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Communications Mars Networking Space

Mars One Studying How To Maintain Communications With Mars 24/7 143

braindrainbahrain writes "Mars One, the low-credibility effort to colonize Mars, is at least funding some interesting concept studies for their alleged plan to colonize the red planet. One of the most interesting is the effort to maintain uninterrupted communications with Mars. This is not as trivial as it may sound, as any satellite in Martian orbit will still have to deal with occultations between Mars and Earth due to the Sun. Surrey Satellite Technology will be performing the study."
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Mars One Studying How To Maintain Communications With Mars 24/7

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  • Re: classy (Score:5, Informative)

    by fahrbot-bot ( 874524 ) on Saturday January 11, 2014 @01:07AM (#45924249)

    Space mission faster and more ambitious than NASA financed by reality TV and application fees?

    They did manage to get the Moon landing done is fairly short order - in the 1960s - (obviously not as ambitious as going to / living on Mars) but, sadly, present-day NASA is crippled by the fear of people actually dying, LOTS of bureaucracy, politics (internal and external) and Congress. If the Government (meaning "we the People") *really* wanted to be on Mars, we'd be there.

  • Every 780 days (Score:5, Informative)

    by mbone ( 558574 ) on Saturday January 11, 2014 @01:29AM (#45924327)

    Once per synodic period (779.94 days) you will lose 10 days or so during superior conjunction, or ~ 1.3% of the time. NASA gives its spaceships at Mars a vacation (for the rovers, generally a long integration X ray spectrum of some rock). If Mars One really worries losing contact even for that little, they can either build a cycler, or put a relay somewhere else (say, orbiting Venus).

  • by AK Marc ( 707885 ) on Saturday January 11, 2014 @02:15AM (#45924505)

    Put some satellites in orbit around the sun. Enough of them and you'll always be able to see at least one of them from either planet, and they can relay between each other.

    "enough" being one (or more). One satellite in Earth's L4 or L5 Lagrange points, and you have sight around the sun. If you don't use that natural gravity saddle, you might want to use a gravity hole, such as Jupiter to put another, though to stop Jupiter from getting in the way, you'd still need to use a Lagrange point, I'd recommend L1.

    This doesn't seem like a hard problem. You can even launch three, Earth L4 &L5, and Jupiter L1 to have redundant and diverse coverage. Though no idea if they were looking for something in a more stable orbit, as Lagrange points take corrections to remain in. Or if those sorts of details were the point of the study.

  • Re:Quantum Telegraph (Score:3, Informative)

    by liquidrocket ( 3439123 ) on Saturday January 11, 2014 @04:51AM (#45925005)
    Why would you want to use quantum entanglement for communication with Mars? If you are after faster-than-light communication, quantum entanglement is not going to help you. (and it is extremely unlikely anything else would either)

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