NASA MAVEN probe, as seen at NASA, has been circling the Red Planet since November of 2014 and has just completed its 1,000th orbit. It has already made some great progress in uncovering the mysteries of Mars. Space scientists and researchers at NASA are anxiously awaiting more results from this probe in hopes of revealing and understanding more about Mars.
NASA MAVEN probe’s Mission to Mars
NASA MAVEN probe, or Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution, was originally scheduled to launch in late 2013, and it did launch on time on November 16th of that year. Since then it has been working tirelessly to ensure that scientists and researchers on Earth have the most current information possible on the Red Planet.
NASA MAVEN probe is equipped with some amazing instruments and tools that help it during its orbits of Mars to get as much data and information as possible. Some of these instruments include an Ultraviolet Spectrometer, a Neutral Gas and Ion Mass Spectrometer, and a Solar Energetic Particle instrument. All of these amazing tools have been crucial in understanding more of the Martian planet and its atmosphere.
NASA MAVEN’s Most Recent Discoveries
Most recently, NASA MAVEN probe, as seen at NASA, has been able to study some of the cloud formations surrounding Mars and give space scientists clues as to what they are and what could have caused them. Using its Neutral Gas and Ion Mass Spectrometer, it was able to take direct samples of the gases in the atmosphere and send them back to the scientists for analysis.
Current theories suggest that Mars’ moons, Phobos and Deimos, could very well be contributing to the cloud formations around the planet. Another thought is that these clouds may have formed from the dust and particles that have collected in the atmosphere and simply arrived there through solar winds.
Future of Mars’ Exploration
The future of the exploration on Mars is looking very positive right now. NASA MAVEN probe has done an amazing job so far over its 1,000 orbits around Mars to collect as much data as it can. Currently, MAVEN is in cooperation with NASA’s Curiosity Rover through what’s known as Electra Relay capability in order to communicate more efficiently between the two different probes.
Since NASA’s Curiosity has great camera capabilities and the MAVEN can more accurately test the atmosphere of Mars, there is a good chance that, between the two, Mars will end up giving away its secrets. With all of NASA’s efforts to continually update and upgrade both its current probes and technology, as well as future projects, there are sure to be leaps and bounds made towards the full understanding of Mars’ atmosphere and surface.
There are various organizations and different NASA locations that have partnered with NASA in all of its recent Mars missions, including NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, the University of Berkley in California, and the University of Boulder in Colorado. Between all of their efforts and future discoveries made by NASA MAVEN probe, there is certain to be fascinating information becoming available about Mars in the coming years.
Mysteries of space never get old because of sights like this and other endlessly enjoyable reasons: