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Mars Space Science

Mars Rover Begins "Whole New Mission" 93

Posted by samzenpus
from the back-to-the-beginning dept.
sighted writes "NASA reports that the seemingly-unstoppable robotic geologist Opportunity is finding things at Endeavour crater that it has never seen before, adding new life to a mission that has already been epic. Observations 'suggest that rock exposures on Endeavour's rim date from early in Martian history and include clay minerals that form in less-acidic wet conditions, possibly more favorable for life.' In a teleconference today, one mission scientist compared this new phase of exploration to a 'whole new mission.'"
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Mars Rover Begins "Whole New Mission"

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  • XKCD Spirit (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 01, 2011 @07:26PM (#37281218)

    http://xkcd.com/695/

  • by Ga_101 (755815) on Thursday September 01, 2011 @08:56PM (#37281780)
    Which makes it all the greater same that the Beagle 2 did not land. We need a robotic chemist up there.
    While the two NASA rovers have done great work, they are very specialised as robotic geologists. This is great if you wanted pretty pictures of rocks, but does leave you stuffed if you want hard data on potential organic molecules.
    For it's many, many flaws, the Beagle 2 did manage to pack in a lot of science (indeed it would have provided much more interesting results IMHO) into a very small space on a shoe string. I can't help but think that if a little of the now obvious considerable redundancy (two rovers for crynout loud) built into the NASA mission had been given up for more science there would not be such a the need to send a rover the size of a car.

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