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Latest Lander Stories

2010-11-04 11:27:00

BOULDER, Colo., Nov. 4, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- The Ball Aerospace-built Deep Impact Flyby spacecraft successfully completed another "first" for NASA on November 4 when its onboard cameras captured spectacular images of comet Hartley 2 as part of the EPOXI mission. This was the first time in history that two comets - Hartley 2 and Tempel 1 - have been imaged by the same spacecraft, same instruments, and with the same spatial resolution. (Photo:...

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2010-10-17 10:55:00

NASA has awarded Innovative Lunar Demonstrations Data (ILDD) contracts to six companies for the purchase of technical data resulting from industry efforts to develop vehicle capabilities and demonstrate end-to-end robotic lunar landing missions. The data from these contracts will inform the development of future human and robotic lander vehicles and exploration systems.The ILDD Broad Agency Announcement resulted in multiple award firm-fixed price indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity...

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2010-09-03 14:35:00

NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander discovered a surpise chemical in 2008, which suggests that carbon-based chemicals found in 1976 by Viking Mars landers could be from the Martian soil and not from cleaning fluids, according to a NASA statement released on Friday. "This doesn't say anything about the question of whether or not life has existed on Mars, but it could make a big difference in how we look for evidence to answer that question," said Chris McKay of NASA's Ames Research...

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2010-08-16 15:08:39

Russia and India are battling China in a modern-day space race to land an unmanned probe on the moon. Russian and Indian engineers have started working together on a robotic mission to land on the moon in 2013. China's Chang'e-3 spacecraft is also racing to get to Earth's celestial neighbor during the same time frame. Whichever rover lands first would be the first human hardware to function on the lunar surface since the Soviet Luna-24 spacecraft returned to Earth with Moon soil samples in...

2010-08-09 06:32:09

NASA has issued a Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) to purchase specific data resulting from industry efforts to test and verify vehicle capabilities through demonstrations of small robotic landers. The purpose is to inform the development of future human and robotic lander vehicles. The Innovative Lunar Demonstrations Data (ILDD) BAA will result in multiple small firm-fixed price indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contracts with a total value up to $30.1 million through 2012. Multiple...

2010-05-24 14:20:00

PASADENA, Calif., May 24 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander has ended operations after repeated attempts to contact the spacecraft were unsuccessful. A new image transmitted by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) shows signs of severe ice damage to the lander's solar panels. (Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20081007/38461LOGO) "The Phoenix spacecraft succeeded in its investigations and exceeded its planned lifetime," said Fuk Li, manager of the...

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2010-05-24 14:35:00

NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander has ended operations after repeated attempts to contact the spacecraft were unsuccessful. A new image transmitted by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter shows signs of severe ice damage to the lander's solar panels. "The Phoenix spacecraft succeeded in its investigations and exceeded its planned lifetime," said Fuk Li, manager of the Mars Exploration Program at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. "Although its work is finished, analysis of...

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2010-05-19 18:15:00

PASADENA, Calif. -- NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Project will pass a historic Martian longevity record on Thursday, May 20. The Opportunity rover will surpass the duration record set by NASA's Viking 1 Lander of six years and 116 days operating on the surface of Mars. The effects of favorable weather on the red planet could also help the rovers generate more power. Opportunity's twin rover, Spirit, began working on Mars three weeks before Opportunity. However, Spirit has been out of...

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2010-05-14 08:35:00

From May 17 to 21, NASA's Mars Odyssey orbiter will conduct a fourth and final campaign to check on whether the Phoenix Mars Lander has come back to life. During that period, Odyssey will listen for a signal from Phoenix during 61 flights over the lander's site on far-northern Mars. The orbiter detected no transmission from the lander in earlier campaigns totaling 150 overflights in January, February and April. In 2008, Phoenix completed its three-month mission studying Martian ice, soil and...

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2010-04-29 06:00:00

Despite receiving an extra $6 billion in federal funding, NASA could be forced to break down Mars missions into smaller parts in order to save funding, an expert told reporters on Wednesday. In a telephone briefing with reporters, Cornell University astronomer Steve Squyres, the current head of the Mars Exploration Rover Mission, suggested that a single mission to retrieve samples from the planet's surface could be broken down into three smaller missions. Squyers laid out his plans by...