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Appendix E: Planetary Science Division Missions
Pages 97-102

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From page 97...
... Curiosity currently is in its second extended mission, embarking on an ascent of the mound at the center of Gale crater, informally known as Mount Sharp. Scientific Productivity Through geological, chemical, and isotopic analyses, the MSL mission has found evidence of a sustained, habitable environment at a location in Gale crater called Yellowknife Bay.
From page 98...
... Impact on the Current and Future Health of the Relevant Scientific Communities The MSL mission has been a key part of the Mars Exploration Program, collecting data sets from the Martian surface with unprecedented accuracy and precision. The diversity of science enabled by the MSL instrument suite, which includes imaging, alpha particle X-ray spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction analysis, laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy, mass spectroscopy, and temperature, wind, and UV measurements, has led to the involvement of a large segment of the Mars science community in the analysis of MSL data -- the entire science team consists of 485 people at the time of this writing, approximately 40 percent of whom are non-U.S.
From page 99...
... MARS RECONNAISSANCE ORBITER The Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) , a medium-class mission in the Mars Exploration Program, was designed to map the Martian landscape at high resolution for both scientific and programmatic applications.
From page 100...
... Impact on the Current and Future Health of the Relevant Scientific Communities The MRO mission continues to play a significant role in the Mars Exploration Program, both scientifically and programmatically. As with many planetary missions, MRO engages a large segment of the Mars science community, primarily through the analysis of MRO instrument data sets.
From page 101...
... Dawn's capability to accommodate significant schedule changes was a direct result of its use of solar electric propulsion, which can provide planetary launch periods of years instead of weeks. The project completed its prime mission in June 2016, having met or exceeded all its original requirements, and at the time of this writing is conducting an extended mission at Ceres.
From page 102...
... The new operational methods Dawn developed will reduce cost and risk on future SEP missions. Dawn maintained NASA's unique expertise in designing and flying SEP missions, for the subsystem, system, and mission.

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