Posted by: cranky | May 25, 2008

Cool Space Stuff

Phoenix Lander arrives at the planet Mars at about 1930 Eastern, 2330 UTC, tonight.  NASA has a really cool artists’ depiction of what the landing on Mars might look like.

Phoenix Lander Arrives at Mars
Animated Illustration Credit & Copyright: MAAS Digital, SVV Project, NASAExplanation:

Will Phoenix survive its landing today on Mars? Phoenix‘s landing sequence will ramp up starting at about 7:30 pm EDT (23:30 UTC) today and last just over an hour. If all goes well, one of Phoenix’s first images from Mars will appear on APOD tomorrow. The Phoenix Lander is programmed to set down near the North Pole of Mars, and, over the next three months, sample alien soil and ice and look for conditions conducive for ancient microbial life. Shown above is an artistic animation of what it might look like to see Phoenix land on Mars. In the animated sequence, the Phoenix spacecraft arrives at Mars, deploys its breaking parachute, jettisons its heat shield, fires it thrusters, lands, unfurls its solar panels, deploys its instruments, scoops up some of Mars, and begins its analysis.



  1. Well, she made it. Photos are available on NASA’s website. Quite remarkable.

  2. Photos already? The NASA Astronomy Picture of the Day for today (above) said there would be pictures on Monday morning.

    Amazing stuff.

  3. Yep. They got B&W shots 1-2 hours after touchdown. Looks like things are exceedingly swell!

  4. McGoo, you had this story for a while and I forgot. Sunday’s Astronomy Pix of the Day had their thing about the lander and that prompted this post.

    I should have remembered and given you, the landed gentry, a tip of the hat — my apologies. What do we have to look forward to in the area of artistic photography?

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