The twin Mars Exploration rovers, NASA’s Spirit and Opportunity, continue to astonish scientists with their endurance and longevity. These rovers were designed to tough it out in the harsh Martian conditions, but they were expected to begin failing not long after they completed their initial missions — which ended in April.
Mars rovers’ longevity amazes scientists Palm Beach Post
Life on Mars? Palm Beach Post
The two Mars Rovers, Opportunity and Spirit, working on opposite sides of the planet, have already achieved their shared goal: to find evidence of liquid water on the barren world. Although they didn’t find actual glistening pools of Martian water, they did discover strong evidence that Mars was once a world drenched in water, with rivers and streams flowing into larger basins and perhaps even an ocean or two. Important questions remain unanswered: Where did the water go? How long was it on the planet? And, because water is one of the key elements needed for life as we know it, was there — is there — life on that hunk of rock next door?