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[EDIT] Perseverance landing video


The sky-crane is the most amazing thing to me. Just genius.

So much more elegant than having something inflate like an octagonal airbag, and roll around the surface willy-nilly.

The sky crane, with all that can go wrong, 125M miles away through frozen space, can then be thrown into the extreme heat of entry.
Then independently executed by software, can gently place a 2,200lb (Earth weight) 10'x 9' vehicle on an ideal patch of terrain of it's own choosing.

Then there's the helicopter/drone.
It's a shame we aren't already making equipment drops for manned missions.


If it goes like this they might discover the Galactic Federation base on there, complete with US government personnel. 😂


That landing part is also mind blowing. This hover thing had to decelerate to almost a dead stop, then pick the location to deploy the rover entirely on its own, then put it down, and fly away, all completely automatically. Apparently parachutes don't work particularly well on Mars due to thin atmosphere. Which is why, I suspect, SpaceX does not use them, or the proposed winged designs from the 80s (notably Energia Uragan), to land their boosters, and likely won't use them to land the BFR on Mars.

To date only two nations were able to successfully land a probe there: the Soviet Union was technically first and by quite a margin (1971!), but their probe only worked for 20 seconds and presumably got immediately fucked up by a dust storm. They haven't succeeded since. If it were successful, by the way, it would have deployed the first rover as well - quite a feat at the time, because that rover would have to drive around autonomously - radio signals take too long for any kind of meaningful control to be possible.

The first truly successful lander did not arrive until 4 years later when NASA's Viking lander was put on the surface and returned pictures from there. European probe did land (some 28 years later), but failed to deploy solar panels, so it wasn't clear until much later (like 2015) whether it crashed or not. In fact, you could argue it's still not clear - you can't tell from the photos whether it got screwed up by an overly hard landing, even if NASA wants to throw ESA a bone by saying that it "partially deployed". It's sort of like rocket engineers call it "rapid unscheduled disassembly" when their rockets blow up.


Here it is....the video of the decent!! Incredible multi-camera views of the sky crane maneuver..WOW!

I have no words to describe how I feel after watching that video. I’m blown away. To be able to watch high resolution video from a lander on another planet is amazing. I’m going to watch this over and over again.

I’m so impressed by what NASA and JPL has accomplished with this mission!
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