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Latest Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Stories

2008-05-27 16:47:32

This story was updated at 4:13 p.m. EDT. PASADENA, Calif. A spacecraft orbiting Mars has photographed the Phoenix Mars Lander on the surface of the red planet, NASA scientists announced today. Mission controllers also said the mission seems to have hit its first snag as the radio on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO), which communicates with Phoenix, has shut itself off due to an unknown problem. Despite this setback, Phoenix seems to be doing just fine. "Phoenix is...

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2008-05-27 15:15:00

NASA's Phoenix Lander is ready to begin moving its robotic arm, first unlatching its wrist and then flexing its elbow. Mission scientists are eager to move Phoenix's robotic arm, for that arm will deliver samples of icy terrain to their instruments made to study this unexplored Martian environment. The team sent commands for moving the arm on Tuesday morning, May 27, to NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter for relay to Phoenix. However, the orbiter did not relay those commands to the lander,...

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2008-05-26 16:10:00

PASADENA, Calif. -- A telescopic camera in orbit around Mars caught a view of NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander suspended from its parachute during the lander's successful arrival at Mars Sunday evening, May 25. The image from the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter marks the first time ever one spacecraft has photographed another one in the act of landing on Mars. Meanwhile, scientists pored over initial images from Phoenix, the first ever...

2008-05-24 16:49:26

DENVER, Colorado — Getting the Phoenix Mars Lander down and dirty on the red planet is an engineering saga stretching out over a decade. Its mission "raises from the ashes" a spacecraft and instruments from two prior tries to reach the red planet: the Mars Polar Lander that failed to phone home in 1999 and a 2001 lander that was mothballed and shelved by NASA. The builders of those two earlier spacecraft here at Lockheed Martin Space Systems have taken lessons learned to send...

2008-05-22 04:30:00

Science What advantages does the Thermal and Evolved Gas Analyzer (TEGA) have over the Viking mission's Gas Chromatograph in detecting organics? The Phoenix mission has two advantages over the Viking mission with respect to organics. The first is that Phoenix is slowly heating the sample to 1000 C, whereas Viking heated very quickly to 500 C. There are many organics thought to be possibly stable on Mars that vaporize in the 700 C to 800 C range. These types of organics are often call...

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2008-04-17 10:05:00

ESA's Mars Express radar sounder, MARSIS, has looked beneath the Martian surface and opened up the third dimension for planetary exploration. The technique's success is prompting scientists to think of all the other places in the Solar System where they would like to use radar sounders. No matter how accurate a camera is, it can only map a planet's surface. To retrieve information about the underground realm, planetary scientists in the past would have thought it necessary to land on the...

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2008-04-10 20:50:41

PASADENA, Calif. -- NASA engineers have adjusted the flight path of the Phoenix Mars Lander, setting the spacecraft on course for its May 25 landing on the Red Planet. "This is our first trajectory maneuver targeting a specific location in the northern polar region of Mars," said Brian Portock, chief of the Phoenix navigation team at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. The mission's two prior trajectory maneuvers, made last August and October, adjusted the flight path of...

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2008-04-09 13:35:00

PASADENA, Calif. "“ A new stereo view of Phobos, the larger and inner of Mars' two tiny moons, has been captured by a NASA spacecraft orbiting Mars. The High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter took two images of Phobos 10 minutes apart on March 23. Scientists combined the images for a stereo view. "Phobos is of great interest because it may be rich in water ice and carbon-rich materials," said Alfred McEwen, HiRISE principal...

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2008-03-20 14:35:00

WASHINGTON - NASA's Mars Odyssey orbiter has found evidence of salt deposits. These deposits point to places where water once was abundant and where evidence might exist of possible Martian life from the Red Planet's past. A team led by Mikki Osterloo of the University of Hawaii, Honolulu, found approximately 200 places on southern Mars that show spectral characteristics consistent with chloride minerals. Chloride is part of many types of salt, such as sodium chloride or table salt. The...

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2008-03-06 11:05:00

Scientists studying images from The University of Arizona-led High Resolution Imaging Experiment camera on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter have discovered never-before-seen impact "megabreccia" and a possibly once-habitable ancient lake on Mars at a place called Holden crater.The megabreccia is topped by layers of fine sediments that formed in what apparently was a long-lived, calm lake that filled Holden crater on early Mars, HiRISE scientists say."Holden crater has some of the...


Word of the Day
holluschickie
  • A 'bachelor seal'; a young male seal which is prevented from mating by its herd's older males (mated bulls defending their territory).
This comes from the Russian word for 'bachelors.'
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