Spring, 1998. From left: Dr. Bob
Anderson and Rob
Manning, chief Pathfinder engineer
and me. Robb had the ultra-complicated job of getting Pathfinder
to the surface of Mars. For example, when Pathfinder was entering
the Martian atmosphere at a very high speed there were many steps
that had to occur in order for it to succeed. All the explosive
bolts had to fire at exactly the right time and in the right
order for the parachute to open and the airbags deploy, etc.
There were at least 50 different points of that type that would
have caused a failure if not executed perfectly. Well, the flight
hardware and the flight software worked perfectly. Robb Manning
was in charge of making it work.
Here he is when the team
first found out that Pathfinder was safely on Mars!
Robb's job for Pathfinder
ended at that triumphant moment.
the next image in the Sandbox.