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Re: SPAAACE

#50
Cody wrote:
Wed Jul 25, 2018 3:42 pm
The Martian equivalent of Lake Vostok, perhaps?

I just read this news a little while ago. Wow.

Apparently these instruments are the only ones that have been able to detect this buried southern polar lake, so this conclusion needs to be replicated independently before we get too excited.

If it can be replicated, though, there are some crazy implications here: Could some kind of life survive in the sort of brine this "water" must be? Are space agency planners already thinking up missions to go drilling? Will they be able to do so, or will any such missions be blocked by those who want no Earthly bacteria contaminating possible Martian ecologies?

Interesting times.
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Re: SPAAACE

#51
If the top is ice all the way through, they could build a rover with an drop-drone on a cable with a (radioactive decay) powered "melting-head".
The cable needs to be heated too, to keep sliding down / or is released from the drone itself (probably easier).

Sounds much more doable than a similar mission to Europa.
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Re: SPAAACE

#52
When S2 passed by the black hole at a distance just 120 times that of the Earth from the Sun, it reached an astonishing orbital velocity of 8,000 km/s. That corresponds to about 2.7% of the speed of light.
Those who seek gold dig a lot of earth, and find little
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Re: SPAAACE

#53
Very cool on both counts. :D Personally I'd rather see a mission to Europa. Much more water there means, I think, much higher chance of finding something particularly interesting. Realistically a mission to Mars to check the lakes is probably a better choice, though, assuming we can confirm there's actually liquid water there.
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Re: SPAAACE

#55
The only problem: I dont see another way than using a nuclear heater to power the melt down.
Anything powered electrically or mechanical would require a huge (mobile) platform. (cost) Might only be viable when humans can land there and operate the drill.
But having a nuclear probe left behind is probably not the nicest approach, possibly contaminating the site.
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Re: SPAAACE

#56
Damocles wrote:
Fri Jul 27, 2018 5:08 am
The only problem: I dont see another way than using a nuclear heater to power the melt down.
Anything powered electrically or mechanical would require a huge (mobile) platform. (cost) Might only be viable when humans can land there and operate the drill.
But having a nuclear probe left behind is probably not the nicest approach, possibly contaminating the site.
It's only a little nuclear. :ghost: And we've left RTGs all over the place already.
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Re: SPAAACE

#57
0111narwhalz wrote:
Fri Jul 27, 2018 1:43 pm
It's only a little nuclear. :ghost: And we've left RTGs all over the place already.

Heh. True. RTG tech is pretty well developed at this point.

Clearly what we really need is a high-powered orbital laser platform that burns a hole in the southern polar ice cap, which a specially-designed rover can then crawl down and back up again to transmit its results.

I see no way in which this plan could go wrong.

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