Ten Years Ago, Spirit Rover Lands on Mars

in science •  last year


This mosaic image taken on Jan. 4, 2004, by the navigation  camera on the Mars Exploration Rover Spirit, shows a 360 degree  panoramic view of the rover on the surface of Mars. Spirit operated for  more than six years after landing in January 2004 for what was planned  as a three-month mission. Spirit drove 4.8 miles (7.73 kilometers), more than 12 times the goal  set for the mission. The drives crossed a plain to reach a distant  range of hills that appeared as mere bumps on the horizon from the  landing site; climbed slopes up to 30 degrees as Spirit became the first  robot to summit a hill on another planet; and covered more than half a  mile (nearly a kilometer) after Spirit's right-front wheel became  immobile in 2006. The rover returned more than 124,000 images. It ground  the surfaces off 15 rock targets and scoured 92 targets with a brush to  prepare the targets for inspection with spectrometers and a microscopic  imager. Image Credit: NASA/JPL  Last Updated: Aug. 7, 2017
Editor: Sarah Loff

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It's more than ten years ago, but still that was a nice big step in tech. Your article made me want to see again pictures and movies related to the rovers sent to Mars.