The logical way to discover a new life is to suppose it exists on the other planet. As our solar system counts nine planets and four of them are the closest to the Sun, thus the life can be found on one of them. However, the astronomers and physicists have reached the conclusion that Mars is the most probable planet where life forms could live. So almost every three or two years a spacecraft arrives on Mars.
In 2007, the mission called Phoenix launched the lander and it successfully arrived on Mars in 2008. The mass of the lander weighted 350 kilograms, was about 5.5 meters in length including the solar batteries and panels and about 1.5 meters in diameter without them, its total height from the ground to the highest point was 2.2 meters.
The energy was generated using solar panels, as it was mentioned before, that deployed from the main body of the lander after its letdown on Mars. Each battery was capable to function for 16 hours at a time.
The system was created for handling the necessary data and analyzing the main incoming information. Other parts of the system contained technical devices for support the lander workable and functional such as the batteries, the heat generators (so the lander did not get cold), the mechanical details and the structural elements for technical possibility to provide the research.
The challenges of this program were quite impressive. First challenge of the scientists was providing the communication from the area right after the first touchdown. The contact with a surface was established successfully and the lander was able to conduct the further analysis.
The other important task the spacecraft had was finding at least some form of water. Its presence was supposedly proved before the mission itself so the aim was to identify the truth of this statement. Eventually NASA declared that Phoenix confirmed the presence of water ice on Mars. After the heating of the initial sample of water ice, as the temperature reached 0 C, the Lander system elicited the necessary results. As liquid forms cannot exist because of the low pressure on the planet, anyway Phoenix detected the water vapor.
The third challenge of the mission was providing the main data about the soil structure within the samples. Soil on Mars does not have the same structure and some of the elements are not similar with the terrestrial soil elements. As a result, the robotics systems have analyzed the sample and came to the conclusion that it contained unknown and unusual components in salts, and the acidity of the Martian soil.
These discoveries showed that the life on Mars is possible and it was proved scientifically without only building theories around this question. As it was mentioned above, the question of other life forms are still central among the scientists and this mission confirms these suggestions.
If you ask me, this mission on Mars was extremely important for the whole science and the world in general. The photos provided by the website are detailed, informative and instructive. Considering the fact that it was impossible for me to see the preparations of the mission and the launching itself, the photos clarify the details and helps me to conduct the complete research of this mission.
NASA. NASA, 31 July 2015. Web. 01 July 2016.
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