Collection Item Summary:
The Mars Pathfinder possessed five separate antennas for cruise, landing, and surface operations during its 1997 mission. The most important of these was this high-gain antenna, providing continuous telecommunications from the lander on the Martian surface to Earth. This high-gain antenna included a mechanically-steered slotted plate with 2 degrees of freedom in pointing. It provided a nominal 125 bits per second (b/s) uplink rate and a telemetry downlink rate of approximately 600 b/s that could be monitored using the NASA Deep Space Network on Earth containing 34-meter and 70-meter dish antennas.
NASA transferred this to the Museum with the Pathfinder engineering model in 1999.
Collection Item Long Description:
National Air and Space Museum
Do not reproduce without permission from the Smithsonian Institution, National Air and Space Museum
Transferred from Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology
Metal, plastic, and eletronic components
Overall: 2in. x 11in. x 1ft 2in. (5.1 x 27.9 x 35.6cm)
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SPACECRAFT-Unmanned-Parts & Structural Components