Seven Minutes of Terror – NASA’s Mars Mission
Have you heard about it? We have another billion dollar rover heading towards Mars right now. On August 5th, it will be plummeting toward the planet going thousands of miles an hour and it will have to land, of its own accord, without shattering to pieces.
From the top of the atmosphere to Mars’ surface, it will be a seven-minute plummet. Contact between NASA and the rover has a 14 minute delay however. What’s that mean? Well, when we first hear that the rover has touched the atmosphere of Mars, in reality, it has already finished landing. We won’t know about its success or its failure for a full seven minutes after the fact. This is called the Seven Minutes of Terror and if you’re interested in learning more about it, check out NASA’s awesome video:
Want to find out more about the NASA Space Program? Check out their website at http://mars.jpl.nasa.gov/
or follow the Curiosity Rover Exploration Program on the National Public Radio’s newspage.
If you like space and science, don’t forget there’s a lot of awesome books on the Middle School and High School Summer Reading Lists.
If you’re in 10th grade and like all things outer space, don’t miss reading Neil DeGrasse Tyson’s Pluto Files!
11th graders interested in our planet and the atmosphere should grab, Six Degrees: Our Future on a Hotter Planet.