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Future Planetary Exploration
PhilipTerryGraha...
post Jan 3 2017, 07:40 PM
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It's happening! The press conference to announce the 13th Discovery mission will be at 21:00 UTC (16:00 EST) on 4 January! Go Psyche! biggrin.gif


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Explorer1
post Jan 4 2017, 07:25 AM
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I don't have a favourite myself, but the funny thing about this round is that is four of the five proposals can be thematically linked by subject (Venus and asteroids), so it would be neat for them to complement one another (if two are actually picked). I hope it was at least a factor in the decision on whether to do two....
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PhilipTerryGraha...
post Jan 4 2017, 04:23 PM
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Some news websites are already running with the headline that NASA has selected one of the Venus proposals. The News Recorder published 9 hours ago an article titled "NASA is going to explore earth’s deadly twin-Venus". The Latin Post published an article with the title "Report: NASA's Next Plan For Solar System; Venus Could Be Next Destination". Neither article states any source or reason as to why VERITAS or DAVINCI have been the one(s) selected, and just recount the proposals and such like every other article is doing, so I call a load of bull.


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JRehling
post Jan 4 2017, 05:30 PM
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We'll know soon enough… I tried to play detective in sneaky ways to get the answer early; I think I can rule one of the asteroid missions out, but I'll keep that reasoning to myself.

One thing I learned recently is that VERITAS had a proposed optional mini-entry probe that could steal much of DAVINCI's thunder.

If you were going to launch both of the Venus missions eventually, VERITAS logically precedes DAVINCI – it would provide an incremental improvement in the ability to pick DAVINCI's landing site. There's a third mission in the background, too – the proposed New Frontiers mission to Venus, whose goals would be partially addressed by either of these Discovery proposals.

I see VERITAS as the favorite in terms of the science, but then, there are behind-the-scenes factors about readiness, etc., that are outside of public purview.

Waiting eagerly…
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PhilipTerryGraha...
post Jan 4 2017, 05:42 PM
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Do you mean the New Frontiers mission to Venus, or...?


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JRehling
post Jan 4 2017, 05:42 PM
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The News Recorder article is literally incoherent – grammatically mangled sentences whose meaning is indecipherable. I don't think it's an accurate source of information. The article begins, "Under a mission on discovering the possible dangerous cosmic objects near to earth surface by 2020…" I'm not even sure if the writer knows what a headline is for or can accurately distinguish between statements of fact and statements of possibility.
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JRehling
post Jan 4 2017, 05:43 PM
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QUOTE (PhilipTerryGraham @ Jan 4 2017, 10:42 AM) *
Do you mean the New Frontiers mission to Venus, or...?


Yes! Thanks; I corrected it.
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PhilipTerryGraha...
post Jan 4 2017, 06:43 PM
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It's official! The press release has come early! Lucy and Psyche are going to be Discovery missions 13 and 14! Lucy for launch in 2021 and Psyche for launch in 2023! Incredible!


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Explorer1
post Jan 4 2017, 07:30 PM
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Sweet! The Youtube announcement is here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nYdCU1QQQro

Possible Lucy targets here (one in the main-belt en route to the Trojans): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lucy_(spacecraft)#Targets
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JRehling
post Jan 4 2017, 07:40 PM
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Between them, the missions will visit 7 asteroids… That will roughly/more than double the number of closely-explored asteroids.
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PhilipTerryGraha...
post Jan 4 2017, 07:51 PM
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Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe this will be the third deep space mission led by SwRI after New Horizons and IBEX, and ASU's second after Phoenix.


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charborob
post Jan 4 2017, 07:57 PM
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I'm very excited about the Psyche mission, except... arrival will be in 2030, and I'll be 76 by then. I just hope I will still have some wits remaining in order to enjoy the mission.
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mcaplinger
post Jan 4 2017, 08:04 PM
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QUOTE (PhilipTerryGraham @ Jan 4 2017, 11:51 AM) *
Correct me if I'm wrong... ASU's second after Phoenix.

The Phoenix PI was at University of Arizona, not ASU. They're not the same.


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PhilipTerryGraha...
post Jan 4 2017, 08:08 PM
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Ahh whoops. I always find myself confusing many similarly-located universities all the time. n.n'


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Explorer1
post Jan 4 2017, 10:34 PM
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QUOTE (charborob @ Jan 4 2017, 11:57 AM) *
I'm very excited about the Psyche mission, except... arrival will be in 2030, and I'll be 76 by then. I just hope I will still have some wits remaining in order to enjoy the mission.


Seems like a consequence of using ion engines and going to the main belt; these things take time. The cost-cap prevents use of bigger launchers too...

Will there be a link to the recorded telecon eventually?
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