NASA declares Phoenix Mars lander deadMay 25th, 2010 - 7:04 am ICT by IANS
Washington, May 25 (DPA) A robotic lander that confirmed the presence of ice on Mars was confirmed dead by NASA scientists Monday.
The Phoenix Mars lander was damaged by harsh conditions during the Martian winter and repeated attempts to contact it have been unsuccessful, the US space agency said.
The lander had wrapped up its mission in 2008 and had not been expected to survive the harsh winter, which is twice as long as that on Earth. But scientists needed to make last attempts to contact it in good weather before officially writing it off.
The Mars Odyssey orbiter flew over Phoenix last week, but could not pick up any signals and photographed what appeared to be ice damage to its solar panels.
Phoenix found water in a soil sample during its five months spent examining the red planet for evidence that it could support life. It dug several trenches in the Martian soil near the planet’s north pole and heated soil samples in a series of small “ovens”.
Although orbiting spacecraft had picked up evidence of water, Phoenix for the first time found water inside the planet’s soil. Phoenix also identified minerals necessary for life in soil samples and found perchlorate, a chemical that could feed some microbes and be poisonous to others.
- Three more missions to Mars planned - Nov 24, 2011
- NASA's Odyssey spacecraft sets exploration record on Mars - Dec 16, 2010
- Viking discovered organics on Mars: Study - Jan 05, 2011
- Carbon dioxide frost consigns Phoenix Mars Lander to history - May 25, 2010
- Missing piece of Mars puzzle may reveal whether life existed on planet - Sep 04, 2010
- NASA's Odyssey spacecraft becomes Mars' longest-staying guest - Dec 16, 2010
- Martian weather report reveals ice and fog near surface - Mar 18, 2011
- NASAs Phoenix to collect soil sample in advance of winter - Sep 06, 2008
- NASA's Odyssey orbiter to pass Martian career longevity record - Dec 10, 2010
- Scientists find signs of flowing water on Mars - Aug 05, 2011
- NASA's Mars rovers set new longevity record - May 20, 2010
- Mars had a wetter and warmer climate in the recent past - Jul 03, 2009
- Phoenix lander finds water on Mars - Aug 01, 2008
- NASA's Mars Orbiter completes 5-yr mark - Mar 10, 2011
- New Mars finding dims chance of life - Aug 06, 2008
Tags: five months, good weather, harsh conditions, harsh winter, ice on mars, mars odyssey orbiter, martian soil, martian winter, microbes, nasa, nasa scientists, north pole, ovens, perchlorate, phoenix mars lander, red planet, soil samples, solar panels, trenches, us space agency