Lockheed on board with $425M mission to Mars
- By Mark Hoover
- Aug 22, 2012
Lockheed Martin Space Systems Co. has been selected by NASA to build and operate a spacecraft to traverse the landscape of Mars, the company said.
This new mission, named the Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport mission or InSight, aims to discover how Mars—as well as the other three planets of the inner solar system—were formed more than four billion years ago. To accomplish this, the spacecraft will measure for the first time the interior of Mars.
The mission will be managed by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and led by its principal investigator, Bruce Banerdt.
Mission cost of the mission is capped at $425 million in 2010 dollars, excluding launch vehicle and related expenditures, and the spacecraft is expected to launch in 2016. It will land near the equator of Mars later that year.
Mark Hoover is a contributing writer to Washington Technology.