A public launch viewing of NASA's latest mission to Mars, carrying a Maryland instrument, will be held at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Visitor Center in Greenbelt, Md. on November 25, 2011. NASA Goddard developed the Sample Analysis at Mars or SAM instrument.
The Visitor Center event is from 9 to 11:30 a.m. EST. The launch window for the Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover opens on Friday, November 25 at 10:25 a.m. EST.
The Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover will explore Gale Crater in search of environments that might have supported life at some time in the past -- or could still today. The Sample Analysis at Mars investigation, or SAM, will use a suite of three analytical tools inside Curiosity to study chemistry relevant to life.
The NASA Goddard Visitor Center's launch event will include:
* A talk and Q&A session about Curiosity and SAM, led by a SAM scientist
* A call from SAM/Curiosity scientists participating in launch events at Cape Canaveral
* Hands-on Mars- and SAM-related activities
* Science on a Sphere
* SAM/Curiosity resources for teachers
* Launch viewing via NASA TV
* And more!
Anyone of any age who is excited about the Mars or exploration is welcome to attend. If the launch of MSL is postponed, the event will still take place on Friday, November 25, from 9 to 11:30 a.m. EST.
For the latest targeted launch date/time, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/missions/highlights/schedule.html
For directions, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/centers/goddard/visitor/directions/index.html
For more information about SAM, visit: http://msl-scicorner.jpl.nasa.gov/Instruments/SAM/
For more information about Curiosity, visit: http://mars.jpl.nasa.gov/msl/