March 19, 2018

InSight lander flown to California for final launch preps

March 2, 2018

NASA’s robotic InSight Mars lander arrived at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California this week aboard a U.S. Air Force cargo plane, ready for final testing, fueling and launch aboard an Atlas 5 rocket May 5, two years later the originally planned.

NASA gears up for brisk launch pace, starting with weather satellite

February 14, 2018

Engineers at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center tasked with overseeing launches of scientific satellites and interplanetary probes will be responsible later this year for ensuring six major missions safely get into space over a span of a little more than six months, beginning with the launch of NOAA’s new GOES-S weather observatory on an Atlas 5 rocket March 1.

InSight lander’s troubled seismometer passes major test

March 28, 2017

A balky interplanetary seismic instrument that ran into technical problems in 2015, forcing a two-year delay in the launch of NASA’s InSight lander to Mars, cleared a major test last week after engineers redesigned part of the sensor package, boosting confidence that the mission will be ready to blast off in May 2018.

NASA official says new mission selections on track despite InSight woes

September 7, 2016

A $150 million cost overrun and two-year launch delay for NASA’s InSight Mars mission could mean fewer opportunities for new planetary science missions in the next few years, but the head of the agency’s science division said this week NASA will still approve development of at least one new solar system probe in December.

Fate of NASA’s InSight Mars mission to be decided soon

March 5, 2016

NASA is close to deciding whether to spend an extra $150 million to send the InSight lander to Mars in 2018 or cancel the mission after an instrument problem made the spacecraft miss a launch opportunity this year, with a verdict on the project’s future expected within weeks, officials said.

Launch of NASA’s next Mars mission delayed until at least 2018

December 27, 2015

Persistent problems with a seismometer instrument package will keep NASA’s InSight Mars lander from departing for the red planet during a March launch period, and officials said they will consider shelving the $675 million project if the issues prove too costly to fix.

Two ‘microprobes’ to accompany InSight lander to Mars

June 14, 2015

NASA managers have formally approved the launch of two small CubeSat-based satellites with the InSight Mars lander next year, adding an experimental data relay capability to give ground controllers news about the landing’s outcome.

Crunch time: Next Mars lander enters final year before launch

March 4, 2015

Wednesday marked one year until the launch of a NASA seismic station to Mars, and scientists believe they have found a suitable operating post for the lander as engineers race to keep the mission on schedule for liftoff in a narrow 26-day window next March.

New Mars lander takes shape

November 17, 2014

The next Mars lander — a platform to drill beneath the surface of the red planet — has begun its assembly phase in preparation for launch in March 2016.

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