What helps power missions to the planets in space? 

What helps power missions to the planets in space?


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bill-education eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Missions to other planets are powered by special purpose vehicles called spacecrafts. A spacecraft is a special vehicle designed specifically for travel in space. It may be manned or unmanned. It is designed to carry special equipment tailored to meet the requirements of the voyage and the data it is meant to collect.

When a space mission is approved, a Scientific Working Group works on the essential science components of the space vehicle. Objects in the solar system are in a state of constant motion. Scientists working on the vehicle must therefore carefully work out when to launch the spacecraft and how fast it should travel in order to meet the planet it is travelling towards.

When completed, the vehicle is first tested on ground. If all goes well,the vehicle is launched on a multi-staged launch rocket at a pre-determined date, time and location (barring unfavorable weather changes). Ground control keeps in contact with the vehicle through the deep space network. Further details on the engineering and working of a spacecraft is provided in this link.

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