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  • Spirit Condition Serious
    An anomaly team has been huddled to determine the current state of the Spirit rover's health. They estimate days to weeks before a final operational diagnosis can be completed.
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  • Second Opportunity, Safe on Mars
    Surviving its harrowing entry and landing, the second Mars rover called Opportunity was reported to be 'live' and at rest on the surface of a volcanic plain called Meridiani Planum. As Rob Manning, the development manager for the critical Entry, Descent and Landing.
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  • Gem Sorting for the Next Earth
    Which star is most like our own Sun? This intriguing question offers a chance to test hypotheses about what places might make for a good Earth-like, habitable planet. The best found so far may well be the 37th most westerly star in the constellation, Gemini,
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  • No Hostage to Earth’s Geology
    Spirit rover geologists might look to drill into their first rock sample, with their cameras trained on whether it shows round or glassy grains inside. The differences may extend their sampling strategy to look for other examples from the four major classes: volcanic, impact debris,
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  • Martian Silk and Sandpaper
    With Mars lander now transformed into roving geologists, mission scientists stretched Spirit rover's robotic arm and took highest resolution image. Their microscopic imager can resolve soil and rock surfaces with sufficient sharpness to photograph features small enough to compare with width of human hair.
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  • Spirit Makes Tracks on Mars
    The Mars Exploration Rover, Spirit, descended today from its landing base onto red soil. The wheel tracks were confirmed by new images looking back at what is now debris, its petal-like platform. What was a mission that began as a lander is now a
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  • Mars Express: Takeout Service
    The swarm of ongoing Mars missions offers scientists a chance to combine wits, either using different instruments or unusual perspectives. An experiment dreamed up in a Paris cafe less than a year ago will unfold on Friday, when the European Mars Express orbiter looks down
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  • Shadow Boxing with ‘Fear’
    One of the most intriguing views that the rover Spirit may bear witness to is a solar eclipse by its potato-shaped moon, Phobos. Taken from the Greek word, 'fear', Phobos makes two trips across the martian sky everyday and passes in front of the
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  • Spirit Scientists Plot a Course
    The first thing that the Spirit rover will do later tonight, after getting all six wheels on the ground, is sample the soil in the immediate vicinity of its base petal. Once that task is complete, Spirit will head out toward a nearby crater.
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  • Our Time in the Sun
    Each martian day is about 40 minutes longer than a terrestrial one, but thanks to the first interplanetary sundial the differences in movements of the sun can be tracked between two planets by the shadow that the sun casts.
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  • Reverse Robotic Origami
    As the Spirit rover unfolded from its stowed position and prepared to drive with six wheels in the martian soil, mission scientists described why the current landing site has their team ready to drive.
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  • Earth, Wind and Fire: What’s Missing?
    In variations on the Mars' theme to 'follow the water', one colorful global map shows why scientists have followed the hydrogen to the Spirit rover's current location at Gusev crater.
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  • Water on Mars? Maybe.
    The first color images, seen as if in infrared with heat detection, reveal that Gusev crater has some signatures of minerals common to Earth that form only in water. If found in future images, this ground-truth provided by being on the surface will
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  • Where on Earth is That?
    Short of buying a ticket to Mars, where on Earth is the best place to get a taste of what scenery the red planet offers? A tourist to a Mars analog location would have to pack well, because the destination may be cold, dry,
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  • There’s History in Them Thar Hills
    Taking the Spirit rover over the horizon is just one of the unique mission options available to scientists as they debate where to turn next on Mars.
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