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NOVA: The Life Issue

NOVA: The Life Issue

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Published by SEDS-USA
The biannual magazine of the Students for the Exploration and Development of Space (SEDS). "The Life Issue" focuses on the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL), a robotic rover named “Curiosity,” which is now on its way to the red planet. In this issue, you will find a discussion of what it is that makes a planet habitable, an overview of the MSL rover, and a review of Gale Crater - the landing site selected for this flagship mission. In addition to all that, we'll introduce you to the new SEDS-USA executive board and look back on the 2011 High-Powered Rocketry Competition.
The biannual magazine of the Students for the Exploration and Development of Space (SEDS). "The Life Issue" focuses on the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL), a robotic rover named “Curiosity,” which is now on its way to the red planet. In this issue, you will find a discussion of what it is that makes a planet habitable, an overview of the MSL rover, and a review of Gale Crater - the landing site selected for this flagship mission. In addition to all that, we'll introduce you to the new SEDS-USA executive board and look back on the 2011 High-Powered Rocketry Competition.

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Published by: SEDS-USA on Mar 06, 2012
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03/11/2013

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The Life Issue
Winter 2012
 
 
In this issue
In December, we invited the members of SEDS-USA to tweet, facebook, or email their top news storiesfrom 2011 to the editors of this magazine. As turbulent as 2011 was for the space community, I’m glad to see that the robotic exploration of Mars and the achievements of the human spaceflight programranked so highly in our query. In response to your comments, this issue will focus on the Mars ScienceLaboratory (MSL), a robotic rover named “Curiosity,” which is now on its way to the red planet. In these pages, you will find a discussion of what it is that makes a planet habitable, an overview of the MSLrover and mission architecture, and a review of Gale Crater the landing site selected for this flagshipmission.
Contents
03 / Le
Ʃ
er from the Chair04 / Meet the SEDS-USA Execu
Ɵ
ve Board09 / SpaceVision / A Revela
Ɵ
on11 / Top Stories of 201212 / Tracers of Habitability / Looking for signs of life on Mars22 / Meet “Curiosity” the Mars Science Laboratory37 / Gale Crater / Curiosity’s new home42 / Alumni Spotlight / Chris Lewicki43 / SEDS-USA Projects46 / Chapter Updates
 
Letter from the Chair
Welcome to 2012!As this latest installment o the NOVA comes out, we cannot help but look back on last year. 2011was a year o many changes to our nation’s space program. The fnal launch o the Space Shuttleo course will be seen as one o the year’s most important events, although not the only. 2011also saw the launch o Mars Science Laboratory, an exciting next step in our Mars program, aswell as or the frst time ever we have a satellite in the orbit o Mercury (MESSENGER). We’ve seenthe loss o another scientifc mission to Mars, the Russian PhobosGrunt. Human spaceight ispreparing or its next steps in the orm o commercial launch providers and planning or beyondEarth orbit. There will be a great amount o excitement as we venture beyond LEO, anddetermine what destinations await us. 2012 will see several o these launch service providersdoing testing to the International space station and other destinations, proving their capabilitiesbeore being put into service. The next ew years will lay the groundwork or our uture exploration and development in space,and the students o today will be among the ones that make it happen. This is why involvementin SEDS helps students learn more about what is going on in Spaceight, and help to buildexperience working on projects.When we look at where SEDS is today, we’ve come a long way as an organization even in the pastour years. The number o Chapters across the country is at alltime highs, and we’re welcomingmore and more chapters in each month. Despite the unknowns about the uture, this growthalone shows that there is an incredible amount o interest rom students across the country in theuture o Space Exploration and Development. Our generation will be the group that makes ouruture in space a reality.SEDS exists as an organization to help guide students to obtain that uture and to get morestudents (and the general public) involved with the space community. This year, I challenge allmembers who are involved with SEDS to go out and get your riends involved, be rom your ownschool or rom other schools. Through growth each member can make their experience in SEDSthat much more.Finally, we’re working on trying to bring our national organization closer together with themembers across the country. I strongly encourage those members o SEDS sign up or ournational announcement letter (www.seds.org/mail) to hear the latest o what’s going on. We’ll besending out updates, opportunities, internships and job postings once or twice a month. I hopethis resource will help members rom across the country keep in touch with SEDS and give themopportunities that you wouldn’t have known about. Thank YouDan Pastu Chair, SEDSUSA
 

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