Welcome to Mars Society Australia

Rotor Drones for Mars

by Dr Graham Mann

As in many terrestrial applications, there are good reasons to think that small, highly maneuvrable drones would be valuable to human explorers on Mars. They could be used for scouting difficult or dangerous terrain, aerial photography for EVA safety and maintenance inspection purposes, hoisting antenna wires, fast location of small science targets and rapidly transporting small tools, instruments, circuit boards or regolith samples. In 2014 MSA field trials of Mars astronaut-assistance robots, a small Phantom quadrotor performed as well or better than the ground robots in many tasks.

Very low atmospheric densities and temperatures as well as windblown fine dust make flight in the Martian atmosphere a severe challenge for rotorcraft. To provide sufficient lift, even allowing for one third the gravity of Earth, rotors need to be larger and turn much faster than their terrestrial counterparts. That puts a lot of stress on the rotors. Combined with poor...

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Mars Society Australia at the 17th Australian Space Research Conference

MSA is a partner in the 17th Australian Space Research Conference (ASRC) along with the National Space Society of Australia and the Australian Academy of Science.  This is Australia’s premier space conference covering Australian space science, engineering, policy, history, education, heritage, and outreach.  This year it is being held at the University of Sydney, November 13 – 15.  MSA will chair two streams, one on Mars and one of human factors in spaceflight, with  the annual David Cooper public lecture being held one evening, in honour of the late MSA president.  Member of MSA will be eligible for a deduction.  Members wishing to present are encouraged to do so.  In addition to being a great conference it is an ideal time to catch up with other MSA members.

Find out more about the conference here http://www.nssa.com.au/17asrc/

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MSA Welcomes New Website Content Managers

The Mars Society Australia is pleased to announce the appointment of two new volunteer content managers to assist with maintaining this website. 

Darryn Wong is a Brisbane based Mars enthusiast with a background in IT and administration. His interest in Mars started after reading the Mars trilogy by Kim Stanley Robinson back in the early 2000s. He has recently joined MSA Facebook group.

Earl White is based in Oyster Bay, NSW and has a background in both business and IT.  He has recently completed a Master of Science in Astronomy at Swinburne University in Melbourne. 

"MSA relies on the work of its volunteer members to bring the story of Mars exploration to a wider audience" said MSA President Dr Jonathan Clarke.  "We hope the valued input of Darryn and Earl will result in MSA having a more dynamic online presence". 

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MSA to Support the Mars MEDIAN Mission

Mars Median Penetrator
The Mars MEDIAN (Methane Detection by In-situ Analysis with NanoLanders) Mission is aiming at Mars to be the first multi-probe extra-terrestrial network and it's looking for Methane. It is a joint UK, Australian project.

The mission has been devised by Robert Brand, a leading Australian space entrepreneur, aerospace engineer and innovator. At the age of 17, Robert was involved in support for Apollo 11 in Australia with the feeds from Honeysuckle Creek and the Parkes Radio Telescope. He supported almost every mission from Apollo 11 to STS-7 and played a minor support role in Shuttle flights right up to 1985. In that time...

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Free Public Lecture - Dr Eriita Jones - How can we find water on Mars (and why are we looking?)

Sunday 9th October 2016

Free Public Lecture by Dr Eriita Jones - Booking essential through Eventbrite.

Abstract: Any liquid water on present-day Mars is hidden from view within the Martian regolith, but we can still find clues to where it is, and where it existed in the past.  Come along to this talk to discover why there is so much interest in finding past and present liquid water environments on Mars, whether Mars could really support life, and how learning about Mars can teach us about Earth.

Bio: Eriita Jones completed a Bachelor of Philosophy (Science) with Honours at the Australian National University in 2007 with the title of “ Identifying targets within the potential biosphere of Mars through study of gullies and rampart craters.  of Science” and a PhD at the same university in 2012.  Her PhD thesis was titled “Two...

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