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Preparing for launch
Guest_Oersted_*
post Oct 25 2011, 08:40 PM
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QUOTE (pospa @ Oct 24 2011, 10:14 AM) *
All MSL elements assembly (except MMRTG and some covers) is complete.


Surely the Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator is already in place?
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climber
post Oct 25 2011, 09:02 PM
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QUOTE (Oersted @ Oct 25 2011, 10:40 PM) *
Surely the Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator is already in place?

I don't think so.
See Emily' entry here: http://planetary.org/blog/article/00003217/

She wrote: The MMRTG won't be installed until just a couple of days before the launch, because it throws off so much heat. Once the rover has launched, a cooling system will vent the excess heat to space, but between now and then it takes a pretty powerful cooling system to keep the MMRTG from heating up the interior of the spacecraft to hazardous levels. I was told a while ago that they have three redundant cooling systems working to keep the spacecraft at a safe temperature between MMRTG installation and launch.


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djellison
post Oct 25 2011, 09:27 PM
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QUOTE (Oersted @ Oct 25 2011, 01:40 PM) *
Surely the Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator is already in place?


It gets installed, thru the fairing and the backshell, once the rocket is on the launch pad.


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Guest_Oersted_*
post Oct 26 2011, 01:31 PM
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ah, wauw, thanks for the info.
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eoincampbell
post Oct 26 2011, 09:48 PM
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Is the fairing hatch for the MMRTG seen in this view : http://marsprogram.jpl.nasa.gov/msl/images...11-7261-br2.jpg ?
(near top - gap in acoustic panelling)


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djellison
post Oct 26 2011, 11:16 PM
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I think so.
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pospa
post Oct 27 2011, 09:20 AM
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I do not think so. wink.gif
The fairing hatch for the MMRTG should be the big square panel on the bottom right portion of payload fairing (PLF) on this picture.
I'm guessing the purpose of piping with downward pointing nozzles inside the firing is airconditioning - it should blow cool air onto heat radiators on the rim of cruise stage.
IMHO, this two features should clearly determine the spacecraft position in PLF.

Btw. this is just upper part of the complete PLF.
I gestimate it's the Short version - 13,3 m hight.
The Lower part that covers the Centaur upper stage is 7,4 m high.
All together it will be 20,7 meters long PLF.
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djellison
post Oct 27 2011, 02:33 PM
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QUOTE (pospa @ Oct 27 2011, 01:20 AM) *
The fairing hatch for the MMRTG should be the big square panel on the bottom right portion of payload fairing (PLF) on this picture.


Sorry - yes - that's what I was agreeing with. I hadn't spotted Eoin's reference to the tiny gap in insulation near the top.


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punkboi
post Oct 28 2011, 07:03 AM
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MSL is now encapsulated by the Atlas V's payload fairing
Attached thumbnail(s)
Attached Image
 


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pospa
post Nov 4 2011, 08:43 AM
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MSL payload fairing's got nice NASA & mission logos on Tuesday and has been attached to its Atlas V yesterday morning.

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pospa
post Nov 4 2011, 09:01 AM
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Not sure if this is the best thread to share this info but I'd like to notify that December's issue of SKY & TELESCOPE contains nice Emily's article Face To Face with a Giant about her "close encounter" with Curiosity rover in JPL.

7 pages web preview: http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/newtrack/st_201112/#/22
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ilbasso
post Nov 6 2011, 10:15 PM
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I was within a couple of miles of the launch complex out at CCAFS this morning. I gave Curiosity a thumbs up, "you go, girl!" on behalf of all of us!


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CosmicRocker
post Nov 10 2011, 05:33 AM
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NASA to Hold Media Briefing About Mars Rover Launch


QUOTE
November 08, 2011

PASADENA, Calif. -- NASA will hold a news conference at 10 a.m. PST (1 p.m. EST), Thursday, Nov. 10, to discuss the upcoming launch of the Mars Science Laboratory, with the largest and most capable rover going to another planet. The televised event will take place at NASA Headquarters in Washington and will be carried live on NASA TV and Ustream.

The Mars Science Laboratory mission is scheduled to launch at 7:25 a.m. PST (10:25 a.m. EST), on Nov. 25. The launch period extends to Dec. 18. The spacecraft will deliver a car-size rover named Curiosity to the surface of Mars in August 2012.

News conference participants are:
-- Doug McCuistion, director, Mars Program, NASA Headquarters, Washington
-- Ashwin Vasavada, Mars Science Laboratory deputy project scientist, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.
-- Pete Theisinger, Mars Science Laboratory project manager, JPL

NASA TV streaming video, scheduling and downlink information is at: http://www.nasa.gov/ntv . The news conference will also be carried on JPL's Ustream channel, with a moderated chat, at http://www.ustream.tv/nasajpl.

For more information about the new rover, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/msl and http://mars.jpl.nasa.gov/msl.

JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the Mars Science Laboratory mission for NASA.


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CosmicRocker
post Nov 10 2011, 06:13 PM
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The press conference has apparently been delayed 15 minutes...

sad.gif


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I'm not a Space Fan, I'm a Space Exploration Enthusiast.
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djellison
post Nov 10 2011, 07:08 PM
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That it was 15 mins 'late' was shared via social media and the NASA TV schedule several hours before the press conf.
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