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To MARS with MER - Interact

Countdown program script - part 2 of 3


Here is the draft script of the television program. It is continued from Part 1.


8.0 CAMILLE LIVE IN CLEAN ROOM: CM INTERACTION WITH TONY SPEAR (09:05)
LIVE / 03:00
CAMILLE (face behind mask) gives live guided tour of the clean room... 10 times cleaner than Viking... positive air flow... spacecraft "ER"... and asks TONY (who's outside) "what's this... that... " and he directs her around

The live camera hovers with her, and pans away to see what she is speaking about... there is a high, overhead shot from the remotely-controlled camera looking down on the spacecraft:
CAMILLE:
WELL, NOW HERE I AM IN THE CLEAN ROOM... DOWN THERE, THERE'S A WALL OF AIR HOLES, BLOWING ANY PARTICLES WHICH GET IN HERE RIGHT PAST ME AND AWAY FROM THE PATHFINDER, WHICH IS SITTING UP THERE ON ITS 3RD STAGE ROCKET...

WE CAN GET A BETTER VIEW FROM THAT HIGH CAMERA RIGHT UP THERE...

cut to overhead camera: dissolve to still frames of during construction shots:
PATHFINDER IS REALLY TWO SPACECRAFT... A LANDER AND A MINI-ROVER, ABOUT THE SIZE OF A MICROWAVE OVEN/LASER PRINTER!

NOW IT'S INSIDE ITS PROTECTIVE AEROSHELL... BUT JUST A FEW WEEKS BACK, THIS IS WHAT IT LOOKED LIKE AS TECHNICIANS WERE PUTTING IT THROUGH FINAL TESTS...

TONY, GIVE ME A GUIDED TOUR OF WHAT'S GOING ON IN HERE RIGHT NOW, AND WE'LL TAKE OUR CAMERA ALONG TO SHOW EVERYONE WHAT YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT...

TONY
tells us what is going on, and directs CAMILLE around the room. As he and she interact, the live camera shows us what she is seeing...

TONY:
OVER THERE IS THE...

CAMILLE, TO YOUR LEFT...

CAMILLE, with some concern!:
TONY, WHY DOES THIS SAY, "WARNING: EXPLOSIVES LOADED!?!

TONY:
THE PYROTECHNICS ARE DESIGNED TO...

CAMILLE:
WOW, THIS IS REALLY AN AMAZING EXPERIENCE...

NOW WHILE I COME OUT TO WHERE TONY IS, AND GET OUT OF ALL THIS GEAR, Y'ALL CAN SEND US E-MAIL QUESTIONS FOR TONY, MATT, AND WAYNE...

SUPER: as below!
SEND YOUR QUESTIONS TO: onair-lfm@quest.arc.nasa.gov

AND WE'LL GET TO AS MANY OF THEM AS WE CAN!

OVER TO YOU, NEIL AND MATT...


9.0 MATT RESPONDS TO FIRST SCIENCE QUESTIONS: WORCESTER (19:20)
LIVE & VTR / 06:00
LIVE Q&A Worcester
LIVE Q&A from kids at KSC
LIVE e-mail questions relayed by kids at KSC
VTR pre-taped VIDEO questions

NEIL:
WE'LL BE LOOKING IN MORE DETAIL AT THE SPACECRAFT AND THEIR MISSIONS LATER, BUT WE WANTED TO START OFF BY ASKING MATT, AS THE PROJECT SCIENTIST, SOME QUESTIONS ABOUT MARS...

FIRST, STUDENT #1 HERE IN WORCESTER...

STUDENT #1 question:
HI, I'M... AND WHAT... WHY...?

super: MATT GOLOMBEK Mars Pathfinder Project Scientist
MATT:
short, snappy answers... so we can get in a fair number of questions and interactions...

STUDENT #2 question:
HI, I'M... AND WHAT... WHY... ?

MATT:
answers...

NEIL:
NOW WE'VE GOT A QUESTION FROM THE CAPE

McNAIR STUDENTS in Mission Director's Area KSC STUDENT #1 question...

MATT answers:

NEIL:
NOW ONE OF THE QUESTIONS THAT CAME IN BY E-MAIL...

KSC STUDENT #2
asks the e-mail question, giving the name of the respondent

MATT answers:

NEIL:
AND WE'VE RECEIVED SOME QUESTIONS ON TAPE: THIS IS FROM CANADA!

VTR STUDENT #1

MATT answers:

NEIL:
WELL, YOU MAY STILL BE WONDERING JUST WHY WE'RE UP HERE IN MASSACHUSETTS, TALKING ABOUT MARS. MATT THINKS IT'S BECAUSE HE'S A GRADUATE OF U. MASS., JUST (CHECK) MILES FROM HERE, BUT NICOLE LUPARELLI HAS THE REAL ANSWER!


10.0 ROBERT H. GODDARD (21:50)
VTR / 02:30
A kid's eye tour of Worcester and how RHG advanced rocketry:

Student Host (Nicole Luparelli) on porch of RG house holding a 4th July-type rocket

HI! I'M AT THE ROBERT GODDARD HOUSE IN WORCESTER.. WHILE YOU GUYS DOWN AT THE CAPE ARE AROUND ALL THOSE HUGE ROCKETS, I WANT TO TELL YOU A STORY THAT STARTED WITH A BOY... NEW ENGLAND FOURTH OF JULY CELEBRATIONS... AND ROCKETS LIKE THIS.

YOU KNOW, THIS IS WHAT ROCKETS LOOKED LIKE 100 YEARS AGO.

ROBERT GODDARD WHO LIVED RIGHT HERE IS RESPONSIBLE FOR MOST OF THE STEPS IN-BETWEEN THESE ROCKETS AND THOSE AT CAPE CANAVERAL."

South High School exterior.
THE FOURTH OF JULY FIREWORKS THAT GODDARD LOVED AS A KID SPARKED A REAL INTEREST IN ROCKETRY. AND ABOUT THE TIME HE WAS IN SCHOOL HERE, AT OLD SOUTH HIGH...WHERE I'M A SENIOR... GODDARD READ A SCIENCE FICTION BOOK THAT REALLY HELPED TURN HIS INTEREST IN ROCKETS INTO A LIFE LONG QUEST: IT WAS CALLED "THE WAR OF THE WORLDS"

Clark University Physics building

GODDARD WENT TO COLLEGE AT WORCESTER POLYTECHNICAL INSTITUTE, AND, HERE, AT CLARK UNIVERSITY WHERE HE BEGAN TEACHING, AND CONTINUED HIS STUDY OF ROCKETS.

WHEN THE AMERICA ENTERED WORLD WAR I IN1917, GODDARD'S RESEARCH LED HIM TO DESIGN A SOLID FUEL ROCKET FOR THE U.S. ARMY... SHOT THROUGH A TUBE... CALLED "THE BAZOOKA"

GODDARD CALCULATED THAT TO GET A SMALL SOLID FUEL ROCKET... LIKE THE BAZOOKA...UP INTO SPACE, THE AMOUNT OF GUNPOWDER NEEDED WOULD REQUIRE A ROCKET BIGGER THAN THE EARTH ITSELF!

SO GODDARD STARTED SEARCHING FOR LIGHT-WEIGHT FUELS THAT PACKED A MORE POWERFUL PUNCH. AND THAT DROVE HIM TO EXPERIMENT WITH THE USE OF LIQUID FUELS...

AND OFF WE GO TO AUNT EFFIE'S FARM.

GODDARD THOUGHT HE COULD EXPERIMENT WITH ROCKETS HERE...UNTIL THE LOCAL POLICE AND FIRE DEPARTMENTS WERE CALLED WHEN NEIGHBORS THOUGHT THEY SAW AN AIRPLANE EXPLODE. WHAT THEY ACTUALLY SAW WAS THE FIERY TRAIL FROM ONE OF GODDARD'S ROCKETS STREAKING ACROSS THE FARM... BUT I'M GETTING AHEAD OF MYSELF.

AUNT EFFIE'S FARM IS NOW A GOLF COURSE... AND HERE'S THE SITE WHERE GODDARD SET OFF THE WORLD'S FIRST LIQUID FUEL ROCKET. THAT ROCKET WENT UP ONLY 41 FEET. BUT IT CONVINCED GODDARD THAT HE WAS ON TO SOMETHING. AND EVEN THOUGH IT HAS SEEN SOME CHANGES SINCE 1926, THERE ARE STILL A LOT OF MISSILES BEING LAUNCHED ON OL' AUNT EFFIE'S FARM.

NOW GODDARD CONTINUED BUILDING BIGGER AND BETTER ROCKETS AND EXPERIMENTING ON HOW TO LAUNCH ROCKETS INTO OUTER SPACE.

Footage of Saturn rocket (or similar taking off from pad). Adding paint box overlay (grease pencil) when each point is made.

ROBERT GODDARD NEVER LIVED TO SEE ONE OF THESE MONSTERS TAKE OFF. BUT LET'S STOP THE LAUNCH RIGHT HERE AND SEE HOW MANY MAJOR PARTS OF THIS ROCKET GODDARD WAS RESPONSIBLE FOR DEVELOPING:
     LIQUID FUEL
     STABILIZER FINS
     MULTIPLE STAGES TO LIGHTEN THE LOAD, AND A
     GYROSCOPE FOR STEERING

Back on Goddard's porch with rocket

SO, YOU SEE, ROBERT GODDARD HELPED US GET FROM FOURTH OF JULY FIREWORKS TO ROCKETS DESTINED FOR MARS AND THAT'S WHY THE KID FROM WORCESTER GREW TO BE CALLED "THE FATHER OF MODERN ROCKETRY".

I'M NICCOLE LUPARELLI, SITTIN' ON ROBERT GODDARD'S FRONT PORCH... BACK TO YOU!

Alternate close:

I'M NICCOLE LUPARELLI, SITTIN' ON ROBERT GODDARD'S FRONT PORCH IN MASSACHUSETTS...THROWING TO MARS MISSION PLANNER, WAYNE LEE, AT THE CAPE.


11.0 WAYNE AT PAD 17 (22:50)
VTR / 01:00

WAYNE LEE: SUGGESTED copy (Wayne: please iterate with us to get the most memorable material you'd like to say.) intercut "pad" cameras showing details of the work BEHIND ME IS PAD 17B AND THE ROCKET THAT SHOULD LAUNCH MARS PATHFINDER ON ITS WAY ON OR ABOUT DECEMBER 2ND AT THIS VERY MOMENT AIR FORCE AND MACDONNEL DOUGLAS TECHNICIANS ARE DOING SOME PRETTY CRITICAL FUEL-LOADING WHICH IS WHY THIS IS AS CLOSE AS WE'RE ALLOWED TO GET.

THE DELTA IS DESIGNED TO... IT'S X TIMES SMALLER THAN THE APOLLO SATURN V... MGS TOOK OFF ON NOVEMBER 7, ONE DAY LATE BECAUSE OF BAD WEATHER... AND AS OF TODAY, NOVEMBER 19, "MY" SPACECRAFT IS Y MILES FROM EARTH... COURSE CORRECTIONS... LATE-BREAKING MISSION UPDATE... NOW I'M OFF TO THE MISSION DIRECTOR'S AREA, FROM WHERE I'LL BE HAPPY TO ANSWER QUESTIONS ABOUT ROCKETRY AND HOW WE GET SPACECRAFT TO MARS... HERE'S HOW OUR MISSIONS BEGAN...


12.0 GETTING TO MARS (24:50)
VTR / 03:00 / NEIL v.o.
graphics and animation from the MPF and MGS mission films: the specifics of "our" missions...

LIKE ALL SPACECRAFT, THE 1996 MISSIONS BEGAN AS DESIGN CONCEPTS -- BOTH ORIGINATING AT NASA'S JET PROPULSION LABORATORY.

ONE SPACECRAFT WILL CARRY MANY INSTRUMENTS ORIGINALLY DESIGNED FOR MARS OBSERVER, A MISSION WHICH FELL MYSTERIOUSLY SILENT IN 1993, AS IT APPROACHED THE RED PLANET.

MARS GLOBAL SURVEYOR IS DESIGNED FOR TWO YEAR'S OF HIGH-RESOLUTION DETAILED MAPPING AND ANALYSIS OF THE SURFACE.

MARS PATHFINDER IS AN EXPERIMENTAL "DISCOVERY"- CLASS MISSION -- SMALLER, CHEAPER, FASTER FROM DESIGN THROUGH LAUNCH, COSTING ONE HUNDRED AND FIFTY MILLION DOLLARS, THE PRICE OF A COUPLE OF MODEST SCIENCE FICTION MOVIES -- AND INTENDED TO PROTOTYPE INNOVATIVE TECHNOLOGIES FOR SOFT- LANDING AND OPERATING SIMPLE PLANETARY ROVERS.

COMPUTER SIMULATIONS AND FIELD TESTS HELPED VERIFY PATHFINDER'S NOVEL ENTRY, DESCENT AND LANDING STRATEGIES DURING PARACHUTE TRIALS.

THERE WERE TESTS OF RETRO-ROCKETS...

AND OF THE AIRBAGS WHICH -- FOR THE FIRST TIME ON AN AMERICAN MISSION -- WERE TO CUSHION THE FINAL LANDING.

LOCKHEED-MARTIN, IN DENVER, COLORADO, BUILT GLOBAL SURVEYOR... AND THE HEATSHIELD THAT WILL PROTECT PATHFINDER DURING ITS INITIAL PLUNGE THROUGH THE MARTIAN ATMOSPHERE.

THE PATHFINDER LANDER AND ROVER WERE CONSTRUCTED AND TESTED AT JPL IN CALIFORNIA...

MEANWHILE COMPONENTS OF THE DELTA 2 LAUNCH VEHICLES WERE BUILT IN COLORADO BY MCDONNELL DOUGLAS.

BOTH ROCKETS WERE BROUGHT TO AIR FORCE LAUNCH COMPLEX 17 AT CAPE CANAVERAL AIR STATION FOR ASSEMBLY... AND INTEGRATION WITH THE PAYLOADS.

SONY footage we shot, plus the final "petal close" as on NTV

AT THE CAPE, THERE WERE MANY LAST MINUTE TESTS AND CHECKS AS THE VARIOUS PARTS WERE PUT TOGETHER FOR THE FIRST TIME. GRADUALLY PATHFINDER AND ITS SOJOURNER ROVER WERE ASSEMBLED INTO THEIR FINAL LAUNCH CONFIGURATION...

ALTHOUGH THE DELTA LAUNCHERS WHICH START THEM ON THEIR JOURNEY ARE VIRTUALLY IDENTICAL, EACH SPACECRAFT ARRIVES AT MARS VERY DIFFERENTLY.

PATHFINDER'S HEAT SHIELD AND PARACHUTE FIRST SLOW THE SPACECRAFT FROM 17,000 MILES PER HOUR TO LESS THAN 200 M.P.H.

THEN RETRO-ROCKETS SLOW THE CRAFT STILL MORE... AND FINALLY THE NOVEL AIRBAG SYSTEM ABSORBS THE IMPACT AS IT BOUNCES -- AT FIRST AS HIGH AS A 10-STORY BUILDING! -- TO A BUMPY HALT ON THE SURFACE OF MARS.

THE GLOBAL SURVEYOR ORBITER IS HEAVIER AND MUST USE ALL THE EXTRA ROCKET FUEL IT CAN CARRY JUST TO SLOW DOWN ENOUGH TO BE "CAPTURED" IN A LONG LOOPING ORBIT AROUND MARS. THE WEIGHT OF THE EXTRA FUEL IS MORE THAN 4 TIMES THE WEIGHT OF THE SCIENCE PAYLOAD!

TO ATTAIN THE FINAL LOW ORBIT NEEDED FOR PRECISION MAPPING, GLOBAL SURVEYOR WILL BE THE FIRST OPERATIONAL SPACECRAFT TO USE "AEROBRAKING", USING ITS SOLAR PANELS TO SKIM LIKE A BADMINTON SHUTTLECOCK THROUGH THE UPPER FRINGES OF THE MARTIAN ATMOSPHERE SEVERAL TIMES A DAY FOR SIX MONTHS. MARS GLOBAL SURVEYOR, SLOWS A LITTLE EACH TIME, CAREFULLY LOWERING ITS ORBIT UNTIL THE DESIRED CIRCULAR TRACK IS FINALLY OBTAINED IN MARCH 1998.

BY THEN, PATHFINDER'S SOJOURNER ROVER SHOULD ALREADY HAVE COMPLETED ITS 7-DAY BASELINE MISSION, SNIFFING ROCKS, TESTING THE SOIL, DEMONSTRATING REMOTELY-CONTROLLED OPERATIONS ON THE SURFACE OF MARS.

WITH ANY LUCK THE LANDER ITSELF WILL CONTINUE ITS "EXTENDED MISSION" THROUGH AUGUST 1998 AND SO PROVIDE "GROUND TRUTH" TO COMPARE WITH THE OBSERVATIONS MARS GLOBAL SURVEYOR WILL BE MAKING FROM ORBIT.


(To be continued in Part 3)