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Space Exploration

The Design and Engineering of Curiosity

How the Mars Rover Performs Its Job

Authors: Lakdawalla, Emily

  • Based on interviews with the scientists and engineers who built and now operate the rover
  • Explains how the rover has actually functioned on Mars, including the wear on its components
  • Collects a wide variety of otherwise inaccessible information on rover engineering, including corrections to previously published work
  • Provides a one-of-a-kind reference to a mission that is likely to last for another decade at least, and which will need to onboard numerous scientists and engineers into operational roles
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eBook $29.99
price for USA in USD (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-68146-7
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: EPUB, PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Softcover $39.99
price for USA in USD
  • ISBN 978-3-319-68144-3
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
About this book

This book describes the most complex machine ever sent to another planet: Curiosity. It is a one-ton robot with two brains, seventeen cameras, six wheels, nuclear power, and a laser beam on its head. No one human understands how all of its systems and instruments work. This essential reference to the Curiosity mission explains the engineering behind every system on the rover, from its rocket-powered jetpack to its radioisotope thermoelectric generator to its fiendishly complex sample handling system. Its lavishly illustrated text explains how all the instruments work -- its cameras, spectrometers, sample-cooking oven, and weather station -- and describes the instruments' abilities and limitations. It tells you how the systems have functioned on Mars, and how scientists and engineers have worked around problems developed on a faraway planet: holey wheels and broken focus lasers. And it explains the grueling mission operations schedule that keeps the rover working day in and day out.  

About the authors

Emily Lakdawalla is a planetary scientist who came to the discipline with a background as a boots-on-the-ground field geologist. Although not currently performing research, she has served as an interpreter of planetary science for the public through writing and editing the blog for The Planetary Society for nearly seven years. Lakdawalla is also a Contributing Editor to Sky & Telescope magazine and has written numerous articles for The Planetary Society's Planetary Report.

Lakdawalla has been following the Mars Science Laboratory mission closely since its inception, attending all relevant public meetings, including the last three landing site selection meetings and frequently checking in on its progress from the observation deck over the clean room at JPL.

Table of contents (9 chapters)

Buy this book

eBook $29.99
price for USA in USD (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-68146-7
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: EPUB, PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Softcover $39.99
price for USA in USD
  • ISBN 978-3-319-68144-3
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
The Design and Engineering of Curiosity
Book Subtitle
How the Mars Rover Performs Its Job
Authors
Series Title
Space Exploration
Copyright
2018
Publisher
Springer International Publishing
Copyright Holder
Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature
eBook ISBN
978-3-319-68146-7
DOI
10.1007/978-3-319-68146-7
Softcover ISBN
978-3-319-68144-3
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XIV, 394
Number of Illustrations and Tables
16 b/w illustrations, 209 illustrations in colour
Topics