- To obtain precise measure of solar
isotopic abundances. Genesis will measure isotopic
compositions of oxygen, nitrogen, and noble gases.
These data will enable scientists to better understand
the isotopic variations in meteorites, comets, lunar
samples, and planetary atmospheres.
- To obtain greatly improved measures
of solar elemental abundances.
- To provide a reservoir of solar
matter for 21st century science research, eliminating
the need for future solar wind sample return missions.
The Genesis mission is the:
- First sample return of the new
- First to use bulk metallic glass
as collector material.
- First mission to return from L-1.
- First to use a mid-air recovery
for a sample return.
- First NASA mission to develop a
class 10 cleanroom (only 10 particles of contaminant
per cubic meter).
- First mission to study solar wind
in exceptionally accurate analytical mass spectrometer
- First mission to partner with education
research laboratory (McREL) to provide education and
public outreach for a mission.
National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Genesis is one of NASA's Discovery Program missions.
Sweetnam, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA
Project Scientist and Principal Investigator
Donald (Don) Burnett, California
Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA
Lockheed Martin Space Systems
Company-Astronautics Operations (LMAO), Denver,
CO. LMAO is the industrial partner, develops the carrier
spacecraft and the sample return capsule, puts the components
together, and tests the entire flight system. Lloyd
Oldham served as the former deputy project manager
and program manager. Joe Villenga manages the Lockheed
Martin spaceflight and return work.
Los Alamos National Laboratory
Los Alamos, NM. LANL Space and Atmospheric Science Division
develops the sample concentrator and two solar wind
Wiens serves as the Genesis payload activities lead.
Johnson Space Center (JSC),
Houston, TX. JSC prevents and controls contamination
of the solar wind collectors and safely maintains the
returned samples. Eileen
Stansbery serves as the contamination control lead.
Mid-continent Research for Education
and Learning (McREL),
Denver, CO. McREL develops and disseminates a wide range
of materials for education and public outreach efforts.
Search for Origins
The total cost of the mission, including
the rocket that launches it into space and all our communications
systems, is $260 million dollars.
Width of Spacecraft Deck:
Solar Panel Span (longest dimension
of the spacecraft):
Diameter of Sample Return Capsule:
Diameter of Science Canister:
97.3 centimeters longest distance across
Height from bottom to top
of sample return capsule:
Spin Rate on Station:
One revolution every 37.5 seconds
Mass of spacecraft and launch rocket:
Mass at launch, including propellant:
Blowdown monopropellant (hydrazine) with helium pressurant
S-band telemetry reception at 15 kilobits per second
during the halo orbit phase, and 120 bits per second
during the cruise and return phases.
Data Rate during Sample Collection:
15 kilobits per second
Max Power Capability:
Boeing Delta 2 rocket
Kennedy Space Center, Cape Canaveral, FL
August 8, 2001
Project Life Cycle (months):
Mission began in January 1998
Launch in August 2001
Sample recovery in September 2004
Analysis phase concludes 2007
Contact for more info:
Media Relations Specialist, Solar System Beat
Jet Propulsion Laboratory
4800 Oak Grove Dr.
Pasadena, CA 91106