Canada wants in on Mars mission National Post

The Canadian Space Agency is angling for a chance to fly to Mars with a groundbreaking U.S. mission in 2007, and is using work on an innovative planetary landing system to try to impress NASA scientists. Canada’s contribution could also include robotic mining equipment designed to delve below the Martian surface for the first time and dig up a wealth of information on the mysterious red planet. If the agency’s role gets a green light from NASA and budget chiefs in Ottawa, it will probably cost Canada in the hundreds of millions of dollars, an agency official said yesterday. “Mars is one of those subjects that really catches people’s interest and it could be a tremendous education and outreach opportunity … especially for young people,” said Alain Berinstain, the organization’s Mars lead.