AdrianG (adriang) wrote,

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Go for EDL (Entry Descent and Landing)

I am listening to a reply of activity in the mission control room from the landing of the second Mars Rover, Opportunity, from last night. They polled various members of the team, and then someone announced that they were "Go for EDL" (EDL is atmospheric Entry, Descent, and Landing).

This made me wonder what, exactly, they would have done if they decided that they weren't "Go for EDL"? They were minutes away from receiving telemetry indications that the device was entering the Martian atmosphere. Of course, since there is about a 20 minute turn around time for signals to Mars, right now, it was far too late to send any command to the entry vehicle to abort. By the time such a signal arrived, the entry vehicle would probably be hanging on a parachute or resting on the Martian surface.

It just struck me as really funny to hear that "We are go for EDL".

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