Mars Update - Robot Rovers Are Running

Dr. Edward A. Guinness of Washington University, will be featured at the May meeting of the St. Louis Astronomical Society. The meeting will begin at 7:30 pm Friday, May 20, in McDonnell Hall, Room 162, on the Washington University campus. McDonnell Hall is accessible from Forsyth Boulevard via Tolman Way.

Dr. Guinness will talk about the continuing exploration of the planet Mars, particularly using remote-control robotic rovers. In January, 2004, two Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) touched down on the Martian surface. Both are still operating, returning images and information from opposite sides of the Red Planet. Dr. Guinness will present some of the results of these highly successful missions. He will describe the scientific instruments on board the MER robots, and explain how they are being used to answer important questions about the origin and evolution of the Red Planet. He will also preview the next stages in the exploration of Mars and the role that St. Louis scientists will continue to play in future NASA spacecraft missions.
At Washington University, Edward Guinness is a Senior Research Scientist working in the Earth and Planetary Remote Sensing Laboratory, under the direction of Professor Raymond E. Arvidson. He was one of the planetary geologists who spent the first six months of 2004 at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, selecting targets for the newly-arrived rovers and participating in the initial analysis of the images and data being returned.

The St. Louis Astronomical Society is an organization for individuals interested in astronomy and telescopes. The public is invited to attend its meetings, telescope observing sessions, and special events.