GE ASTRO SPACE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY GE ASTRO SPACE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Artist's impression of the Mars Observer spacecraft in orbit. The Mars Observer mission will be launched in September/October 1992, entering the orbit of Mars a year later. The orbit will be sun-synchronous, and will allow a complete high-resolution map of the planet to be made over the one Martian year duration of the mission (687 Earth days). In addition to its camera, Mars Observer will carry a laser altimeter accurate to a few metres and a variety of instruments investigating Martian mineralogy, atmosphere and magnetosphere. The six-part solar panel will provide around 1.1kW of electricity.
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