Pictures of Spacecraft
The Orion capsule and ESA-designed service module are seen here shortly after launch, with the service module's solar arrays deployed. The preliminary upper stage of the Space Launch System -- the Interim Cryogenic Propulsion System -- is still attached.
HiRISE shot this view of Curiosity and its tracks, leading all the way back to the landing site, on January 2, 2013 (sol 145). Curiosity was in Yellowknife Bay, at the site from which it took the "Grandma's House" panorama.
Lunokhod 2 roved 37 kilometers across the Moon over five lunar days (Earth months) in 1973. This image, taken by Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter's high-resolution camera, shows the final resting place of Lunokod 2, as well as the crater that caused its death.
A portion of Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter photo M114185541RC, with a 1978 map of the Lunokod 1 traverse superimposed. The identification of Luna 17, Lunokhod 1, and the rover's tracks was made based on analysis of the Lunokhod navigation records and TV camera panoramas.
Curiosity delivered a sample of Martian soil to the rover's observation tray for the first time on sol 70 (October 16, 2012). The sample came from the third scoopful of material collected at the "Rocknest" patch of windblown dust and sand. This image, taken later that same sol by the rover's left Mastcam, shows how wind or vibration or both affected the sample after delivery, moving much of it off the tray to the left in this view. The tray is 8 centimeters in diameter.
A model of Chang'E 3 on display at the Zhuhai Airshow in November 2012. Photo originally posted by user "Galactic Penguin" at nasaspaceflight.com. On the backdrop is an artist's impression of the Chang'E 5 lunar sample return mission.
As Opportunity stood on the rim of Endurance crater on sol 180 (July 27, 2004), the mission timed a Hazcam photo to catch the rover's shadow stretching deep into the crater's interior.
The Sample Analysis at Mars, or SAM, is about the size of a microwave oven. This image was taken before installation of its side panels and before environmental testing. The suite's three instruments are visible: the tunable laser spectrometer (TLS) at lower left, quadrupole mass spectrometer (QMS) at upper right, and gas chromatograph (GC) at lower right.
A detailed gas flow diagram for Curiosity's SAM instument. Yellow boxes are the main analytical instruments: the Quadrupole Mass Spectrometer (QMS), the Tunable Laser Spectrometer (TLS), andthe Gas Chromatograph System. Tan boxes labeled MN are manifolds, junctions of tubes. Microvalves (V) control where gases can flow. The Sample Manipulation System (SMS) with its Solid Sample Inlet Tubes (SSIT) handles solid samples and places them into ovens. There are two Wide Range Pumps (WRP) behind two High Conductance Valves (HC). Air enters the rover through two Inlets. There are two helium tanks (He) as well as a tank of oxygen (O2) and calibration gas. Scrubbers, Getters (G), and other traps can trap gases for later release and analysis. I don't know what (PM) are. Not shown in this diagram are the manifold and pipe heaters and the temperature sensors associated with each heater.
Technicians and engineers inside a clean room at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory position SAM above the Mars rover, Curiosity, for installing the instrument. The rover is upside-down with its belly pan removed for access to the interior.
The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument, largest of the 10 science instruments on Curiosity, includes three different laboratory instruments for analyzing chemistry, plus mechanisms for handling and processing samples. SAM will examine gases from the Martian atmosphere, as well as gases that ovens and solvents pull from powdered rock and soil samples. This schematic illustration shows major components of the microwave-oven-size instrument.