December 20th, 2002

Mars search mission prepares for lift-off The Scotsman

The smallest and most sophisticated spacecraft of its type ever designed was being packed up yesterday in readiness for its mission to search for life on Mars next year. Scientists at the Open University in Milton Keynes were preparing to close the lid on the Beagle 2 landing craft, which weighs a little more than its canine namesake and is the size of a bicycle wheel.

May 13th, 2002

Woman The Scotsman

A pensioner has offered a female astronaut

May 10th, 2002

Scots scientist trains for a mission to Mars The Scotsman

A Scottish science student who hopes to be the first human on Mars has been selected from hundreds of candidates across the world to start training for a mission to the Red Planet. Emily MacDonald, 24, will join a team of six researchers living in a replica space probe placed in the Canadian Arctic to simulate the extreme Martian weather conditions. She will spend three weeks conducting tests in the cramped 27ft diameter pod, known as a human habitation module, with outside temperatures reaching -30C. Miss MacDonald, from Troon, Ayrshire, who is studying for a PhD in astrophysics at Exeter College, Oxford, was selected from more than 400 applicants to take part in the experiment. After completing her spell at the Mars Arctic Research Station on Devon Island, in July, she plans to spend time in a second replica Mars station in the Utah desert.

October 21st, 2001

Mars hopes rest on America The Scotsman

The latest mission to Mars arrives at the Red Planet this week, marking a crucial next step for a planned British-led search for life on its surface. The US has high hopes its Mars Odyssey spacecraft, which reaches Mars

August 3rd, 2001

Life, But not as we know it The Scotsman

Are we the new Martians? No, we

June 13th, 2001

Red letter day for stargazers The Scotsman

IT WAS like something straight out of a science-fiction film – a close encounter of the Martian kind in the form of a bright red disc hovering over the tops of trees and houses. However, while the spectacular sight was expected to trigger a flood of UFO reports last night, the Earth was not about to be invaded by the little green men. The strange red phenomenon was the planet Mars making its closest approach to Earth in more than a dozen years. The planet was a mere 42 million miles away – close enough for the polar ice caps to be seen through a small telescope.

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