Phoenix Descending


Its Seven Hours to go as this is written.

Check out NASA TV starting at 3 PM PDT.


Coming up on cruise stage separation. Confirmed at 4:41 PDT.

Phoenix is communicating through the Mars Orbiter.

Phoenix has entered the Martian atmosphere. 4:46 PDT.

Phoenix is on the surface and transmitting. 4:58 PDT.
Phoenix Landed

No more computer simulations. We have the real stuff (Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona).
Phoenix Footpad
Martian landscape.
Martian Surface
Compare these to Polygonal Frost Heaves on Earth.
Frost Heaves.
And this picture from Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.
Mars Polar Terrain
Described on the JPL Web Site as:

This image shows ground within the targeted landing area NASA’s Phoenix Mars Lander before the winter frost had entirely disappeared from the surface.

The bright ice in shallow crevices accentuates the area’s polygonal fracturing pattern. The polygons are a few meters (several feet) across.

The image is a small portion of an exposure taken in March 2008 by the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera on NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.


2 thoughts on “Phoenix Descending

  1. Notes from the JPL web site:

    No Final Nudge Needed for Phoenix

    NASA’s Phoenix Mars Lander will reach Mars this evening with no further adjustments to its flight path. The first possible time for confirmation that Phoenix has landed will be at 4:53 p.m. Pacific Time today.

  2. “Step 29-047 has been completed”. These are the TCM thruster heaters (4:03 PDT).

    Currently interviewing Barry Goldstein.

    Now back to live coverage (4:09 PDT).

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