Thursday, 28 February 2013

The Real Mars Mission

 
My novel, Red Rock, is set just after the return of the first manned mission to mars; a mission with a special connection for Danni, because her aunt was one of the astronauts.

Mankind may not yet have set foot on the red planet, but there have been regular missions to mars over the years.

It is a world full of surprises. The first images of ancient river channels sent back by Mariner 9 set the world ablaze, and since then the search for water and for evidence that there may once have been life on that barren world continues.

At the moment the Curiosity rover is up there, sending back data, revealing more secrets and raising even more questions with every day that passes.

I was lucky enough to see it in Florida, a few days before the launch.

Who knows – maybe one of my readers will become the first man, or woman, to set foot on Mars.

12 comments:

  1. I keep being amazed that something so small can travel so far and do so much!

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    1. Yes, it's an impressive bit of technology!

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  2. That would be so cool! It's amazing how far we've sent rovers and satellites into space. I think I remember reading somewhere, the first one is just leaving our solar system.

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    1. Yes, you're right. the Voyager spacecraft.

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  3. Things I can't believe are

    - the precision required to be successful

    - that it was achieved with technology which now seems out of date.

    The book sounds great - I'd like to read it. I haven't been around for a while - is it out yet, or do you have a date?

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    1. Indeed - there's more computing power in my mobile phone than there was on one of the Apollo spacecraft.

      Red Rock is out on the 15th September. :-)

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  4. Funny, I know one of the post docs on Curiosity. She works the Chem Cam unit, and so far, so good.

    One of the biggest problems with the ability of these tiny rovers to detect life is the Planet Protection Act that keeps them from landing in the very places most likely to have the evidence of life. It's one of the great caveats of space exploration: How do we explore a planet without contaminating it with our own DNA/Bacterian/Viruses/etc. Such a big responsibility, so I guess it's a good thing they are so prudent with where they let the rovers go.

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    1. Hi Rena, I didn't know there was a Planet Protection Act. How interesting :-)

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  5. It is amazing we can build machines to do these things. Don't suppose I'll ever get to Mars, but it's cool to think the first person who will is already alive...

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    1. It is indeed quite inspiring :-)

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  6. It would be amazing to visit the planet-but it is so far and it may be more effective to build a space elevator before we visit the Red Planet

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