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Going (almost) all the way to Mars

Published by Sigurd De Keyser on Tue Nov 22, 2005 12:57 am
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by Jeff Foust; The Earth’s own Moon will play a critical role in the future of human exploration of the solar system. While some might quibble whether the Moon should lie in the critical path for future human missions elsewhere in the solar system, it’s clear under the Vision for Space Exploration that, at least for the US, the Moon will be not just a major goal for exploration, but a place to test some of the systems and technologies needed for missions to Mars and beyond.

Less has been said, though, about the role of Mars’s own small moons, Phobos and Deimos, in any future exploration. The two moons are often an afterthought in exploration plans, which tend to focus on sending human crews to the surface of the planet, either directly from Earth or from spacecraft in orbit around the planet. Phobos and Deimos, unlike the Moon, are not seen as being in the critical path to Mars. Read more at The Space Review.

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