Meet a Melbourne man with a mission to master Mars



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After the probe features on Mars (going well – and sometimes not), use a strategic weapon to use "mill" to go up to five meters below the surface, leaving a long tail sensor to wake up. It then marks the essential symptoms of Mars: to find out what heat is there; flows from the heart of the planet to the surface.

Mark Fittock, 34, left the school in 2001 and took a double degree at the University of Monash in astrophysics and mechanical engineering.

Mark Fittock, 34, left the school in 2001 and took a double degree at the University of Monash in astrophysics and mechanical engineering.Credit:DLR

This data, hopefully, will provide a new insight into the nearest neighbor's anatomy, and even to us; emphasizing the emergence of the solar system.

Fittock, 34, left school in 2001 and took a double degree at the University of Monash in astrophysics and mechanical engineering. It was unusual but unambiguous: he wanted to work on space technology.

And seven years ago he got himself at DLR, through "good luck or good chance", he says, as "a great test test leader".

This has been included in a team of 25 as a top-line manager, "Susanna" – the big hill on the surface that uses the palate, keep it safe, guide it on his journey and he will add the readings back to the land of South-

"Morning is a point but we've had to break a lot of new land," said Fittock.

They had a lot of trouble getting to & # 39; whales to work reliably in the Martian environment.

"We do not know well what we're going in there," he said. It is unlikely they can be & # 39; look and watch.

"We can make dimensions from what we see from orbit, but when you're slightly lower below the surface we need to make broader and wider estimates.

"We'll go where nobody has left."

Reduction of Heat and Physical Features, HP3 for short, tow down to nearly five meters) on Mars surface.

Reduction of Heat and Physical Features, HP3 for short, tow down to nearly five meters) on Mars surface.Credit:Mark Fittock

A & # 39; His team's first challenge was to dig deep in order to get good data.

The 1 kilogram, a 30cm long diagonal, will be split into the sand, and # 39; Driving through sand and rock and filling it in the background.

They built "high skinny sandwiches" for a test of how to work.

"The short summary is, it's really hard," said Fittock.

"It was further excavated than expected, and during that time he was damaging himself, because he was going on and gone. It was a great technical challenge, how can we make it stronger. "

They expect Mars's grief to give them a hand, and # 39; make its sand closer than the Earth.

But they also expect to hit rocks.

The concept of this artist shows InSight ashore on NASA after using her instruments on the surface of Martian.

The concept of this artist shows InSight ashore on NASA after using her instruments on the surface of Martian.Credit:NASA

"They built us a good swimming pool, we should be able to dig in, and we will be able to avoid the rocks on the surface," he said.

But there is "moment-biting", he says, when they see the surface they landed, and they can make sure that they can open something.

Even if they get & # 39; Mill into the sand, rocks appear to be beneath the surface. Part they could be & # 39; dropping through, others on which they can travel around, but some can stop them completely by reaching the depth of 5 m. necessary.

An InSight on the west of Mars ... if everything goes according to their plan.

An InSight on the west of Mars … if everything goes according to their plan.Credit:NASA / JPL-Caltech

The excavation process, which begins next year, will be slow and slow. When hitting the troublesheets stopping it, allowing the team back home to analyze the situation and the invention.

Another problem, one completely out of control of the Fittock team, is going to land.

He will go out at dinner with other space engineers.

"I'm going to live with my phone trying to look professional while I sit in it to be a stranger to hell about what a & "It's a big dinner and so I think everyone wants to see it."

There are external risks, Fittock says he is very confident that he is "a good science" out of his systems.

"We will get a better picture not only of what Mars is doing, but also how Mars was created, as Mars got from the start of the solar system to date , and even better understanding of our entire solar system.

"Sometimes we will estimate how little we know about everything outside the Earth and even things here on Earth."

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Fittock has moved on to a new OHB company in Bremen, as the director of his project on future room survey work

He is currently a mission called Hera, working with NASA to go to an asteroid pair and control spacecraft in one.

It gives them a helpful idea of ​​how – if there is an asteroid & # 39; terrestrial marrow & # 39; coming to the Earth – we may be able to remove us from the deadly goal.

"In recent years, we have learned that asteroids and comets are different to what we expect, in many basic ways," said Fittock.

"We want to find out what happens when this event is happening."

Nick Miller is a European writer for The Morning Herald Sydney and The Age

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