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We Made It!by Jim Murphy
July 4, 1997
I'm sitting here at the Jet Propulsion Lab at 1:39 PM PDT,three-and one half hours after Pathfinder successfully landed on Mars (which is just way cool to think about !!!), and I'm waiting for our first surface meteorology data, which we should receive in 26 minutes. This has been an absolutely terrific day for the spacecraft, and all of us who are interested in its success. The entry, descent, and landing apparently went just as designed (at least, that is the present indication), and we have a functioning spacecraft on the surface.
We'll receive three minutes of surface weather data, obtained at 7 AM local time at the landing site, during the low-gain data downlink which will begin in 24 minutes. We'll get a temperature measurement a few centimeters above a solar panel (our mast will not 'stand up' until 11 AM local time at the landing site. We'll also measure pressure during this session. We won't measure wind until our mast is deployed.
It is a great day!!! We really do appreciate all the encouragement and good wishes we have received from all of you !!!