A Space-Based Communications Concept to Support Mars Exploration Missions

by S. J. Poreda, HUBB Systems Inc, United States,
Lt. Lawrence A. Cooper, HUBB Systems Inc, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Engineering, Construction, and Operations in Space


Both the Soviet Union and the United States have expressed a desire to conduct further exploration of Mars and both sides have raised the possibility of joint Mars missions. In addition, the Japanese and European space communities have shown a willingness to take part in and share the costs of such a mission. One area where such cooperation would make a valuable and long-lasting contribution is the fielding of a permanent communications network composed of spacecraft in orbit about Mars. Such a system would enable multiple users to have continual contact with all points on the surface of Mars, as well as provide platforms for long-term and continuous surveillance of the planet. This paper reviews the communication network concept, and key elements which define this mission.

Subject Headings: Space exploration | Communication systems | Mars | Flight | Joints | Benefit cost ratios | Aircraft and spacecraft | Orbits | United States

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