Landing info, commentary and interviews. Schedule at the bottom of this article.
[Curiosity Closes in on its New 'Home'
Sun, 05 Aug 2012 11:20:24 AM GMT+1200
With Mars looming ever larger in front of it, NASA's Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft and its Curiosity rover are in
the final stages of preparing for entry, descent and landing on the Red Planet at 10:31 p.m. PDT Aug. 5 (1:31 a.m. EDT
Aug. 6). Curiosity remains in good health with all systems operating as expected. Today, the flight team uplinked and
confirmed commands to make minor corrections to the spacecraft's navigation reference point parameters. This afternoon,
as part of the onboard sequence of autonomous activities leading to the landing, catalyst bed heaters are being turned
on to prepare the eight Mars Lander Engines that are part of MSL's descent propulsion system. As of 2:25 p.m. PDT (5:25
p.m. EDT), MSL was approximately 261,000 miles (420,039 kilometers) from Mars, closing in at a little more than 8,000
mph (about 3,600 meters per second).]
[MSL Remains on Track for Weekend Landing
Fri, 03 Aug 2012 10:22:02 AM GMT+1200
Curiosity remains in good health, with no significant issues currently in work. There are no real-time activities
planned today. The Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft remains on a consistent and stable course, well within the limits
required to reach its target landing ellipse. As a result, yesterday the flight team decided to cancel the build and
test of a contingency version of Trajectory Correction Maneuver 5. This contingency manuever, had it been needed, would
have been used in the event an emergency prevented the team from executing the nominal scheduled TCM-5 maneuver, which
is planned for Friday, Aug. 3, if needed. The project also canceled a corresponding update to parameters for the
autonomous software controlling events during entry, descent and landing.]
Click for big version.
Curiosity - Robot Geologist and Chemist in One!
This artist's concept features NASA's Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover, a mobile robot for investigating Mars'
past or present ability to sustain microbial life.
Curiosity will land near the Martian equator about 10:31 p.m., Aug. 5 PDT
(1:31 a.m. Aug. 6 EDT) [5:31 p.m. Aug. 6 NZT].
In this picture, the rover examines a rock on Mars with a set of tools at the end of the rover's arm, which extends
about 7 feet (2 meters). Two instruments on the arm can study rocks up close. A drill can collect sample material from
inside of rocks and a scoop can pick up samples of soil. The arm can sieve the samples and deliver fine powder to
instruments inside the rover for thorough analysis.
The mast, or rover's "head," rises to about 6.9 feet (2.1 meters) above ground level, about as tall as a basketball
player. This mast supports two remote-sensing science instruments: the Mast Camera, or "eyes," for stereo color viewing
of surrounding terrain and material collected by the arm; and, the Chemistry and Camera instrument, which uses a laser
to vaporize a speck of material on rocks up to about 23 feet (7 meters) away and determines what elements the rocks are
NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, manages the Mars
Science Laboratory Project for the NASA Science Mission Directorate, Washington.
Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech
NASA Announces News Activities for Mars Landing
Updated Aug. 1, 2012 - 6:42pm PDT
PASADENA, Calif. – The public is invited to tune in for a series of news briefings from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory
in Pasadena, Calif., for the upcoming landing of NASA's Curiosity rover on Mars.
NASA's Mars Science Laboratory mission will deliver the nearly 2,000-pound (1-ton), car-size robotic roving laboratory
to the surface of Mars at 10:31 p.m. PDT Aug. 5 (1:31 a.m. EDT Aug. 6) [5:31 p.m. Aug. 6 NZT]. Curiosity's landing will
mark the start of a two-year prime mission to investigate whether one of the most intriguing places on Mars ever has
offered an environment favorable for microbial life.
News Briefing and Televised Event Schedule
News briefings will be held at JPL beginning Thursday, Aug. 2, and carried live on NASA Television. Additional events,
including a NASA Social Media event Aug. 1 and landing commentary Aug. 5, will be televised. A full schedule of live
news briefings is available at: http://www.nasa.gov/ntvnews
The schedule of events below is subject to change. All times are PDT [NZT -19 hrs].
Thursday, Aug. 2
-- 10 a.m. - Mission Science Overview News Briefing
-- 11 a.m. - Mission Engineering Overview News Briefing
Friday, Aug. 3
-- 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. - NASA Social
Saturday, Aug. 4
-- 9:30 a.m. - Prelanding Update and Entry, Descent and Landing (EDL) Overview News Briefing
Sunday, Aug. 5
-- 9:30 a.m. - Final Prelanding Update News Briefing
-- 3 p.m. - NASA Science News Briefing
-- 8:30 p.m. to about 11 p.m. - Landing Commentary No. 1
-- No earlier than 11:15 p.m. - Post-landing News Briefing
Monday, Aug. 6
-- 12:30 to 1:30 a.m. - Landing Commentary No. 2
-- 9 a.m. - Landing Recap News Briefing
-- 4 p.m. - Possible New Images News Briefing
Tuesday, Aug. 7
-- 10 a.m. - News Briefing
Wednesday, Aug. 8
-- 10 a.m. - News Briefing
Thursday, Aug. 9
-- 10 a.m. - News Briefing
Friday, Aug. 10
-- 10 a.m. (tentative) - News Briefing
For information on how to watch NASA TV, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/ntv
. The televised events will also be streamed live online at: http://www.Ustream.tv/nasa
NASA Television Commentary Feeds
Two live feeds during key landing activities from mission control at JPL will be carried on NASA TV and on the Web from
8:30 to 11 p.m. PDT Aug. 5 [3.30 to 6pm Aug 6 NZT], and from 12:30 to 1:30 a.m. PDT Aug. 6 [7.30 to 8.30pm NZT]. The
NASA TV Public Channel and http://www.ustream.tv/nasajpl
will carry a feed including commentary and interviews.
The NASA TV Media Channel and http://www.ustream.tv/nasajpl2
will carry an uninterrupted, clean feed with only mission audio.
Extensive information on the Mars Science Laboratory mission, including an electronic copy of the press kit, news
releases, fact sheets, status reports, briefing schedule and images, is available at: http://www.nasa.gov/msl
For more information about NASA's Mars program, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/mars
The California Institute of Technology in Pasadena manages JPL for NASA.