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This video is about why it’s harder to successfully land spacecraft and landers and rovers on Mars than on Earth, or Venus, or the Moon, or Titan, or asteroids. It all comes down to atmospheric density! When there’s no atmosphere, you can do a powered descent in a flimsy tinfoil spacecraft like the Lunar Module, and when there’s plenty of atmosphere you can do an unpowered descent via heat shield and parachutes like the space shuttle, Apollo command module, Soyuz, Huygens, etc. But on Mars with its thin air, you have to do both powered & unpowered descent, getting the worst of both worlds.
Thanks to Hoppy Price from JPL for fact-checking this video!
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Spreadsheet to calculate landing success rates: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1jqeZCG56UBKvd_wsyW3GD-qd9TAsaW1RPAiZ-1BCUaE/edit?usp=sharing
LDSD Test Footage: https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/tdm/ldsd/videos.html
More LDSD Test Footage:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lJzeeYoLn50
List of Missions to Mars: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_missions_to_Mars
List of Missions to the Moon: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_missions_to_the_Moon
List of Missions to Saturn: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Exploration_of_Saturn
List of Missions to Venus: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_missions_to_Venus
Curiosity Rover Landing Overview: https://mars.nasa.gov/msl/mission/technology/insituexploration/edl/
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Minute Physics provides an energetic and entertaining view of old and new problems in physics — all in a minute!
Created by Henry Reich