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Новый марсоход NASA «Марс-2020» собран и проходит активную фазу тестирования

Новый марсоход NASA, который отправится на Красную планету летом 2020 года, в настоящий момент проходит активную фазу проверок и тестирования. Как сообщает портал Space.com, специалисты Лаборатории реактивного движения NASA (JPL) полностью собрали и провели испытания совместимости специальной капсулы, в которой марсоход полетит к нашему планетарному соседу. В ходе посадки на поверхность Марса новой автономной научной лаборатории, как и ее предшественнику «Кьюриосити», приземлившемуся на Красную планету в 2012 году, придется испытать «7 минут ужаса».

Новый марсоход NASA «Марс-2020» собран и проходит активную фазу тестирования

Для подготовки марсохода к этому суровому испытанию, ученые проводят надежную «укладку» всего научного оборудования и тщательно проверяют правильно ли подогнан в буквальном смысле каждый болтик и винтик. Новый марсоход и «Кьюриосити» обладают аналогичными шасси и рамой, однако ровер, который отправится на Марс в 2020 году, оснащен другими научными инструментами.

«Укладка является очень важной частью подготовки миссии. Как бы не были хороши наши компьютерные модели, мы должны убедиться в том, что все соединительные отверстия совпадают и всё сходится так, как и должно», — комментирует Дэвид Грюэль, координатор сборки, тестирования и запуска миссии «Марс-2020» из Лаборатории реактивного движения.

«Это удивительное чувство, когда видишь, что все собрано и ожидает дальнейшей фазы подготовки, которая в конечном итоге приведет к тому, что ровер доставят на стартовую площадку на мысе Канаверал и отправят на Марс в июле следующего года».

Для процесса укладки специалисты JPL используют настоящий марсоход и его «двойник», практически точную копию, с помощью которой, перед сборкой и установкой настоящего оборудования, проверяется правильно ли сходятся между собой все детали.

В ходе последней серии проверок инженеры установили поверх ровера-двойника верхнюю часть спускаемого модуля. Убедившись, что все отверстия друг другу соответствуют, специалисты установили затем и нижнюю часть, которая будет защищать настоящий марсоход при его входе в атмосферу Красной планеты. Затем ученые установили специальный носовой конус, предназначенный для защиты блока парашютной системы ровера «Марс-2020» при входе аппарата атмосферу планеты. На финальной фазе спуска аппарата конус отделится, позволив парашютам мягко посадить марсоход на поверхность.

Далее космический аппарат для акустических тестов был доставлен в специальную зону испытаний на воздействие окружающей среды. В ней моделируются различные экстремальные условия среды, которым марсоход будет подвергаться в ходе своего запуска и посадки. В рамках последней проверки ученые проверят, как звуковые волны и вибрация будут воздействовать на марсоход во время запуска и посадки.

По завершении этих испытаний ученые проверят целостность конструкции аппарата. При успешной проверке, марсоход на неделю поместят в термовакуумную камеру, в которой будут симулироваться условия космической среды, в которых роверу «Марс-2020» придется провести семь месяцев в ходе своего полета к Красной планете. Затем последует еще одна проверка на целостность конструкции и надежность всех соединений. После завершения термических испытаний в вакуумной камере собранный аппарат вернут обратно в сборочный цех, где его заново разберут для очередных проверок и доработок.

«Подготовка этой миссии не останавливается ни на минуту. До тех пор, пока ракета «Атлас» не оторвется от поверхности стартовой площадки на мысе Канаверал и не отправит наш ровер к Марсу в июле 2020 года, мы постоянно будет что-то собирать, проверять и модифицировать», — поясняет Грюэль.

Подобная тщательная подготовка нового марсохода вполне оправдана, ведь на ровер «Марс-2020» будет возложена очень амбициозная задача – найти на Марсе жизнь. Его предшественник «Кьюриосити» за время своей работы на Красной планете смог найти множество намеков на ее существование в прошлом (им были обнаружены частицы воды, органические молекулы и метан), однако сам «Кьюриосити» не приспособлен для эффективного поиска жизни. Кроме того, с помощью ровера «Марс-2020» планируется провести сбор образцов марсианского грунта, которые в рамках последующих миссий предполагается доставить на Землю для более подробного анализа.

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Источник: hi-news.ru

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