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Archive for May, 2008

25-May-08 | Success!

Phoenix is on Mars!

The lander survived its arduous EDL phase and has transmitted signals confirming its safe arrival on the Martian northern plains. Follow-up subsystem checks have yet to complete, but the nail-biting part is over.

Congratulations to NASA-JPL, the University of Arizona, and all their contractors and contributors!

16-May-08 | On course for Mars

Phoenix is nearing the end of its cruise phase, and will arrive at Mars on Sunday, 25 May. Using a heat shield, parachute, and deceleration thrusters, the EDL (entry, descent, and landing) phase will last about seven minutes and is expected to conclude with a gentle touchdown upon spidery landing gear around 23:53 UTC, Earth received time.

Many museums and planetaria around the United States will host landing parties, allowing visitors to watch live video of mission controllers staring nervously at computer screens, while scientists stand by ready to discuss the mission and answer questions. If landing is successful, Phoenix will then begin a three-month surface operations phase, during which it will explore for water ice in the soil of the Martian north pole. Phoenix was launched aboard Delta 325 on 4 August 2007.

16-May-08 | Next launch

NASA’s Gamma-ray Large Area Space Telescope (GLAST) is now scheduled to launch on 3 June.  The flight was delayed from 16 May due to an unspecified issue that arose during stacking of the Delta II-Heavy’s second stage.



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