Thursday, January 28, 2010

NASA Rover Spirit Hopelessly Stuck

On May 1, 2009 NASA's Martian rover Spirit became bogged down in loose sand that NASA now admits it will not be able to free itself from. After researching methods that might free the rover and trying many different maneuvers, as of January 26th 2010 NASA said that none of the maneuvers proved effective, thus dooming the rover to remain in place. However controlers feel that there are many experiments that the rover is still capable of performing so will continue to operate the craft until such times are the solar cells can no longer charge the system's batteries.

The twin rover missions were to last only 90 days. As of NASA deeming the Spirit rover as no longer a mobile platform, mission elapse time stands at 6 years and 22 days since landing or 24.6 times the planned mission duration.

Gizmodo article

1 comment:

Ron Huber said...

Just wait until a good Martian sandstorm picks up and strips some of the sand away. Then gun the engine, Houston, and rock 'er back and forth a bit, until Rover runs free again!