Planets and Moons 

MAVEN Neutral Gas and Ion Mass Spectrometer

While NASA rovers, landers, and orbiters have scrutinized the surface of Mars for decades, a key question to understanding the Red Planet's ancient habitability has hitherto gone unanswered: what happened to its atmosphere? NASA's MAVEN spacecraft will fill in this gap in the history of Mars, thanks in part to its Neutral Gas and Ion Mass Spectrometer, or NGIMS instrument. By studying the interaction of neutral gases and ions with the solar wind, NGIMS will observe current atmospheric escape processes on Mars and allow scientists to extrapolate back to the ancient atmosphere. The results could tell scientists just how long Mars was warm, wet, and hospitable, refining our understanding of its early potential for life.


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For More Information

http://www.nasa.gov/content/goddard/maven-spectrometer-opens-window-to-red-planet-s-past/#.UgExWHB8wgM


Credits

Dan Gallagher (USRA): Video Editor
Paul Mahaffy (NASA/GSFC): Interviewee
Dan Gallagher (USRA): Producer
Aaron E Lepsch (ADNET Systems, Inc.): Project Support
Rob Andreoli (AIMM): Videographer
Dan Gallagher (USRA): Videographer
Please give credit for this item to:
NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center

Short URL to share this page:
http://svs.gsfc.nasa.gov/goto?11310

Mission:
MAVEN: Mars Atmosphere and Volatile EvolutioN

This item is part of these series:
Narrated Movies
MAVEN Instrument Profiles

Goddard TV Tape:
G2013-041 -- MAVEN NGIMS

Keywords:
SVS >> Atmosphere
SVS >> HDTV
SVS >> Mars
SVS >> Neutral Atoms
SVS >> MAVEN
SVS >> Mass Spectrometry
SVS >> Solar System >> Planets >> Mars >> Ionosphere
SVS >> Spectrometer
NASA Science >> Planets and Moons