instrument on the Curiosity rover can detect volatile organic compounds thermally evolved from solid samples using a combination of evolved gas analysis (EGA) and gas chromatography mass spectrometry (GCMS) (Mahaffy et al. 2012). The first solid samples analyzed by SAM, a scoop of windblown dust and sand at Rocknest, revealed several chloromethanes and a C4-chlorinated hydrocarbon derived primarily from reactions between a martian oxychlorine phase (e.g. perchlorate) and terrestrial carbon from N-methyl-N-(tertbutyldimethylsilyl)- trifluoroacetamide (MTBSTFA) vapor present in the SAM instrument background (Glavin et al. 2013). After the analyses at Rocknest, Curiosity traveled to Yellowknife Bay and drilled two separate holes in a fluvio-lacustrine sediment (the Sheepbed unit) designated John Klein and Cumberland. Analyses of the drilled materials by both SAM and the CheMin X-Ray Diffraction instrument revealed a mudstone consisting of 20 wt% smectite clays (Ming et al. 2013; Vaniman et al. 2013), which on Earth are known to aid the concentration and preservation of organic matter. Oxychlorine compounds were also detected in the Sheepbed mudstone during pyrolysis; however, in contrast to Rocknest, much higher levels of chloromethanes were released from the Sheepbed materials, suggesting an additional, possibly martian source of organic carbon (Ming et al. 2013). In addition, elevated abundances of chlorobenzene and a more diverse suite of chlorinated alkanes including dichloropropane and dichlorobutane detected in Cumberland compared to Rocknest suggest that martian or meteoritic organic carbon sources may be preserved in the mudstone (Freissinet et al. 2013

  12. Iron-Rich Carbonates as the Potential Source of Evolved CO2 Detected by the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) Instrument in Gale Crater

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutter, B.; Heil, E.; Rampe, E. B.; Morris, R. V.; Ming, D. W.; Archer, P. D.; Eigenbrode, J. L.; Franz, H. B.; Glavin, D. P.; McAdam, A. C.; hide

    2015-01-01

    The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument detected at least 4 distinct CO2 release during the pyrolysis of a sample scooped from the Rocknest (RN) eolian deposit. The highest peak CO2 release temperature (478-502 C) has been attributed to either a Fe-rich carbonate or nano-phase Mg-carbonate. The objective of this experimental study was to evaluate the thermal evolved gas analysis (T/EGA) characteristics of a series of terrestrial Fe-rich carbonates under analog SAM operating conditions to compare with the RN CO2 releases. Natural Fe-rich carbonates (<53 microns) with varying Fe amounts (Fe(0.66)X(0.34)- to Fe(0.99)X(0.01)-CO3, where X refers to Mg and/or Mn) were selected for T/EGA. The carbonates were heated from 25 to 715 C (35 C/min) and evolved CO2 was measured as a function of temperature. The highest Fe containing carbonates (e.g., Fe(0.99)X(0.01)-CO3) yielded CO2 peak temperatures between 466-487 C, which is consistent with the high temperature RN CO2 release. The lower Fe-bearing carbonates (e.g., Fe(0.66)X(0.34)CO3) did not have peak CO2 release temperatures that matched the RN peak CO2 temperatures; however, their entire CO2 releases did occur within RN temperature range of the high temperature CO2 release. Results from this laboratory analog analysis demonstrate that the high temperature RN CO2 release is consistent with Fe-rich carbonate (approx.0.7 to 1 wt.% FeCO3). The similar RN geochemistry with other materials in Gale Crater and elsewhere on Mars (e.g., Gusev Crater, Meridiani) suggests that up to 1 wt. % Fe-rich carbonate may occur throughout the Gale Crater region and could be widespread on Mars. The Rocknest Fe-carbonate may have formed from the interaction of reduced Fe phases (e.g., Fe2+ bearing olivine) with atmospheric CO2 and transient water. Alternatively, the Rocknest Fe-carbonate could be derived by eolian processes that have eroded distally exposed deep crustal material that possesses Fe-carbonate that may have formed through

  13. The Mars 2020 Rover Mission: EISD Participation in Mission Science and Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fries, M.; Bhartia, R.; Beegle, L.; Burton, A. S.; Ross, A.

    2014-01-01

    The Mars 2020 Rover mission will search for potential biosignatures on the martian surface, use new techniques to search for and identify tracelevel organics, and prepare a cache of samples for potential return to Earth. Identifying trace organic compounds is an important tenet of searching for potential biosignatures. Previous landed missions have experienced difficulty identifying unambiguously martian, unaltered organic compounds, possibly because any organic species have been destroyed on heating in the presence of martian perchlorates and/or other oxidants. The SHERLOC instrument on Mars 2020 will use ultraviolet (UV) fluorescence and Raman spectroscopy to identify trace organic compounds without heating the samples.

  14. Transfer of impact ejecta material from the surface of Mars to Phobos and Deimos.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chappaz, Loïc; Melosh, Henry J; Vaquero, Mar; Howell, Kathleen C

    2013-10-01

    The Russian Phobos-Grunt spacecraft originally planned to return a 200 g sample of surface material from Phobos to Earth. Although it was anticipated that this material would mainly be from the body of Phobos, there is a possibility that such a sample may also contain material ejected from the surface of Mars by large impacts. An analysis of this possibility is completed by using current knowledge of aspects of impact cratering on the surface of Mars and the production of high-speed ejecta that might reach Phobos or Deimos.

  15. Mars Ascent Vehicle-Propellant Aging

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dankanich, John; Rousseau, Jeremy; Williams, Jacob

    2015-01-01

    This project is to develop and test a new propellant formulation specifically for the Mars Ascent Vehicle (MAV) for the robotic Mars Sample Return mission. The project was initiated under the Planetary Sciences Division In-Space Propulsion Technology (ISPT) program and is continuing under the Mars Exploration Program. The two-stage, solid motor-based MAV has been the leading MAV solution for more than a decade. Additional studies show promise for alternative technologies including hybrid and bipropellant options, but the solid motor design has significant propellant density advantages well suited for physical constraints imposed while using the SkyCrane descent stage. The solid motor concept has lower specific impulse (Isp) than alternatives, but if the first stage and payload remain sufficiently small, the two-stage solid MAV represents a potential low risk approach to meet the mission needs. As the need date for the MAV slips, opportunities exist to advance technology with high on-ramp potential. The baseline propellant for the MAV is currently the carboxyl terminated polybutadiene (CTPB) based formulation TP-H-3062 due to its advantageous low temperature mechanical properties and flight heritage. However, the flight heritage is limited and outside the environments, the MAV must endure. The ISPT program competed a propellant formulation project with industry and selected ATK to develop a new propellant formulation specifically for the MAV application. Working with ATK, a large number of propellant formulations were assessed to either increase performance of a CTPB propellant or improve the low temperature mechanical properties of a hydroxyl terminated polybutadiene (HTPB) propellant. Both propellants demonstrated potential to increase performance over heritage options, but an HTPB propellant formulation, TP-H-3544, was selected for production and testing. The test plan includes propellant aging first at high vacuum conditions, representative of the Mars transit

  16. Mars bevares

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hendricks, Vincent Fella; Hendricks, Elbert

    2009-01-01

    2009 er femåret for Mission Mars. I den anledning opridser de to kronikører, far og søn, hvorfor man bør lade planer om en bemandet tur til Mars forblive i skrivebordsskuffen......2009 er femåret for Mission Mars. I den anledning opridser de to kronikører, far og søn, hvorfor man bør lade planer om en bemandet tur til Mars forblive i skrivebordsskuffen...

  17. Test and Delivery of the Chemin Mineralogical Instrument for Mars Science Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blake, D. F.; Vaniman, D.; Anderson, R.; Bish, D.; Chipera, S.; Chemtob, S.; Crisp, J.; DesMarais, D. J.; Downs, R.; Feldman, S.; hide

    2010-01-01

    The CheMin mineralogical instrument on MSL will return quantitative powder X-ray diffraction data (XRD) and qualitative X-ray fluorescence data (XRF; 14samples and drilled rock powders collected on the Mars surface. The geometry of the source, sample, and detector is shown. A transmission geometry was chosen so that diffracted intensities in the low-20 region (5-15 deg), important for phyllosilicate identification, could be detected.

  18. The ecosystem of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge at the sub-polar front and Charlie-Gibbs Fracture Zone; ECO-MAR project strategy and description of the sampling programme 2007-2010

    Science.gov (United States)

    Priede, Imants G.; Billett, David S. M.; Brierley, Andrew S.; Hoelzel, A. Rus; Inall, Mark; Miller, Peter I.; Cousins, Nicola J.; Shields, Mark A.; Fujii, Toyonobu

    2013-12-01

    The ECOMAR project investigated photosynthetically-supported life on the North Mid-Atlantic Ridge (MAR) between the Azores and Iceland focussing on the Charlie-Gibbs Fracture Zone area in the vicinity of the sub-polar front where the North Atlantic Current crosses the MAR. Repeat visits were made to four stations at 2500 m depth on the flanks of the MAR in the years 2007-2010; a pair of northern stations at 54°N in cold water north of the sub-polar front and southern stations at 49°N in warmer water influenced by eddies from the North Atlantic Current. At each station an instrumented mooring was deployed with current meters and sediment traps (100 and 1000 m above the sea floor) to sample downward flux of particulate matter. The patterns of water flow, fronts, primary production and export flux in the region were studied by a combination of remote sensing and in situ measurements. Sonar, tow nets and profilers sampled pelagic fauna over the MAR. Swath bathymetry surveys across the ridge revealed sediment-covered flat terraces parallel to the axis of the MAR with intervening steep rocky slopes. Otter trawls, megacores, baited traps and a suite of tools carried by the R.O.V. Isis including push cores, grabs and a suction device collected benthic fauna. Video and photo surveys were also conducted using the SHRIMP towed vehicle and the R.O.V. Isis. Additional surveying and sampling by landers and R.O.V. focussed on the summit of a seamount (48°44‧N, 28°10‧W) on the western crest of the MAR between the two southern stations.

  19. Planetary Sample Caching System Design Options

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collins, Curtis; Younse, Paulo; Backes, Paul

    2009-01-01

    Potential Mars Sample Return missions would aspire to collect small core and regolith samples using a rover with a sample acquisition tool and sample caching system. Samples would need to be stored in individual sealed tubes in a canister that could be transfered to a Mars ascent vehicle and returned to Earth. A sample handling, encapsulation and containerization system (SHEC) has been developed as part of an integrated system for acquiring and storing core samples for application to future potential MSR and other potential sample return missions. Requirements and design options for the SHEC system were studied and a recommended design concept developed. Two families of solutions were explored: 1)transfer of a raw sample from the tool to the SHEC subsystem and 2)transfer of a tube containing the sample to the SHEC subsystem. The recommended design utilizes sample tool bit change out as the mechanism for transferring tubes to and samples in tubes from the tool. The SHEC subsystem design, called the Bit Changeout Caching(BiCC) design, is intended for operations on a MER class rover.

  20. Evolved Gas Measurements Planned for the Lower Layers of the Gale Crater Mound with the Sample Analysis at Mars Instrument Suite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahaffy, Paul; Brunner, Anna; McAdam, Amy; Franz, Heather; Conrad, Pamela; Webster, Chris; Cabane, Michel

    2009-01-01

    The lower mound strata of Gale Crater provide a diverse set of chemical environments for exploration by the varied tools of the Curiosity Rover of the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Mission. Orbital imaging and spectroscopy clearly reveal distinct layers of hydrated minerals, sulfates, and clays with abundant evidence of a variety of fluvial processes. The three instruments of the MSL Sample Analysis at aMars (SAM) investigation, the Quadrupole Mass Spectrometer (QMS), the Tunable Laser Spectrometer (TLS), and the Gas Chromatograph (GC) are designed to analyze either atmospheric gases or volatiles thermally evolved or chemically extracted from powdered rock or soil. The presence or absence of organic compounds in these layers is of great interest since such an in situ search for this type of record has not been successfully implemented since the mid-60s Viking GCMS experiments. However, regardless of the outcome of the analysis for organics, the abundance and isotopic composition of thermally evolved inorganic compounds should also provide a rich data set to complement the mineralogical and elemental information provided by other MSL instruments. In addition, these evolved gas analysis (EGA) experiments will help test sedimentary models proposed by Malin and Edgett (2000) and then further developed by Milliken et al (2010) for Gale Crater. In the SAM EGA experiments the evolution temperatures of H2O, CO2, SO2, O2, or other simple compounds as the samples are heated in a helium stream to 1000 C provides information on mineral types and their associations. The isotopic composition of O, H, C, and S can be precisely determined in several evolved compounds and compared with the present day atmosphere. Such SAM results might be able to test mineralogical evidence of changing sedimentary and alteration processes over an extended period of time. For example, Bibring et al (2006) have suggested such a major shift from early nonacidic to later acidic alteration. We will

  1. Effects of Low-Temperature Plasma-Sterilization on Mars Analog Soil Samples Mixed with Deinococcus radiodurans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Janosch Schirmack

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available We used Ar plasma-sterilization at a temperature below 80 °C to examine its effects on the viability of microorganisms when intermixed with tested soil. Due to a relatively low temperature, this method is not thought to affect the properties of a soil, particularly its organic component, to a significant degree. The method has previously been shown to work well on spacecraft parts. The selected microorganism for this test was Deinococcus radiodurans R1, which is known for its remarkable resistance to radiation effects. Our results showed a reduction in microbial counts after applying a low temperature plasma, but not to a degree suitable for a sterilization of the soil. Even an increase of the treatment duration from 1.5 to 45 min did not achieve satisfying results, but only resulted in in a mean cell reduction rate of 75% compared to the untreated control samples.

  2. Mars entry-to-landing trajectory optimization and closed loop guidance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ilgen, Marc R.; Manning, Raymund A.; Cruz, Manuel I.

    1991-01-01

    The guidance strategy of the Mars Rover Sample Return mission is presented in detail. Aeromaneuver versus aerobrake trades are examined, and an aerobrake analysis is presented which takes into account targeting, guidance, flight control, trajectory profile, delivery accuracy. An aeromaneuver analysis is given which includes the entry corridor, maneuver footprint, guidance, preentry phase, constant drag phase, equilibrium guide phase, variable drag phase, influence of trajectory profile on the entry flight loads, parachute deployment conditions and strategies, and landing accuracy. The Mars terminal descent phase is analyzed.

  3. Mars oxygen production system design

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cotton, Charles E.; Pillow, Linda K.; Perkinson, Robert C.; Brownlie, R. P.; Chwalowski, P.; Carmona, M. F.; Coopersmith, J. P.; Goff, J. C.; Harvey, L. L.; Kovacs, L. A.

    1989-01-01

    The design and construction phase is summarized of the Mars oxygen demonstration project. The basic hardware required to produce oxygen from simulated Mars atmosphere was assembled and tested. Some design problems still remain with the sample collection and storage system. In addition, design and development of computer compatible data acquisition and control instrumentation is ongoing.

  4. Nitrogen on Mars: Insights from Curiosity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, J. C.; Sutter, B.; Jackson, W. A.; Navarro-Gonzalez, Rafael; McKay, Chrisopher P.; Ming, W.; Archer, P. Douglas; Glavin, D. P.; Fairen, A. G.; Mahaffy, Paul R.

    2017-01-01

    Recent detection of nitrate on Mars indicates that nitrogen fixation processes occurred in early martian history. Data collected by the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument on the Curiosity Rover can be integrated with Mars analog work in order to better understand the fixation and mobility of nitrogen on Mars, and thus its availability to putative biology. In particular, the relationship between nitrate and other soluble salts may help reveal the timing of nitrogen fixation and post-depositional behavior of nitrate on Mars. In addition, in situ measurements of nitrogen abundance and isotopic composition may be used to model atmospheric conditions on early Mars.

  5. An Alternative Humans to Mars Approach: Reducing Mission Mass with Multiple Mars Flyby Trajectories and Minimal Capability Investments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whitley, Ryan J.; Jedrey, Richard; Landau, Damon; Ocampo, Cesar

    2015-01-01

    Mars flyby trajectories and Earth return trajectories have the potential to enable lower- cost and sustainable human exploration of Mars. Flyby and return trajectories are true minimum energy paths with low to zero post-Earth departure maneuvers. By emplacing the large crew vehicles required for human transit on these paths, the total fuel cost can be reduced. The traditional full-up repeating Earth-Mars-Earth cycler concept requires significant infrastructure, but a Mars only flyby approach minimizes mission mass and maximizes opportunities to build-up missions in a stepwise manner. In this paper multiple strategies for sending a crew of 4 to Mars orbit and back are examined. With pre-emplaced assets in Mars orbit, a transit habitat and a minimally functional Mars taxi, a complete Mars mission can be accomplished in 3 SLS launches and 2 Mars Flyby's, including Orion. While some years are better than others, ample opportunities exist within a given 15-year Earth-Mars alignment cycle. Building up a mission cadence over time, this approach can translate to Mars surface access. Risk reduction, which is always a concern for human missions, is mitigated by the use of flybys with Earth return (some of which are true free returns) capability.

  6. Planetary protection issues related to human missions to Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Debus, A.; Arnould, J.

    2008-09-01

    In accordance with the United Nations Outer Space Treaties [United Nations, Agreement Governing the Activities of States on the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies, UN doc A/RES/34/68, resolution 38/68 of December 1979], currently maintained and promulgated by the Committee on Space Research [COSPAR Planetary Protection Panel, Planetary Protection Policy accepted by the COSPAR Council and Bureau, 20 October 2002, amended 24 March 2005, http://www.cosparhq.org/scistr/PPPolicy.htm], missions exploring the Solar system must meet planetary protection requirements. Planetary protection aims to protect celestial bodies from terrestrial contamination and to protect the Earth environment from potential biological contamination carried by returned samples or space systems that have been in contact with an extraterrestrial environment. From an exobiology perspective, Mars is one of the major targets, and several missions are currently in operation, in transit, or scheduled for its exploration. Some of them include payloads dedicated to the detection of life or traces of life. The next step, over the coming years, will be to return samples from Mars to Earth, with a view to increasing our knowledge in preparation for the first manned mission that is likely to take place within the next few decades. Robotic missions to Mars shall meet planetary protection specifications, currently well documented, and planetary protection programs are implemented in a very reliable manner given that experience in the field spans some 40 years. With regards to sample return missions, a set of stringent requirements has been approved by COSPAR [COSPAR Planetary Protection Panel, Planetary Protection Policy accepted by the COSPAR Council and Bureau, 20 October 2002, amended 24 March 2005, http://www.cosparhq.org/scistr/PPPolicy.htm], and technical challenges must now be overcome in order to preserve the Earth’s biosphere from any eventual contamination risk. In addition to the human dimension of

  7. Austere Human Missions to Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Price, Hoppy; Hawkins, Alisa M.; Tadcliffe, Torrey O.

    2009-01-01

    preposition a habitat, supplies, and exploration equipment. The next opportunity, two years later, would send to Mars orbit 1) a lander with a Mars Ascent Vehicle (MAV) and 2) a crewed Mars Transit Habitat with an Orion CEV for Earth return. The following opportunity, two years after the first crew, would go back to cargo-only launches. This alternation of cargo and crew opportunities results in a sustainable launch rate of six Ares V launches every two years. It is notable that four of the six launches per Mars opportunity are identical, build-to-print, Tran-Mars Injection stages. This type of production rate could lend itself well to a COTStype service provider, and would make it feasible to have a live spare in place in the event of a single launch failure.

  8. Mars Express - ESA sets ambitious goals for the first European mission to Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    2003-05-01

    Mars has always fascinated human beings. No other planet has been visited so many times by spacecraft. And still, it has not been easy to unveil its secrets. Martian mysteries seem to have increased in quantity and complexity with every mission. When the first spacecraft were sent - the Mariner series in 1960s - the public was expecting an Earth ‘twin’, a green, inhabited planet full of oceans. Mariner shattered this dream by showing a barren surface. This was followed by the Viking probes which searched for life unsuccessfully in 1976. Mars appeared dry, cold and uninhabited: the Earth’s opposite. Now, two decades later, modern spacecraft have changed that view, but they have also returned more questions. Current data show that Mars was probably much warmer in the past. Scientists now think that Mars had oceans, so it could have been a suitable place for life in the past. “We do not know what happened to the planet in the past. Which process turned Mars into the dry, cold world we see today?” says Agustin Chicarro, ESA’s Mars Express project scientist. “With Mars Express, we will find out. Above all, we aim to obtain a complete global view of the planet - its history, its geology, how it has evolved. Real planetology!” Mars Express will reach the Red Planet by the end of December 2003, after a trip of just over six months. Six days before injection into its final orbit, Mars Express will eject the lander, Beagle 2, named after the ship on which Charles Darwin found inspiration to formulate his theory of evolution. The Mars Express orbiter will observe the planet and its atmosphere from a near-polar orbit, and will remain in operation for at least a whole Martian year (687 Earth days). Beagle 2 will land in an equatorial region that was probably flooded in the past, and where traces of life may have been preserved. The Mars Express orbiter carries seven advanced experiments, in addition to the Beagle 2 lander. The orbiter’s instruments have been

  9. Mineralogy, provenance, and diagenesis of a potassic basaltic sandstone on Mars: CheMin X-ray diffraction of the Windjana sample (Kimberley area, Gale Crater)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Treiman, Allan H.; Bish, David L.; Chipera, Steve J.; Blake, David F.

    2015-01-01

    The Windjana drill sample, a sandstone of the Dillinger member (Kimberley formation, Gale Crater, Mars), was analyzed by CheMin X-ray diffraction (XRD) in the MSL Curiosity rover. From Rietveld refinements of its XRD pattern, Windjana contains the following: sanidine (21% weight, ~Or 95 ); augite (20%); magnetite (12%); pigeonite; olivine; plagioclase; amorphous and smectitic material (~25%); and percent levels of others including ilmenite, fluorapatite, and bassanite. From mass balance on the Alpha Proton X-ray Spectrometer (APXS) chemical analysis, the amorphous material is Fe rich with nearly no other cations—like ferrihydrite. The Windjana sample shows little alteration and was likely cemented by its magnetite and ferrihydrite. From ChemCam Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectrometer (LIBS) chemical analyses, Windjana is representative of the Dillinger and Mount Remarkable members of the Kimberley formation. LIBS data suggest that the Kimberley sediments include at least three chemical components. The most K-rich targets have 5.6% K 2 O, ~1.8 times that of Windjana, implying a sediment component with >40% sanidine, e.g., a trachyte. A second component is rich in mafic minerals, with little feldspar (like a shergottite). A third component is richer in plagioclase and in Na 2 O, and is likely to be basaltic. The K-rich sediment component is consistent with APXS and ChemCam observations of K-rich rocks elsewhere in Gale Crater. The source of this sediment component was likely volcanic. Finally, the presence of sediment from many igneous sources, in concert with Curiosity's identifications of other igneous materials (e.g., mugearite), implies that the northern rim of Gale Crater exposes a diverse igneous complex, at least as diverse as that found in similar-age terranes on Earth.

  10. Searching for signatures of life on Mars: an Fe-isotope perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anand, M; Russell, S S; Blackhurst, R L; Grady, M M

    2006-10-29

    Recent spacecraft and lander missions to Mars have reinforced previous interpretations that Mars was a wet and warm planet in the geological past. The role of liquid water in shaping many of the surface features on Mars has long been recognized. Since the presence of liquid water is essential for survival of life, conditions on early Mars might have been more favourable for the emergence and evolution of life. Until a sample return mission to Mars, one of the ways of studying the past environmental conditions on Mars is through chemical and isotopic studies of Martian meteorites. Over 35 individual meteorite samples, believed to have originated on Mars, are now available for lab-based studies. Fe is a key element that is present in both primary and secondary minerals in the Martian meteorites. Fe-isotope ratios can be fractionated by low-temperature processes which includes biological activity. Experimental investigations of Fe reduction and oxidation by bacteria have produced large fractionation in Fe-isotope ratios. Hence, it is considered likely that if there is/were any form of life present on Mars then it might be possible to detect its signature by Fe-isotope studies of Martian meteorites. In the present study, we have analysed a number of Martian meteorites for their bulk-Fe-isotope composition. In addition, a set of terrestrial analogue material has also been analysed to compare the results and draw inferences. So far, our studies have not found any measurable Fe-isotopic fractionation in bulk Martian meteorites that can be ascribed to any low-temperature process operative on Mars.

  11. Exploring Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Breuil, Stéphanie

    2016-04-01

    Mars is our neighbour planet and has always fascinated humans as it has been seen as a potential abode for life. Knowledge about Mars is huge and was constructed step by step through numerous missions. It could be difficult to describe these missions, the associated technology, the results, the questions they raise, that's why an activity is proposed, that directly interests students. Their production is presented in the poster. Step 1: The main Mars feature and the first Mars explorations using telescope are presented to students. It should be really interesting to present "Mars Canals" from Percival Lowell as it should also warn students against flawed interpretation. Moreover, this study has raised the big question about extra-terrestrial life on Mars for the first time. Using Google Mars is then a good way to show the huge knowledge we have on the planet and to introduce modern missions. Step 2: Students have to choose and describe one of the Mars mission from ESA and NASA. They should work in pairs. Web sites from ESA and NASA are available and the teacher makes sure the main missions will be studied. Step 3: Students have to collect different pieces of information about the mission - When? Which technology? What were the main results? What type of questions does it raise? They prepare an oral presentation in the form they want (role play, academic presentation, using a poster, PowerPoint). They also have to produce playing cards about the mission that could be put on a timeline. Step 4: As a conclusion, the different cards concerning different missions are mixed. Groups of students receive cards and they have to put them on a timeline as fast as possible. It is also possible to play the game "timeline".

  12. Planetary protection implementation on future Mars lander missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howell, Robert; Devincenzi, Donald L.

    1993-01-01

    Committee on Space Research (COSPAR) policy and how will they apply to and affect Mars '94, Mars '96, MESUR Pathfinder, and MESUR Network missions? One additional topic briefly considered at the workshop was the identification of some issues related to planetary protection considerations for Mars sample return missions. These issues will form the basis for a follow-on joint U.S./Russian workshop on that subject.

  13. Planetary protection implementation on future Mars lander missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howell, Robert; Devincenzi, Donald L.

    1993-06-01

    Committee on Space Research (COSPAR) policy and how will they apply to and affect Mars '94, Mars '96, MESUR Pathfinder, and MESUR Network missions? One additional topic briefly considered at the workshop was the identification of some issues related to planetary protection considerations for Mars sample return missions. These issues will form the basis for a follow-on joint U.S./Russian workshop on that subject.

  14. Gold Returns

    OpenAIRE

    Robert J. Barro; Sanjay P. Misra

    2013-01-01

    From 1836 to 2011, the average real rate of price change for gold in the United States is 1.1% per year and the standard deviation is 13.1%, implying a one-standard-deviation confidence band for the mean of (0.1%, 2.1%). The covariances of gold's real rate of price change with consumption and GDP growth rates are small and statistically insignificantly different from zero. These negligible covariances suggest that gold's expected real rate of return--which includes an unobserved dividend yiel...

  15. Returning home

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Agergaard, Jytte; Brøgger, Ditte

    2016-01-01

    flows. By focusing on these educational migrants, this paper explores how they connect to their rural homes. Guided by a critical reading of the migration-development scholarship, the paper examines how migrants and their relatives make sense of educational migrants’ remitting and returning practices......, and by comparing three groups of educational migrants, the migrants’ reasons for staying connected and sending remittances are scrutinized. The paper finds that although educational migrants do not generate extensive economic remittances for local development in Nepal, they stay connected to their rural homes...

  16. In Situ Analysis of Martian Phyllosilicates Using the Chemin Minerological Instrument on Mars Science Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blake, David F.

    2008-01-01

    The CheMin minerological instrument on Mars Science Laboratory (MSL'09) [1] will return quantitive Xray diffraction data (XRD) and quantative X-ray fluorescence data (XRF;14samples and drilled rock powders collected from the Mars surface. Samples of 45-65 mm 3 from material sieved to less than 150 micrometers will be delivered through a funnel to one of 27 reusable sample cells (five additional cells on the sample wheel contain diffraction of fluorescence standards). Sample cells are 8-mm diamater discs with 7-micrometer thick Mylar or Kapton windows spaced 170 micrometers apart. Within this volume, the sample is shaken by piezoelectric vibration at sonic frequencies, causing the powder to flow past a narrow, collimated -ray beam in random orientation can be obtained even from minnerals exhibiting strong preferred orientation such as phylosilicates.

  17. The Clock-in-the-Box, a brief cognitive screen, is associated with failure to return home in an elderly hospitalized sample

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jackson CE

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Colleen E Jackson,1–3 Laura J Grande,1–3 Kelly Doherty,1 Elizabeth Archambault,1 Brittany Kelly,1 Jane A Driver,1,4 William P Milberg,1,2,5 Regina McGlinchey,1,2,5 James L Rudolph6,7 1Geriatric Research, Education and Clinical Center, Department of Veterans Affairs (VA Boston Healthcare System, Boston, MA, 2Translational Research Center for TBI and Stress Disorders, Department of Veterans Affairs (VA Boston Healthcare System, Boston, MA, 3Department of Psychiatry, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA, 4Department of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, 5Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, 6Center of Innovation in Long Term Services and Supports, Department of Veterans Affairs (VA Providence Medical Center, Providence, RI, 7Department of Medicine, Warren Alpert School of Medicine of Brown University, Providence, RI, USA Purpose: Cognitive screening upon hospital admission can provide important information about the patient’s ability to process information during the inpatient stay. The Clock-in-the-Box (CIB is a rapidly administered cognitive screening measure which has been previously validated with cognitive screening and neuropsychological assessments. The purpose of this study is to demonstrate the predictive validity of the CIB for discharge location among a sample of older medical inpatients. Patients and methods: Hospitalized Veterans (N=218, aged 55 years and older, were recruited on the day after admission after they gave their consent. These participants completed the CIB, the Montreal Cognitive Assessment, and self-report measures of daily functioning. Using logistic regression models, the bivariable and multivariable impact of the cognitive screening and functional assessments were examined for their ability to predict whether the participants did not return home after hospitalization (eg, admission to subacute rehabilitation facilities or nursing facilities. Results: The

  18. Sex differences in the return-to-work process of cancer survivors 2 years after diagnosis: results from a large French population-based sample.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marino, Patricia; Teyssier, Luis Sagaon; Malavolti, Laetitia; Le Corroller-Soriano, Anne-Gaelle

    2013-04-01

    To investigate the effects of clinical, sociodemographic, and occupational factors on time to return to work (RTW) during the 2 years after cancer diagnosis and to analyze whether sex differences exist. This study was based on a French national cross-sectional survey involving 4,270 cancer survivors. Time to RTW was estimated through the duration of sick leave of 801 cancer survivors younger than 58 years who were employed during the 2-year survey. Multivariate analysis of the RTW after sick leave was performed using a Weibull accelerated failure time model. We found some sex differences in the RTW process. Older men returned to work more slowly than older women (P = .013), whereas married men returned to work much faster than married women (P = .019). Duration dependence was also sex-specific. In men, the time spent on sick leave was independent of the probability of returning to work, whereas in women, this duration dependence was positive (P work contract (P = .042). The factor found to accelerate RTW was a higher educational level (P = .014). The RTW process 2 years after cancer diagnosis differed between men and women. A better knowledge of this process should help the national implementation of more cost-effective strategies for managing the RTW of cancer survivors.

  19. The development of a Martian atmospheric Sample collection canister

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kulczycki, E.; Galey, C.; Kennedy, B.; Budney, C.; Bame, D.; Van Schilfgaarde, R.; Aisen, N.; Townsend, J.; Younse, P.; Piacentine, J.

    The collection of an atmospheric sample from Mars would provide significant insight to the understanding of the elemental composition and sub-surface out-gassing rates of noble gases. A team of engineers at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), California Institute of Technology have developed an atmospheric sample collection canister for Martian application. The engineering strategy has two basic elements: first, to collect two separately sealed 50 cubic centimeter unpressurized atmospheric samples with minimal sensing and actuation in a self contained pressure vessel; and second, to package this atmospheric sample canister in such a way that it can be easily integrated into the orbiting sample capsule for collection and return to Earth. Sample collection and integrity are demonstrated by emulating the atmospheric collection portion of the Mars Sample Return mission on a compressed timeline. The test results achieved by varying the pressure inside of a thermal vacuum chamber while opening and closing the valve on the sample canister at Mars ambient pressure. A commercial off-the-shelf medical grade micro-valve is utilized in the first iteration of this design to enable rapid testing of the system. The valve has been independently leak tested at JPL to quantify and separate the leak rates associated with the canister. The results are factored in to an overall system design that quantifies mass, power, and sensing requirements for a Martian atmospheric Sample Collection (MASC) canister as outlined in the Mars Sample Return mission profile. Qualitative results include the selection of materials to minimize sample contamination, preliminary science requirements, priorities in sample composition, flight valve selection criteria, a storyboard from sample collection to loading in the orbiting sample capsule, and contributions to maintaining “ Earth” clean exterior surfaces on the orbiting sample capsule.

  20. On the search for extant life on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klein, H. P.

    1996-01-01

    Proposals for continuing the search for extant life on Mars are primarily predicated on the assumption that specialized environmental niches that could support a biota may exist on the planet. Before attempting any critical tests for extant organisms, either in situ or on returned samples, it is imperative to determine whether any such sites actually exist. If, through remote sensing and landed instrumentation, sites of potential biological interest are discovered and characterized, biological tests can then more effectively be planned to elicit the presence of organisms that are adapted to living in these particular environments.

  1. In Situ Techniques for Life Detection on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Becker, L.; Brinckerhoff, W.; Cotter, R.

    2006-12-01

    The search for organic matter on Mars is rapidly emerging as a result of technological advancements and the study of early "life" on our own planet. As we learned from the Viking missions and the examination of martian meteorites, the criteria for establishing life require the appropriate strategy. One such approach would require careful mapping of the surface from orbit for the selection of the appropriate landing sites, robotic space missions equipped with several life detection in situ techniques for selection of samples, and sample return missions for additional verification of in situ results and laboratory measurements. It may, however, be possible to obtain critical information about the organic matter and associated mineral assemblages present on Mars, in situ, in a single measurement that is both capable of flight and is nondestructive to the sample. We discuss a new multi-source mass spectrometer, `MOMA' (Mars Organic Molecule Analyzer) that incorporates multiple methods of volatilizing and ionizing chemical compounds from intact samples without further processing or manipulation. Moreover, MOMA is capable of detecting a broad range of organics enabling the evaluation of the origin of the organics and the presence of terrestrial contaminants.

  2. A Geology Sampling System for Small Bodies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naids, Adam J.; Hood, Anthony D.; Abell, Paul; Graff, Trevor; Buffington, Jesse

    2016-01-01

    Human exploration of microgravity bodies is being investigated as a precursor to a Mars surface mission. Asteroids, comets, dwarf planets, and the moons of Mars all fall into this microgravity category and some are being discussed as potential mission targets. Obtaining geological samples for return to Earth will be a major objective for any mission to a small body. Currently, the knowledge base for geology sampling in microgravity is in its infancy. Humans interacting with non-engineered surfaces in microgravity environment pose unique challenges. In preparation for such missions a team at the NASA Johnson Space Center has been working to gain experience on how to safely obtain numerous sample types in such an environment. This paper describes the type of samples the science community is interested in, highlights notable prototype work, and discusses an integrated geology sampling solution.

  3. A Geology Sampling System for Microgravity Bodies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hood, Anthony; Naids, Adam

    2016-01-01

    Human exploration of microgravity bodies is being investigated as a precursor to a Mars surface mission. Asteroids, comets, dwarf planets, and the moons of Mars all fall into this microgravity category and some are been discussed as potential mission targets. Obtaining geological samples for return to Earth will be a major objective for any mission to a microgravity body. Currently the knowledge base for geology sampling in microgravity is in its infancy. Humans interacting with non-engineered surfaces in microgravity environment pose unique challenges. In preparation for such missions a team at the NASA Johnson Space Center has been working to gain experience on how to safely obtain numerous sample types in such an environment. This paper describes the type of samples the science community is interested in, highlights notable prototype work, and discusses an integrated geology sampling solution.

  4. Interactive 3D Mars Visualization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Powell, Mark W.

    2012-01-01

    The Interactive 3D Mars Visualization system provides high-performance, immersive visualization of satellite and surface vehicle imagery of Mars. The software can be used in mission operations to provide the most accurate position information for the Mars rovers to date. When integrated into the mission data pipeline, this system allows mission planners to view the location of the rover on Mars to 0.01-meter accuracy with respect to satellite imagery, with dynamic updates to incorporate the latest position information. Given this information so early in the planning process, rover drivers are able to plan more accurate drive activities for the rover than ever before, increasing the execution of science activities significantly. Scientifically, this 3D mapping information puts all of the science analyses to date into geologic context on a daily basis instead of weeks or months, as was the norm prior to this contribution. This allows the science planners to judge the efficacy of their previously executed science observations much more efficiently, and achieve greater science return as a result. The Interactive 3D Mars surface view is a Mars terrain browsing software interface that encompasses the entire region of exploration for a Mars surface exploration mission. The view is interactive, allowing the user to pan in any direction by clicking and dragging, or to zoom in or out by scrolling the mouse or touchpad. This set currently includes tools for selecting a point of interest, and a ruler tool for displaying the distance between and positions of two points of interest. The mapping information can be harvested and shared through ubiquitous online mapping tools like Google Mars, NASA WorldWind, and Worldwide Telescope.

  5. An Integrated XRF/XRD Instrument for Mars Exobiology and Geology Experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koppel, L. N.; Franco, E. D.; Kerner, J. A.; Fonda, M. L.; Schwartz, D. E.; Marshall, J. R.

    1993-01-01

    By employing an integrated x-ray instrument on a future Mars mission, data obtained will greatly augment those returned by Viking; details characterizing the past and present environment on Mars and those relevant to the possibility of the origin and evolution of life will be acquired. A combined x-ray fluorescence/x-ray diffraction (XRF/XRD) instrument was breadboarded and demonstrated to accommodate important exobiology and geology experiment objectives outlined for MESUR and future Mars missions. Among others, primary objectives for the exploration of Mars include the intense study of local areas on Mars to establish the chemical, mineralogical, and petrological character of different components of the surface material; to determine the distribution, abundance, and sources and sinks of volatile materials, including an assessment of the biologic potential, now and during past epoches; and to establish the global chemical and physical characteristics of the Martian surface. The XRF/XRD breadboard instrument identifies and quantifies soil surface elemental, mineralogical, and petrological characteristics and acquires data necessary to address questions on volatile abundance and distribution. Additionally, the breadboard is able to characterize the biogenic element constituents of soil samples providing information on the biologic potential of the Mars environment. Preliminary breadboard experiments confirmed the fundamental instrument design approach and measurement performance.

  6. High Temperature Life Testing of 80Ni-20Cr Wire in a Simulated Mars Atmosphere for the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) Instrument Suit Gas Processing System (GPS) Carbon Dioxide Scrubber

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gundersen, Cynthia; Hoffman, Christopher; Munoz, Bruno; Steohenson, Timothy; Thomas, Walter

    2008-01-01

    In support of the GPS for the SAM instrument suite built by GSFC, a life test facility was developed to test the suitability of 80Ni-20Cr wire, 0.0056 inches in diameter, for use as a heater element for the carbon dioxide scrubber. The wire would be required to operate at 1000 C in order to attain the 800 C required for regeneration of the getter. The wire also would need to operate in the Mars atmosphere, which consists mostly of CO2 at pressures between 4 and 12 torr. Data on the high temperature degradation mechanism of 80Ni-20Cr in low pressure CO2, together with the effects of thermal cycling, were unknown. In addition, the influence of work hardening of the wire during assembly and the potential for catastrophic grain growth also were unknown. Verification of the wire reliability as defined by the mission goals required the construction of a test facility that would accurately simulate the duty cycles in a simulated Mars atmosphere. The experimental set-up, along with the test protocol and results will be described.

  7. High Temperature Life Testing of 80Ni-20Cr Wire in a Simulated Mars Atmosphere for the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) Instrument Suite Gas Processing System (GPS) Carbon Dioxide Scrubber

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoffman, Christopher; Munoz, Bruno; Gundersen, Cynthia; Thomas, Walter, III; Stephenson, Timothy

    2008-01-01

    In support of the GPS for the SAM instrument suite built by NASA/GSFC, a life test facility was developed to test the suitability of 80Ni-20Cr alloy wire, 0.0142 cm diameter, for use as a heater element for the carbon dioxide scrubber. The element would be required to operate at 1000 C in order to attain the 800 C required for regeneration of the getter. The element also would need to operate in the Mars atmosphere, which consists mostly of CO2 at pressures between 4 and 12 torr. Data on the high temperature degradation mechanism of 80Ni- 20Cr in low pressure CO2, coupled with the effects of thermal cycling, were unknown. In addition, the influence of work hardening of the wire during assembly and the potential for catastrophic grain growth also were unknown. Verification of the element reliability as defined by the mission goals required the construction of a test facility that would accurately simulate the duty cycles in a simulated Mars atmosphere. The experimental set-up, along with the test protocol and results will be described.

  8. Computing return times or return periods with rare event algorithms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lestang, Thibault; Ragone, Francesco; Bréhier, Charles-Edouard; Herbert, Corentin; Bouchet, Freddy

    2018-04-01

    The average time between two occurrences of the same event, referred to as its return time (or return period), is a useful statistical concept for practical applications. For instance insurances or public agencies may be interested by the return time of a 10 m flood of the Seine river in Paris. However, due to their scarcity, reliably estimating return times for rare events is very difficult using either observational data or direct numerical simulations. For rare events, an estimator for return times can be built from the extrema of the observable on trajectory blocks. Here, we show that this estimator can be improved to remain accurate for return times of the order of the block size. More importantly, we show that this approach can be generalised to estimate return times from numerical algorithms specifically designed to sample rare events. So far those algorithms often compute probabilities, rather than return times. The approach we propose provides a computationally extremely efficient way to estimate numerically the return times of rare events for a dynamical system, gaining several orders of magnitude of computational costs. We illustrate the method on two kinds of observables, instantaneous and time-averaged, using two different rare event algorithms, for a simple stochastic process, the Ornstein–Uhlenbeck process. As an example of realistic applications to complex systems, we finally discuss extreme values of the drag on an object in a turbulent flow.

  9. Product return management

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Shaharudin, Mohd Rizaimy; Govindan, Kannan; Zailani, Suhaiza

    2017-01-01

    The aim of this study is to examine the extent to which product returns motivate manufacturing firms to adopt closed-loop supply chain activities that influence the effectiveness of reverse supply chains. The hypotheses have been tested using data from a sample of 150 environmental management...... system ISO 14001 certified manufacturing firms in Malaysia through the census sampling approach. The results of the empirical test using LISREL Version 8.70 for the structural equation modeling support the fundamental explanation of the influence of the institutional forces towards the adoption of closed...... eventually impacts the firm's effectiveness in the reverse supply chain. The findings also help managers to understand the factors that can improve the outcome of the adoption of closed-loop supply chain activities by intensifying the extent of involvement in product returns, which provides a valuable...

  10. Sampling

    CERN Document Server

    Thompson, Steven K

    2012-01-01

    Praise for the Second Edition "This book has never had a competitor. It is the only book that takes a broad approach to sampling . . . any good personal statistics library should include a copy of this book." —Technometrics "Well-written . . . an excellent book on an important subject. Highly recommended." —Choice "An ideal reference for scientific researchers and other professionals who use sampling." —Zentralblatt Math Features new developments in the field combined with all aspects of obtaining, interpreting, and using sample data Sampling provides an up-to-date treat

  11. What would we miss if we characterized the Moon and Mars with just planetary meteorites, remote mapping, and robotic landers?. [Abstract only

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindstrom, M. M.

    1994-01-01

    Exploration of the Moon and planets began with telescopic studies of their surfaces, continued with orbiting spacecraft and robotic landers, and will culminate with manned exploration and sample return. For the Moon and Mars we also have accidental samples provided by impacts on their surfaces, the lunar and martian meteorites. How much would we know about the lunar surface if we only had lunar meteorites, orbital spacecraft, and robotic exploration, and not the Apollo and Luna returned samples? What does this imply for Mars? With martian meteorites and data from Mariner, Viking, and the future Pathfinder missions, how much could we learn about Mars? The basis of most of our detailed knowledge about the Moon is the Apollo samples. They provide ground truth for the remote mapping, timescales for lunar processes, and samples from the lunar interior. The Moon is the foundation of planetary science and the basis for our interpretation of the other planets. Mars is similar to the Moon in that impact and volcanism are the dominant processes, but Mars' surface has also been affected by wind and water, and hence has much more complex surface geology. Future geochemical or mineralogical mapping of Mars' surface should be able to tell us whether the dominant rock types of the ancient southern highlands are basaltic, anorthositic, granitic, or something else, but will not be able to tell us the detailed mineralogy, geochemistry, or age. Without many more martian meteorites or returned samples we will not know the diversity of martian rocks, and therefore will be limited in our ability to model martian geological evolution.

  12. Habitable Mars Ascent Vehicle (MAV) Concept. [Mars Ascent Vehicle (MAV) Layout and Configuration: 6-Crew, Habitable, Nested Tank Concept

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dang, Victor; Rucker, Michelle

    2013-01-01

    NASA's ultimate goal is the human exploration of Mars. Among the many difficult aspects of a trip to Mars is the return mission that would transport the astronauts from the Martian surface back into Mars orbit. One possible conceptual design to accomplish this task is a two-stage Mars Ascent Vehicle (MAV). In order to assess this design, a general layout and configuration for the spacecraft must be developed. The objective of my internship was to model a conceptual MAV design to support NASA's latest human Mars mission architecture trade studies, technology prioritization decisions, and mass, cost, and schedule estimates.

  13. Exomars 2018 Rover Pasteur Payload Sample Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Debus, Andre; Bacher, M.; Ball, A.; Barcos, O.; Bethge, B.; Gaubert, F.; Haldemann, A.; Kminek, G.; Lindner, R.; Pacros, A.; Rohr, T.; Trautner, R.; Vago, J.

    The ExoMars programme is a joint ESA-NASA program having exobiology as one of the key science objectives. It is divided into 2 missions: the first mission is ESA-led with an ESA orbiter and an ESA Entry, Descent and Landing (EDL) demonstrator, launched in 2016 by NASA, and the second mission is NASA-led, launched in 2018 by NASA including an ESA rover and a NASA rover both deployed by a single NASA EDL system. For ESA, the ExoMars programme will demonstrate key flight and in situ enabling technologies in support of the European ambitions for future exploration missions, as outlined in the Aurora Declaration. The ExoMars 2018 ESA Rover will carry a comprehensive and coherent suite of analytical instruments dedicated to exobiology and geology research: the Pasteur Payload (PPL). This payload includes a selection of complementary instruments, having the following goals: to search for signs of past and present life on Mars and to investigate the water/geochemical environment as a function of depth in the shallow subsurface. The ExoMars Rover will travel several kilometres searching for sites warranting further investigation. The Rover includes a drill and a Sample Preparation and Distribution System which will be used to collect and analyse samples from within outcrops and from the subsurface. The Rover systems and instruments, in particular those located inside the Analytical Laboratory Drawer must meet many stringent requirements to be compatible with exobiologic investigations: the samples must be maintained in a cold and uncontaminated environment, requiring sterile and ultraclean preparation of the instruments, to preserve volatile materials and to avoid false positive results. The value of the coordinated observations suggests that a significant return on investment is to be expected from this complex development. We will present the challenges facing the ExoMars PPL, and the plans for sending a robust exobiology laboratory to Mars in 2018.

  14. Mars Global Reference Atmospheric Model 2010 Version: Users Guide

    Science.gov (United States)

    Justh, H. L.

    2014-01-01

    This Technical Memorandum (TM) presents the Mars Global Reference Atmospheric Model 2010 (Mars-GRAM 2010) and its new features. Mars-GRAM is an engineering-level atmospheric model widely used for diverse mission applications. Applications include systems design, performance analysis, and operations planning for aerobraking, entry, descent and landing, and aerocapture. Additionally, this TM includes instructions on obtaining the Mars-GRAM source code and data files as well as running Mars-GRAM. It also contains sample Mars-GRAM input and output files and an example of how to incorporate Mars-GRAM as an atmospheric subroutine in a trajectory code.

  15. Mars: Atmosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moroz, V.; Murdin, P.

    2001-07-01

    The atmosphere of MARS is much thinner than the terrestrial one. However, even the simplest visual telescopic observations show a set of atmospheric events such as seasonal exchange of material between polar caps, temporal appearance of clouds and changes of visibility of dark regions on the disk of the planet. In 1947 the prominent CO2 bands in the near-infrared part of the Martian spectrum were...

  16. Emotions and Habitability study in Moon Mars Analogue.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mertens, Alexandre; Lia Schlacht, Irene

    Euro Moon Mars mission have been conducted by students and field researchers in the Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS) a habitat installed by the Mars Society (MS) in the Utah desert. The campaign was supported by ILEWG International Lunar Exploration Working Group, ESTEC, NASA Ames, and partners. It investigated human aspects of isolation in a Mars analogue base. The project is in line with the ILEWG which coordinates several MDRS missions, and contributes to the preparation of future Mars sample return missions. The objective is to study and improve the habitat dynamics in a closed and small environment. Investigation cover different fields as emotional, sociological and psychological aspects and a food study but also habitability aspects. The study has been conducted by asking to the crew members to perform task and fill in questionnaires before, during and after the simulation. Video recovering, pictures and heart rate counting will also be used. One of the main study subject, conducted by Bernard Rimé, concerns the sharing of emotions in an isolated environ-e ment. Another is "Mars Habitability Experiment", which responsible is Irene Schlacht, will try to determine whether humans need variability of stimuli such as it happens in the natural environment -e.g. seasonal changing -to gain efficiency, reliability and well-being. This study have been conducted from February 19 to April 19 on two crews presenting different aspects that could lead to various behaviours. The first crew is made of people from different countries that don't know each other very well. On the opposite, the second crew members have the same cultural background -they come from the same country, university -and they know each other for at least six months. This allow studying how the extreme conditions of the isolation affect the crew efficiency, creativity and sanity according to its homogeneity. Report on the science and technical results, and implications for Earth-Mars comparative stud

  17. Science applications of a multispectral microscopic imager for the astrobiological exploration of Mars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Núñez, Jorge I; Farmer, Jack D; Sellar, R Glenn; Swayze, Gregg A; Blaney, Diana L

    2014-02-01

    Future astrobiological missions to Mars are likely to emphasize the use of rovers with in situ petrologic capabilities for selecting the best samples at a site for in situ analysis with onboard lab instruments or for caching for potential return to Earth. Such observations are central to an understanding of the potential for past habitable conditions at a site and for identifying samples most likely to harbor fossil biosignatures. The Multispectral Microscopic Imager (MMI) provides multispectral reflectance images of geological samples at the microscale, where each image pixel is composed of a visible/shortwave infrared spectrum ranging from 0.46 to 1.73 μm. This spectral range enables the discrimination of a wide variety of rock-forming minerals, especially Fe-bearing phases, and the detection of hydrated minerals. The MMI advances beyond the capabilities of current microimagers on Mars by extending the spectral range into the infrared and increasing the number of spectral bands. The design employs multispectral light-emitting diodes and an uncooled indium gallium arsenide focal plane array to achieve a very low mass and high reliability. To better understand and demonstrate the capabilities of the MMI for future surface missions to Mars, we analyzed samples from Mars-relevant analog environments with the MMI. Results indicate that the MMI images faithfully resolve the fine-scale microtextural features of samples and provide important information to help constrain mineral composition. The use of spectral endmember mapping reveals the distribution of Fe-bearing minerals (including silicates and oxides) with high fidelity, along with the presence of hydrated minerals. MMI-based petrogenetic interpretations compare favorably with laboratory-based analyses, revealing the value of the MMI for future in situ rover-mediated astrobiological exploration of Mars. Mars-Microscopic imager-Multispectral imaging-Spectroscopy-Habitability-Arm instrument.

  18. Atmosphere Processing Module Automation and Catalyst Durability Analysis for Mars ISRU Pathfinder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petersen, Elspeth M.

    2016-01-01

    The Mars In-Situ Resource Utilization Pathfinder was designed to create fuel using components found in the planet’s atmosphere and regolith for an ascension vehicle to return a potential sample return or crew return vehicle from Mars. The Atmosphere Processing Module (APM), a subunit of the pathfinder, uses cryocoolers to isolate and collect carbon dioxide from Mars simulant gas. The carbon dioxide is fed with hydrogen into a Sabatier reactor where methane is produced. The APM is currently undergoing the final stages of testing at Kennedy Space Center prior to process integration testing with the other subunits of the pathfinder. The automation software for the APM cryocoolers was tested and found to perform nominally. The catalyst used for the Sabatier reactor was investigated to determine the factors contributing to catalyst failure. The results from the catalyst testing require further analysis, but it appears that the rapid change in temperature during reactor start up or the elevated operating temperature is responsible for the changes observed in the catalyst.

  19. Proposal on application of Russian technical facilities for International Mars Research Program for 2009 2015

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polishchuk, Georgy; Pichkhadze, Konstantin; Vorontsov, Victor; Pavel, Kazmerchuk

    2006-07-01

    Recently International Mars Research Program is widely discussed. Well-known initiative of President of the USA, recent progress of American and European scientists and engineers in implementation of “Mars Odyssey” and “Mars-Express” projects and Russian proposals on cooperation and participation in “Phobos Sample Return” mission declare every intention to join efforts in the ambitious Martian Program realization. The final goal of the program for nearly 15 20 years is landing of a man on the Martian surface. Before this event happens another critical stage will be Martian soil sample return. Within the next 10 years, apparently, a major task will be scale research by means of various types of technical facilities. A crucial issue for this research will be creation of research station network which would allow collecting information about planetary conditions at far-remote points. By this time within the frame of “Phobos Sample Return Program” to be launched in 2009 it is planned to deliver some meteorological mini-landers developed by the Russian and Finnish specialists on the Martian surface. From this point view it is also interesting to use balloons capable to cover considerable distance. Such proposals have been made by Russian side for “Scout” mission. European “Aurora” program also anticipates application of wide range of technical means to explore the Martian atmosphere and surface including inflatable devices. Thus, for the International Mars Exploration Program, it seems to be very prospective to use apart from launch vehicles, upper stages etc. such technical means as mini-stations, Mars rovers, penetrators, balloons, etc.

  20. Past, present, and future life on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKay, C. P.

    1998-01-01

    Although the Viking results indicated that the surface of Mars is dry and lifeless, there is direct geomorphological evidence that Mars had large amounts of liquid water on its surface in the past. From a biological perspective the existence of liquid water, by itself, motivates the question of the origin of life on Mars. One of the martian meteorites dates back to this early period and may contain evidence consistent with life. The Mars environment 3.5 to 4.0 Gyr ago was comparable to that on the Earth at this time in that both contained liquid water. Life had originated on Earth and reached a fair degree of biological sophistication by 3.5 Gyr ago. To determine if life similarly arose on Mars may require extensive robotic exploration and ultimately human exploration. Intensive exploration of Mars will require a continued presence on the Martian surface and the development of a self sustaining community in which humans can live and work for very long periods of time. A permanent Mars research station can obtain its life support requirements directly from the martian environment enabling a high degree of self-sufficiency. In the longer term, it is possible that in the future we might restore a habitable climate on Mars, returning it to the life-bearing state it may have enjoyed early in its history.

  1. Mars @ ASDC

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carraro, Francesco

    "Mars @ ASDC" is a project born with the goal of using the new web technologies to assist researches involved in the study of Mars. This project employs Mars map and javascript APIs provided by Google to visualize data acquired by space missions on the planet. So far, visualization of tracks acquired by MARSIS and regions observed by VIRTIS-Rosetta has been implemented. The main reason for the creation of this kind of tool is the difficulty in handling hundreds or thousands of acquisitions, like the ones from MARSIS, and the consequent difficulty in finding observations related to a particular region. This led to the development of a tool which allows to search for acquisitions either by defining the region of interest through a set of geometrical parameters or by manually selecting the region on the map through a few mouse clicks The system allows the visualization of tracks (acquired by MARSIS) or regions (acquired by VIRTIS-Rosetta) which intersect the user defined region. MARSIS tracks can be visualized both in Mercator and polar projections while the regions observed by VIRTIS can presently be visualized only in Mercator projection. The Mercator projection is the standard map provided by Google. The polar projections are provided by NASA and have been developed to be used in combination with APIs provided by Google The whole project has been developed following the "open source" philosophy: the client-side code which handles the functioning of the web page is written in javascript; the server-side code which executes the searches for tracks or regions is written in PHP and the DB which undergoes the system is MySQL.

  2. Science Driven Human Exploration of Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKay, Christopher P.

    2004-01-01

    Mars appears to be cold dry and dead world. However there is good evidence that early in its history it had liquid water, more active volcanism, and a thicker atmosphere. Mars had this earth-like environment over three and a half billion years ago, during the same time that life appeared on Earth. The main question in the exploration of Mars then is the search for a independent origin of life on that planet. Ecosystems in cold, dry locations on Earth - such as the Antarctic - provide examples of how life on Mars might have survived and where to look for fossils. Fossils are not enough. We will want to determine if life on Mars was a separate genesis from life on Earth. For this determination we need to access intact martian life; possibly frozen in the deep old permafrost. Human exploration of Mars will probably begin with a small base manned by a temporary crew, a necessary first start. But exploration of the entire planet will require a continued presence on the Martian surface and the development of a self sustaining community in which humans can live and work for very long periods of time. A permanent Mars research base can be compared to the permanent research bases which several nations maintain in Antarctica at the South Pole, the geomagnetic pole, and elsewhere. In the long run, a continued human presence on Mars will be the most economical way to study that planet in detail. It is possible that at some time in the future we might recreate a habitable climate on Mars, returning it to the life-bearing state it may have enjoyed early in its history. Our studies of Mars are still in a preliminary state but everything we have learned suggests that it may be possible to restore Mars to a habitable climate. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  3. Reaching Mars: multi-criteria R&D portfolio selection for Mars exploration technology planning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, J. H.; Dolgin, B. P.; Weisbin, C. R.

    2003-01-01

    The exploration of Mars has been the focus of increasing scientific interest about the planet and its relationship to Earth. A multi-criteria decision-making approach was developed to address the question, Given a Mars program composed of mission concepts dependent on a variety of alternative technology development programs, which combination of technologies would enable missions to maximize science return under a constrained budget?.

  4. The Ph-D project: Manned expedition to the Moons of Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singer, S. Fred

    2000-01-01

    The Ph-D (Phobos-Deimos) mission involves the transfer of six to eight men (and women), including two medical scientists, from Earth orbit to Deimos, the outer satellite of Mars. There follows a sequential program of unmanned exploration of the surface of Mars by means of some ten to twenty unmanned rover vehicles, each of which returns Mars samples to the Deimos laboratory. A two-man sortie descends to the surface of Mars to gain a direct geological perspective and develop priorities in selecting samples. At the same time, other astronauts conduct a coordinated program of exploration (including sample studies) of Phobos and Deimos. Bringing men close to Mars to control exploration is shown to have scientific and other advantages over either (i) (manned) control from the Earth, or (ii) manned operations from Mars surface. The mission is envisaged to take place after 2010, and to last about two years (including a three-to six-month stay at Deimos). Depending on then-available technology, take-off weight from Earth orbit is of the order of 300 tons. A preferred mission scheme may preposition propellants and equipment at Deimos by means of ``slow freight,'' possibly using a ``gravity boost'' from Venus. It is then followed by a ``manned express'' that conveys the astronauts more rapidly to Deimos. Both chemical and electric propulsion are used in this mission, as appropriate. Electric power is derived from solar and nuclear sources. Assuming that certain development costs can be shared with space-station programs, the incremental cost of the project is estimated as less than $40 billion (in 1998 dollars), expended over a 15-year period. The potential scientific returns are both unique and important: (i) Establishing current or ancient existence of life-forms on Mars; (ii) Understanding the causes of climate change by comparing Earth and Mars; (iii) Martian planetary history; (iv) Nature and origin of the Martian moons. Beyond the Ph-D Project, many advanced programs

  5. Mars Analog Rio Tinto Experiment (MARTE): An Experimental Demonstration of Key Technologies for Searching for Life on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoker, Carol

    2004-01-01

    The discovery of near surface ground ice by the Mars Odyssey mission and the abundant evidence for recent Gulley features observed by the Mars Global Surveyor mission support longstanding theoretical arguments for subsurface liquid water on Mars. Thus, implementing the Mars program goal to search for life points to drilling on Mars to reach liquid water, collecting samples and analyzing them with instrumentation to detect in situ organisms and biomarker compounds. Searching for life in the subsurface of Mars will require drilling, sample extraction and handling, and new technologies to find and identify biomarker compounds and search for living organisms.

  6. Mars Hybrid Propulsion System Trajectory Analysis. Part II; Cargo Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chai, Patrick R.; Merrill, Raymond G.; Qu, Min

    2015-01-01

    NASA's Human Spaceflight Architecture Team is developing a reusable hybrid transportation architecture in which both chemical and electric propulsion systems are used to send crew and cargo to Mars destinations such as Phobos, Deimos, the surface of Mars, and other orbits around Mars. By combining chemical and electrical propulsion into a single spaceship and applying each where it is more effective, the hybrid architecture enables a series of Mars trajectories that are more fuel-efficient than an all chemical architecture without significant increases in flight times. This paper shows the feasibility of the hybrid transportation architecture to pre-deploy cargo to Mars and Phobos in support of the Evolvable Mars Campaign crew missions. The analysis shows that the hybrid propulsion stage is able to deliver all of the current manifested payload to Phobos and Mars through the first three crew missions. The conjunction class trajectory also allows the hybrid propulsion stage to return to Earth in a timely fashion so it can be reused for additional cargo deployment. The 1,100 days total trip time allows the hybrid propulsion stage to deliver cargo to Mars every other Earth-Mars transit opportunity. For the first two Mars surface mission in the Evolvable Mars Campaign, the short trip time allows the hybrid propulsion stage to be reused for three round-trip journeys to Mars, which matches the hybrid propulsion stage's designed lifetime for three round-trip crew missions to the Martian sphere of influence.

  7. Mission Design Considerations for Mars Cargo of the Human Spaceflight Architecture Team's Evolvable Mars Campaign

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sjauw, Waldy K.; McGuire, Melissa L.; Freeh, Joshua E.

    2016-01-01

    Recent NASA interest in human missions to Mars has led to an Evolvable Mars Campaign by the agency's Human Architecture Team. Delivering the crew return propulsion stages and Mars surface landers, SEP based systems are employed because of their high specific impulse characteristics enabling missions requiring less propellant although with longer transfer times. The Earth departure trajectories start from an SLS launch vehicle delivery orbit and are spiral shaped because of the low SEP thrust. Previous studies have led to interest in assessing the divide in trip time between the Earth departure and interplanetary legs of the mission for a representative SEP cargo vehicle.

  8. A half-century of terrestrial analog studies: From craters on the Moon to searching for life on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Léveillé, Richard

    2010-03-01

    Terrestrial analogs to the Moon and Mars have been used to advance knowledge in planetary science for over a half-century. They are useful in studies of comparative geology of the terrestrial planets and rocky moons, in astronaut training and testing of exploration technologies, and in developing hypotheses and exploration strategies in astrobiology. In fact, the use of terrestrial analogs can be traced back to the origins of comparative geology and astrobiology, and to the early phases of the Apollo astronaut program. Terrestrial analog studies feature prominently throughout the history of both NASA and the USGS' Astrogeology Research Program. In light of current international plans for a return missions to the Moon, and eventually to send sample return and manned missions to Mars, as well as the recent creation of various analog research and development programs, this historical perspective is timely.

  9. Paloma: In-Situ Measurement of the Isotopic Composition of Mars Atmosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jambon, A.; Quemerais, E.; Chassiefiere, E.; Berthelier, J. J.; Agrinier, P.; Cartigny, P.; Javoy, M.; Moreira, M.; Sabroux, J. -C.; Sarda, P.; Pineau, J. -F.

    2000-07-01

    Scientific objectives for an atmospheric analysis of Mars are presented in the DREAM project. Among the information presently available most are fragmentary or limited in their precision for both major element (H, C, O, N) and noble gas isotopes. These data are necessary for the understanding and modelling of Mars atmospheric formation and evolution, and consequently for other planets, particularly the Earth. To fulfill the above requirements, two approaches can be envisonned: 1) analysis of a returned sample (DREAM project) or 2) in situ analysis, e.g. PALOMA project presented here. Among the advantages of in situ analysis, we notice: the minimal terrestrial contamination, the unlimited availability of gas to be analyzed and the possibility of multiple analyses (replicates, daynight... ). Difficulties specific to in situ analyses are of a very different kind to those of returned samples. In situ analysis could also be viewed as a preparation to future analysis of returned samples. Finally, some of the measurements will not be possible on Earth: for instance, radon and its short lived decay products, will provide complementary information to 4-He analysis and can only be obtained in situ, independently of analytical capabilities.

  10. In Situ Analysis of Mars Soil and Rocks Sample with the Sam Gcms Instrumentation Onboard Curiosity : Interpretation and Comparison of Measurements Done during the First Martian Year of Curiosity on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szopa, C.; Coll, P. J.; Cabane, M.; Buch, A.; Coscia, D.; Millan, M.; Francois, P.; Belmahadi, I.; Teinturier, S.; Navarro-Gonzalez, R.; Glavin, D. P.; Freissinet, C.; Steele, A.; Eigenbrode, J. L.; Mahaffy, P. R.

    2014-12-01

    The characterisation of the chemical and mineralogical composition of solid surface samples collected with the Curiosity rover is a primary objective of the SAM experiment. These data should provide essential clues on the past habitability of Gale crater. Amongst the SAM suite of instruments [1], SAM-GC (Gas Chromatograph) is devoted to identify and quantify volatiles evolved from the thermal (heating up to about 900°C)/chemical (derivatization procedure) treatment of any soil sample collected by the Curiosity rover. With the aim to search for potential organic molecules outgassed from the samples, SAM-GC analytical channels composed of thermal-desorption injector, and a MXT-CLP or a MXT-Q chromatographic column was chosen to achieve all the measurements done up today, with the aim to separate of a wide range of volatile inorganic and organic molecules. Four solid samples have been analyzed with GCMS, one sand sample collected at the Rocknest site, two rock samples (John Klein and Cumberland respectively) collected at the Yellowknife Bay site using the Curiosity driller, and one rock sample collected at the Kimberly site. All the measurements were successful and they produced complex chromatograms with both detectors used for SAM GC, i.e. a thermal conductivity detector and the SAM quandrupole mass spectrometer. Their interpretation already revealed the presence of an oxychlorine phase present in the sample which is at the origin of chlorohydrocarbons clearly identified [2] but this represents only a fraction of the GCMS signal recorded [3,4]. This work presents a systematic comparison of the GCMS measurements done for the different samples collected, supported by reference data obtained in laboratory with different spare models of the gas chromatograph, with the aim to bring new elements of interpretation of the SAM measurements. References: [1] Mahaffy, P. et al. (2012) Space Sci Rev, 170, 401-478. [2] Glavin, D. et al. (2013), JGR. [3] Leshin L. et al. (2013

  11. Return of a giant: DNA from archival museum samples helps to identify a unique cutthroat trout lineage formerly thought to be extinct.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peacock, Mary M; Hekkala, Evon R; Kirchoff, Veronica S; Heki, Lisa G

    2017-11-01

    Currently one small, native population of the culturally and ecologically important Lahontan cutthroat trout ( Oncorhynchus clarkii henshawi , LCT, Federally listed) remains in the Truckee River watershed of northwestern Nevada and northeastern California. The majority of populations in this watershed were extirpated in the 1940s due to invasive species, overharvest, anthropogenic water consumption and changing precipitation regimes. In 1977, a population of cutthroat trout discovered in the Pilot Peak Mountains in the Bonneville basin of Utah, was putatively identified as the extirpated LCT lacustrine lineage native to Pyramid Lake in the Truckee River basin based on morphological and meristic characters. Our phylogenetic and Bayesian genotype clustering analyses of museum specimens collected from the large lakes (1872-1913) and contemporary samples collected from populations throughout the extant range provide evidence in support of a genetically distinct Truckee River basin origin for this population. Analysis of museum samples alone identified three distinct genotype clusters and historical connectivity among water bodies within the Truckee River basin. Baseline data from museum collections indicate that the extant Pilot Peak strain represents a remnant of the extirpated lacustrine lineage. Given the limitations on high-quality data when working with a sparse number of preserved museum samples, we acknowledge that, in the end, this may be a more complicated story. However, the paucity of remnant populations in the Truckee River watershed, in combination with data on the distribution of morphological, meristic and genetic data for Lahontan cutthroat trout, suggests that recovery strategies, particularly in the large lacustrine habitats should consider this lineage as an important part of the genetic legacy of this species.

  12. The Icebreaker Life Mission to Mars: A Search for Biomolecular Evidence for Life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mckay, Christopher P.; Stoker, Carol R.; Glass, Brian J.; Dave, Arwen I.; Davila, Alfonso F.; Heldmann, Jennifer L.; Marinova, Margarita M.; Fairen, Alberto G; Quinn, Richard C; Zacny, Kris A.; hide

    2012-01-01

    The search for evidence of life on Mars is the primary motivation for the exploration of that planet. The results from previous missions, and the Phoenix mission in particular, indicate that the ice-cemented ground in the north polar plains is likely to be the most recently habitable place that is currently known on Mars. The near-surface ice likely provided adequate water activity during periods of high obliquity, 5 Myr ago. Carbon dioxide and nitrogen is present in the atmosphere, and nitrates may be present in the soil. Perchlorate in the soil together with iron in basaltic rock provides a possible energy source for life. Furthermore, the presence of organics must once again be considered, as the results of the Viking GCMS are now suspect given the discovery of the thermally reactive perchlorate. Ground-ice may provide a way to preserve organic molecules for extended periods of time, especially organic biomarkers. The Mars Icebreaker Life mission focuses on the following science goals: 1. Search for specific biomolecules that would be conclusive evidence of life. 2. A general search for organic molecules in the ground ice. 3. Determine the processes of ground ice formation and the role of liquid water. 4. Understand the mechanical properties of the Mars polar ice-cemented soil. 5. Assess the recent habitability of the environment with respect to required elements to support life, energy sources, and possible toxic elements. And 6. Compare the elemental composition of the northern plains with mid-latitude sites. The Icebreaker Life payload has been designed around the Phoenix spacecraft and is targeted to a site near the Phoenix landing site. However, the Icebreaker payload could be supported on other Mars landing systems. Preliminary studies of the SpaceX Dragon lander show that it could support the Icebreaker payload for a landing either at the Phoenix site or at mid-latitudes. Duplicate samples could be cached as a target for possible return by a Mars Sample

  13. Mars Aqueous Processing System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berggren, Mark; Wilson, Cherie; Carrera, Stacy; Rose, Heather; Muscatello, Anthony; Kilgore, James; Zubrin, Robert

    2012-01-01

    ore concentrate, which demonstrates that lunar-derived material can be used in a manner similar to conventional terrestrial iron. Metallic iron was also produced from the Mars soil simulant. The aluminum and magnesium oxide products produced by MAPS from lunar and Mars soil simulants exhibited excellent thermal stability, and were shown to be capable of use for refractory oxide structural materials, or insulation at temperatures far in excess of what could be achieved using unrefined soils. These materials exhibited the refractory characteristics needed to support iron casting and forming operations, as well as other thermal processing needs. Extraction residue samples contained up to 79 percent silica. Such samples were successfully fused into a glass that exhibited high light transmittance.

  14. Mars, accessing the third dimension: a software tool to exploit Mars ground penetrating radars data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cantini, Federico; Ivanov, Anton B.

    2016-04-01

    The Mars Advanced Radar for Subsurface and Ionosphere Sounding (MARSIS), on board the ESA's Mars Express and the SHAllow RADar (SHARAD), on board the NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter are two ground penetrating radars (GPRs) aimed to probe the crust of Mars to explore the subsurface structure of the planet. By now they are collecting data since about 10 years covering a large fraction of the Mars surface. On the Earth GPRs collect data by sending electromagnetic (EM) pulses toward the surface and listening to the return echoes occurring at the dielectric discontinuities on the planet's surface and subsurface. The wavelengths used allow MARSIS EM pulses to penetrate the crust for several kilometers. The data products (Radargrams) are matrices where the x-axis spans different sampling points on the planet surface and the y-axis is the power of the echoes over time in the listening window. No standard way to manage this kind of data is established in the planetary science community and data analysis and interpretation require very often some knowledge of radar signal processing. Our software tool is aimed to ease the access to this data in particular to scientists without a specific background in signal processing. MARSIS and SHARAD geometrical data such as probing point latitude and longitude and spacecraft altitude, are stored, together with relevant acquisition metadata, in a geo-enabled relational database implemented using PostgreSQL and PostGIS. Data are extracted from official ESA and NASA released data using self-developed python classes and scripts and inserted in the database using OGR utilities. This software is also aimed to be the core of a collection of classes and script to implement more complex GPR data analysis. Geometrical data and metadata are exposed as WFS layers using a QGIS server, which can be further integrated with other data, such as imaging, spectroscopy and topography. Radar geometry data will be available as a part of the iMars Web

  15. Science Applications of a Multispectral Microscopic Imager for the Astrobiological Exploration of Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farmer, Jack D.; Sellar, R. Glenn; Swayze, Gregg A.; Blaney, Diana L.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Future astrobiological missions to Mars are likely to emphasize the use of rovers with in situ petrologic capabilities for selecting the best samples at a site for in situ analysis with onboard lab instruments or for caching for potential return to Earth. Such observations are central to an understanding of the potential for past habitable conditions at a site and for identifying samples most likely to harbor fossil biosignatures. The Multispectral Microscopic Imager (MMI) provides multispectral reflectance images of geological samples at the microscale, where each image pixel is composed of a visible/shortwave infrared spectrum ranging from 0.46 to 1.73 μm. This spectral range enables the discrimination of a wide variety of rock-forming minerals, especially Fe-bearing phases, and the detection of hydrated minerals. The MMI advances beyond the capabilities of current microimagers on Mars by extending the spectral range into the infrared and increasing the number of spectral bands. The design employs multispectral light-emitting diodes and an uncooled indium gallium arsenide focal plane array to achieve a very low mass and high reliability. To better understand and demonstrate the capabilities of the MMI for future surface missions to Mars, we analyzed samples from Mars-relevant analog environments with the MMI. Results indicate that the MMI images faithfully resolve the fine-scale microtextural features of samples and provide important information to help constrain mineral composition. The use of spectral endmember mapping reveals the distribution of Fe-bearing minerals (including silicates and oxides) with high fidelity, along with the presence of hydrated minerals. MMI-based petrogenetic interpretations compare favorably with laboratory-based analyses, revealing the value of the MMI for future in situ rover-mediated astrobiological exploration of Mars. Key Words: Mars—Microscopic imager—Multispectral imaging

  16. Science applications of a multispectral microscopic imager for the astrobiological exploration of Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nunez, Jorge; Farmer, Jack; Sellar, R. Glenn; Swayze, Gregg A.; Blaney, Diana L.

    2014-01-01

    Future astrobiological missions to Mars are likely to emphasize the use of rovers with in situ petrologic capabilities for selecting the best samples at a site for in situ analysis with onboard lab instruments or for caching for potential return to Earth. Such observations are central to an understanding of the potential for past habitable conditions at a site and for identifying samples most likely to harbor fossil biosignatures. The Multispectral Microscopic Imager (MMI) provides multispectral reflectance images of geological samples at the microscale, where each image pixel is composed of a visible/shortwave infrared spectrum ranging from 0.46 to 1.73 μm. This spectral range enables the discrimination of a wide variety of rock-forming minerals, especially Fe-bearing phases, and the detection of hydrated minerals. The MMI advances beyond the capabilities of current microimagers on Mars by extending the spectral range into the infrared and increasing the number of spectral bands. The design employs multispectral light-emitting diodes and an uncooled indium gallium arsenide focal plane array to achieve a very low mass and high reliability. To better understand and demonstrate the capabilities of the MMI for future surface missions to Mars, we analyzed samples from Mars-relevant analog environments with the MMI. Results indicate that the MMI images faithfully resolve the fine-scale microtextural features of samples and provide important information to help constrain mineral composition. The use of spectral endmember mapping reveals the distribution of Fe-bearing minerals (including silicates and oxides) with high fidelity, along with the presence of hydrated minerals. MMI-based petrogenetic interpretations compare favorably with laboratory-based analyses, revealing the value of the MMI for future in situ rover-mediated astrobiological exploration of Mars.

  17. Life On Mars: Past, Present and Future

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKay, Christopher P.; DeVincenzi, Donald L. (Technical Monitor)

    2000-01-01

    human presence on Mars will be the most economical way to study that planet in detail. It is possible that at some time in the future we might recreate a habitable climate on Mars, returning it to the life-bearing state it may have enjoyed early in its history. Our studies of Mars are still in a preliminary state but everything we have learned suggests that it may be possible to restore Mars to a habitable climate.

  18. Raman-Mössbauer-XRD studies of selected samples from "Los Azulejos" outcrop: A possible analogue for assessing the alteration processes on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lalla, E. A.; Sanz-Arranz, A.; Lopez-Reyes, G.; Sansano, A.; Medina, J.; Schmanke, D.; Klingelhoefer, G.; Rodríguez-Losada, J. A.; Martínez-Frías, J.; Rull, F.

    2016-06-01

    The outcrop of "Los Azulejos" is visible at the interior of the Cañadas Caldera in Tenerife Island (Spain). It exhibits a great variety of alteration processes that could be considered as terrestrial analogue for several geological processes on Mars. This outcrop is particularly interesting due to the content of clays, zeolite, iron oxides, and sulfates corresponding to a hydrothermal alteration catalogued as "Azulejos" type alteration. A detailed analysis by portable and laboratory Raman systems as well as other different techniques such as X-ray diffraction (XRD) and Mössbauer spectroscopy has been carried out (using twin-instruments from Martian lander missions: Mössbauer spectrometer MIMOS-II from the NASA-MER mission of 2001 and the XRD diffractometer from the NASA-MSL Curiosity mission of 2012). The mineral identification presents the following mineral species: magnetite, goethite, hematite, anatase, rutile, quartz, gregoryite, sulfate (thenardite and hexahydrite), diopside, feldspar, analcime, kaolinite and muscovite. Moreover, the in-situ Raman and Micro-Raman measurements have been performed in order to compare the capabilities of the portable system specially focused for the next ESA Exo-Mars mission. The mineral detection confirms the sub-aerial alteration on the surface and the hydrothermal processes by the volcanic fluid circulations in the fresh part. Therefore, the secondary more abundant mineralization acts as the color agent of the rocks. Thus, the zeolite-illite group is the responsible for the bluish coloration, as well as the feldspars and carbonates for the whitish and the iron oxide for the redish parts. The XRD system was capable to detect a minor proportion of pyroxene, which is not visible by Raman and Mössbauer spectroscopy due to the "Azulejos" alteration of the parent material on the outcrop. On the other hand, Mössbauer spectroscopy was capable of detecting different types of iron-oxides (Fe3+/2+-oxide phases). These analyses

  19. X-Ray Diffraction on Mars: Scientific Discoveries Made by the CheMin Instrument

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rampe, E. B.; Blake, D. F.; Ming, D. W.; Bristow, T. F.

    2017-01-01

    The Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity landed in Gale crater in August 2012 with the goal to identify and characterize habitable environments on Mars. Curiosity has been studying a series of sedimentary rocks primarily deposited in fluviolacustrine environments approximately 3.5 Ga. Minerals in the rocks and soils on Mars can help place further constraints on these ancient aqueous environments, including pH, salinity, and relative duration of liquid water. The Chemistry and Mineralogy (CheMin) X-ray diffraction and X-ray fluorescence instrument on Curiosity uses a Co X-ray source and charge-coupled device detector in transmission geometry to collect 2D Debye-Scherrer ring patterns of the less than 150 micron size fraction of drilled rock powders or scooped sediments. With an angular range of approximately 2.52deg 20 and a 20 resolution of approximately 0.3deg, mineral abundances can be quantified with a detection limit of approximately 1-2 wt. %. CheMin has returned quantitative mineral abundances from 16 mudstone, sandstone, and aeolian sand samples so far. The mineralogy of these samples is incredibly diverse, suggesting a variety of depositional and diagenetic environments and different source regions for the sediments. Results from CheMin have been essential for reconstructing the geologic history of Gale crater and addressing the question of habitability on ancient Mars.

  20. Gypsum-permineralized microfossils and their relevance to the search for life on Mars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schopf, J William; Farmer, Jack D; Foster, Ian S; Kudryavtsev, Anatoliy B; Gallardo, Victor A; Espinoza, Carola

    2012-07-01

    Orbital and in situ analyses establish that aerially extensive deposits of evaporitic sulfates, including gypsum, are present on the surface of Mars. Although comparable gypsiferous sediments on Earth have been largely ignored by paleontologists, we here report the finding of diverse fossil microscopic organisms permineralized in bottom-nucleated gypsums of seven deposits: two from the Permian (∼260 Ma) of New Mexico, USA; one from the Miocene (∼6 Ma) of Italy; and four from Recent lacustrine and saltern deposits of Australia, Mexico, and Peru. In addition to presenting the first report of the widespread occurrence of microscopic fossils in bottom-nucleated primary gypsum, we show the striking morphological similarity of the majority of the benthic filamentous fossils of these units to the microorganisms of a modern sulfuretum biocoenose. Based on such similarity, in morphology as well as habitat, these findings suggest that anaerobic sulfur-metabolizing microbial assemblages have changed relatively little over hundreds of millions of years. Their discovery as fossilized components of the seven gypsiferous units reported suggests that primary bottom-nucleated gypsum represents a promising target in the search for evidence of past life on Mars. Key Words: Confocal laser scanning microscopy-Gypsum fossils-Mars sample return missions-Raman spectroscopy-Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument-Sulfuretum.

  1. Organic molecules in the Sheepbed Mudstone, Gale Crater, Mars

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Freissinet, C.; Glavin, D. P.; Mahaffy, P. R.; Miller, K. E.; Eigenbrode, J. L.; Summons, R. E.; Brunner, A. E.; Buch, A.; Szopa, C.; Archer, P. D.; Franz, H. B.; Atreya, S. K.; Brinckerhoff, W. B.; Cabane, M.; Coll, P.; Conrad, P. G.; Des Marais, D. J.; Dworkin, J. P.; Fairén, A. G.; François, P.; Grotzinger, J. P.; Kashyap, S.; ten Kate, I. L.; Leshin, L. A.; Malespin, C. A.; Martin, M. G.; Martin-Torres, F. J.; Mcadam, A. C.; Ming, D. W.; Navarro-González, R.; Pavlov, A. A.; Prats, B. D.; Squyres, S. W.; Steele, A.; Stern, J. C.; Sumner, D. Y.; Sutter, B.; Zorzano, M. P.

    The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument on board the Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover is designed to conduct inorganic and organic chemical analyses of the atmosphere and the surface regolith and rocks to help evaluate the past and present habitability potential of Mars at Gale Crater.

  2. Constructing an Educational Mars Simulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henke, Stephen A.

    2004-01-01

    January 14th 2004, President George Bush announces his plans to catalyst the space program into a new era of space exploration and discovery. His vision encompasses a robotics program to explore our solar system, a return to the moon, the human exploration of Mars, and to promote international prosperity towards our endeavors. We at NASA now have the task of constructing this vision in a very real timeframe. I have been chosen to begin phase 1 of making this vision a reality. I will be working on creating an Educational Mars Simulation of human exploration of Mars to stimulate interest and involvement with the project from investors and the community. GRC s Computer Services Division (CSD) in collaboration with the Office of Education Programs will be designing models, constructing terrain, and programming this simulation to create a realistic portrayal of human exploration on mars. With recent and past technological breakthroughs in computing, my primary goal can be accomplished with only the aid of 3-4 software packages. Lightwave 3D is the modeling package we have selected to use for the creation of our digital objects. This includes a Mars pressurized rover, rover cockpit, landscape/terrain, and habitat. Once we have the models completed they need textured so Photoshop and Macromedia Fireworks are handy for bringing these objects to life. Before directly importing all of this data into a simulation environment, it is necessary to first render a stunning animation of the desired final product. This animation with represent what we hope to capture out of the simulation and it will include all of the accessories like ray-tracing, fog effects, shadows, anti-aliasing, particle effects, volumetric lighting, and lens flares. Adobe Premier will more than likely be used for video editing and adding ambient noises and music. Lastly, V-Tree is the real-time 3D graphics engine which will facilitate our realistic simulation. Additional information is included in the

  3. The Athena Mars Rover Science Payload

    Science.gov (United States)

    Squyes, S. W.; Arvidson, R.; Bell, J. F., III; Carr, M.; Christensen, P.; DesMarais, D.; Economou, T.; Gorevan, S.; Klingelhoefer, G.; Haskin, L.

    1998-01-01

    The Mars Surveyor missions that will be launched in April of 2001 will include a highly capable rover that is a successor to the Mars Pathfinder mission's Sojourner rover. The design goals for this rover are a total traverse distance of at least 10 km and a total lifetime of at least one Earth year. The rover's job will be to explore a site in Mars' ancient terrain, searching for materials likely to preserve a record of ancient martian water, climate, and possibly biology. The rover will collect rock and soil samples, and will store them for return to Earth by a subsequent Mars Surveyor mission in 2005. The Athena Mars rover science payload is the suite of scientific instruments and sample collection tools that will be used to perform this job. The specific science objectives that NASA has identified for the '01 rover payload are to: (1) Provide color stereo imaging of martian surface environments, and remotely-sensed point discrimination of mineralogical composition. (2) Determine the elemental and mineralogical composition of martian surface materials. (3) Determine the fine-scale textural properties of these materials. (4) Collect and store samples. The Athena payload has been designed to meet these objectives. The focus of the design is on field operations: making sure the rover can locate, characterize, and collect scientifically important samples in a dusty, dirty, real-world environment. The topography, morphology, and mineralogy of the scene around the rover will be revealed by Pancam/Mini-TES, an integrated imager and IR spectrometer. Pancam views the surface around the rover in stereo and color. It uses two high-resolution cameras that are identical in most respects to the rover's navigation cameras. The detectors are low-power, low-mass active pixel sensors with on-chip 12-bit analog-to-digital conversion. Filters provide 8-12 color spectral bandpasses over the spectral region from 0.4 to 1.1 micron Narrow-angle optics provide an angular resolution of 0

  4. A Novel Approach to Exploring the Mars Polar Caps

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brophy, John R.; Carsey, Frank D.; Rodgers, David H.; Soderblom, L. A.; Wilcox, Brian H.

    2000-01-01

    The Martian polar caps contain some of the most important scientific sites on the planet. There is much interest in exploring them with a view to understanding their role in the Mars climate system. By gaining access to the stratigraphy of the polar terrain, it is probable that one can access the climate history of the planet. Additionally, investigations aimed at localizing subsurface water--liquid or solid--are not only of great scientific interest but are also germane to the long-term interests of the manned space flight program. A major difficulty with polar exploration is access. Current techniques using chemical propulsion, Holman transfers, and direct-entry landers with aeroshells have limited capability to access the polar terrain. For the near term the authors propose a new approach to solving this transportation issue by using Solar Electric Propulsion (SEP), recently flight demonstrated on NASA's DS1 Mission to an asteroid and a comet. For a longer-term approach there are additional ways in which access to Mars, as well as other planets, can be significantly improved. These include the use of Chaos orbit theory to enable transportation between LaGrange points in the solar system, gossamer structures enabling very low-mass mobility, and advanced ascent vehicles. In this paper the authors describe how a 1000-kG payload can be transported to the surface of Mars and a polar sample obtained and returned to Earth in less than five years using SEP. A vision of how this approach can be integrated into a long-term Mars exploration strategy building toward the future is also discussed.

  5. A Novel Approach to Exploring the Mars Polar Caps

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brophy, John R.; Carsey, Frank D.; Rodgers, David H.; Soderblom, L. A.; Wilcox, Brian H.

    2000-08-01

    The Martian polar caps contain some of the most important scientific sites on the planet. There is much interest in exploring them with a view to understanding their role in the Mars climate system. By gaining access to the stratigraphy of the polar terrain, it is probable that one can access the climate history of the planet. Additionally, investigations aimed at localizing subsurface water--liquid or solid--are not only of great scientific interest but are also germane to the long-term interests of the manned space flight program. A major difficulty with polar exploration is access. Current techniques using chemical propulsion, Holman transfers, and direct-entry landers with aeroshells have limited capability to access the polar terrain. For the near term the authors propose a new approach to solving this transportation issue by using Solar Electric Propulsion (SEP), recently flight demonstrated on NASA's DS1 Mission to an asteroid and a comet. For a longer-term approach there are additional ways in which access to Mars, as well as other planets, can be significantly improved. These include the use of Chaos orbit theory to enable transportation between LaGrange points in the solar system, gossamer structures enabling very low-mass mobility, and advanced ascent vehicles. In this paper the authors describe how a 1000-kG payload can be transported to the surface of Mars and a polar sample obtained and returned to Earth in less than five years using SEP. A vision of how this approach can be integrated into a long-term Mars exploration strategy building toward the future is also discussed.

  6. Money growth and aggregate stock returns

    OpenAIRE

    Böing, Tobias; Stadtmann, Georg

    2016-01-01

    We empirically evaluate the predictive power of money growth measured by M2 for stock returns of the S&P 500 index. We use monthly US data and predict multiperiod returns over 1, 3, and 5 years with long-horizon regressions. In-sample regressions show that money growth is useful for predicting returns. Higher recent money growth has a significantly negative effect on subsequent returns of the S&P 500. An out-of-sample analysis shows that a simple model with money growth as a single predictor ...

  7. Radiation chemistry in exploration of Mars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zagorski, Z.P.

    2005-01-01

    Problems of exploration of Mars are seldom connected with radiation research. Improvements in such approach, more and more visible, are reported in this paper, written by the present author working on prebiotic chemistry and origins of life on Earth. Objects on Mars subjected to radiation are very different from those on Earth. Density of the Martian atmosphere is by two orders smaller than over Earth and does not protect the surface of Mars from ionizing radiations, contrary to the case of Earth, shielded by the equivalent of ca. 3 meters of concrete. High energy protons from the Sun are diverted magnetically around Earth, and Mars is deprived of that protection. The radiolysis of martian '' air '' (95.3% of carbon dioxide) starts with the formation of CO 2 + , whereas the primary product over Earth is N 2 + ion radical. The lack of water vapor over Mars prevents the formation of many secondary products. The important feature of Martian regolith is the possibility of the presence of hydrated minerals, which could have been formed milliards years ago, when (probably) water was present on Mars. The interface of the atmosphere and the regolith can be the site of many chemical reactions, induced also by intensive UV, which includes part of the vacuum UV. Minerals like sodalite, discovered on Mars can contribute as reagents in many reactions. Conclusions are dedicated to questions of the live organisms connected with exploration of Mars; from microorganisms, comparatively resistant to ionizing radiation, to human beings, considered not to be fit to manned flight, survival on Mars and return to Earth. Pharmaceuticals proposed as radiobiological protection cannot improve the situation. Exploration over the distance of millions of kilometers performed successfully without presence of man, withstands more easily the presence of ionizing radiation. (author)

  8. The humanation of Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    David, L. W.

    Early developments related to human excursions to Mars are examined, taking into account plans considered by von Braun, and the 'ambitious goal of a manned flight to Mars by the end of the century', proposed at the launch of Apollo 11. In response to public reaction, plans for manned flights to Mars in the immediate future were given up, and unmanned reconnaissance of Mars was continued. An investigation is conducted concerning the advantages of manned exploration of Mars in comparison to a study by unmanned space probes, and arguments regarding a justification for interplanetary flight to Mars are discussed. Attention is given to the possibility to consider Mars as a 'back-up' planet for preserving earth life, an international Mars expedition as a world peace project, the role of Mars in connection with resource utilization considerations, and questions of exploration ethics.

  9. Mobile/Modular BSL-4 Facilities for Meeting Restricted Earth Return Containment Requirements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calaway, M. J.; McCubbin, F. M.; Allton, J. H.; Zeigler, R. A.; Pace, L. F.

    2017-01-01

    NASA robotic sample return missions designated Category V Restricted Earth Return by the NASA Planetary Protection Office require sample containment and biohazard testing in a receiving laboratory as directed by NASA Procedural Requirement (NPR) 8020.12D - ensuring the preservation and protection of Earth and the sample. Currently, NPR 8020.12D classifies Restricted Earth Return for robotic sample return missions from Mars, Europa, and Enceladus with the caveat that future proposed mission locations could be added or restrictions lifted on a case by case basis as scientific knowledge and understanding of biohazards progresses. Since the 1960s, sample containment from an unknown extraterrestrial biohazard have been related to the highest containment standards and protocols known to modern science. Today, Biosafety Level (BSL) 4 standards and protocols are used to study the most dangerous high-risk diseases and unknown biological agents on Earth. Over 30 BSL-4 facilities have been constructed worldwide with 12 residing in the United States; of theses, 8 are operational. In the last two decades, these brick and mortar facilities have cost in the hundreds of millions of dollars dependent on the facility requirements and size. Previous mission concept studies for constructing a NASA sample receiving facility with an integrated BSL-4 quarantine and biohazard testing facility have also been estimated in the hundreds of millions of dollars. As an alternative option, we have recently conducted an initial trade study for constructing a mobile and/or modular sample containment laboratory that would meet all BSL-4 and planetary protection standards and protocols at a faction of the cost. Mobile and modular BSL-2 and 3 facilities have been successfully constructed and deployed world-wide for government testing of pathogens and pharmaceutical production. Our study showed that a modular BSL-4 construction could result in approximately 90% cost reduction when compared to

  10. Predictability of Stock Returns

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ahmet Sekreter

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Predictability of stock returns has been shown by empirical studies over time. This article collects the most important theories on forecasting stock returns and investigates the factors that affecting behavior of the stocks’ prices and the market as a whole. Estimation of the factors and the way of estimation are the key issues of predictability of stock returns.

  11. Field Characterization of the Mineralogy and Organic Chemistry of Carbonates from the 2010 Arctic Mars Analog Svalbard Expedition by Evolved Gas Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    McAdam, A. C.; Ten Kate, I. L.; Stern, J. C.; Mahaffy, P. R.; Blake, D. F.; Morris, R. V.; Steele, A.; Amundson, H. E. F.

    2011-01-01

    The 2010 Arctic Mars Analog Svalbard Expedition (AMASE) investigated two geologic settings using methodologies and techniques being developed or considered for future Mars missions, such as the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL), ExoMars, and Mars Sample Return. The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) [1] instrument suite, which will be on MSL, consists of a quadrupole mass spectrometer (QMS), a gas chromatograph (GC), and a tunable laser mass spectrometer (TLS); all will be applied to analyze gases created by pyrolysis of samples. During AMASE, a Hiden Evolved Gas Analysis-Mass Spectrometer (EGA-MS) system represented the EGA-MS capability of SAM. Another MSL instrument, CheMin, will use x-ray diffraction (XRD) and x-ray fluorescence (XRF) to perform quantitative mineralogical characterization of samples [e.g., 2]. Field-portable versions of CheMin were used during AMASE. AMASE 2010 focused on two sites that represented biotic and abiotic analogs. The abiotic site was the basaltic Sigurdfjell vent complex, which contains Mars-analog carbonate cements including carbonate globules which are excellent analogs for the globules in the ALH84001 martian meteorite [e.g., 3, 4]. The biotic site was the Knorringfjell fossil methane seep, which featured carbonates precipitated in a methane-supported chemosynthetic community [5]. This contribution focuses on EGA-MS analyses of samples from each site, with mineralogy comparisons to CheMin team results. The results give insight into organic content and organic-mineral associations, as well as some constraints on the minerals present.

  12. A Mars orbiter/rover/penetrator mission for the 1984 opportunity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hastrup, R.; Driver, J.; Nagorski, R.

    1977-01-01

    A point design mission is described that utilizes the 1984 opportunity to extend the exploration of Mars after the successful Viking operations and provide the additional scientific information needed before conducting a sample return mission. Two identical multi-element spacecraft are employed, each consisting of (1) an orbiter, (2) a Viking-derived landing system that delivers a heavily instrumented, semi-autonomous rover, and (3) three penetrators deployed from the approach trajectory. Selection of the orbit profiles requires consideration of several important factors in order to satisfy all of the mission goals.

  13. A Simple Analytic Model for Estimating Mars Ascent Vehicle Mass and Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woolley, Ryan C.

    2014-01-01

    The Mars Ascent Vehicle (MAV) is a crucial component in any sample return campaign. In this paper we present a universal model for a two-stage MAV along with the analytic equations and simple parametric relationships necessary to quickly estimate MAV mass and performance. Ascent trajectories can be modeled as two-burn transfers from the surface with appropriate loss estimations for finite burns, steering, and drag. Minimizing lift-off mass is achieved by balancing optimized staging and an optimized path-to-orbit. This model allows designers to quickly find optimized solutions and to see the effects of design choices.

  14. Reporting on Strategic Considerations About the Role of Science in Initial Human Missions to Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beaty, David; Bass, Deborah; Thronson, Harley; Hays, Lindsay; Carberry, Chris; Cassady, Joe; Craig, Mark; Duggan, Matt; Drake, Bret; Stern, Jennifer; Zucker, Rick

    2016-07-01

    mission prior to a Mars surface mission should be initiated. 3. A well-planned set of science objectives for a future human-landed mission to Mars is essential in order to sustain coordination among the science and human spaceflight communities. In particular, while it is clear how humans on the surface of Mars would significantly accelerate the pace of the search for past life, it is unclear how humans would play a role in (and not serve as a hindrance to) the search for extant life. Further study should be supported. 4. Sustained formal collaboration among Mars scientists, engineers, technologists, and teams developing scenarios for Mars exploration should be supported. The human and robotic sides of the Mars exploration community need to become further engaged with each other, particularly as we enter a potential period of dual-purpose (science + human precursor) missions. Central to this era is generating mutual support for a Mars sample return architecture as a goal that has crucial value to both the human preparatory program and planetary science.

  15. 'Bimodal' NTR and LANTR propulsion for human missions to Mars/Phobos

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    1999-01-01

    The nuclear thermal rocket (NTR) is one of the leading propulsion options for future human missions to Mars due to its high specific impulse (Isp ∼850-1000 s) and attractive engine thrust-to-weight ratio (∼3-10). Because only a miniscule amount of enriched uranium-235 fuel is consumed in a NTR during the primary propulsion maneuvers of a typical Mars mission, engines configured for both propulsive thrust and modest power generation (referred to as 'bimodal' operation) provide the basis for a robust, 'power-rich' stage enabling propulsive Mars capture and reuse capability. A family of modular 'bimodal' NTR (BNTR) vehicles are described which utilize a common 'core' stage powered by three 66.7 kN (∼15 klbf) BNTRs that produce 50 kWe of total electrical power for crew life support, an active refrigeration/reliquification system for long term, 'zero-boiloff' liquid hydrogen (LH 2 ) storage, and high data rate communications. Compared to other propulsion options, a Mars mission architecture using BNTR transfer vehicles requires fewer transportation system elements which reduces mission mass, cost and risk because of simplified space operations. For difficult Mars options, such as a Phobos rendezvous and sample return mission, volume (not mass) constraints limit the performance of the 'all LH 2 ' BNTR stage. The use of ''LOX-augmented' NTR (LANTR) engines, operating at a modest oxygen-to-hydrogen (O/H) mixture ratio (MR) of 0.5, helps to increase 'bulk' propellant density and total thrust during the trans-Mars injection (TMI) burn. On all subsequent burns, the bimodal LANTR engines operate on LH 2 only (MR=0) to maximize vehicle performance while staying within the mass limits of two ∼80 t 'Magnum' heavy lift launch vehicles (HLLVs)

  16. Abnormal Returns and Contrarian Strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ivana Dall'Agnol

    2003-12-01

    Full Text Available We test the hypothesis that strategies which are long on portfolios of looser stocks and short on portfolios of winner stocks generate abnormal returns in Brazil. This type of evidence for the US stock market was interpreted by The Bondt and Thaler (1985 as reflecting systematic evaluation mistakes caused by investors overreaction to news related to the firm performance. We found evidence of contrarian strategies profitability for horizons from 3 months to 3 years in a sample of stock returns from BOVESPA and SOMA from 1986 to 2000. The strategies are more profitable for shorter horizons. Therefore, there was no trace of the momentum effect found by Jagadeesh and Titman (1993 for the same horizons with US data. There are remaing unexplained positive returns for contrarian strategies after accounting for risk, size, and liquidity. We also found that the strategy profitability is reduced after the Real Plan, which suggests that the Brazilian stock market became more efficient after inflation stabilization.

  17. Geology of Mars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Soderblom, L.A.

    1988-01-01

    The geology of Mars and the results of the Mariner 4, 6/7, and 9 missions and the Viking mission are reviewed. The Mars chronology and geologic modification are examined, including chronological models for the inactive planet, the active planet, and crater flux. The importance of surface materials is discussed and a multispectral map of Mars is presented. Suggestions are given for further studies of the geology of Mars using the Viking data. 5 references

  18. The Icebreaker Life Mission to Mars: a search for biomolecular evidence for life.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKay, Christopher P; Stoker, Carol R; Glass, Brian J; Davé, Arwen I; Davila, Alfonso F; Heldmann, Jennifer L; Marinova, Margarita M; Fairen, Alberto G; Quinn, Richard C; Zacny, Kris A; Paulsen, Gale; Smith, Peter H; Parro, Victor; Andersen, Dale T; Hecht, Michael H; Lacelle, Denis; Pollard, Wayne H

    2013-04-01

    The search for evidence of life on Mars is the primary motivation for the exploration of that planet. The results from previous missions, and the Phoenix mission in particular, indicate that the ice-cemented ground in the north polar plains is likely to be the most recently habitable place that is currently known on Mars. The near-surface ice likely provided adequate water activity during periods of high obliquity, ≈ 5 Myr ago. Carbon dioxide and nitrogen are present in the atmosphere, and nitrates may be present in the soil. Perchlorate in the soil together with iron in basaltic rock provides a possible energy source for life. Furthermore, the presence of organics must once again be considered, as the results of the Viking GCMS are now suspect given the discovery of the thermally reactive perchlorate. Ground ice may provide a way to preserve organic molecules for extended periods of time, especially organic biomarkers. The Mars Icebreaker Life mission focuses on the following science goals: (1) Search for specific biomolecules that would be conclusive evidence of life. (2) Perform a general search for organic molecules in the ground ice. (3) Determine the processes of ground ice formation and the role of liquid water. (4) Understand the mechanical properties of the martian polar ice-cemented soil. (5) Assess the recent habitability of the environment with respect to required elements to support life, energy sources, and possible toxic elements. (6) Compare the elemental composition of the northern plains with midlatitude sites. The Icebreaker Life payload has been designed around the Phoenix spacecraft and is targeted to a site near the Phoenix landing site. However, the Icebreaker payload could be supported on other Mars landing systems. Preliminary studies of the SpaceX Dragon lander show that it could support the Icebreaker payload for a landing either at the Phoenix site or at midlatitudes. Duplicate samples could be cached as a target for possible return by

  19. Thermochemolysis: A New Sample Preparation Approach for the Detection of Organic Components of Complex Macromolecules in Mars Rocks via Gas Chromatography Mass Spectrometry in SAM on MSL

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eugenbrode, J.; Glavin, D.; Dworkin, J.; Conrad, P.; Mahaffy, P.

    2011-01-01

    Organic chemicals, when present in extraterrestrial samples, afford precious insight into past and modern conditions elsewhere in the Solar System . No single technology identifies all molecular components because naturally occurring molecules have different chemistries (e.g., polar vs. non-polar, low to high molecular weight) and interface with the ambient sample chemistry in a variety of modes (i.e., organics may be bonded, absorbed or trapped by minerals, liquids, gases, or other organics). More than 90% of organic matter in most natural samples on Earth and in meteorites is composed of complex macromolecules (e.g. biopolymers, complex biomolecules, humic substances, kerogen) because the processes that tend to break down organic molecules also tend towards complexation of the more recalcitrant components. Thus, methodologies that tap the molecular information contained within macromolecules may be critical to detecting extraterrestrial organic matter and assessing the sources and processes influencing its nature.

  20. Calibration of a degassing-emanation line for 222Rn determination in seawater samples; Calibracao de uma linha de emanacao para determinacao de {sup 222}Rn em amostras de agua do mar

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Farias, Luciana Aparecida

    2002-07-01

    The purpose of this study is to calibrate a degassing-emanation line and to determine {sup 222}Rn and {sup 226}Ra activity concentrations in seawater samples. This methodology, also called Lucas method, consists in the extraction of radon (originally dissolved in seawater), collection of the gas in a liquid nitrogen cold trap and transfer from the trap to an alpha scintillation cell. Total extraction efficiencies of the 4 degassing-emanation systems were determined by measuring {sup 226}Ra reference solutions. The efficiencies obtained for these 4 systems varied from 21 % to 62%. This work also presents preliminary results of a study carried out in a series of small embayements of Ubatuba, Sao Paulo State-Brazil: Flamengo Bay, Fortaleza Bay, Mar Virado Bay and Ubatuba Bay. Concentration of Rn in excess varied from 0,011 to 0,317 Bq/L for Flamengo Bay, from 0,009 to 0,130 Bq/L for Fortaleza Bay, from 0,018 to 0,050 Bq/L for Mar Virado Bay and from 0,004 to 0,120 Bq/L for Ubatuba Bay. The results obtained for the concentration of {sup 222}Rn in excess in a transect at Flamengo Bay varied from 0,002 to 0,036 Bq/L. Higher concentrations of {sup 222}Rn in excess were obtained in Flamengo Bay, Fortaleza Bay and Ubatuba bay. It was also observed that the concentration of {sup 222}Rn in excess increases with depth, as expected. (author)

  1. In situ analysis of Mars soil sample with the sam gcms instrumentation onboard Curiosity : interpretation and comparison of measurements done at Rocknest and Yelloknife bay sites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szopa, Cyril; Coll, Patrice; Cabane, Michel; Coscia, David; Buch, Arnaud; Francois, Pascaline; Millan, Maeva; Teinturier, Sammy; Navarro-Gonzales, Rafael; Glavin, Daniel; Freissinet, Caro; Steele, Andrew; Eigenbrode, Jen; Mahaffy, Paul

    2014-05-01

    The characterisation of the chemical and mineralogical composition of regolith samples collected with the Curiosity rover is a primary objective of the SAM experiment. These data should provide essential clues on the past habitability of Gale crater. Amongst the SAM suite of instruments [1], SAM-GC (Gas Chromatograph) is devoted to identify and quantify volatiles evolved from the thermal (heating up to about 900°C)/chemical (derivatization procedure) treatment of any soil sample collected by the Curiosity rover. With the aim to search for potential organic molecules outgassed from the samples, a SAM-GC analytical channel composed of thermal-desorption injector and a MXT-CLP chromatographic column was chosen to achieve all the measurements done up today, as it was designed for the separation of a wide range of volatile organic molecules. Three solid samples have been analyzed with GCMS, one sand sample collected at the Rocknest site, and two rock samples (John Klein and Cumberland respectively) collected at the Yellowknife Bay site using the Curiosity driller. All the measurements were successful and they produced complex chromatograms with both detectors used for SAM GC, i.e. a thermal conductivity detector and the SAM quandrupole mass spectrometer. Their interpretation already revealed the presence of an oxychlorine phase present in the sample which is at the origin of chlorohydrocarbons clearly identified [2] but this represents only a fraction of the GCMS signal recorded [3,4]. This work presents a systematic comparison of the GCMS measurements done for the different samples collected, supported by reference data obtained in laboratory with different spare models of the gas chromatograph, with the aim to bring new elements of interpretation of the SAM measurements. References: [1] Mahaffy, P. et al. (2012) Space Sci Rev, 170, 401-478. [2] Glavin, D. et al. (2013), JGR. [3] Leshin L. et al. (2013), Science, [4] Ming D. et al. (2013), Science, 32, 64

  2. Mineral remains of early life on Earth? On Mars?

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    1991-01-01

    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

  3. Mars: The Viking Discoveries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    French, Bevan M.

    This booklet describes the results of NASA's Viking spacecraft on Mars. It is intended to be useful for the teacher of basic courses in earth science, space science, astronomy, physics, or geology, but is also of interest to the well-informed layman. Topics include why we should study Mars, how the Viking spacecraft works, the winds of Mars, the…

  4. Report of the NASA Science Definition Team for the Mars Science Orbiter (MSO)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Michael

    2007-01-01

    NASA is considering that its Mars Exploration Program (MEP) will launch an orbiter to Mars in the 2013 launch opportunity. To further explore this opportunity, NASA has formed a Science Definition Team (SDT) for this orbiter mission, provisionally called the Mars Science Orbiter (MSO). Membership and leadership of the SDT are given in Appendix 1. Dr. Michael D. Smith chaired the SDT. The purpose of the SDT was to define the: 1) Scientific objectives of an MSO mission to be launched to Mars no earlier than the 2013 launch opportunity, building on the findings for Plan A [Atmospheric Signatures and Near-Surface Change] of the Mars Exploration Program Analysis Group (MEPAG) Second Science Analysis Group (SAG-2); 2) Science requirements of instruments that are most likely to make high priority measurements from the MSO platform, giving due consideration to the likely mission, spacecraft and programmatic constraints. The possibilities and opportunities for international partners to provide the needed instrumentation should be considered; 3) Desired orbits and mission profile for optimal scientific return in support of the scientific objectives, and the likely practical capabilities and the potential constraints defined by the science requirements; and 4) Potential science synergies with, or support for, future missions, such as a Mars Sample Return. This shall include imaging for evaluation and certification of future landing sites. As a starting point, the SDT was charged to assume spacecraft capabilities similar to those of the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO). The SDT was further charged to assume that MSO would be scoped to support telecommunications relay of data from, and commands to, landed assets, over a 10 Earth year period following orbit insertion. Missions supported by MSO may include planned international missions such as EXOMARS. The MSO SDT study was conducted during October - December 2007. The SDT was directed to complete its work by December 15, 2007

  5. Planned Environmental Microbiology Aspects of Future Lunar and Mars Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ott, C. Mark; Castro, Victoria A.; Pierson, Duane L.

    2006-01-01

    With the establishment of the Constellation Program, NASA has initiated efforts designed similar to the Apollo Program to return to the moon and subsequently travel to Mars. Early lunar sorties will take 4 crewmembers to the moon for 4 to 7 days. Later missions will increase in duration up to 6 months as a lunar habitat is constructed. These missions and vehicle designs are the forerunners of further missions destined for human exploration of Mars. Throughout the planning and design process, lessons learned from the International Space Station (ISS) and past programs will be implemented toward future exploration goals. The standards and requirements for these missions will vary depending on life support systems, mission duration, crew activities, and payloads. From a microbiological perspective, preventative measures will remain the primary techniques to mitigate microbial risk. Thus, most of the effort will focus on stringent preflight monitoring requirements and engineering controls designed into the vehicle, such as HEPA air filters. Due to volume constraints in the CEV, in-flight monitoring will be limited for short-duration missions to the measurement of biocide concentration for water potability. Once long-duration habitation begins on the lunar surface, a more extensive environmental monitoring plan will be initiated. However, limited in-flight volume constraints and the inability to return samples to Earth will increase the need for crew capabilities in determining the nature of contamination problems and method of remediation. In addition, limited shelf life of current monitoring hardware consumables and limited capabilities to dispose of biohazardous trash will drive flight hardware toward non-culture based methodologies, such as hardware that rapidly distinguishes biotic versus abiotic surface contamination. As missions progress to Mars, environmental systems will depend heavily on regeneration of air and water and biological waste remediation and

  6. Mars Drilling Status

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mandell, Humboldt, C., Jr.

    2002-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews the current status of work to explore Mars beneath the surface of planet. One of the objective of this work is to enable further exploration of Mars by humans. One of the requirements for this is to find water on Mars. The presences of water is critical for Human Exploration and a permanent presence on Mars. If water is present beneath the surface it is the best chance of finding life on Mars. The presentation includes a timeline showing the robotic missions, those that have already been on Mars, and planned missions, an explanation of why do we want to drill on Mars, and some of the challenges, Also include are reviews of a missions that would drill 200 and 4,000 to 6,000 meters into the Martian bedrock, and a overview description of the drill. There is a view of some places where we have hopes of finding water.

  7. Mass Spectrometry on Future Mars Landers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brinckerhoff, W. B.; Mahaffy, P. R.

    2011-01-01

    Mass spectrometry investigations on the 2011 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) and the 2018 ExoMars missions will address core science objectives related to the potential habitability of their landing site environments and more generally the near-surface organic inventory of Mars. The analysis of complex solid samples by mass spectrometry is a well-known approach that can provide a broad and sensitive survey of organic and inorganic compounds as well as supportive data for mineralogical analysis. The science value of such compositional information is maximized when one appreciates the particular opportunities and limitations of in situ analysis with resource-constrained instrumentation in the context of a complete science payload and applied to materials found in a particular environment. The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) investigation on MSL and the Mars Organic Molecule Analyzer (MOMA) investigation on ExoMars will thus benefit from and inform broad-based analog field site work linked to the Mars environments where such analysis will occur.

  8. Relay Telecommunications for the Coming Decade of Mars Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, C.; DePaula, R.

    2010-01-01

    Over the past decade, an evolving network of relay-equipped orbiters has advanced our capabilities for Mars exploration. NASA's Mars Global Surveyor, 2001 Mars Odyssey, and Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO), as well as ESA's Mars Express Orbiter, have provided telecommunications relay services to the 2003 Mars Exploration Rovers, Spirit and Opportunity, and to the 2007 Phoenix Lander. Based on these successes, a roadmap for continued Mars relay services is in place for the coming decade. MRO and Odyssey will provide key relay support to the 2011 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) mission, including capture of critical event telemetry during entry, descent, and landing, as well as support for command and telemetry during surface operations, utilizing new capabilities of the Electra relay payload on MRO and the Electra-Lite payload on MSL to allow significant increase in data return relative to earlier missions. Over the remainder of the decade a number of additional orbiter and lander missions are planned, representing new orbital relay service providers and new landed relay users. In this paper we will outline this Mars relay roadmap, quantifying relay performance over time, illustrating planned support scenarios, and identifying key challenges and technology infusion opportunities.

  9. Telecommunications Relay Support of the Mars Phoenix Lander Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Charles D., Jr.; Erickson, James K.; Gladden, Roy E.; Guinn, Joseph R.; Ilott, Peter A.; Jai, Benhan; Johnston, Martin D.; Kornfeld, Richard P.; Martin-Mur, Tomas J.; McSmith, Gaylon W.; hide

    2010-01-01

    The Phoenix Lander, first of NASA's Mars Scout missions, arrived at the Red Planet on May 25, 2008. From the moment the lander separated from its interplanetary cruise stage shortly before entry, the spacecraft could no longer communicate directly with Earth, and was instead entirely dependent on UHF relay communications via an international network of orbiting Mars spacecraft, including NASA's 2001 Mars Odyssey (ODY) and Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) spacecraft, as well as ESA's Mars Express (MEX) spacecraft. All three orbiters captured critical event telemetry and/or tracking data during Phoenix Entry, Descent and Landing. During the Phoenix surface mission, ODY and MRO provided command and telemetry services, far surpassing the original data return requirements. The availability of MEX as a backup relay asset enhanced the robustness of the surface relay plan. In addition to telecommunications services, Doppler tracking observables acquired on the UHF link yielded an accurate position for the Phoenix landing site.

  10. Highlight on the indigenous organic molecules detected on Mars by SAM and potential sources of artifacts and backgrounds generated by the sample preparation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buch, A.; Belmahdi, I.; Szopa, C.; Freissinet, C.; Glavin, D. P.; Coll, P. J.; Cabane, M.; Millan, M.; Eigenbrode, J. L.; Navarro-Gonzalez, R.; Stern, J. C.; Pinnick, V. T.; Coscia, D.; Teinturier, S.; Stambouli, M.; Dequaire, T.; Mahaffy, P. R.

    2015-12-01

    Among the experiments which explore the martian soil aboard the Curiosity Rover, SAM experiment is mainly dedicated to the search for indigenous organic compounds. To reach its goals SAM can operate in different analysis modes: Pyrolysis-GC-MS and Pyrolysis-MS (EGA). In addition SAM includes wet chemistry experiments [1] to supports extraction of polar organic compounds from solid samples that improves their detection either by increasing the release of chemical species from solid sample matrices, or by changing their chemical structure to make compounds more amenable to gas chromatography mass spectrometry (GCMS). The two wet chemistry experimental capabilities of SAM provide alternatives to the nominal inert-thermal desorption/pyrolysis analytical protocol and are more aptly suited for polar components: MTBSTFA derivatization [2-3] and TMAH thermochemolysis [4-5]. Here we focus on the MTBSTFA derivatization experiment. In order to build a support used to help the interpretation of SAM results, we have investigated the artifacts and backgrounds sources generated by the all analysis process: Solid sample were heated up to approximately 840°C at a rate of 35°C/min under He flow. For GC analyses, the majority of the gas released was trapped on a hydrocarbon trap (Tenax®) over a specific temperature range. Adsorbed volatiles on the GC injection trap (IT) were then released into the GC column (CLP-MXT 30m x 0.25mm x 0.25μm) by rapidly heating the IT to 300°C. Then, in order better understand the part of compounds detected coming from internal reaction we have performed several lab experiments to mimic the SAM device: Among the sources of artifact, we test: (1) the thermal stability and the organic material released during the degradation of Tenax® and carbosieve, (2) the impact of MTBSTFA and a mixture of DMF and MTBSTFA on the adsorbent, (3) the reaction between the different adsorbents (Tenax® and Carbosieve) and calcium perchlorate and then (4) the sources

  11. Classifying Returns as Extreme

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christiansen, Charlotte

    2014-01-01

    I consider extreme returns for the stock and bond markets of 14 EU countries using two classification schemes: One, the univariate classification scheme from the previous literature that classifies extreme returns for each market separately, and two, a novel multivariate classification scheme tha...

  12. Supporting a Deep Space Gateway with Free-Return Earth-Moon Periodic Orbits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Genova, A. L.; Dunham, D. W.; Hardgrove, C.

    2018-02-01

    Earth-Moon periodic orbits travel between the Earth and Moon via free-return circumlunar segments and can host a station that can provide architecture support to other nodes near the Moon and Mars while enabling science return from cislunar space.

  13. Preservation of Biomarkers from Cyanobacteria Mixed with Mars­Like Regolith Under Simulated Martian Atmosphere and UV Flux

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baqué, Mickael; Verseux, Cyprien; Böttger, Ute; Rabbow, Elke; de Vera, Jean-Pierre Paul; Billi, Daniela

    2016-06-01

    The space mission EXPOSE-R2 launched on the 24th of July 2014 to the International Space Station is carrying the BIOMEX (BIOlogy and Mars EXperiment) experiment aimed at investigating the endurance of extremophiles and stability of biomolecules under space and Mars-like conditions. In order to prepare the analyses of the returned samples, ground-based simulations were carried out in Planetary and Space Simulation facilities. During the ground-based simulations, Chroococcidiopsis cells mixed with two Martian mineral analogues (phyllosilicatic and sulfatic Mars regolith simulants) were exposed to a Martian simulated atmosphere combined or not with UV irradiation corresponding to the dose received during a 1-year-exposure in low Earth orbit (or half a Martian year on Mars). Cell survival and preservation of potential biomarkers such as photosynthetic and photoprotective pigments or DNA were assessed by colony forming ability assays, confocal laser scanning microscopy, Raman spectroscopy and PCR-based assays. DNA and photoprotective pigments (carotenoids) were detectable after simulations of the space mission (570 MJ/m2 of UV 200-400 nm irradiation and Martian simulated atmosphere), even though signals were attenuated by the treatment. The fluorescence signal from photosynthetic pigments was differently preserved after UV irradiation, depending on the thickness of the samples. UV irradiation caused a high background fluorescence of the Martian mineral analogues, as revealed by Raman spectroscopy. Further investigation will be needed to ensure unambiguous identification and operations of future Mars missions. However, a 3-month exposure to a Martian simulated atmosphere showed no significant damaging effect on the tested cyanobacterial biosignatures, pointing out the relevance of the latter for future investigations after the EXPOSE-R2 mission. Data gathered during the ground-based simulations will contribute to interpret results from space experiments and guide our

  14. Volatile and Isotopic Imprints of Ancient Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahaffy, Paul R.; Conrad, Pamela G.

    2015-01-01

    The science investigations enabled by Curiosity rover's instruments focus on identifying and exploring the habitability of the Martian environment. Measurements of noble gases, organic and inorganic compounds, and the isotopes of light elements permit the study of the physical and chemical processes that have transformed Mars throughout its history. Samples of the atmosphere, volatiles released from soils, and rocks from the floor of Gale Crater have provided a wealth of new data and a window into conditions on ancient Mars.

  15. Quick trips to Mars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hornung, R.

    1991-01-01

    The design of a Mars Mission Vehicle that would have to be launched by two very heavy lift launch vehicles is described along with plans for a mission to Mars. The vehicle has three nuclear engine for rocket vehicle application (NERVA) boosters with a fourth in the center that acts as a dual mode system. The fourth generates electrical power while in route, but it also helps lift the vehicle out of earth orbit. A Mars Ascent Vehicle (MAV), a Mars transfer vehicle stage, and a Mars Excursion Vehicle (MEV) are located on the front end of this vehicle. Other aspects of this research including aerobraking, heat shielding, nuclear thermal rocket engines, a mars mission summary, closed Brayton cycle with and without regeneration, liquid hydrogen propellant storage, etc. are addressed

  16. Cars on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.

    2002-01-01

    Mars is one of the most fascinating planets in the solar system, featuring an atmosphere, water, and enormous volcanoes and canyons. The Mars Pathfinder, Global Surveyor, and Odyssey missions mark the first wave of the Planet Earth's coming invasion of the red planet, changing our views of the past and future of the planet and the possibilities of life. Scientist and science-fiction writer Geoffrey A. Landis will present experiences on the Pathfinder mission, the challenges of using solar power on the surface of Mars, and present future missions to Mars such as the upcoming Mars Twin Rovers, which will launch two highly-capable vehicles in 2003 to explore the surface of Mars.

  17. Integrated vision-based GNC for autonomous rendezvous and capture around Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strippoli, L.; Novelli, G.; Gil Fernandez, J.; Colmenarejo, P.; Le Peuvedic, C.; Lanza, P.; Ankersen, F.

    2015-06-01

    Integrated GNC (iGNC) is an activity aimed at designing, developing and validating the GNC for autonomously performing the rendezvous and capture phase of the Mars sample return mission as defined during the Mars sample return Orbiter (MSRO) ESA study. The validation cycle includes testing in an end-to-end simulator, in a real-time avionics-representative test bench and, finally, in a dynamic HW in the loop test bench for assessing the feasibility, performances and figure of merits of the baseline approach defined during the MSRO study, for both nominal and contingency scenarios. The on-board software (OBSW) is tailored to work with the sensors, actuators and orbits baseline proposed in MSRO. The whole rendezvous is based on optical navigation, aided by RF-Doppler during the search and first orbit determination of the orbiting sample. The simulated rendezvous phase includes also the non-linear orbit synchronization, based on a dedicated non-linear guidance algorithm robust to Mars ascent vehicle (MAV) injection accuracy or MAV failures resulting in elliptic target orbits. The search phase is very demanding for the image processing (IP) due to the very high visual magnitude of the target wrt. the stellar background, and the attitude GNC requires very high pointing stability accuracies to fulfil IP constraints. A trade-off of innovative, autonomous navigation filters indicates the unscented Kalman filter (UKF) as the approach that provides the best results in terms of robustness, response to non-linearities and performances compatibly with computational load. At short range, an optimized IP based on a convex hull algorithm has been developed in order to guarantee LoS and range measurements from hundreds of metres to capture.

  18. Mars at Opposition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riddle, Bob

    2010-01-01

    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. Astrobiology Results from ILEWG EuroMoonMars Analogue Field Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foing, Bernard H.

    We give an update on the astrobiology results from a series of field research campaigns (ILEWG EuroMoonMars) in the extreme environment of the Utah desert. These are relevant to prepare future lunar landers and polar sample return missions, interpret Moon-Mars data (eg SMART1, LRO, Mars Express, MRO, MER, MSL), study habitability and astrobiology in Moon-Mars environments, or to test human-robotic surface EVA or base operations. 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 [0, 1, 2, 9-11] including sample collection, context imaging from re-mote to local and microscale, drilling, spectrometers and life sensors. We analyzed how geological and geo-chemical evolution affected local parameters (mineralogy, organics content, environment variations) and the habitability and signature of organics and biota. Results: 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 [0-9] to new measurements from 2010-2013 campaigns relevant to: comparison between remote sensing and in-situ measurements; the study of minerals; the detection of organics and signs of life. We acknowledge team members and supporting institutes: B.H. Foing (1, 2, 6), C. Stoker (3), P. Ehrenfreund (4, 5), I. Rammos (2), L. Rodrigues (2), A. Svendsen (2), D. Oltheten (2), I. Schlacht (2), K. Nebergall (6), M. Battler (6, 7), H

  20. History of Mars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lewis, J.S.

    1988-01-01

    The origin and early history of Mars and the relationship between Mars and the other planets are reviewed. The solar system formation and planetary differentiation are examined using data from planetary missions. Different views of Mars are presented, showing how ideas about the planet have changed as the amount of available observational data has increased. Viking aerography and surface characterization are discussed, including the nature of specific atmospheric components and the implications of surface phenomena. Models for the planetary formation and accretion processes are considered. The value of future missions to Mars is stressed

  1. Mars Stratigraphy Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Budney, C. J.; Miller, S. L.; Cutts, J. A.

    2000-01-01

    The Mars Stratigraphy Mission lands a rover on the surface of Mars which descends down a cliff in Valles Marineris to study the stratigraphy. The rover carries a unique complement of instruments to analyze and age-date materials encountered during descent past 2 km of strata. The science objective for the Mars Stratigraphy Mission is to identify the geologic history of the layered deposits in the Valles Marineris region of Mars. This includes constraining the time interval for formation of these deposits by measuring the ages of various layers and determining the origin of the deposits (volcanic or sedimentary) by measuring their composition and imaging their morphology.

  2. The Development of the Chemin Mineralogy Instrument and Its Deployment on Mars (and Latest Results from the Mars Science Laboratory Rover Curiosity)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blake, David F.

    2014-01-01

    The CheMin instrument (short for "Chemistry and Mineralogy") on the Mars Science Laboratory rover Curiosity is one of two "laboratory quality" instruments on board the Curiosity rover that is exploring Gale crater, Mars. CheMin is an X-ray diffractometer that has for the first time returned definitive and fully quantitative mineral identifications of Mars soil and drilled rock. I will describe CheMin's 23-year development from an idea to a spacecraft qualified instrument, and report on some of the discoveries that Curiosity has made since its entry, descent and landing on Aug. 6, 2012, including the discovery and characterization of the first habitable environment on Mars.

  3. The Investigation of Chlorate and Perchlorate/Saponite Mixtures as a Possible Source of Oxygen and Chlorine Detected by the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) Instrument in Gale Crater

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, J.; Sutter, B.; Min, D. W.; Mahaffy, P.

    2016-01-01

    The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument on board the Curiosity Rover has detected O2 and HCl gas releases from all analyzed Gale Crater sediments, which are attributed to the presence of perchlorates and/or chlorates in martian sediment. Previous SAM analog laboratory analyses found that most pure perchlorates and chlorates release O2 and HCl at different temperatures than those observed in the SAM data. Subsequent studies examined the effects of perchlorate and chlorate mixtures with Gale Crater analog iron phases, which are known to catalyze oxychlorine decomposition. Several mixtures produced O2 releases at similar temperatures as Gale Crater materials, but most of these mixtures did not produce significant HCl releases comparable to those detected by the SAM instrument. In order to better explain the Gale Crater HCl releases, perchlorates and chlorates were mixed with Gale Crater analog saponite, which is found at abundances from 8 to 20 wt % in the John Klein and Cumberland drill samples. Mixtures of chlorates or perchlorates with calcium-saponite or ferrian-saponite were heated to 1000 deg C in a Labsys EVO differential scanning calorimeter/mass spectrometer configured to operate similarly to the SAM oven/quadrupole mass spectrometer system. Our results demonstrate that all chlorate and perchlorate mixtures produce significant HCl releases below 1000 deg C as well as depressed oxygen peak release temperatures when mixed with saponite. The type of saponite (calcium or ferrian saponite) did not affect the evolved gas results significantly. Saponite/Mg-perchlorate mixtures produced two HCl releases similar to the Cumberland drilled sample. Mg-chlorate mixed with saponite produced HCl releases similar to the Big Sky drilled sample in an eolian sandstone. A mixture of Ca-perchlorate and saponite produced HCl and oxygen releases similar to the Buckskin mudstone drilled sample and the Gobabeb 2 eolian dune material. Ca-chlorate mixed with saponite produced both

  4. Mars atmosphere. Mars methane detection and variability at Gale crater.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webster, Christopher R; Mahaffy, Paul R; Atreya, Sushil K; Flesch, Gregory J; Mischna, Michael A; Meslin, Pierre-Yves; Farley, Kenneth A; Conrad, Pamela G; Christensen, Lance E; Pavlov, Alexander A; Martín-Torres, Javier; Zorzano, María-Paz; McConnochie, Timothy H; Owen, Tobias; Eigenbrode, Jennifer L; Glavin, Daniel P; Steele, Andrew; Malespin, Charles A; Archer, P Douglas; Sutter, Brad; Coll, Patrice; Freissinet, Caroline; McKay, Christopher P; Moores, John E; Schwenzer, Susanne P; Bridges, John C; Navarro-Gonzalez, Rafael; Gellert, Ralf; Lemmon, Mark T

    2015-01-23

    Reports of plumes or patches of methane in the martian atmosphere that vary over monthly time scales have defied explanation to date. From in situ measurements made over a 20-month period by the tunable laser spectrometer of the Sample Analysis at Mars instrument suite on Curiosity at Gale crater, we report detection of background levels of atmospheric methane of mean value 0.69 ± 0.25 parts per billion by volume (ppbv) at the 95% confidence interval (CI). This abundance is lower than model estimates of ultraviolet degradation of accreted interplanetary dust particles or carbonaceous chondrite material. Additionally, in four sequential measurements spanning a 60-sol period (where 1 sol is a martian day), we observed elevated levels of methane of 7.2 ± 2.1 ppbv (95% CI), implying that Mars is episodically producing methane from an additional unknown source. Copyright © 2015, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  5. Moon-Mars Analogue Mission (EuroMoonMars 1 at the Mars Desert Research Station)

    Science.gov (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

  6. KINERJA KEUANGAN KONVENSIONAL, ECONOMIC VALUE ADDED, DAN RETURN SAHAM

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bambang Sudiyatno

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Penelitian ini bertujuan untuk menguji pengaruh kinerja keuangan konvensional; Return on Asset (ROA, Return on Equity (ROE, Residual Income (RI, dan kinerja keuangan yang lebih modern; Economic Value Added (EVA terhadap return saham pada perusahaan-perusahaan dalam industry makanan dan minuman yang terdaftar di Bursa Efek Indonesia. Pengambilan sampel dalam penelitian ini menggunakan metode sensus, karena semua perusahaan dalam industry makanan dan minuman digunakan sebagai sampel. Namun dalam proses samplingnya mengunakan metode purposive sampling, yaitu menggunakan sampel dengan criteria-kriteria tertentu. Hasil penelitian menunjukkan bahwa Return on Asset (ROA dan Residual Income (RI berpengaruh positif dan secara statistik signifikan terhadap return saham pada level signifikansi 1%. Sedangkan Return on Equity (ROE berpengaruh negative dan secara statistik signifikan terhadap return saham pada level signifikansi 10%, dan Economic Value Added (ERA berpengaruh positif tetapi tidak signifikan terhadap return saham.This study aims to test the effect of conventional financial performance i.e. Return on Asset (ROA, Return on Equity (ROE, Residual Income (RI, and the more modern financial performance which is Economic Value Added (EVA toward stock returns on companies in the food and beverage industry listed in Indonesia Stock Exchange. Sampling technique in this study uses the census method, all companies in the food and beverage industry are used as a sample. The process of sampling using purposive sampling method. The result shows that Return On Asset (ROA and Residual Income (RI are positive and statistic significant impact on the stock returns at significance level 1%. While the Return on Equity (ROE is negative and statistic significant impact on the stock returns at significance level 10%, Economic Value Added (EVA is positive and statistic not significant impact on the stock returns.

  7. Mission to Mars: Plans and concepts for the first manned landing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oberg, J. E.

    The manned exploration and settlement of Mars is discussed. The topics considered include: the rationale for a manned landing; spaceships and propulsion for getting to Mars; human factors such as psychological stress, the effects of prolonged weightlessness, and radiation dangers; the return from Mars; site selection and relevant criteria; scientific problems that can be studied by landing men on Mars. Also addressed are economic resources of air and water on Mars and their relevance for transportation and mission planning; the exploration and utilization of Phobos and Deimos; cost factors; the possibilities of the Russians' going to Mars; political and social issues; colonies on Mars; and manipulation of the Martian environment to make it more habitable.

  8. The Mars Astrobiology Explorer-Cacher (MAX-C): a potential rover mission for 2018. Final report of the Mars Mid-Range Rover Science Analysis Group (MRR-SAG) October 14, 2009.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-03-01

    This report documents the work of the Mid-Range Rover Science Analysis Group (MRR-SAG), which was assigned to formulate a concept for a potential rover mission that could be launched to Mars in 2018. Based on programmatic and engineering considerations as of April 2009, our deliberations assumed that the potential mission would use the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) sky-crane landing system and include a single solar-powered rover. The mission would also have a targeting accuracy of approximately 7 km (semimajor axis landing ellipse), a mobility range of at least 10 km, and a lifetime on the martian surface of at least 1 Earth year. An additional key consideration, given recently declining budgets and cost growth issues with MSL, is that the proposed rover must have lower cost and cost risk than those of MSL--this is an essential consideration for the Mars Exploration Program Analysis Group (MEPAG). The MRR-SAG was asked to formulate a mission concept that would address two general objectives: (1) conduct high priority in situ science and (2) make concrete steps toward the potential return of samples to Earth. The proposed means of achieving these two goals while balancing the trade-offs between them are described here in detail. We propose the name Mars Astrobiology Explorer-Cacher(MAX-C) to reflect the dual purpose of this potential 2018 rover mission.

  9. The overprotection of Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fairén, Alberto G.; Schulze-Makuch, Dirk

    2013-07-01

    Planetary protection policies aim to guard Solar System bodies from biological contamination from spacecraft. Costly efforts to sterilize Mars spacecraft need to be re-evaluated, as they are unnecessarily inhibiting a more ambitious agenda to search for extant life on Mars.

  10. Building Virtual Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abercrombie, S. P.; Menzies, A.; Goddard, C.

    2017-12-01

    Virtual and augmented reality enable scientists to visualize environments that are very difficult, or even impossible to visit, such as the surface of Mars. A useful immersive visualization begins with a high quality reconstruction of the environment under study. This presentation will discuss a photogrammetry pipeline developed at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory to reconstruct 3D models of the surface of Mars using stereo images sent back to Earth by the Curiosity Mars rover. The resulting models are used to support a virtual reality tool (OnSight) that allows scientists and engineers to visualize the surface of Mars as if they were standing on the red planet. Images of Mars present challenges to existing scene reconstruction solutions. Surface images of Mars are sparse with minimal overlap, and are often taken from extremely different viewpoints. In addition, the specialized cameras used by Mars rovers are significantly different than consumer cameras, and GPS localization data is not available on Mars. This presentation will discuss scene reconstruction with an emphasis on coping with limited input data, and on creating models suitable for rendering in virtual reality at high frame rate.

  11. Microscope on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    2004-01-01

    This image taken at Meridiani Planum, Mars by the panoramic camera on the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity shows the rover's microscopic imager (circular device in center), located on its instrument deployment device, or 'arm.' The image was acquired on the ninth martian day or sol of the rover's mission.

  12. IJslandse inzichten op Mars

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Vet, S.

    2013-01-01

    Vulkaanuitbarstingen onder gletsjers, zoals de vliegverkeer-verlammende uitbarsting van de vulkaan Eyjafjallajökull in IJsland in 2010, lijken in veel opzichten op vulkaanuitbarstingen die ooit op Mars voorkwamen. Dankzij de landschappelijke gelijkenissen tussen onze aarde en Mars is het mogelijk om

  13. Preparing for the crewed Mars journey: microbiota dynamics in the confined Mars500 habitat during simulated Mars flight and landing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwendner, Petra; Mahnert, Alexander; Koskinen, Kaisa; Moissl-Eichinger, Christine; Barczyk, Simon; Wirth, Reinhard; Berg, Gabriele; Rettberg, Petra

    2017-10-04

    The Mars500 project was conceived as the first full duration simulation of a crewed return flight to Mars. For 520 days, six crew members lived confined in a specifically designed spacecraft mock-up. The herein described "MIcrobial ecology of Confined Habitats and humAn health" (MICHA) experiment was implemented to acquire comprehensive microbiota data from this unique, confined manned habitat, to retrieve important information on the occurring microbiota dynamics, the microbial load and diversity in the air and on various surfaces. In total, 360 samples from 20 (9 air, 11 surface) locations were taken at 18 time-points and processed by extensive cultivation, PhyloChip and next generation sequencing (NGS) of 16S rRNA gene amplicons. Cultivation assays revealed a Staphylococcus and Bacillus-dominated microbial community on various surfaces, with an average microbial load that did not exceed the allowed limits for ISS in-flight requirements indicating adequate maintenance of the facility. Areas with high human activity were identified as hotspots for microbial accumulation. Despite substantial fluctuation with respect to microbial diversity and abundance throughout the experiment, the location within the facility and the confinement duration were identified as factors significantly shaping the microbial diversity and composition, with the crew representing the main source for microbial dispersal. Opportunistic pathogens, stress-tolerant or potentially mobile element-bearing microorganisms were predicted to be prevalent throughout the confinement, while the overall microbial diversity dropped significantly over time. Our findings clearly indicate that under confined conditions, the community structure remains a highly dynamic system which adapts to the prevailing habitat and micro-conditions. Since a sterile environment is not achievable, these dynamics need to be monitored to avoid spreading of highly resistant or potentially pathogenic microorganisms and a

  14. The Mars Science Laboratory Organic Check Material

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conrad, Pamela G.; Eigenbrode, J. E.; Mogensen, C. T.; VonderHeydt, M. O.; Glavin, D. P.; Mahaffy, P. M.; Johnson, J. A.

    2011-01-01

    The Organic Check Material (OCM) has been developed for use on the Mars Science Laboratory mission to serve as a sample standard for verification of organic cleanliness and characterization of potential sample alteration as a function of the sample acquisition and portioning process on the Curiosity rover. OCM samples will be acquired using the same procedures for drilling, portioning and delivery as are used to study martian samples with The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument suite during MSL surface operations. Because the SAM suite is highly sensitive to organic molecules, the mission can better verify the cleanliness of Curiosity's sample acquisition hardware if a known material can be processed through SAM and compared with the results obtained from martian samples.

  15. Are fund of hedge fund returns asymmetric?

    OpenAIRE

    Lynch, Margaret; Hutson, Elaine; Stevenson, Max

    2004-01-01

    We examine the return distributions of 332 funds of hedge funds and associated indices. Over half of the sample is significantly skewed according to the skewness statistic, and these are split 50/50 positive and negative. However, we argue that the skewness statistic can lead to erroneous inferences regarding the nature of the return distribution, because the test statistic is based on the normal distribution. Using a series of tests that make minimal assumptions about the shape of the ...

  16. Technology Development and Design of a Hybrid Mars Ascent Vehicle Concept

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karp, Ashley C.; Redmond, Matt; Nakazono, Barry; Vaughan, David; Shotwell, Robert; Story, George; Jackson, Dale; Young, David

    2016-01-01

    Hybrid propulsion has been investigated as an enhancing technology for a Mars Ascent Vehicle (MAV) concept as part of potential Mars Sample Return (MSR) because of its high specific impulse, restartability, and the ability to operate and survive at extremely low temperatures. A new wax-based hybrid fuel formulation has been developed that could withstand the harsh and variable Mars environment protected solely by a minimal layer of passive insulation. This formulation could provide substantial energy savings for a notional lander and is critical for rover mobility. Preliminary thermal cycle testing has determined that the formulation can survive the expected temperature extremes and lifetime thermal testing is currently underway. A complete preliminary design using this new fuel formulation combined with a low temperature oxidizer such as Mixed Oxides of Nitrogen (MON30) is presented. Several key features associated with a complete hybrid MAV concept are investigated to determine their mission suitability (e.g. Thrust Vector Control and restartable ignition options). Potential challenges along a path towards developing such a system are outlined and future work is suggested as a means of technology maturation. The hybrid design presented here was the lowest Gross Lift Off Mass (GLOM) result of a 2015 Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) led MAV concept study.

  17. SGTR assessment using MARS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Raines, J.C.; Dawson, S.M.; Deitke, B.; Henry, R.E.

    1996-01-01

    During the course of a plant accident, a consistent understanding of the plant response is vital to support an accident manager's decision making process. One tool that can provide assistance to the plant staff in assessing conditions in the plant during accident conditions is the MAAP Accident Response System (MARS) software. During an accident, MARS utilizes the on-line data from the plant instrumentation to initialize the Modular Accident Analysis Program (MAAP) code. Once initialized, MARS tracks and characterizes the plant behavior through the use of integrated logic modules. These logic modules provide the user with important information about the status of systems and the possible cause of the accident. The MARS logic modules evaluate relevant available plant instrumentation and the observations of the operating staff using fuzzy logic. The fuzzy logic is applied to provide a transition between areas where one is absolutely sure that a situation has not occurred to a condition where one is absolutely certain that a situation has occurred. One example of the use of logic modules in MARS is illustrated by that used to assess if a steam generator tube rupture (SGTR) event has occurred. Each piece of relevant plant data is evaluated to determine if it is consistent with the symptoms of a SGTR. Each of the evaluations for the individual plant instruments and the operating staff observations are assembled to determine an overall confidence which characterizes the likelihood that a SGTR is occurring. Additional MARS logic modules are used to determine confidence levels for other types of accident events. The conclusions arrived at by each individual logic module are expressed as confidence levels. The logic module confidence levels can be graphically displayed using the MARS Graphical Users Interface (GUI), to indicate the confidence level MARS has assessed for each accident type. The GUI shows the identification of the possible accident types, but is not limited

  18. Launching to the Moon, Mars, and Beyond

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dumbacher, Daniel L.

    2006-01-01

    The U.S. Vision for Space Exploration, announced in 2004, calls on NASA to finish constructing the International Space Station, retire the Space Shuttle, and build the new spacecraft needed to return to the Moon and go on the Mars. By exploring space, America continues the tradition of great nations who mastered the Earth, air, and sea, and who then enjoyed the benefits of increased commerce and technological advances. The progress being made today is part of the next chapter in America's history of leadership in space. In order to reach the Moon and Mars within the planned timeline and also within the allowable budget, NASA is building upon the best of proven space transportation systems. Journeys to the Moon and Mars will require a variety of vehicles, including the Ares I Crew Launch Vehicle, the Ares V Cargo Launch Vehicle, the Orion Crew Exploration Vehicle, and the Lunar Surface Access Module. What America learns in reaching for the Moon will teach astronauts how to prepare for the first human footprints on Mars. While robotic science may reveal information about the nature of hydrogen on the Moon, it will most likely tale a human being with a rock hammer to find the real truth about the presence of water, a precious natural resource that opens many possibilities for explorers. In this way, the combination of astronauts using a variety of tools and machines provides a special synergy that will vastly improve our understanding of Earth's cosmic neighborhood.

  19. Low-cost autonomous orbit control about Mars: Initial simulation results

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dawson, S. D.; Early, L. W.; Potterveld, C. W.; Königsmann, H. J.

    1999-11-01

    Interest in studying the possibility of extraterrestrial life has led to the re-emergence of the Red Planet as a major target of planetary exploration. Currently proposed missions in the post-2000 period are routinely calling for rendezvous with ascent craft, long-term orbiting of, and sample-return from Mars. Such missions would benefit greatly from autonomous orbit control as a means to reduce operations costs and enable contact with Mars ground stations out of view of the Earth. This paper present results from initial simulations of autonomously controlled orbits around Mars, and points out possible uses of the technology and areas of routine Mars operations where such cost-conscious and robust autonomy could prove most effective. These simulations have validated the approach and control philosophies used in the development of this autonomous orbit controller. Future work will refine the controller, accounting for systematic and random errors in the navigation of the spacecraft from the sensor suite, and will produce prototype flight code for inclusion on future missions. A modified version of Microcosm's commercially available High Precision Orbit Propagator (HPOP) was used in the preparation of these results due to its high accuracy and speed of operation. Control laws were developed to allow an autonomously controlled spacecraft to continuously control to a pre-defined orbit about Mars with near-optimal propellant usage. The control laws were implemented as an adjunct to HPOP. The GSFC-produced 50 × 50 field model of the Martian gravitational potential was used in all simulations. The Martian atmospheric drag was modeled using an exponentially decaying atmosphere based on data from the Mars-GRAM NASA Ames model. It is hoped that the simple atmosphere model that was implemented can be significantly improved in the future so as to approach the fidelity of the Mars-GRAM model in its predictions of atmospheric density at orbital altitudes. Such additional work

  20. Halite as a Methane Sequestration Host: A Possible Explanation for Periodic Methane Release on Mars, and a Surface-accessible Source of Ancient Martian Carbon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fries, M. D.; Steele, Andrew; Hynek, B. M.

    2015-01-01

    We present the hypothesis that halite may play a role in methane sequestration on the martian surface. In terrestrial examples, halite deposits sequester large volumes of methane and chloromethane. Also, examples of chloromethane-bearing, approximately 4.5 Ga old halite from the Monahans meteorite show that this system is very stable unless the halite is damaged. On Mars, methane may be generated from carbonaceous material trapped in ancient halite deposits and sequestered. The methane may be released by damaging its halite host; either by aqueous alteration, aeolian abrasion, heating, or impact shock. Such a scenario may help to explain the appearance of short-lived releases of methane on the martian surface. The methane may be of either biogenic or abiogenic origin. If this scenario plays a significant role on Mars, then martian halite deposits may contain samples of organic compounds dating to the ancient desiccation of the planet, accessible at the surface for future sample return missions.

  1. Mars Exploration 2003 to 2013 - An Integrated Perspective: Time Sequencing the Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Briggs, G.; McKay, C.

    2000-01-01

    The science goals for the Mars exploration program, together with the HEDS precursor environmental and technology needs, serve as a solid starting point for re-planning the program in an orderly way. Most recently, the community has recognized the significance of subsurface sampling as a key component in "following the water". Accessing samples from hundreds and even thousands of meters beneath the surface is a challenge that will call for technology development and for one or more demonstration missions. Recent mission failures and concerns about the complexity of the previously planned MSR missions indicate that, before we are ready to undertake sample return and deep sampling, the Mars exploration program needs to include: 1) technology development missions; and 2) basic landing site assessment missions. These precursor missions should demonstrate the capability for reliable & accurate soft landing and in situ propellant production. The precursor missions will need to carry out close-up site observations, ground-penetrating radar mapping from orbit and conduct seismic surveys. Clearly the programs should be planned as a single, continuous exploration effort. A prudent minimum list of missions, including surface rovers with ranges of more than 10 km, can be derived from the numerous goals and requirements; they can be sequenced in an orderly way to ensure that time is available to feed forward the results of the precursor missions. One such sequence of missions is proposed for the decade beginning in 2003.

  2. The Reference Return Ratio

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nicolaisen, Jeppe; Faber Frandsen, Tove

    2008-01-01

    The paper introduces a new journal impact measure called The Reference Return Ratio (3R). Unlike the traditional Journal Impact Factor (JIF), which is based on calculations of publications and citations, the new measure is based on calculations of bibliographic investments (references) and returns...... (citations). A comparative study of the two measures shows a strong relationship between the 3R and the JIF. Yet, the 3R appears to correct for citation habits, citation dynamics, and composition of document types - problems that typically are raised against the JIF. In addition, contrary to traditional...

  3. The Returns to Entrepreneurship

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Van Praag, Mirjam; Raknerud, Arvid

    Empirical studies show low pecuniary returns of switching from wage employment to entrepreneurship. We reconsider the pecuniary gains of this switching by employing a two-stage procedure, where the randomness in the timing of inheritance transfers is used as an exclusion restriction to identify...... causal effects. The model is estimated on data covering the whole Norwegian population of individuals matched to the entire population of firms established in the period 2002-2011. The results indicate that the average returns to entrepreneurship are significantly negative for individuals entering...... entrepreneurship through self-employment and modest, but significantly positive, for incorporated startups....

  4. Return to nucleate boiling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shumway, R.W.

    1985-01-01

    This paper presents a collection of TMIN (temperature of return to nucleate boiling) correlations, evaluates them under several conditions, and compares them with a wide range of data. Purpose is to obtain the best one for use in a water reactor safety computer simulator known as TRAC-B. Return to nucleate boiling can occur in a reactor accident at either high or low pressure and flow rates. Most of the correlations yield unrealistic results under some conditions. A new correlation is proposed which overcomes many of the deficiencies

  5. Stock return distribution in the BRICS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    George Adu

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Stock returns in emerging market economies exhibit patterns that are distinctively different from developed countries: returns are noted to be highly volatile and autocorrelated, and long horizon returns are predictable. While these stylized facts are well established, the assumption underlying the distribution of returns is less understood. In particular, the empirical literature continues to rely on the normality assumption as a starting point, and most asset pricing models tend to overstretch this point. This paper questions the rationale behind this supposition and proceeds to test more formally for normality using multivariate joint test for skewness and kurtosis. Additionally, the paper extends the literature by examining a number of empirical regularities for Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (the BRICS for short. Our main findings are that the distribution of stock returns for the BRICS exhibits peakedness with fatter and longer tails, and this is invariant to both the unit of measurement and the time horizon of returns. Volatility clustering is prevalent in all markets, and this decays exponentially for all but Brazil. The relationship between risk and return is found to be significant and risk premiums are prevalent in our sample.

  6. Return of qualified Sudanese

    OpenAIRE

    Lindsay T McMahon

    2007-01-01

    With the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement in January 2005, the new Government of South Sudan began to call for the return of the millions of South Sudanese IDP s and refugees. The International Organization for Migration (IOM) has developed a programme to help them do so.

  7. Return of qualified Sudanese

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lindsay T McMahon

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available With the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement in January 2005, the new Government of South Sudan began to call for the return of the millions of South Sudanese IDP s and refugees. The International Organization for Migration (IOM has developed a programme to help them do so.

  8. Higher Education Endowments Return

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bahlmann, David; Walda, John D.; Sedlacek, Verne O.

    2012-01-01

    A new study of endowments by the National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO) and the Commonfund Institute has brought good news to college and universities: While endowment returns dropped precipitously in fiscal year 2009 as a result of the financial crisis and accompanying slide in equity markets, they climbed to an…

  9. Return to Play

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mangan, Marianne

    2013-01-01

    Call it physical activity, call it games, or call it play. Whatever its name, it's a place we all need to return to. In the physical education, recreation, and dance professions, we need to redesign programs to address the need for and want of play that is inherent in all of us.

  10. Automation &robotics for future Mars exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schulte, W.; von Richter, A.; Bertrand, R.

    2003-04-01

    site. In the frame of near-term Mars exploration a dedicated exobiology mission is envisaged. Scientific and technical studies for a facility to detect the evidence of past of present life have been carried out under ESA contract. Mars soil/rock samples are to be analyzed for their morphology, organic and inorganic composition using a suite of scientific instruments. Robotic devices, e.g. for the acquisition, handling and onboard processing of Mars sample material retrieved from different locations, and surface mobility are important elements in a fully automated mission. Necessary robotic elements have been identified in past studies. Their realization can partly be based on heritage of existing space hardware, but will require dedicated development effort.

  11. The Calibration Target for the Mars 2020 SHERLOC Instrument: Multiple Science Roles for Future Manned and Unmanned Mars Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fries, M.; Bhartia, R.; Beegle, L.; Burton, A.; Ross, A.; Shahar, A.

    2014-01-01

    The Scanning Habitable Environments with Raman & Luminescence for Organics & Chemicals (SHERLOC) instrument is a deep ultraviolet (UV) Raman/fluorescence instrument selected as part of the Mars 2020 rover instrument suite. SHERLOC will be mounted on the rover arm and its primary role is to identify carbonaceous species in martian samples, which may be selected for inclusion into a returnable sample cache. The SHERLOC instrument will require the use of a calibration target, and by design, multiple science roles will be addressed in the design of the target. Samples of materials used in NASA Extravehicular Mobility unit (EMU, or "space suit") manufacture have been included in the target to serve as both solid polymer calibration targets for SHERLOC instrument function, as well as for testing the resiliency of those materials under martian ambient conditions. A martian meteorite will also be included in the target to serve as a well-characterized example of a martian rock that contains trace carbonaceous material. This rock will be the first rock that we know of that has completed a round trip between planets and will therefore serve an EPO role to attract public attention to science and planetary exploration. The SHERLOC calibration target will address a wide range of NASA goals to include basic science of interest to both the Science Mission Directorate (SMD) and Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate (HEOMD).

  12. Mars Technology Project

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — NASA’s Mars Exploration Program (MEP) calls for a series of highly ambitious missions over the next decade and beyond. The overall goals of the MEP must be...

  13. Mars Electric Reusable Flyer

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — One of the main issues with a Mars flight vehicle concept that can be reused and cover long distances for maximum surface data gathering is its ability to take off,...

  14. Environment of Mars, 1988

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kaplan, D.I.

    1988-10-01

    A compilation of scientific knowledge about the planet Mars is provided. Information is divided into three categories: atmospheric data, surface data, and astrodynamic data. The discussion of atmospheric data includes the presentation of nine different models of the Mars atmosphere. Also discussed are Martian atmospheric constituents, winds, clouds, and solar irradiance. The great dust storms of Mars are presented. The section on Mars surface data provides an in-depth examination of the physical and chemical properties observed at the two Viking landing sites. Bulk densities, dielectric constants, and thermal inertias across the planet are then described and related back to those specific features found at the Viking landing sites. The astrodynamic materials provide the astronomical constants, time scales, and reference coordinate frames necessary to perform flightpath analysis, navigation design, and science observation design

  15. Habit formation, surplus consumption and return predictability

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Engsted, Tom; Hyde, Stuart; Vinther Møller, Stig

    2010-01-01

    On an international post World War II dataset, we use an iterated GMM procedure to estimate and test the Campbell and Cochrane (1999, By force of habit: a consumption-based explanation of aggregate stock market behavior. Journal of Political Economy 107, 205–251.) habit formation model with a time......-varying risk-free rate. In addition, we analyze the predictive power of the surplus consumption ratio for future stock and bond returns. We find that, although there are important cross-country differences and economically significant pricing errors, for the majority of countries in our sample the model gets...... significant information about future stock returns, also during the 1990s. In addition, in most countries the surplus consumption ratio is also a powerful predictor of future bond returns. Thus, the surplus consumption ratio captures time-varying expected returns in both stock and bond markets....

  16. MARS software package status

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Azhgirej, I.L.; Talanov, V.V.

    2000-01-01

    The MARS software package is intended for simulating the nuclear-electromagnetic cascades and the secondary neutrons and muons transport in the heterogeneous medium of arbitrary complexity in the magnetic fields presence. The inclusive approach to describing the particle production in the nuclear and electromagnetic interactions and by the unstable particles decay is realized in the package. The MARS software package was actively applied for solving various radiation physical problems [ru

  17. Status of MARS Code

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    N.V. Mokhov

    2003-04-09

    Status and recent developments of the MARS 14 Monte Carlo code system for simulation of hadronic and electromagnetic cascades in shielding, accelerator and detector components in the energy range from a fraction of an electronvolt up to 100 TeV are described. these include physics models both in strong and electromagnetic interaction sectors, variance reduction techniques, residual dose, geometry, tracking, histograming. MAD-MARS Beam Line Build and Graphical-User Interface.

  18. Habitability & Astrobiology Research in Mars Terrestrial Analogues

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foing, Bernard

    2014-05-01

    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. Autonomous Operation of Mars Meteorological Network

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, W.; Harri, A.-M.; Vázquez, L.; Linkin, V.; Alexashkin, S.

    2012-09-01

    In the next years a series of small landing vehicles concentrating on Martian meteorology should be deployed to the surface of Mars. As commanding from Earth will not be possible most of the time, the station software has to be capable of adapting to any foreseeable conditions and optimize the science return as much as feasible. In this paper we outline the constraints and strategies implemented into the control system of the MetNet Landers. For details to the mission and its instruments see the mission home page [1].

  20. Terrestrial Analogs to Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farr, T. G.; Arcone, S.; Arvidson, R. W.; Baker, V.; Barlow, N. G.; Beaty, D.; Bell, M. S.; Blankenship, D. D.; Bridges, N.; Briggs, G.; Bulmer, M.; Carsey, F.; Clifford, S. M.; Craddock, R. A.; Dickerson, P. W.; Duxbury, N.; Galford, G. L.; Garvin, J.; Grant, J.; Green, J. R.; Gregg, T. K. P.; Guinness, E.; Hansen, V. L.; Hecht, M. H.; Holt, J.; Howard, A.; Keszthelyi, L. P.; Lee, P.; Lanagan, P. D.; Lentz, R. C. F.; Leverington, D. W.; Marinangeli, L.; Moersch, J. E.; Morris-Smith, P. A.; Mouginis-Mark, P.; Olhoeft, G. R.; Ori, G. G.; Paillou, P.; Reilly, J. F., II; Rice, J. W., Jr.; Robinson, C. A.; Sheridan, M.; Snook, K.; Thomson, B. J.; Watson, K.; Williams, K.; Yoshikawa, K.

    2002-08-01

    It is well recognized that interpretations of Mars must begin with the Earth as a reference. The most successful comparisons have focused on understanding geologic processes on the Earth well enough to extrapolate to Mars' environment. Several facets of terrestrial analog studies have been pursued and are continuing. These studies include field workshops, characterization of terrestrial analog sites, instrument tests, laboratory measurements (including analysis of Martian meteorites), and computer and laboratory modeling. The combination of all these activities allows scientists to constrain the processes operating in specific terrestrial environments and extrapolate how similar processes could affect Mars. The Terrestrial Analogs for Mars Community Panel has considered the following two key questions: (1) How do terrestrial analog studies tie in to the Mars Exploration Payload Assessment Group science questions about life, past climate, and geologic evolution of Mars, and (2) How can future instrumentation be used to address these questions. The panel has considered the issues of data collection, value of field workshops, data archiving, laboratory measurements and modeling, human exploration issues, association with other areas of solar system exploration, and education and public outreach activities.

  1. Life on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKay, Christopher P.; Cuzzi, Jeffrey (Technical Monitor)

    1996-01-01

    Although the Viking results may indicate that Mars has no life today, the possibility exists that Mars may hold the best record of the events that led to the origin of life. There is direct geomorphological evidence that in the past Mars had large amounts of liquid water on its surface. Atmospheric models would suggest that this early period of hydrological activity was due to the presence of a thick atmosphere and the resulting warmer temperatures. From a biological perspective the existence of liquid water, by itself motivates the question of the origin of life on Mars. From studies of the Earth's earliest biosphere we know that by 3.5 Gyr. ago, life had originated on Earth and reached a fair degree of biological sophistication. Surface activity and erosion on Earth make it difficult to trace the history of life before the 3.5 Gyr timeframe. If Mars did maintain a clement environment for longer than it took for life to originate on Earth, then the question of the origin of life on Mars follows naturally.

  2. Mars, clays and the origins of life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hartman, Hyman

    1989-01-01

    To detect life in the Martian soil, tests were designed to look for respiration and photosynthesis. Both tests (labeled release, LR, and pyrolytic release, PR) for life in the Martian soils were positive. However, when the measurement for organic molecules in the soil of Mars was made, none were found. The interpretation given is that the inorganic constituents of the soil of Mars were responsible for these observations. The inorganic analysis of the soil was best fitted by a mixture of minerals: 60 to 80 percent clay, iron oxide, quartz, and soluble salts such as halite (NaCl). The minerals most successful in simulating the PR and LR experiments are iron-rich clays. There is a theory that considers clays as the first organisms capable of replication, mutation, and catalysis, and hence of evolving. Clays are formed when liquid water causes the weathering of rocks. The distribution of ions such as aluminum, magnesium, and iron play the role of bases in the DNA. The information was stored in the distribution of ions in the octahedral and tetrahedral molecules, but that they could, like RNA and DNA, replicate. When the clays replicated, each sheet of clay would be a template for a new sheet. The ion substitutions in one clay sheet would give rise to a complementary or similar pattern on the clay synthesized on its surface. It was theorized that it was on the surface of replicating iron-rich clays that carbon dioxide would be fixed in the light into organic acids such as formic or oxalic acid. If Mars had liquid water during a warm period in its past, clay formation would have been abundant. These clays would have replicated and evolved until the liquid water was removed due to cooling of Mars. It is entirely possible that the Viking mission detected life on Mars, but it was clay life that awaits the return of water to continue its evolution into life based on organic molecules.

  3. Habitability on Early Mars and the Search for Biosignatures with the ExoMars Rover

    Science.gov (United States)

    Westall, Frances; Coates, Andrew J.; Jaumann, Ralf; Korablev, Oleg; Ciarletti, Valérie; Mitrofanov, Igor; Josset, Jean-Luc; De Sanctis, Maria Cristina; Bibring, Jean-Pierre; Goesmann, Fred; Steininger, Harald; Brinckerhoff, William; Szopa, Cyril; Raulin, François; Westall, Frances; Edwards, Howell G. M.; Whyte, Lyle G.; Fairén, Alberto G.; Bibring, Jean-Pierre; Bridges, John; Hauber, Ernst; Ori, Gian Gabriele; Werner, Stephanie; Loizeau, Damien; Kuzmin, Ruslan O.; Williams, Rebecca M. E.; Flahaut, Jessica; Forget, François; Rodionov, Daniel; Korablev, Oleg; Svedhem, Håkan; Sefton-Nash, Elliot; Kminek, Gerhard; Lorenzoni, Leila; Joudrier, Luc; Mikhailov, Viktor; Zashchirinskiy, Alexander; Alexashkin, Sergei; Calantropio, Fabio; Merlo, Andrea; Poulakis, Pantelis; Witasse, Olivier; Bayle, Olivier; Bayón, Silvia; Meierhenrich, Uwe; Carter, John; García-Ruiz, Juan Manuel; Baglioni, Pietro; Haldemann, Albert; Ball, Andrew J.; Debus, André; Lindner, Robert; Haessig, Frédéric; Monteiro, David; Trautner, Roland; Voland, Christoph; Rebeyre, Pierre; Goulty, Duncan; Didot, Frédéric; Durrant, Stephen; Zekri, Eric; Koschny, Detlef; Toni, Andrea; Visentin, Gianfranco; Zwick, Martin; van Winnendael, Michel; Azkarate, Martín; Carreau, Christophe

    2017-01-01

    Abstract The second ExoMars mission will be launched in 2020 to target an ancient location interpreted to have strong potential for past habitability and for preserving physical and chemical biosignatures (as well as abiotic/prebiotic organics). The mission will deliver a lander with instruments for atmospheric and geophysical investigations and a rover tasked with searching for signs of extinct life. The ExoMars rover will be equipped with a drill to collect material from outcrops and at depth down to 2 m. This subsurface sampling capability will provide the best chance yet to gain access to chemical biosignatures. Using the powerful Pasteur payload instruments, the ExoMars science team will conduct a holistic search for traces of life and seek corroborating geological context information. Key Words: Biosignatures—ExoMars—Landing sites—Mars rover—Search for life. Astrobiology 17, 471–510.

  4. The MARS2013 Mars analog mission.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Groemer, Gernot; Soucek, Alexander; Frischauf, Norbert; Stumptner, Willibald; Ragonig, Christoph; Sams, Sebastian; Bartenstein, Thomas; Häuplik-Meusburger, Sandra; Petrova, Polina; Evetts, Simon; Sivenesan, Chan; Bothe, Claudia; Boyd, Andrea; Dinkelaker, Aline; Dissertori, Markus; Fasching, David; Fischer, Monika; Föger, Daniel; Foresta, Luca; Fritsch, Lukas; Fuchs, Harald; Gautsch, Christoph; Gerard, Stephan; Goetzloff, Linda; Gołebiowska, Izabella; Gorur, Paavan; Groemer, Gerhard; Groll, Petra; Haider, Christian; Haider, Olivia; Hauth, Eva; Hauth, Stefan; Hettrich, Sebastian; Jais, Wolfgang; Jones, Natalie; Taj-Eddine, Kamal; Karl, Alexander; Kauerhoff, Tilo; Khan, Muhammad Shadab; Kjeldsen, Andreas; Klauck, Jan; Losiak, Anna; Luger, Markus; Luger, Thomas; Luger, Ulrich; McArthur, Jane; Moser, Linda; Neuner, Julia; Orgel, Csilla; Ori, Gian Gabriele; Paternesi, Roberta; Peschier, Jarno; Pfeil, Isabella; Prock, Silvia; Radinger, Josef; Ramirez, Barbara; Ramo, Wissam; Rampey, Mike; Sams, Arnold; Sams, Elisabeth; Sandu, Oana; Sans, Alejandra; Sansone, Petra; Scheer, Daniela; Schildhammer, Daniel; Scornet, Quentin; Sejkora, Nina; Stadler, Andrea; Stummer, Florian; Taraba, Michael; Tlustos, Reinhard; Toferer, Ernst; Turetschek, Thomas; Winter, Egon; Zanella-Kux, Katja

    2014-05-01

    We report on the MARS2013 mission, a 4-week Mars analog field test in the northern Sahara. Nineteen experiments were conducted by a field crew in Morocco under simulated martian surface exploration conditions, supervised by a Mission Support Center in Innsbruck, Austria. A Remote Science Support team analyzed field data in near real time, providing planning input for the management of a complex system of field assets; two advanced space suit simulators, four robotic vehicles, an emergency shelter, and a stationary sensor platform in a realistic work flow were coordinated by a Flight Control Team. A dedicated flight planning group, external control centers for rover tele-operations, and a biomedical monitoring team supported the field operations. A 10 min satellite communication delay and other limitations pertinent to human planetary surface activities were introduced. The fields of research for the experiments were geology, human factors, astrobiology, robotics, tele-science, exploration, and operations research. This paper provides an overview of the geological context and environmental conditions of the test site and the mission architecture, in particular the communication infrastructure emulating the signal travel time between Earth and Mars. We report on the operational work flows and the experiments conducted, including a deployable shelter prototype for multiple-day extravehicular activities and contingency situations.

  5. Launching to the Moon, Mars, and Beyond

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sumrall, John P.

    2007-01-01

    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 today, the reasons for returning to the Moon and going to Mars, and how NASA will accomplish that mission. 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. Unlike the Apollo program of the 1960s, this phase of exploration will be a journey, not a race. In 1966, the NASA's budget was 4 percent of federal spending. Today, with 6/10 of 1 percent of the budget, NASA must incrementally develop the vehicles, infrastructure, technology, and organization to accomplish this goal. Fortunately, our knowledge and experience are greater than they were 40 years ago. NASA's goal is a return to the Moon by 2020. The Moon is the first step to America's exploration of Mars. Many questions about the Moon's history and how its history is linked to that of Earth remain even after 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. The Moon also will serve as a training ground in several respects before embarking on the longer, more perilous trip to Mars. The journeys to the Moon and Mars will require a variety of vehicles, including the Ares I Crew Launch Vehicle, the Ares V Cargo Launch Vehicle, the Orion Crew Exploration Vehicle, and the Lunar Surface Access Module. The architecture for the lunar missions will use one launch to ferry the crew into orbit on the Ares I and a second launch to orbit the lunar lander and the Earth Departure Stage to send the lander and crew vehicle to the Moon. In order to reach the Moon and Mars within a lifetime and within budget, NASA is building on proven hardware and decades of experience derived from

  6. Examining Mars with SPICE

    Science.gov (United States)

    Acton, Charles H.; Bachman, Nathaniel J.; Bytof, Jeff A.; Semenov, Boris V.; Taber, William; Turner, F. Scott; Wright, Edward D.

    1999-01-01

    The International Mars Conference highlights the wealth of scientific data now and soon to be acquired from an international armada of Mars-bound robotic spacecraft. Underlying the planning and interpretation of these scientific observations around and upon Mars are ancillary data and associated software needed to deal with trajectories or locations, instrument pointing, timing and Mars cartographic models. The NASA planetary community has adopted the SPICE system of ancillary data standards and allied tools to fill the need for consistent, reliable access to these basic data and a near limitless range of derived parameters. After substantial rapid growth in its formative years, the SPICE system continues to evolve today to meet new needs and improve ease of use. Adaptations to handle landers and rovers were prototyped on the Mars pathfinder mission and will next be used on Mars '01-'05. Incorporation of new methods to readily handle non-inertial reference frames has vastly extended the capability and simplified many computations. A translation of the SPICE Toolkit software suite to the C language has just been announced. To further support cartographic calculations associated with Mars exploration the SPICE developers at JPL have recently been asked by NASA to work with cartographers to develop standards and allied software for storing and accessing control net and shape model data sets; these will be highly integrated with existing SPICE components. NASA specifically supports the widest possible utilization of SPICE capabilities throughout the international space science community. With NASA backing the Russian Space Agency and Russian Academy of Science adopted the SPICE standards for the Mars 96 mission. The SPICE ephemeris component will shortly become the international standard for agencies using the Deep Space Network. U.S. and European scientists hope that ESA will employ SPICE standards on the Mars Express mission. SPICE is an open set of standards, and

  7. Curiosity: the Mars Science Laboratory Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook, Richard A.

    2012-01-01

    The Curiosity rover landed successfully in Gale Crater, Mars on August 5, 2012. This event was a dramatic high point in the decade long effort to design, build, test and fly the most sophisticated scientific vehicle ever sent to Mars. The real achievements of the mission have only just begun, however, as Curiosity is now searching for signs that Mars once possessed habitable environments. The Mars Science Laboratory Project has been one of the most ambitious and challenging planetary projects that NASA has undertaken. It started in the successful aftermath of the 2003 Mars Exploration Rover project and was designed to take significant steps forward in both engineering and scientific capabilities. This included a new landing system capable of emplacing a large mobile vehicle over a wide range of potential landing sites, advanced sample acquisition and handling capabilities that can retrieve samples from both rocks and soil, and a high reliability avionics suite that is designed to permit long duration surface operations. It also includes a set of ten sophisticated scientific instruments that will investigate both the geological context of the landing site plus analyze samples to understand the chemical & organic composition of rocks & soil found there. The Gale Crater site has been specifically selected as a promising location where ancient habitable environments may have existed and for which evidence may be preserved. Curiosity will spend a minimum of one Mars year (about two Earth years) looking for this evidence. This paper will report on the progress of the mission over the first few months of surface operations, plus look retrospectively at lessons learned during both the development and cruise operations phase of the mission..

  8. The Mars Science Laboratory Organic Check Material

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conrad, Pamela G.; Eigenbrode, Jennifer L.; Von der Heydt, Max O.; Mogensen, Claus T.; Canham, John; Harpold, Dan N.; Johnson, Joel; Errigo, Therese; Glavin, Daniel P.; Mahaffy, Paul R.

    2012-09-01

    Mars Science Laboratory's Curiosity rover carries a set of five external verification standards in hermetically sealed containers that can be sampled as would be a Martian rock, by drilling and then portioning into the solid sample inlet of the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) suite. Each organic check material (OCM) canister contains a porous ceramic solid, which has been doped with a fluorinated hydrocarbon marker that can be detected by SAM. The purpose of the OCM is to serve as a verification tool for the organic cleanliness of those parts of the sample chain that cannot be cleaned other than by dilution, i.e., repeated sampling of Martian rock. SAM possesses internal calibrants for verification of both its performance and its internal cleanliness, and the OCM is not used for that purpose. Each OCM unit is designed for one use only, and the choice to do so will be made by the project science group (PSG).

  9. Mars 2020 Rover SHERLOC Calibration Target

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graff, Trevor; Fries, Marc; Burton, Aaron; Ross, Amy; Larson, Kristine; Garrison, Dan; Calaway, Mike; Tran, Vinh; Bhartia, Roh; Beegle, Luther

    2016-01-01

    The Scanning Habitable Environments with Raman & Luminescence for Organics & Chemicals (SHERLOC) instrument is a deep ultraviolet (UV) Raman Fluorescence instrument selected as part of the Mars 2020 rover instrument suite. SHERLOC will be mounted on the rover arm and its primary role is to identify carbonaceous species in martian samples. The SHERLOC instrument requires a calibration target which is being designed and fabricated at JSC as part of our continued science participation in Mars robotic missions. The SHERLOC calibration target will address a wide range of NASA goals to include basic science of interest to both the Science Mission Directorate and Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate.

  10. Robotics and automation in Mars exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourke, Roger D.; Sturms, Francis M., Jr.; Golombek, Matthew P.; Gamber, R. T.

    1992-01-01

    A new approach to the exploration of Mars is examined which relies on the use of smaller and simpler vehicles. The new strategy involves the following principles: limiting science objectives to retrieval of rock samples from several different but geologically homogeneous areas; making use of emerging microspacecraft technologies to significantly reduce the mass of hardware elements; simplifying missions to the absolutely essential elements; and managing risk through the employment of many identical independent pieces some of which may fail. The emerging technologies and their applications to robotic Mars missions are discussed.

  11. Low cost manned Mars mission based on indigenous propellant production

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruckner, A. P.; Cinnamon, M.; Hamling, S.; Mahn, K.; Phillips, J.; Westmark, V.

    1993-01-01

    The paper describes a low-cost approach to the manned exploration of Mars (which involves an unmanned mission followed two years later by a manned mission) based on near-term technologies and in situ propellant production. Particular attention is given to the basic mission architecture and its major components, including the orbital analysis, the unmanned segment, the Earth Return Vehicle, the aerobrake design, life sciences, guidance, communications, power, propellant production, the surface rovers, and Mars science. Also discussed are the cost per mission over an assumed 8-yr initiative.

  12. Bond return predictability in expansions and recessions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Engsted, Tom; Møller, Stig Vinther; Jensen, Magnus David Sander

    We document that over the period 1953-2011 US bond returns are predictable in expansionary periods but unpredictable during recessions. This result holds in both in-sample and out-of-sample analyses and using both univariate regressions and combination forecasting techniques. A simulation study...... but negative in recessions. The results are also consistent with tests showing that the expectations hypothesis of the term structure holds in recessions but not in expansions. However, the results for bonds are in sharp contrast to results for stocks showing that stock returns are predictable in recessions...... but not in expansions. Thus, our results indicate that there is not a common predictive pattern of stock and bond returns associated with the state of the economy....

  13. Mars Analytical Microimager

    Science.gov (United States)

    Batory, Krzysztof J.; Govindjee; Andersen, Dale; Presley, John; Lucas, John M.; Sears, S. Kelly; Vali, Hojatollah

    Unambiguous detection of extraterrestrial nitrogenous hydrocarbon microbiology requires an instrument both to recognize potential biogenic specimens and to successfully discriminate them from geochemical settings. Such detection should ideally be in-situ and not jeopardize other experiments by altering samples. Taken individually most biomarkers are inconclusive. For example, since amino acids can be synthesized abiotically they are not always considered reliable biomarkers. An enantiomeric imbalance, which is characteristic of all terrestrial life, may be questioned because chirality can also be altered abiotically. However, current scientific understanding holds that aggregates of identical proteins or proteinaceous complexes, with their well-defined amino acid residue sequences, are indisputable biomarkers. Our paper describes the Mars Analytical Microimager, an instrument for the simultaneous imaging of generic autofluorescent biomarkers and overall morphology. Autofluorescence from ultraviolet to near-infrared is emitted by all known terrestrial biology, and often as consistent complex bands uncharacteristic of abiotic mineral luminescence. The MAM acquires morphology, and even sub-micron morphogenesis, at a 3-centimeter working distance with resolution approaching a laser scanning microscope. Luminescence is simultaneously collected via a 2.5-micron aperture, thereby permitting accurate correlation of multi-dimensional optical behavior with specimen morphology. A variable wavelength excitation source and photospectrometer serve to obtain steady-state and excitation spectra of biotic and luminescent abiotic sources. We believe this is the first time instrumentation for detecting hydrated or desiccated microbiology non-destructively in-situ has been demonstrated. We have obtained excellent preliminary detection of biota and inorganic matrix discrimination from terrestrial polar analogues, and perimetric morphology of individual magnetotactic bacteria. Proposed

  14. Guidelines for 2008 MARS exercise

    CERN Multimedia

    HR Department

    2008-01-01

    Full details of the Merit Appraisal and Recognition Scheme (MARS) are available via the HR Department’s homepage or directly on the Department’s MARS web page: https://cern.ch/hr-dept/ https://cern.ch/hr-eguide/mars/mars.asp You will find on these pages: MARS procedures including the MARS timetable for proposals and decisions; Regulations with links to the scheme’s statutory basis; Frequently Asked Questions; Useful documents with links to relevant documentation; e.g. mandate of the Senior Staff Advisory Committee (SSAC); Related links and contacts. HR Department Tel. 73566

  15. 'Mister Badger' Pushing Mars Rock

    Science.gov (United States)

    1976-01-01

    Viking's soil sampler collector arm successfully pushed a rock on the surface of Mars during the afternoon of Friday, October 8. The irregular-shaped rock was pushed several inches by the Lander's collector arm, which displaced the rock to the left of its original position, leaving it cocked slightly upward. Photographs and other information verified the successful rock push. Photo at left shows the soil sampler's collector head pushing against the rock, named 'Mister Badger' by flight controllers. Photo at right shows the displaced rock and the depression whence it came. Part of the soil displacement was caused by the collector s backhoe. A soil sample will be taken from the site Monday night, October 11. It will then be delivered to Viking s organic chemistry instrument for a series of analyses during the next few weeks. The sample is being sought from beneath a rock because scientists believe that, if there are life forms on Mars, they may seek rocks as shelter from the Sun s intense ultraviolet radiation.

  16. Astrobiology Sample Analysis Program (ASAP) for Advanced Life Detection Instrumentation Development and Calibration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glavin, Daniel; Brinkerhoff, Will; Dworkin, Jason; Eigenbrode, Jennifer; Franz, Heather; Mahaffy, Paul; Stern, Jen; Blake, Daid; Sandford, Scott; Fries, marc; hide

    2008-01-01

    Scientific ground-truth measurements for near-term Mars missions, such as the 2009 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) mission, are essential for validating current in situ flight instrumentation and for the development of advanced instrumentation technologies for life-detection missions over the next decade. The NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI) has recently funded a consortium of researchers called the Astrobiology Sample Analysis Program (ASAP) to analyze an identical set of homogenized martian analog materials in a "round-robin" style using both state-of-the-art laboratory techniques as well as in-situ flight instrumentation including the SAM gas chromatograph mass spectrometer and CHEMIN X-ray diffraction/fluorescence instruments on MSL and the Urey and MOMA organic analyzer instruments under development for the 2013 ExoMars missions. The analog samples studied included an Atacama Desert soil from Chile, the Murchison meteorite, a gypsum sample from the 2007 AMASE Mars analog site, jarosite from Panoche Valley, CA, a hydrothermal sample from Rio Tinto, Spain, and a "blind" sample collected during the 2007 MSL slow-motion field test in New Mexico. Each sample was distributed to the team for analysis to: (1) determine the nature and inventory of organic compounds, (2) measure the bulk carbon and nitrogen isotopic composition, (3) investigate elemental abundances, mineralogy and matrix, and (4) search for biological activity. The experimental results obtained from the ASAP Mars analog research consortium will be used to build a framework for understanding the biogeochemistry of martian analogs, help calibrate current spaceflight instrumentation, and enhance the scientific return from upcoming missions.

  17. Mars in this century: The Olympia Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hyde, Roderick A.; Ishikawa, Muriel Y.; Wood, Lowell L.

    Manned exploration of the inner solar system, typified by a manned expedition of Mars, this side of the indefinite future involves fitting a technical peg into the political hole. If Apollo-level resources are assumed unavailable for such exploratory programs, then non-Apollo means and methods must be employed, involving greater technical and human risks, or else such exploration must be deferred indefinitely. Sketched here is an example of such a relatively high risk alternative, one which could land men on Mars in the next decade, and return them to earth. Two of its key features are a teleoperated rocket fuel generating facility on the lunar surface and an interplanetary mission staging space station at L4, which would serve to enable a continuing solar system exploratory program, with annual mission commencements to points as distant as the Jovian moons. The estimated cost to execute this infrastructure building manned Mars mission is $3 billion, with follow on missions estimated to cost no more than $1 billion each.

  18. Remanent magnetism at Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curtis, S. A.; Ness, N. F.

    1988-01-01

    It is shown that a strong case can be made for an intrinsic magnetic field of dynamo origin for Mars earlier in its history. The typical equatorial magnetic field intensity would have been equal to about 0.01-0.1 gauss. The earlier dynamo activity is no longer extant, but a significant remanent magnetic field may exist. A highly non-dipole magnetic field could result from the remanent magnetization of the surface. Remanent magnetization may thus play an important role in the Mars solar wind interactions, in contrast to Venus with its surface temperatures above the Curie point. The anomalous characteristics of Mars'solar wind interaction compared to that of Venus may be explicable on this basis.

  19. Spiders from Mars?

    Science.gov (United States)

    2003-01-01

    MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-426, 19 July 2003No, this is not a picture of a giant, martian spider web. This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows a plethora of polygonal features on the floor of a northern hemisphere impact crater near 65.6oN, 327.7oW. The picture was acquired during spring, after the seasonal carbon dioxide frost cap had largely migrated through the region. At the time the picture was taken, remnants of seasonal frost remained on the crater rim and on the edges of the troughs that bound each of the polygons. Frost often provides a helpful hint as to where polygons and patterned ground occur. The polygons, if they were on Earth, would indicate the presence of freeze-thaw cycles in ground ice. Although uncertain, the same might be true of Mars. Sunlight illuminates the scene from the lower left.

  20. Stability of water on Mars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sears, D. W. G.; Moore, S. R.

    2004-11-01

    In order to try to quantify some of the factors determining the evaporation rate of water on Mars, we have been measuring evaporation rates under simulated martian conditions in a large planetary environmental chamber. All of our experiments have been performed at 5.25 Torr (7 mb) total pressure, but we have varied the temperature of the water surface, atmosphere and walls of the chamber (the walls we assume to be somewhat analogous to surrounding surfaces on Mars). We have also monitored the partial pressure of water vapor in the atmosphere to investigate its effect on evaporation rate. Most importantly, we have attempted to model the effect of advection - physical removal of the water vapor by wind or other forms of atmospheric motion - by (1) placing a bag of dry ice in the chamber and (2) by installing a copper cold finger with circulating methanol/dry ice slurry next to the sample and pumping as necessary to maintain 5.25 Torr. As might be expected, the situation is complicated and not readily described theoretically, but several conclusions seem to be emerging. Evaporation rates under nonadvective conditions are 1.2 mm/h and decrease only by about 30% as water vapor builds up in the atmosphere to as much as 40 vol %. Wall temperature and water surface temperature do not appear to affect evaporation rates significantly, but a 20 C increase in atmospheric temperature causes a 40% increase in evaporation rate. The evaporation rate increases by a factor of two in the presence of advection and under advective conditions is not affected significantly by changes in water, air, or wall temperature, or water vapor pressure. These results suggest that atmospheric motion may be the dominant factor in determining water evaporation on Mars.

  1. Mars Gashopper Airplane, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Mars Gas Hopper Airplane, or "gashopper" is a novel concept for propulsion of a robust Mars flight and surface exploration vehicle that utilizes indigenous CO2...

  2. Frost on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    2008-01-01

    This image shows bluish-white frost seen on the Martian surface near NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander. The image was taken by the lander's Surface Stereo Imager on the 131st Martian day, or sol, of the mission (Oct. 7, 2008). Frost is expected to continue to appear in images as fall, then winter approach Mars' northern plains. The Phoenix Mission is led by the University of Arizona, Tucson, on behalf of NASA. Project management of the mission is by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. Spacecraft development is by Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver.

  3. The stratigraphy of Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanaka, Kenneth L.

    1986-01-01

    A global stratigraphy of Mars was developed from a global geologic map series derived from Viking images; the stratigraphy is composed of three maps. A new chronostratigraphic classification system which consists of lower, middle, and upper Noachian, Hesperian, and Amazonian systems is described. The crater-density boundaries of the chronostratigraphic units and the absolute ages of the Martian epochs aer estimated. The relative ages of major geologic units and featues are calculated and analyzed. The geologic history of Mars is summarized on the maps in terms of epochs.

  4. Lakes on Mars

    CERN Document Server

    Cabrol, Nathalie A

    2014-01-01

    On Earth, lakes provide favorable environments for the development of life and its preservation as fossils. They are extremely sensitive to climate fluctuations and to conditions within their watersheds. As such, lakes are unique markers of the impact of environmental changes. Past and current missions have now demonstrated that water once flowed at the surface of Mars early in its history. Evidence of ancient ponding has been uncovered at scales ranging from a few kilometers to possibly that of the Arctic ocean. Whether life existed on Mars is still unknown; upcoming missions may find critic

  5. 'Mars-shine'

    Science.gov (United States)

    2005-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site] 'Mars-shine' Composite NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit continues to take advantage of favorable solar power conditions to conduct occasional nighttime astronomical observations from the summit region of 'Husband Hill.' Spirit has been observing the martian moons Phobos and Deimos to learn more about their orbits and surface properties. This has included observing eclipses. On Earth, a solar eclipse occurs when the Moon's orbit takes it exactly between the Sun and Earth, casting parts of Earth into shadow. A lunar eclipse occurs when the Earth is exactly between the Sun and the Moon, casting the Moon into shadow and often giving it a ghostly orange-reddish color. This color is created by sunlight reflected through Earth's atmosphere into the shadowed region. The primary difference between terrestrial and martian eclipses is that Mars' moons are too small to completely block the Sun from view during solar eclipses. Recently, Spirit observed a 'lunar' eclipse on Mars. Phobos, the larger of the two martian moons, was photographed while slipping into the shadow of Mars. Jim Bell, the astronomer in charge of the rover's panoramic camera (Pancam), suggested calling it a 'Phobal' eclipse rather than a lunar eclipse as a way of identifying which of the dozens of moons in our solar system was being cast into shadow. With the help of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory's navigation team, the Pancam team planned instructions to Spirit for acquiring the views shown here of Phobos as it entered into a lunar eclipse on the evening of the rover's 639th martian day, or sol (Oct. 20, 2005) on Mars. This image is a time-lapse composite of eight Pancam images of Phobos moving across the martian sky. The entire eclipse lasted more than 26 minutes, but Spirit was able to observe only in the first 15 minutes. During the time closest to the shadow crossing, Spirit's cameras were programmed to take images every 10 seconds. In the first three

  6. The Effect of Gamma Radiation on Mars Mineral Matrices: Implications for Perchlorate Formation on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fox, A. C.; Eigenbrode, J. L.; Pavlov, A.; Lewis, J.

    2017-12-01

    Observations by the Phoenix Wet Chemistry Lab of the Martian surface indicate the presence of perchlorate in high concentrations. Additional observations by the Sample Analysis at Mars and the Viking Landers indirectly support the presence of perchlorate at other localities on Mars. The evidence for perchlorate at several localities on Mars coupled with its detection in Martian meteorite EETA79001 suggests that perchlorate is present globally on Mars. The presence of perchlorate on Mars further complicates the search for organic molecules indicative of past life. While perchlorate is kinetically limited in Martian conditions, the intermediate species associated with its formation or decomposition, such as chlorate or chlorite, could oxidize Martian organic species. As a result, it is vital to understand the mechanism of perchlorate formation on Mars in order to determine its role in the degradation of organics. Here, we explore an alternate mechanism of formation of perchlorate by bombarding Cl-salts and Mars-relevant mineral mixtures with gamma radiation both with and without the presence of liquid water, under vacuum. Previous work has shown that OClO can form from both UV radiation and energetic electrons bombardment of Cl-ices or Cl-salts, which then reacts with either OH- or O-radicals to produce perchlorate. Past research has suggested that liquid water or ice is the source of these hydroxyl and oxygen radicals, which limits the location of perchlorate formation on Mars. We demonstrate that trace amounts of perchlorate are potentially formed in samples containing silica dioxide or iron oxide and Cl-salts both with and without liquid water. Perchlorate was also detected in a portion of samples that were not irradiated, suggesting possible contamination. We did not detect perchlorate in samples that contained sulfate minerals. If perchlorate was formed without liquid water, it is possible that oxide minerals could be a potential source of oxygen radicals

  7. Geologic setting of diverse volcanic materials in northern Elysium Planitia, Mars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mouginis-Mark, P.J.

    1990-01-01

    Geologic mapping of high-resolution (30-50 m/pixel) Viking Orbiter images of northern Elysium Planitia has identified seven sites where current problems in martian volcanology, chronology, and stratigraphy can be resolved. These sites, which are discussed in the context of a potential Mars rover/sample return mission, would permit the following investigations: (1) the dating of Lower Amazonian lava flows from Elysium Mons (thereby providing absolute calibration for global crater size/frequency relative chronologies), (2) the petrologic investigation of long run-out lava flows, (3) the geologic interpretation of materials that may either be lava flows or lahar deposits, (4) the analysis of materials believed to be ash deposits produced by explosive eruptions of Hecates Tholus, and (5) the investigation of the stratigraphy of fractured terrain along the boundary between northern Elysium Planitia and southern Utopia Planitia. 63 refs

  8. MANAJEMEN LABA, RETURN SAHAM, DAN KINERJA OPERASI SEBAGAI PEMODERASI

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Farid Addy Sumantri

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of this study was to determine the indications of the practice of earnings management at the time of the IPO, one year after the IPO, and two years after the IPO. This study also examined the effect of earnings management on stock returns and operating performance in moderating the relationship between earnings management and stock returns. The study sample comprised 33 firms that go public in the year 2007 to 2011 using a purposive sampling method. Earnings management is proxied by discretionary accruals using the Modified Jones Model, which used proxy for the stock return is cummulative abnormal returns (CAR, while for the company's operating performance used proxy for the return on assets (ROA. The results showed that there were indications of earnings management at the time of the IPO, one year after the IPO, and two years after the IPO with a lower profit rate. No effect on earnings management is proxied by stock return cummulative abnormal returns (CAR. Operating performance of the company also can not moderate the relationship between earnings management with stock return.   Keywords: Earning Management, Initial Public Offering, Cummulative Abnormal Return, Return On Asset

  9. The Return to Foreign Aid

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dalgaard, Carl-Johan Lars; Hansen, Henrik

    2017-01-01

    We estimate the average rate of return on investments financed by aid and by domestic resource mobilisation, using aggregate data. Both returns are expected to vary across countries and time. Consequently we develop a correlated random coefficients model to estimate the average returns. Across...... different estimators and two different data sources for GDP and investment our findings are remarkably robust; the average gross return on ‘aid investments’ is about 20 per cent. This is in accord with micro estimates of the economic rate of return on aid projects and with aggregate estimates of the rate...

  10. Mars Pathfinder and Mars Global Surveyor Outreach Compilation

    Science.gov (United States)

    1999-09-01

    This videotape is a compilation of the best NASA JPL (Jet Propulsion Laboratory) videos of the Mars Pathfinder and Mars Global Surveyor missions. The mission is described using animation and narration as well as some actual footage of the entire sequence of mission events. Included within these animations are the spacecraft orbit insertion; descent to the Mars surface; deployment of the airbags and instruments; and exploration by Sojourner, the Mars rover. JPL activities at spacecraft control during significant mission events are also included at the end. The spacecraft cameras pan the surrounding Mars terrain and film Sojourner traversing the surface and inspecting rocks. A single, brief, processed image of the Cydonia region (Mars face) at an oblique angle from the Mars Global Surveyor is presented. A description of the Mars Pathfinder mission, instruments, landing and deployment process, Mars approach, spacecraft orbit insertion, rover operation are all described using computer animation. Actual color footage of Sojourner as well as a 360 deg pan of the Mars terrain surrounding the spacecraft is provided. Lower quality black and white photography depicting Sojourner traversing the Mars surface and inspecting Martian rocks also is included.

  11. Indigenous Fixed Nitrogen on Mars: Implications for Habitability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, J. C.; Sutter, B.; Navarro-Gonzalez, R.; McKay, C. P.; Freissinet, C.; Archer, D., Jr.; Eigenbrode, J. L.; Mahaffy, P. R.; Conrad, P. G.

    2015-12-01

    Nitrate has been detected in Mars surface sediments and aeolian deposits by the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument on the Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover (Stern et al., 2015). This detection is significant because fixed nitrogen is necessary for life, a requirement that drove the evolution of N-fixing metabolism in life on Earth. The question remains as to the extent to which a primitive N cycle ever developed on Mars, and whether N is currently being deposited on the martian surface at a non-negligible rate. It is also necessary to consider processes that could recycle oxidized N back into the atmosphere, and how these processes may have changed the soil inventory of N over time. The abundance of fixed nitrogen detected as NO from thermal decomposition of nitrate is consistent with both delivery of nitrate via impact generated thermal shock early in martian history and dry deposition from photochemistry of thermospheric NO, occurring in the present. Processes that could recycle N back into the atmosphere may include nitrate reduction by Fe(II) in aqueous environments on early Mars, impact decomposition, and/or UV photolysis. In order to better understand the history of nitrogen fixation on Mars, we look to cycling of N in Mars analog environments on Earth such as the Atacama Desert and the Dry Valleys of Antarctica. In particular, we examine the ratio of nitrate to perchlorate (NO3-/ClO4-) in these areas compared to those calculated from data acquired on Mars.

  12. Searching for Life on Mars Before It Is Too Late.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fairén, Alberto G; Parro, Victor; Schulze-Makuch, Dirk; Whyte, Lyle

    2017-10-01

    Decades of robotic exploration have confirmed that in the distant past, Mars was warmer and wetter and its surface was habitable. However, none of the spacecraft missions to Mars have included among their scientific objectives the exploration of Special Regions, those places on the planet that could be inhabited by extant martian life or where terrestrial microorganisms might replicate. A major reason for this is because of Planetary Protection constraints, which are implemented to protect Mars from terrestrial biological contamination. At the same time, plans are being drafted to send humans to Mars during the 2030 decade, both from international space agencies and the private sector. We argue here that these two parallel strategies for the exploration of Mars (i.e., delaying any efforts for the biological reconnaissance of Mars during the next two or three decades and then directly sending human missions to the planet) demand reconsideration because once an astronaut sets foot on Mars, Planetary Protection policies as we conceive them today will no longer be valid as human arrival will inevitably increase the introduction of terrestrial and organic contaminants and that could jeopardize the identification of indigenous martian life. In this study, we advocate for reassessment over the relationships between robotic searches, paying increased attention to proactive astrobiological investigation and sampling of areas more likely to host indigenous life, and fundamentally doing this in advance of manned missions. Key Words: Contamination-Earth Mars-Planetary Protection-Search for life (biosignatures). Astrobiology 17, 962-970.

  13. Mars at war

    Science.gov (United States)

    2018-04-01

    Whether the climate of early Mars was warm and wet or cold and dry remains unclear, but the debate is overheated. With a growing toolbox and increasing data to tackle the open questions, progress is possible if there is openness to bridging the divide.

  14. Watersporen op Mars

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Seijmonsbergen, A.C.; Cammeraat, L.H.; Jansen, B.

    2005-01-01

    SAMENVATTING De discussie over het voorkomen van water op Mars, in vaste of vloeibare vorm, nu en in het verleden, is nog steeds in volle gang. Dat geldt ook voor het effect van mogelijk aanwezig water op de landschapsontwikkeling van de Rode Planeet. Met het vrijkomen van steeds meer nieuwe

  15. Ancient aliens on mars

    CERN Document Server

    Bara, Mike

    2013-01-01

    Best-selling author and Secret Space Program researcher Bara brings us this lavishly illustrated volume on alien structures on Mars. Was there once a vast, technologically advanced civilization on Mars, and did it leave evidence of its existence behind for humans to find eons later? Did these advanced extraterrestrial visitors vanish in a solar system wide cataclysm of their own making, only to make their way to Earth and start anew? Was Mars once as lush and green as the Earth, and teeming with life? Did Mars once orbit a missing member of the solar system, a "Super Earth” that vanished in a disaster that devastated life on Earth and Venus and left us only the asteroid belt as evidence of its once grand existence? Did the survivors of this catastrophe leave monuments and temples behind, arranged in a mathematical precision designed to teach us the Secret of a new physics that could lift us back to the stars? Does the planet have an automated defense shield that swallows up robotic probes if they wander int...

  16. Mars Mission Specialist

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burton, Bill; Ogden, Kate; Walker, Becky; Bledsoe, Leslie; Hardage, Lauren

    2018-01-01

    For the last several years, the authors have implemented an integrated Mars Colony project for their third-grade classes. Students explored several considerations related to colonizing and inhabiting a new world, including food sources, types of citizens, transportation, and housing design. Nearly everything about the project was open-ended, full…

  17. Field Simulation of a Drilling Mission to Mars to Search for Subsurface Life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoker, C. R.; Lemke, L. G.; Cannon, H.; Glass, B.; Dunagan, S.; Zavaleta, J.; Miller, D.; Gomez-Elvira, J.

    2005-01-01

    The discovery of near surface ground ice by the Mars Odyssey mission and the abundant evidence for recent Gulley features observed by the Mars Global Surveyor mission support longstanding theoretical arguments for subsurface liquid water on Mars. Thus, implementing the Mars program goal to search for life points to drilling on Mars to reach liquid water, collecting samples and analyzing them with instrumentation to detect in situ organisms and biomarker compounds. Searching for life in the subsurface of Mars will require drilling, sample extraction and handling, and new technologies to find and identify biomarker compounds and search for living organisms. In spite of its obvious advantages, robotic drilling for Mars exploration is in its technological infancy and has yet to be demonstrated in even a terrestrial field environment.

  18. Investigation of microbial diversity in a desert Mars-like environment: Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS), Utah

    Science.gov (United States)

    Direito, Maria Susana; Staats, Martijn; Foing, Bernard H.; Ehrenfreund, Pascale; Roling, Wilfred

    The Utah Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS) harbours geo-morphology and geo-processes analogues to the planet Mars. Soil samples were collected during the EuroGeoMars campaign (from 24 January to 1 March 2009) from different locations and depths [1]. Samples were distributed among scientific collaborator institutes for analysis of microbial diversity, amino acid content and degradation, content of PAH or larger organic molecules, and respective soil properties. Our sample analysis had the objective of characterizing the microbial communities in this Mars analogue: DNA isolation, PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction) using primers for DNA amplification of Bacteria, Archaea and Eukarya ribosomal RNA (rRNA) gene fragments, DGGE (Denaturing Gradient Gel Electrophoresis) and clone library construction with the final aim of sequencing. Results indicate that life is present in all the three domains of life (Archaea, Bacteria and Eukarya), while the most diversity was found in the domain Bacteria. Microorgan-isms are heterogeneously present and their identities are currently investigated. The obtained information will be later related to the other scientific analysis in order to obtain a better understanding of this Mars analogue site, which in turn will provide important information for the search for life on Mars. [1] Foing, B.H. et al . (2009). Exogeolab lander/rover instruments and EuroGeoMars MDRS campaign. LPI, 40, 2567.

  19. The 'successful' return

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Olwig, Karen Fog

    2012-01-01

    Research on female migrant caregivers has tended to focus upon the emotional and social problems they encounter working abroad, given women’s traditional role as caregivers for their own families. This article analyses how Caribbean women who have returned after a period abroad as domestic workers...... inscribe their migration experiences within the gendered narrative of the good relative who migrates to help the family left behind and therefore deserves social recognition in the community of origin. It argues that this narrative allows the women to both affirm and reinterpret local family and gender...... roles within the context of migration. This analysis points to the close connection between narrative structures, accounts of migration experiences, and self-presentations and suggests that narratives about family and gender roles not only reflect people’s lives, but are also a malleable resource...

  20. Managed Readiness Simulator (MARS) V2: Implementation of the Managed Readiness Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-12-01

    The SRDB architecture is described in detail in [6]. Database VBA VBA Runtime Data Sub run() SQL (“UPDATE Table SET Rank = 5”) Run_query_obj...FilterResources”) Algorithms ( VBA & SQL ) End Sub Arena Process Logic Figure 5: MARS V2 simulation architecture. The MARS managed readiness...database layer below it. Using VBA blocks, the algorithm layer can execute complex data operations on the database layer using SQL and can return

  1. The Small Mars System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fantino, E.; Grassi, M.; Pasolini, P.; Causa, F.; Molfese, C.; Aurigemma, R.; Cimminiello, N.; de la Torre, D.; Dell'Aversana, P.; Esposito, F.; Gramiccia, L.; Paudice, F.; Punzo, F.; Roma, I.; Savino, R.; Zuppardi, G.

    2017-08-01

    The Small Mars System is a proposed mission to Mars. Funded by the European Space Agency, the project has successfully completed Phase 0. The contractor is ALI S.c.a.r.l., and the study team includes the University of Naples ;Federico II;, the Astronomical Observatory of Capodimonte and the Space Studies Institute of Catalonia. The objectives of the mission are both technological and scientific, and will be achieved by delivering a small Mars lander carrying a dust particle analyser and an aerial drone. The former shall perform in situ measurements of the size distribution and abundance of dust particles suspended in the Martian atmosphere, whereas the latter shall demonstrate low-altitude flight in the rarefied planetary environment. The mission-enabling technology is an innovative umbrella-like heat shield, known as IRENE, developed and patented by ALI. The mission is also a technological demonstration of the shield in the upper atmosphere of Mars. The core characteristics of SMS are the low cost (120 M€) and the small size (320 kg of wet mass at launch, 110 kg at landing), features which stand out with respect to previous Mars landers. To comply with them is extremely challenging at all levels, and sets strict requirements on the choice of the materials, the sizing of payloads and subsystems, their arrangement inside the spacecraft and the launcher's selection. In this contribution, the mission and system concept and design are illustrated and discussed. Special emphasis is given to the innovative features and to the challenges faced in the development of the work.

  2. Mars Surface Environmental Issues

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charles, John

    2002-01-01

    Planetary exploration by astronauts will require extended periods of habitation on a planet's surface, under the influence of environmental factors that are different from those of Earth and the spacecraft that delivered the crew to the planet. Human exploration of Mars, a possible near-term planetary objective, can be considered a challenging scenario. Mission scenarios currently under consideration call for surface habitation periods of from 1 to 18 months on even the earliest expeditions. Methods: Environmental issues associated with Mars exploration have been investigated by NASA and the National Space Biomedical Research Institute (NSBRI) as part of the Bioastronautics Critical Path Roadmap Project (see http ://criticalpath.jsc.nasa.gov). Results: Arrival on Mars will immediately expose the crew to gravity only 38% of that at Earth's surface in possibly the first prolonged exposure to gravity other than the 1G of Earth's surface and the zero G of weightless space flight, with yet unknown effects on crew physiology. The radiation at Mars' surface is not well documented, although the planet's bulk and even its thin atmosphere may moderate the influx of galactic cosmic radiation and energetic protons from solar flares. Secondary radiation from activated components of the soil must also be considered. Ultrafine and larger respirable and nonrespirable particles in Martian dust introduced into the habitat after surface excursions may induce pulmonary inflammation exacerbated by the additive reactive and oxidizing nature of the dust. Stringent decontamination cannot eliminate mechanical and corrosive effects of the dust on pressure suits and exposed machinery. The biohazard potential of putative indigenous Martian microorganisms may be assessed by comparison with analog environments on Earth. Even in their absence, human microorganisms, if not properly controlled, can be a threat to the crew's health. Conclusions: Mars' surface offers a substantial challenge to the

  3. Mars Atmosphere Effects on Arc Welds: Phase 1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Courtright, Z. S.

    2016-01-01

    NASA has been unprecedented in achieving its goals related to space exploration and furthering the understanding of our solar system. In keeping with this trend, NASA's current mission is to land a team of astronauts on Mars and return them safely to Earth. In addition to comprising much of the structure and life support systems that will be brought to Mars for the habitat and vehicle, titanium and aluminum can be found and mined on Mars and may be used when building structures.Where metals are present, there will be a need for welding capabilities. For welds that need to be made quickly and are located far from heavy resistance or solid state welding machinery, there will be a need for basic arc welding. Arc welding has been a major cornerstone of manufacturing throughout the 20th century, and the portability and capability of gas tungsten arc welding (GTAW) will be necessary for repair, manufacturing, and survival on Mars. The two primary concerns for welding on Mars are that the Martian atmosphere contains high levels of carbon dioxide (CO2), and the atmospheric pressure is much lower than it is on Earth. The high levels of CO2 in the Martian atmosphere may dissociate and produce oxygen in the arc and therefore increase the risk of oxidation. For simplification, atmospheric pressure will not be taken into account for this experiment. For survival on Mars during this mission, the life support and water filtration systems must be kept operational at all times. In order to ensure that water filtration systems can be repaired in the event of an emergency, it is very important to have the capability to weld. The Orion capsule and Mars lander must also remain operational throughout the duration of the mission to ensure the safe return of the astronauts on the mission to Mars. A better understanding of welding in a Mars environment is important to ensure that repair welds are possible if the Orion capsule/Mars lander or water filtration system is damaged at any point

  4. A computational intelligence approach to the Mars Precision Landing problem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Birge, Brian Kent, III

    Various proposed Mars missions, such as the Mars Sample Return Mission (MRSR) and the Mars Smart Lander (MSL), require precise re-entry terminal position and velocity states. This is to achieve mission objectives including rendezvous with a previous landed mission, or reaching a particular geographic landmark. The current state of the art footprint is in the magnitude of kilometers. For this research a Mars Precision Landing is achieved with a landed footprint of no more than 100 meters, for a set of initial entry conditions representing worst guess dispersions. Obstacles to reducing the landed footprint include trajectory dispersions due to initial atmospheric entry conditions (entry angle, parachute deployment height, etc.), environment (wind, atmospheric density, etc.), parachute deployment dynamics, unavoidable injection error (propagated error from launch on), etc. Weather and atmospheric models have been developed. Three descent scenarios have been examined. First, terminal re-entry is achieved via a ballistic parachute with concurrent thrusting events while on the parachute, followed by a gravity turn. Second, terminal re-entry is achieved via a ballistic parachute followed by gravity turn to hover and then thrust vector to desired location. Third, a guided parafoil approach followed by vectored thrusting to reach terminal velocity is examined. The guided parafoil is determined to be the best architecture. The purpose of this study is to examine the feasibility of using a computational intelligence strategy to facilitate precision planetary re-entry, specifically to take an approach that is somewhat more intuitive and less rigid, and see where it leads. The test problems used for all research are variations on proposed Mars landing mission scenarios developed by NASA. A relatively recent method of evolutionary computation is Particle Swarm Optimization (PSO), which can be considered to be in the same general class as Genetic Algorithms. An improvement over

  5. Comparison of Propulsion Options for Human Exploration of Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drake, Bret G.; McGuire, Melissa L.; McCarty, Steven L.

    2018-01-01

    NASA continues to advance plans to extend human presence beyond low-Earth orbit leading to human exploration of Mars. The plans being laid out follow an incremental path, beginning with initial flight tests followed by deployment of a Deep Space Gateway (DSG) in cislunar space. This Gateway, will serve as the initial transportation node for departing and returning Mars spacecraft. Human exploration of Mars represents the next leap for humankind because it will require leaving Earth on a long mission with very limited return, rescue, or resupply capabilities. Although Mars missions are long, approaches and technologies are desired which can reduce the time that the crew is away from Earth. This paper builds off past analyses of NASA's exploration strategy by providing more detail on the performance of alternative in-space transportation options with an emphasis on reducing total mission duration. Key options discussed include advanced chemical, nuclear thermal, nuclear electric, solar electric, as well as an emerging hybrid propulsion system which utilizes a combination of both solar electric and chemical propulsion.

  6. Nuclear propulsion: the way to mars is open

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jamet, Ph.

    2005-01-01

    A manned mission to mars will require the use of nuclear propulsion because of the efficiency of this technique in terms of high values for the momentum/weight ratio and the thrust. A period of 10 years will be necessary to develop nuclear-thermal or nuclear-electric propulsion systems able to bring a 5 member crew on mars. The go and return trip has to be optimized in terms of energy consumption: it may last 250 days and a time period of about 500 days, spent on mars, may be necessary before undertaking the return trip. The long stay on mars implies the existence of important structure so that life may be possible for the astronauts. The weight of equipment needed to be carried is assessed to reach 20 or 30 tonnes. Different scenarios have been considered by the Nasa in order to reduce the constraints on the launching: launching from either a lunar station or a space station has been proposed. (A.C.)

  7. Cost Efficiency and Returns to Scope in Italian Investment Firms

    OpenAIRE

    Marcello Basili; Fulvio Fontini

    2005-01-01

    This paper estimates cost efficiency and returns to scope of Italian investment firms during the period 1998-2002, following the stochastic frontier function approach. Results indicate a large inefficiency for Italian investment firms (with a high standard deviation across sample) and the absence of significant returns to scope

  8. The Economic Value of Predicting Stock Index Returns and Volatility

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Marquering, W.; Verbeek, M.J.C.M.

    2000-01-01

    In this paper, we analyze the economic value of predicting index returns as well as volatility. On the basis of fairly simple linear models, estimated recursively, we produce genuine out-of-sample forecasts for the return on the S&P 500 index and its volatility. Using monthly data from 1954-1998, we

  9. Short Range-Ordered Minerals: Insight into Aqueous Alteration Processes on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ming, Douglas W.; Morris, R. V.; Golden, D. C.

    2011-01-01

    involved. The style of aqueous alteration (hydrolytic vs. acid sulfate) impacts which phases will form (e.g., oxides, oxysulfates, and oxyhydroxides). Knowledge on the formation processes of SRO phases in basaltic materials on Earth has allowed significant enhancement in our understanding of the aqueous processes at work on Mars. The 2011 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) will provide an instrument suite that should improve our understanding of the mineralogical and chemical compositions of SRO phases. CheMin is an X-ray diffraction instrument that may provide broad X-ray diffraction peaks for SRO phases; e.g., broad peaks around 0.33 and 0.23 nm for allophane. Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) heats samples and detects evolved gases of volatile-bearing phases including SRO phases (i.e., carbonates, sulfates, hydrated minerals). The Alpha Particle X-ray Spectrometer (APXS) and ChemCam element analyzers will provide chemical characterization of samples. The identification of SRO phases in surface materials on MSL will be challenging due to their nanocrystalline properties; their detection and identification will require utilizing the MSL instrument suite in concert. Ultimately, sample return missions will be required to definitively identify and fully characterize SRO minerals with state-of-the-art laboratory instrumentation back on Earth.

  10. Deixis in Bruno Mars's Doo-wops & Hooligans Album

    OpenAIRE

    Sortha Silitonga, Ika Sapitriani and

    2016-01-01

    This study deals with the English. The objectives of this study are to analyze type of deixis and to find out the most dominant type of deixis in Bruno Mars's Doo-Wops & Hooligans Album. This study was conducted by using descriptive qualitative method. The data of this research were taken from Bruno Mars's song lyrics in the Doo-Wops & Hooligans album and 10 titles songs lyrics as the samples. The findings showed that there are five types of deixis found in Bruno Mars in the ‘Doo-Wops & Hooli...

  11. Mars Science Laboratory Using Laser Instrument, Artist's Concept

    Science.gov (United States)

    2007-01-01

    This artist's conception of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory portrays use of the rover's ChemCam instrument to identify the chemical composition of a rock sample on the surface of Mars. ChemCam is innovative for planetary exploration in using a technique referred to as laser breakdown spectroscopy to determine the chemical composition of samples from distances of up to about 8 meters (25 feet) away. ChemCam is led by a team at the Los Alamos National Laboratory and the Centre d'Etude Spatiale des Rayonnements in Toulouse, France. Mars Science Laboratory, a mobile robot for investigating Mars' past or present ability to sustain microbial life, is in development at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory for a launch opportunity in 2009. The mission is managed by JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, Calif., for the NASA Science Mission Directorate, Washington.

  12. Evidence for a Large Natural Nuclear Reactor in Mars Past

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brandenburg, J. E.

    2006-05-01

    It has long been known that The isotopic ratios 129 Xe/132Xe and 40Ar/36Ar are very high in Mars atmosphere relative to Earth or meteoritic backgrounds. This fact has allowed the SNC meteorites to be identified as Martian based on their trapped gases (1). However, while the isotopic anomalies explained one mystery, the origin of the SNC meteorites, they created a new mystery: the rock samples from Mars show no evidence of the large amounts of Iodine or Potassium that would give naturally give rise to the Xenon and Argon isotopic anomalies (2). In fact, the Martian meteorites are depleted in Potassium relative to earth rocks. This is added to the fact that for other isotopic systems such as 80Kr, Mars rock samples must be irradiated by neutrons at fluences of 1015 /cm2 to explain observed abundances (1) . Compounding the mystery is the fact that Mars surface layer has elevated levels of Uranium and Thorium relative to Earth and even its own rocks, as determined from SNCs (3). These anomalies can be explained if some large nuclear energy release, such as by natural nuclear reactors known to have operated on Earth (4) in in some concentrated ore body, occurred with perhaps a large volcano like explosion that spread residues over the planets surface. Based on gamma ray observations from orbit (3), and the correlations of normally uncorrelated Th and K deposits , the approximate location of this event would appear to have been in the north of Mars in a region in Acidalia Planitia centered at 45N Latitude and 15W Longitude (5). The possibility of such a large radiological event in Mars past adds impetus to Mars exploration efforts and particularly to a human mission to Mars to learn more about this possible occurrence. (1) Swindle, T. D. , Caffee, M. W., and Hohenberg, C. M., (1986) "Xenon and other Noble Gases in Shergottites" Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 50, pp 1001-1015. (2) Banin, A., Clark, B.C., and Wanke, H. "Surface Chemistry and Mineralogy" (1992) in "Mars

  13. Return to the... past

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ammerich, M.

    2009-01-01

    This article goes back over the incidents occurring during the summer 2008, that is to say the uranium release from the Socatri facility in the South of France. From this point, the purpose studies the radiological situation of the Camargue seashore; the levels of radioactivity are from 3 to thirty times higher than these ones expected in this area, but the natural radioactivity with thorium and uranium coming from the granitic massifs erosion brings an important part. It is difficult to make the part between human and natural contribution to ambient radioactivity. However, it appears that to limit the water consumption until the time of dilution played its part was absolutely necessary. Then, because it is question of water, the drinking water is tackled. Some mineral waters go over the recommended limits of doses. A last return to the past with the radioactive watches, but this time with actual watches that activate detection. Two watches contained promethium 147, 147 Pm is a beta emitter but also gamma emitter. To end, in Ireland and Great Britain, some fire detectors contain americium 241. In fact, this article constitutes a summary of different abnormalities around radioactivity. (N.C.)

  14. The return of religion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Griffioen

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Religion is back in Philosophy as a respectable subject. Part 1 first charts what MacIntyre, Taylor and Derrida have meant in this regard. Subsequently, it turns to the Enlightenment to determine what constituted the breakthrough. It is found that even where the Enlightenment gave maximum room to religion i.e. as a civic religion and as “religion of the heart” it still excluded a constitutive relation to a transcendent revelation. Part 2 centres on the religion-faith distinction in reformational philosophy. Similar to the Enlightenment, religion is understood as part of human nature. However, human nature itself is conceived as intrinsically religious and depending for its light on revelation. Secondly, “religion” in this context also encompasses idols and religious substitutes. Thus, it directs attention to shopping malls, football stadiums, health policy, et cetera, as possible contexts of a return of religion. Examples show that this has become a popular approach. However, most of the publications surveyed fail to distinguish between an “analogical” and a “pistically qualified” use of religion, and are open to exaggerations (the shopping mall and football stadiums as temples, etc.. At this junction, the relevance is shown of the religion-faith distinction as well as of Elaine Botha’s theory of metaphors. The epilogue offers an integration of parts one and two.

  15. EquiMar

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Johnstone, C. M.; McCombes, T.; Bahaj, A. S.

    2011-01-01

    the performance evaluation of such systems in order to address this deficiency. This paper reports the development of a set of ‘Best Practices’ within the ECFPVII EquiMar project to be adopted for the performance quantification of wave and tidal energy converters as they evolve from an engineering concept......At the present time there are no approved standards or recognised best practices being implemented for the performance appraisal and benchmarking of wave and tidal energy converters. As such, this develops considerable misunderstanding between device developers, testing centres, investors....../ financiers etc when attempting to quantify the performance of a device since it makes it very difficult to reference and benchmark the performance of a marine energy converter. The EC Framework Programme VII EquiMar project has set out to develop a suite of Best Practices to be adopted when undertaking...

  16. The politics of Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmitt, Harrison H.

    1986-01-01

    A discussion is presented comparing past and present major accomplishments of the U.S. and the Soviet Union in space. It concludes that the Soviets are presently well ahead of the U.S. in several specific aspects of space accomplishment and speculates that the Soviet strategy is directed towards sending a man to the vicinity of Mars by the end of this century. A major successful multinational space endeavor, INTELSAT, is reviewed and it is suggested that the manned exploration of Mars offers a unique opportunity for another such major international cooperative effort. The current attitude of U.S. leadership and the general public is assessed as uniformed or ambivalent about the perceived threat of Soviet dominance in space.

  17. Fossil life on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walter, M. R.

    1989-01-01

    Three major problems beset paleontologists searching for morphological evidence of life on early Earth: selecting a prospective site; finding biogenic structures; and distinguishing biogenic from abiogenic structures. The same problems arise on Mars. Terrestrial experience suggests that, with the techniques that can be employed remotely, ancient springs, including hot springs, are more prospective than lake deposits. If, on the other hand, the search is for chemical evidence, the strategy can be very different, and lake deposits are attractive targets. Lakes and springs frequenly occur in close proximity, and therefore a strategy that combines the two would seem to maximize the chance of success. The strategy for a search for stromatolite on Mars is discussed.

  18. Magnetic storms on Mars

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vennerstrøm, Susanne

    2011-01-01

    and typical time profile of such periods is investigated and compared to solar wind measurements at Earth. Typical durations of the events are 20–40h, and there is a tendency for large events to last longer, but a large spread in duration and intensity are found. The large and medium intensity events at Mars......Based on data from the Mars Global Surveyor magnetometer we examine periods of significantly enhanced magnetic disturbances in the martian space environment. Using almost seven years of observations during the maximum and early declining phase of the previous solar cycle the occurrence pattern...... are found to occur predominantly in association with interplanetary sector boundaries, with solar wind dynamic pressure enhancements being the most likely interplanetary driver. In addition it is found that, on time scales of months to several years, the dominant cause of global variability of the magnetic...

  19. Artificial structures on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Flandern, T.

    2002-05-01

    Approximately 70,000 images of the surface of Mars at a resolution of up to 1.4 meters per pixel, taken by the Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft, are now in public archives. Approximately 1% of those images show features that can be broadly described as `special shapes', `tracks, trails, and possible vegetation', `spots, stripes, and tubes', `artistic imagery', and `patterns and symbols'. Rather than optical illusions and tricks of light and shadow, most of these have the character that, if photographed on Earth, no one would doubt that they were the products of large biology and intelligence. In a few cases, relationships, context, and fulfillment of a priori predictions provide objective evidence of artificiality that is exempt from the influence of experimenter biases. Only controlled test results can be trusted because biases are strong and operate both for and against artificiality.

  20. PUC fast track nips returns

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon.

    1990-01-01

    In the first of what it says will be annual cost-of-capital proceedings to set returns on equity and rates of return on rate base for electric utilities, the California Public Utilities Commission (PUC) lowered from 1989 levels the 1990 returns on common equity (ROE) and rates of return (ROR) for the state's four major investor-owned electric utilities. Under this fast-track procedure, by May 8 of every year, utilities will have to file an application for rate adjustments that reflect their projected costs of capital for the following year

  1. The return to foreign aid

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dalgaard, Carl-Johan Lars; Hansen, Henrik

    We investigate the marginal productivity of investment across countries. The aim is to estimate the return on investments financed by foreign aid and by domestic resource mobilization, using aggregate data. Both returns are expected to vary across countries and time. Consequently we develop...... a correlated random coefficients model, to estimate the average aggregate return on ‘aid investments’ and ‘domestic investments’. Across different estimators and two different sources for GDP and investment data our findings are remarkably robust; the average gross return on ‘aid investments’ is about 20 per...

  2. A Dual Source Ion Trap Mass Spectrometer for the Mars Organic Molecule Analyzer of ExoMars 2018

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brickerhoff, William B.; vanAmerom, F. H. W.; Danell, R. M.; Arevalo, R.; Atanassova, M.; Hovmand, L.; Mahaffy, P. R.; Cotter, R. J.

    2011-01-01

    We present details on the objectives, requirements, design and operational approach of the core mass spectrometer of the Mars Organic Molecule Analyzer (MOMA) investigation on the 2018 ExoMars mission. The MOMA mass spectrometer enables the investigation to fulfill its objective of analyzing the chemical composition of organic compounds in solid samples obtained from the near surface of Mars. Two methods of ionization are realized, associated with different modes of MOMA operation, in a single compact ion trap mass spectrometer. The stringent mass and power constraints of the mission have led to features such as low voltage and low frequency RF operation [1] and pulse counting detection.

  3. Advanced Solar-propelled Cargo Spacecraft for Mars Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Auziasdeturenne, Jacqueline; Beall, Mark; Burianek, Joseph; Cinniger, Anna; Dunmire, Barbrina; Haberman, Eric; Iwamoto, James; Johnson, Stephen; Mccracken, Shawn; Miller, Melanie

    1989-01-01

    Three concepts for an unmanned, solar powered, cargo spacecraft for Mars support missions were investigated. These spacecraft are designed to carry a 50,000 kg payload from a low Earth orbit to a low Mars orbit. Each design uses a distinctly different propulsion system: A Solar Radiation Absorption (SRA) system, a Solar-Pumped Laser (SPL) system and a solar powered magnetoplasmadynamic (MPD) arc system. The SRA directly converts solar energy to thermal energy in the propellant through a novel process. In the SPL system, a pair of solar-pumped, multi-megawatt, CO2 lasers in sunsynchronous Earth orbit converts solar energy to laser energy. The MPD system used indium phosphide solar cells to convert sunlight to electricity, which powers the propulsion system. Various orbital transfer options are examined for these concepts. In the SRA system, the mother ship transfers the payload into a very high Earth orbit and a small auxiliary propulsion system boosts the payload into a Hohmann transfer to Mars. The SPL spacecraft and the SPL powered spacecraft return to Earth for subsequent missions. The MPD propelled spacecraft, however, remains at Mars as an orbiting space station. A patched conic approximation was used to determine a heliocentric interplanetary transfer orbit for the MPD propelled spacecraft. All three solar-powered spacecraft use an aerobrake procedure to place the payload into a low Mars parking orbit. The payload delivery times range from 160 days to 873 days (2.39 years).

  4. Biomedical Aspects of Lunar and Mars Exploration Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charles, John B.

    2006-01-01

    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.

  5. MAHLI on Mars: lessons learned operating a geoscience camera on a landed payload robotic arm

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aileen Yingst, R.; Edgett, Kenneth S.; Kennedy, Megan R.; Krezoski, Gillian M.; McBride, Marie J.; Minitti, Michelle E.; Ravine, Michael A.; Williams, Rebecca M. E.

    2016-06-01

    The Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) is a 2-megapixel, color camera with resolution as high as 13.9 µm pixel-1. MAHLI has operated successfully on the Martian surface for over 1150 Martian days (sols) aboard the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) rover, Curiosity. During that time MAHLI acquired images to support science and science-enabling activities, including rock and outcrop textural analysis; sand characterization to further the understanding of global sand properties and processes; support of other instrument observations; sample extraction site documentation; range-finding for arm and instrument placement; rover hardware and instrument monitoring and safety; terrain assessment; landscape geomorphology; and support of rover robotic arm commissioning. Operation of the instrument has demonstrated that imaging fully illuminated, dust-free targets yields the best results, with complementary information obtained from shadowed images. The light-emitting diodes (LEDs) allow satisfactory night imaging but do not improve daytime shadowed imaging. MAHLI's combination of fine-scale, science-driven resolution, RGB color, the ability to focus over a large range of distances, and relatively large field of view (FOV), have maximized the return of science and science-enabling observations given the MSL mission architecture and constraints.

  6. Habitability on Early Mars and the Search for Biosignatures with the ExoMars Rover

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vago, Jorge L.; Westall, Frances; Pasteur Instrument Team; Pasteur Landing Team; Coates, Andrew J.; Jaumann, Ralf; Korablev, Oleg; Ciarletti, Valérie; Mitrofanov, Igor; Josset, Jean-Luc; De Sanctis, Maria Cristina; Bibring, Jean-Pierre; Rull, Fernando; Goesmann, Fred; Steininger, Harald; Goetz, Walter; Brinckerhoff, William; Szopa, Cyril; Raulin, François; Westall, Frances; Edwards, Howell G. M.; Whyte, Lyle G.; Fairén, Alberto G.; Bibring, Jean-Pierre; Bridges, John; Hauber, Ernst; Ori, Gian Gabriele; Werner, Stephanie; Loizeau, Damien; Kuzmin, Ruslan O.; Williams, Rebecca M. E.; Flahaut, Jessica; Forget, François; Vago, Jorge L.; Rodionov, Daniel; Korablev, Oleg; Svedhem, Håkan; Sefton-Nash, Elliot; Kminek, Gerhard; Lorenzoni, Leila; Joudrier, Luc; Mikhailov, Viktor; Zashchirinskiy, Alexander; Alexashkin, Sergei; Calantropio, Fabio; Merlo, Andrea; Poulakis, Pantelis; Witasse, Olivier; Bayle, Olivier; Bayón, Silvia; Meierhenrich, Uwe; Carter, John; García-Ruiz, Juan Manuel; Baglioni, Pietro; Haldemann, Albert; Ball, Andrew J.; Debus, André; Lindner, Robert; Haessig, Frédéric; Monteiro, David; Trautner, Roland; Voland, Christoph; Rebeyre, Pierre; Goulty, Duncan; Didot, Frédéric; Durrant, Stephen; Zekri, Eric; Koschny, Detlef; Toni, Andrea; Visentin, Gianfranco; Zwick, Martin; van Winnendael, Michel; Azkarate, Martín; Carreau, Christophe; ExoMars Project Team

    2017-07-01

    The second ExoMars mission will be launched in 2020 to target an ancient location interpreted to have strong potential for past habitability and for preserving physical and chemical biosignatures (as well as abiotic/prebiotic organics). The mission will deliver a lander with instruments for atmospheric and geophysical investigations and a rover tasked with searching for signs of extinct life. The ExoMars rover will be equipped with a drill to collect material from outcrops and at depth down to 2 m. This subsurface sampling capability will provide the best chance yet to gain access to chemical biosignatures. Using the powerful Pasteur payload instruments, the ExoMars science team will conduct a holistic search for traces of life and seek corroborating geological context information.

  7. Curating NASA's future extraterrestrial sample collections: How do we achieve maximum proficiency?

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCubbin, Francis; Evans, Cynthia; Allton, Judith; Fries, Marc; Righter, Kevin; Zolensky, Michael; Zeigler, Ryan

    2016-07-01

    Introduction: The Astromaterials Acquisition and Curation Office (henceforth referred to herein as NASA Curation Office) at NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC) is responsible for curating all of NASA's extraterrestrial samples. Under the governing document, NASA Policy Directive (NPD) 7100.10E "Curation of Extraterrestrial Materials", JSC is charged with "The curation of all extraterrestrial material under NASA control, including future NASA missions." The Directive goes on to define Curation as including "…documentation, preservation, preparation, and distribution of samples for research, education, and public outreach." Here we describe some of the ongoing efforts to ensure that the future activities of the NASA Curation Office are working to-wards a state of maximum proficiency. Founding Principle: Curatorial activities began at JSC (Manned Spacecraft Center before 1973) as soon as design and construction planning for the Lunar Receiving Laboratory (LRL) began in 1964 [1], not with the return of the Apollo samples in 1969, nor with the completion of the LRL in 1967. This practice has since proven that curation begins as soon as a sample return mission is conceived, and this founding principle continues to return dividends today [e.g., 2]. The Next Decade: Part of the curation process is planning for the future, and we refer to these planning efforts as "advanced curation" [3]. Advanced Curation is tasked with developing procedures, technology, and data sets necessary for curating new types of collections as envisioned by NASA exploration goals. We are (and have been) planning for future curation, including cold curation, extended curation of ices and volatiles, curation of samples with special chemical considerations such as perchlorate-rich samples, curation of organically- and biologically-sensitive samples, and the use of m