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Watch engineers build a Mars rover! Answered

This is super-cool. NASA's JPL has set up live streaming video from inside the clean room where they're building the Curiosity rover, formerly known as the Mars Science Laboratory. Work is from 8am-11pm PDT Monday through Friday. I found this on Saturday morning and I've been waiting all weekend for those slacker engineers to get to work so this would be worth posting.

Some comparison: The old Sojourner rover from 1997 was the size of a largeish R/C car. The Mars Exploration Rovers from 2004 that are still running (!) are the size of golf carts. This thing's the size of a Mini Cooper, and has a proportionally larger load of sciencey stuff packed on.

Instructables doesn't allow you to embed Ustream into Forum topics, so you'll have to go to Ustream to watch: http://www.ustream.tv/nasajpl

Via Bad Astronomy Blog, image from MSL website


They're getting on quite well - several extra bits, boxes on arms and such.

They're typical Working Men, as well. There were six men in view a few moments ago - one was poking at the rover, one was poking in a box, three were watching the chap poking the rover, and one bloke was watching computer monitor.

Hey, be nice! They are standing outside the stay-clear while the rover's arm is exercised. It's probably not supposed to move, but do you really want to be in the way when something goes wrong?

What does that warning sign mean? Looks like a "no pets" sign...

nasa warning sign.jpg

. Looks like "Riding of hobby horses is strictly forbidden" to me, but my zoom is not quite CSI quality.

from Freedom of Too Much Information Act:

Robots should not accept piggyback rides from curious onlookers.
Fares to and from the airport are fixed by the Taxi and Limousine Commission. Look for the official medallion or placard posted by the driver. Tolls and extra charges en route to Mars are added to meter rates.


or it means "soap shall be tethered on all missions, regardless of gravitational forces in effect".

from moderator (Veronica) on ustream chat:

1:47 mikeasaurus: did you cover what the yellow sign says?
1:49 VeronicaMcG: The yellow sign states "Flight Hardware. Safeguard it."


09:45 here.

OK, Ibles is in California and you're 8 hours behind, JPL is in California, so work resumes...

16:00 UK time.

See you later!

That eight hour difference will persist until Sunday 7 November at 01:59 local. The U.S. has "extended" DST (Summer Time) through the first week in November, leading to this discrepancy with Europe.

If I time my posting right, this comment should be at 10:00 Ibles time, and a guy an a Tyvek suit just showed up.

Whoop, 8am Ibles time, that's 10am my time. And now there's two of them! GASP.

And an hour later (gotta make time for coffee!) there are two teams in there...

God, I hated wearing those suits! Even with the recirculating AC down to 65 F, you still sweat like a pig :-(

Looks like one of them is bolting on the radiator...

space radiator.jpg

Oh, now that would be cool - I wonder what it would look like?

What, Kelsey sweating like a pig? I imagine very wet and rather...frightening.

Also smelly

That's to scare off any marauding Martians that might disturb the Science.
>hums "Still Alive"<

The maurading Martians are the Science :-D