This article also appears in
Subscribe now »

This artist's concept depicts the InSight Mars lander at work studying the interior of Mars, powered by ATK's UltraFlex arrays.

ATK to provide UltraFlex solar arrays for upcoming Mars mission

Lockheed Martin Space Systems awarded a contract to ATK to provide UltraFlex solar arrays for NASA's InSight Lander mission, which will place a lander on Mars in 2016 to study the red planet's deep interior. The mission’s goal is to provide a better understanding of the processes that shaped the rocky planets of the inner solar system, including Earth, more than 4 billion years ago. The UltraFlex design successfully passed critical design review in February 2014. ATK is now fabricating the InSight arrays for testing later this year and delivery in 2015. The design is based on the array that powered the successful Mars Phoenix Lander in 2008. InSight is managed by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, for NASA's Science Mission Directorate. Lockheed Martin will build and operate the spacecraft.

Continue reading »