[meteorite-list] NASA Selects Five Mars Orbiter Concept Studies

From: Ron Baalke <baalke_at_meteoritecentral.com>
Date: Fri, 22 Jul 2016 16:20:52 -0700 (PDT)
Message-ID: <201607222320.u6MNKqxU016171_at_zagami.jpl.nasa.gov>


NASA Selects Five Mars Orbiter Concept Studies
Jet Propulsion Laboratory
July 18, 2016

NASA has selected five U.S. aerospace companies to conduct concept studies
for a potential future Mars orbiter mission. Such a mission would continue
key capabilities including telecommunications and global high-resolution
imaging in support of the agency's Journey to Mars.

The companies contracted for these four-month studies are: The Boeing
Company in Huntington Beach, California; Lockheed Martin Space Systems
in Denver; Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems in Redondo Beach, California;
Orbital ATK in Dulles, Virginia; and Space Systems/Loral in Palo Alto,

"We're excited to continue planning for the next decade of Mars exploration,"
said Geoffrey Yoder, acting associate administrator for NASA's Science
Mission Directorate in Washington.

The concept studies will address how a potential new Mars orbiter mission
could best provide communications, imaging and operational capabilities.
They also will assess the possibilities for supporting additional scientific
instruments and functionalities, in addition to optical communications.
The orbiter concept under study would take advantage of U.S. industry's
technology capacities by using solar electric propulsion to provide flexible
launch, mission and orbit capabilities.

The Mars Exploration Program Analysis Group, an organization designed
to provide input to NASA from the Mars research science community, published
a report six months ago on recommended science objectives for a Mars orbiter.
These studies will provide input for assessing the feasibility of addressing
these objectives. NASA also is pursuing partnership interest in contributing
to this potential mission.

NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, is managing
the concept studies under the direction of the agency's Mars Exploration

NASA is on an ambitious Journey to Mars that includes sending humans to
the Red Planet in the 2030s. The agency's robotic spacecraft are leading
the way, with two active rovers, three active orbiters, the planned launch
of the InSight lander in 2018, and development of the Mars 2020 rover.

For more information about NASA's Journey to Mars, visit:


News Media Contact
Guy Webster
Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.
guy.w.webster at jpl.nasa.gov

Dwayne Brown / Laurie Cantillo
Headquarters, Washington
202-358-1726 / 202-358-1077
dwayne.c.brown at nasa.gov / laura.l.cantillo at nasa.gov

Received on Fri 22 Jul 2016 07:20:52 PM PDT

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