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Discovery 2012
dvandorn
post Aug 12 2012, 04:56 AM
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I love the concept of TiME, but I have to say that I have been wanting to see some heat flow information from Mars for quite some time. The seismic data will be very useful, but again, heat flow data will tell us a lot about the rate at which Mars' core cooled, thus letting us understand better the process of creating global magnetic fields in rocky planets. That's of great interest to me.

-the other Doug


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SFJCody
post Aug 12 2012, 05:11 AM
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I like the concept of Time but I'd really prefer a probe that ends up in the littoral zone rather than in the middle of a near featureless sea. I want to see what an alien shoreline looks like!
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ngunn
post Aug 12 2012, 08:16 PM
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Well they don't plan for it to sink, or to drop anchor, so it must eventually drift ashore. We may see that beach.
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vjkane
post Aug 13 2012, 03:47 AM
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QUOTE (ngunn @ Aug 12 2012, 12:16 PM) *
Well they don't plan for it to sink, or to drop anchor, so it must eventually drift ashore. We may see that beach.

If I'm remembering the right Titan lake, one shore has a gradual slope from the shore line, probably not that picturesque for a probe with a short camera mast. The other shore had hills. Perhaps someone who follows Titan better will remember.

All three of the proposals are superstars. I'll be happy with any of them, but while the others could fly at the next Discovery selection, TiME would be a much more expensive or a much shorter mission if the direct to Earth telecommunications geometry is lost.


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gpurcell
post Aug 14 2012, 08:46 PM
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Given the budget constraints of the Mars Exploration Program in the next couple of launch opportunities, I wonder if it would make more sense to transfer the existing funds to Discovery and fund InSIGHT and one of the others for Discovery 12. It would be nice to get back to two missions per announcement.
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djellison
post Aug 14 2012, 09:09 PM
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I heard today that the announcement should be 'a week to 10 days' away.
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punkboi
post Aug 15 2012, 06:18 PM
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Thanks for the heads-up! *Crosses fingers for TIME* smile.gif


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Vultur
post Aug 18 2012, 02:07 AM
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I'm hoping for TiME too... Cassini has made Titan look like one of the most interesting places in the solar system...
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vjkane
post Aug 18 2012, 03:46 AM
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The journal Nature has a poll on which mission it's readers would like to see selected (see here). The current results:

InSight - 49.7%

TiME - 39.3%

Chopper - 11.1%

I tried to post a poll on my website on future planetary missions, but for some reason the widget won't post.


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nprev
post Aug 18 2012, 06:01 AM
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That poll was actually in Ralph's post that began this thread; I see it's now closed.

Certainly it's not scientific nor objective by its very nature; there were apparently no restrictions on the number of votes cast by an individual, for instance.

Whatever the choice, I hope that the selection based on objective factors and not overwhelmed by risk avoidance; best of luck to all!


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vjkane
post Aug 18 2012, 04:21 PM
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I was very surprised that TiME wasn't the leading choice. Presuming that the poll wasn't skunked somehow (e.g., multiple votes although a lot of sites don't allow more than one vote per url) it shows that different communities have different preferences. The Nature site is a general science site (the front sections of both the journals Nature and Science have some of the best general audience science writing available; their websites post a portion of that content).

We're unlikely to know how much risk avoidance plays into the final selection unless the proposing teams reveal the results of NASA's assessment. We won't know if the two missions not selected had technical issues or would have busted the Discovery program budget.

My fingers are crossed hoping that none of the three proposals have disqualifying problems and the decision comes down to the best science.


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tedstryk
post Aug 20 2012, 03:22 PM
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Having watched the poll, and how it would violently swing back and forth between strongly favoring Mars and strongly favoring Titan, I suspect that it was in a sense skunked.


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Paolo
post Aug 20 2012, 06:07 PM
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audioconference in 3 hours
http://www.nasa.gov/news/media/newsaudio/index.html


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Paolo
post Aug 20 2012, 06:36 PM
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well... the suspense is over
NASA will send robot drill to Mars in 2016


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James Van Allen
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djellison
post Aug 20 2012, 07:01 PM
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From the Washington Post who, as Emily pointed out on Twitter, posted the Curiosity had landed 2 days before it arrived.

They may well be right, but wait for the conference.
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