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TABLE 3.1 Comparison of Small Exploration Missions

 

Clementine

NEARa

Mars Pathfinder

Mission type

Orbiter

Rendezvous

Lander

Destination

Moon

433 Eros

Mars

 

1620 Geographos (flyby)

253 Mathilde (flyby)

 

Launch date

25 January 1994

11 February 1996

4 December 1996

Arrival time

1 February 1994 (Moon)

June 1997 (Mathilde)

July 1997

 

 

January 1999 (Eros)

 

Return date

Lifetime at destination (months)

2

12

1 to 12

Wet mass (kg)

458

805

570

Dry mass (kg)

235

485

325

Dimensions (m)

2.0 × 1.0

1.7 × 1.7

1.5 × 2.65

Payload

Ultraviolet/Visible Imager

Imager

Imaging System

 

Near-Infrared Imager

Near-Infrared Spectrograph

α-p-X-ray Spectrometer

 

Long-wave Infrared Imager

Lidar

Meteorology Package

 

High-Resolution Imager/Lidara

Magnetometer

 

 

 

Gamma-ray Spectrometer

 

Payload mass (kg)

6.3

55

20 (includes rover)

Cost (FY 1996 $M)b

 

 

 

Development/Construction

67 (55)

125

199

Operations/Support

6 (5)

48

18

Launch

25 (20)

48

48

Total

98 (80)

221

265

Manufacturer

NRLa

APLa

JPLa

Launch vehicle

Titan IIG

Delta II 7925

Delta II 7925

Development schedule (months)c

28

29

39

Primary rationale

Technology

Science

Technology

Management style

"Skunkworks"

Traditional NASA

Traditional NASA

Selection process

Preselected

Preselected

Preselected

NOTE: Clementine and NASA missions such as the first flight in the New Millennium program (Deep Space 1) and the four selected Discovery missions (Near-Earth Asteroid Rendezvous, Mars Pathfinder, Lunar Prospector, and Stardust) display a variety of similarities and differences. However, the only areas where Clementine stands out as an extreme are in terms of its payload (the smallest) and its launch vehicle (a refurbished ICBM).

The process by which Clementine was selected and managed has many elements in common with four of the five NASA missions. Like Mars Pathfinder and NEAR, Clementine was preselected by its sponsoring agency. But Clementine's "skunkworks" management approach (intimate control by a small team with full authority and accountability for every aspect of the mission) has more in common with the principal-investigator mode adopted by the Discovery missions selected through open competition (Lunar Prospector and Stardust) than with the traditional approach adopted by NASA for the preselected Discovery missions. Deep Space 1 stands out as an interesting variant in that it is run as a traditional NASA program but was defined and selected via a hybrid process involving integrated product development teams, that is, groups of experts drawn from industry, academia, and government and charged with the task of identifying and prioritizing technologies likely to increase the capabilities and lower the life-cycle costs of future science missions.

a Abbreviations and acronyms are defined in the glossary.



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