Whereas the solar is between Earth and Mars, indicators despatched from NASA to the rovers and orbiters may very well be interrupted or in any other case disturbed, probably damaging the fragile and costly gear. This video from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory explains how scientists plan for photo voltaic conjunction by sending sufficient directions prematurely to maintain the rovers busy through the phenomenon. Any knowledge gathered through the break is saved for transmission as soon as the solar is out of the best way. This explicit conjunction started on November 11 and can final till November 25.
Photo voltaic conjunction additionally permits NASA’s busy scientists some much-needed downtime. NASA’s web site explains how employees handles the important interval. “Engineers have turn into expert at letting spacecraft be on their very own. Earlier than photo voltaic conjunction, the mission staff sends up any crucial instructions. Many then contemplate it an opportune time to take just a few well-deserved trip days.”
The timing of this explicit photo voltaic conjunction can even permit NASA staffers to spend Thanksgiving at residence with their households as an alternative of huddled at laptop screens, poring by knowledge despatched from greater than 235 million miles away.