Teledyne Microelectronic Technologies Lands on Mars!

August 06, 2012

LOS ANGELES, Calif. - August 6, 2012 - Teledyne Microelectronic Technologies, a Teledyne Technologies Incorporated company, is pleased to offer its most sincere congratulations to NASA and JPL on the successful deployment of the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) rover "Curiosity" in Gale Crater on Mars. Curiosity is the largest rover ever launched by NASA, and it will be used to determine whether Mars is, or ever has been, hospitable to microbial life.

Teledyne Microelectronic Technologies is proud to contribute to the mission's success. Teledyne Microelectronic Technologies manufactured for JPL two complex radio frequency (RF) modules (Transmit/Receive and Up/Down Module) for the MSL. These modules are part of the terminal descent and landing unit which played a major role in the last critical 30 seconds of the lander's approach to Mars.

These RF modules represent only a part of Teledyne's overall contributions to the launch, landing, and operation of the mission. No fewer than five Teledyne companies contributed components crucial to the mission's success:

  • Teledyne DALSA built the image sensors for the Curiosity's Navcams and Hazcams, as were those on the previous Spirit and Opportunity rovers. The hazard avoidance cameras are installed on each corner of the rover and the 3D stereoscopic navigation cameras are part of the rover's camera mast.
  • Teledyne Energy Systems, Inc. (TESI)developed the thermoelectric system that powers the rover. TESI's Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (MMRTG) converts the heat of plutonium decay into electric power with no moving parts. It can produce 125 watts of electrical power from 2000 watts of thermal power for up to 14 years. TESI is currently under contract to manufacture MMRTG units to power upcoming NASA missions to the outer planets.
  • Teledyne Relays supplied electromechanical relays used on Curiosity's communication suite. The company supplied similar components for the earlier Spirit and Opportunity rover.
  • Teledyne Impulse supplied electromechanical power transfer switches that were used on the Atlas V rocket that launched the mission.

"It gives me great pride to be able to contribute to a project that poses such technical challenges and holds such promise for the advancement of science and knowledge," observed Robert Mehrabian, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Teledyne. "I am also delighted to see how many ways and in how many places Teledyne contributes. From the deepest parts of this planet's oceans to the mountains of Mars and out past the edges of our solar system, Teledyne technology enables exploration, analysis, and communication."

For more on the Mars Science Laboratory and Curiosity, visit

About Teledyne Technologies
Teledyne Technologies is a leading provider of sophisticated instrumentation, digital imaging products and software, aerospace and defense electronics, and engineered systems. Teledyne Technologies' operations are primarily located in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and Mexico. For more information, visit

About Teledyne Microelectronic Technologies
Teledyne Microelectronics Technologies, a Department of Defense (DoD) Trusted Source for microelectronics, is a leading supplier of multichip modules (MCMs) and custom microelectronics packaging solutions. Teledyne Microelectronics Technologies provides turnkey design, manufacturing, test services and technical expertise to the DoD community, medical, communications and high-end industrial markets and are internationally known for its complex packaging and miniaturization solutions where size and weight are critical parameters and performance must be optimized. For more information on Teledyne Microelectronics Technologies, visit


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