Jethro's Braindump


Landing a Rover

Landing on Mars is challenging because there’s is too much atmosphere to be ignored, but too little to cushion the landing. Hence, all Mars rovers will have a three phrases: Entry, Descent and Landing (abbrieviated EDL). (Lakdawalla, n.d.)

TODO Read (Welch, Limonadi, and Manning, n.d.)

How the Curiosity Rover worked

  • Lots of redundancy. A-side and B-side electronics.
  • The battery was a MMRTG battery. Curiosity used plutonium-238 as the nuclear fuel, and an array of thermocouples reliably converted the released heat into electricity with no moving parts.

Things to account for:

  • Operating temperatures of each component. Scientists maintained a heating table, and also had schedules to ensure that the various parts were heated to operating temperature before functioning.
  • Have a system collecting heat output from energy


Lakdawalla, Emily. n.d. The Design and Engineering of Curiosity : How the Mars Rover Performs Its Job. Springer.

Welch, R., D. Limonadi, and R. Manning. n.d. “Systems Engineering the Curiosity Rover: A Retrospective.” In 2013 8th International Conference on System of Systems Engineering, 70–75.