Two weeks ago, the Mars Science Laboratory, a.k.a Curiosity Rover, touched down on Mars. On board this car-sized engineering masterpiece was a small, yet important, element that’s 100% blue and white.
An important science goal of the MSL mission is to identify and characterize past or present habitable environments as recorded in sediments and rocks. CheMin is a definitive mineralogy instrument that will identify and quantify the minerals present in rocks and soil delivered to it by the Sample Acquisition, Sample Processing and Handling (SA/SPaH) system. By determining the mineralogy of rocks and soils, CheMin will assess the involvement of water in their formation, deposition, or alteration. In addition, CheMin data will be useful in the search for potential mineral biosignatures, energy sources for life or indicators of past habitable environments. CheMin can unequivocally identify and quantify minerals above its detection limits in complex natural samples such as basalts, multicomponent evaporite systems, and soils.
This NASA document explains exactly why the Israeli cooler was chosen:
CheMin is one of a suite of instruments on board the Mars Science Laboratory rover that
will be conducting chemistry and mineralogy studies on Mars. The Chemin instrument will use
the Ricor K508 cooler, with the Hybrid 18 drive electronics, to cool the CheMin CCD. The
cooler was selected for its small volume and mass, high cooling capacity, low cost, previous flight history and the fact that no other cooler of its size had any flight heritage (mechanical cooler).
CheMin has conducted a comprehensive test program to qualify the cooler for the MSL mission. The coolers have been subjected to lengthy characterization tests, including FA level thermal tests; the qualification model cooler has been subjected to qualification level random vibration and qualification level thermal tests; and two coolers are presently undergoing life testing.
So there you have it. Israeli culture, high-tech and know-how is currently roaming Mars, while BDSers down on earth still want to boycott Israel and regress humankind.
*A Sol is a Martian day
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