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(Dvice)   With the Mars rovers in the news so often these days, lets take a moment to take a look at their predecessors   (dvice.com) divider line 7
    More: Interesting, Mars rovers, moons, lunar exploration, lunar soil, Apollo program, regolith, flight engineers, lunar orbit  
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1703 clicks; posted to Geek » on 18 Sep 2012 at 9:27 AM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-09-18 09:40:31 AM
Mars is awesome, but personally I'd like to see another probe make touchdown on Venus. I mean, it's been ~38 years since Venera 9. Couldn't we have developed materials strong enough to withstand (or at least slow down the effects of) the nasty acidic atmosphere before it shut down the system? I dunno', maybe a lot of glass shielding over as much of the surface of the probe as possible? I know I'm showing my lack of advanced science here, but I've seen some pretty volatile stuff contained in what looked like glass vials.
 
2012-09-18 10:04:46 AM
I completely agree, I also think Mercury would be impressive to visit providing you can build a rover to withstand the heat.
 
2012-09-18 10:12:34 AM

Slartibeerfest: I completely agree, I also think Mercury would be impressive to visit providing you can build a rover to withstand the heat.




The Messenger spacecraft is paving the way for an eventual Mercury surface exploration. We're getting some very good pics from it these days.
 
2012-09-18 10:34:59 AM
Finally the Russians get some much needed recognition. Read up in what conditions Korolev worked. Makes it even more amazing.

Hawnkee: Mars is awesome, but personally I'd like to see another probe make touchdown on Venus. I mean, it's been ~38 years since Venera 9. Couldn't we have developed materials strong enough to withstand (or at least slow down the effects of) the nasty acidic atmosphere before it shut down the system? I dunno', maybe a lot of glass shielding over as much of the surface of the probe as possible? I know I'm showing my lack of advanced science here, but I've seen some pretty volatile stuff contained in what looked like glass vials.


I would assume that any practical way to resist that fun place would also make it hard to see through. Maybe Corning could come up with a material similar to missile nose cones, but resist pressure and acidity and be transparent... It's a tall order.

But then again, if we could get it to last 30 minutes instead of seconds, that would be an improvement.
 
2012-09-18 11:48:04 AM
The heat's the killer on Venus. All probe hardware would have to survive temperatures that would melt solder. Even with welded connections, electronic components wouldn't last long. Some means of refrigeration would be necessary to reject the heat that would inevitably leak into the probe as well as the heat generated by the probe's systems, and that would probably require a monstrous power supply with it's own heat-rejection issues.
 
2012-09-18 12:23:53 PM

Larva Lump: The heat's the killer on Venus. All probe hardware would have to survive temperatures that would melt solder. Even with welded connections, electronic components wouldn't last long. Some means of refrigeration would be necessary to reject the heat that would inevitably leak into the probe as well as the heat generated by the probe's systems, and that would probably require a monstrous power supply with it's own heat-rejection issues.


http://www.ebay.ca/itm/GE-General-Electric-TIMM-Thermionic-Integrated - Micro-Modules-Circuits-1961-Ad-/140777957885
 
2012-09-18 12:56:38 PM

Hawnkee: Mars is awesome, but personally I'd like to see another probe make touchdown on Venus. I mean, it's been ~38 years since Venera 9. Couldn't we have developed materials strong enough to withstand (or at least slow down the effects of) the nasty acidic atmosphere before it shut down the system? I dunno', maybe a lot of glass shielding over as much of the surface of the probe as possible? I know I'm showing my lack of advanced science here, but I've seen some pretty volatile stuff contained in what looked like glass vials.


Its hard to justify a mission to Venus other than an orbiter simply because even if aerospace engineering has improved since Venera 9 it's hard to justify a mission that may cost as much as a Mars mission but with half the lifetime expectation no matter how much of an improvement we can make over Venera 9. Which is why Mars is such a great target, we know how to have things survive on that planet for a long time. 8 years roving on Mars, going on nine and who knows how long Curiosity will go. I think a better target would be the moon, we haven't landed anything on the surface of the moon since 1973 (Russian's). The engineering challenges are there if that's what you're after, the moon's surface after all alternatives between extreme temperatures on a regular basis/extreme surface and I believe the longest mission on the surface of the moon was five months (Russian rover of course). All that for the fraction of the cost. I'd love to see us go to Venus with robotic explorers but I just don't see it happening, especially in this political climate where the future of just a regular/safe/we can do it no problem Mars mission is uncertain.
 
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