February 21st, 2013

India to Launch Mission to Mars This Year, says President Voice of America

India will launch its first mission to Mars this year, President Pranab Mukherjee said on Thursday, as the emerging Asian nation looks to play catch up in the global space race alongside the United States, Russia and its giant neighbor China.
“Several space missions are planned for 2013, including India’s first mission to Mars and the launch of our first navigational satellite,” Mukherjee told parliament.
India will send a satellite in October via an unmanned spacecraft to orbit the red planet, blasting off from the southeastern coast in a mission expected to cost about $83 million, scientists who are part of the mission say.

October 31st, 2012

Mars Soil Similar to Hawaiian Volcanic Soil Voice of America

The soil on Mars appears to be very similar to the volcanic soils of Hawaii, according to scientists at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, NASA.
The results come after the first chemical and mineralogy tests performed on Martian soil scooped up and taken aboard NASA’s Mars rover, Curiosity. NASA said the soil analysis was carried out by the rover’s Chemistry and Mineralogy instrument (CheMin).
The U.S. space agency said the study concluded that the Mars soil sample “is similar to weathered basaltic soils of volcanic origin in Hawaii.”

January 7th, 2012

NASA Rover Takes ‘Winter Vacation’ to Power Solar Panel Voice of America

NASA has sent its Mars Rover, Opportunity, on its first winter working vacation since the solar-powered vehicle began exploring the red planet’s surface several years ago.
Similar to humans who travel to sunny locations during the winter, the robotic rover will spend the next several months literally soaking up sunlight. The U.S. space agency, NASA, says it positioned Opportunity with its solar panel angled toward the Sun to make sure the rover will have enough power to last for the duration of the long Martian winter.
Mission scientists say it was not necessary for Opportunity to be kept in a Sun-facing position the previous four Martian winters because its landing site just south of the planet’s equator gets relatively strong sunlight year-round. They decided to use the maneuver this year because the rover’s solar panels were caked with an unusually thick coating of dust.

May 30th, 2008

Website of the Week — The Mars Society Voice of America

The world’s attention turned again this week to the surface of Mars, as the U.S. space agency’s Phoenix Mars Lander touched down Sunday to begin a 3-month mission digging in the Martian soil for signs of water and life. The mission is generating heavy traffic on the website of the Mars Society – a private worldwide organization dedicated to the robotic and human exploration of the Red Planet. Mars Society Webmaster Alex Kirk says the Phoenix Lander’s arrival on Mars has bumped traffic to more than 100,000 hits a day on the website. “We have all the latest news on the Society, a nice RSS [Really Simply Syndication] feed that gives you all the latest news that we are collecting from around the web, and a news letter that tells you what is going on with both mars and the Society.” The Mars Society has 139 affiliated chapters with members in all 50 U.S. states and 70 foreign countries. Many chapters have websites of their own linked to the site.

March 7th, 2004

Twin Mars Rovers Prepare to Search for More Signs of Ancient Water Voice of America

The Mars twin rovers are preparing to search for more evidence of water on the Red Planet. Last week, scientists announced Opportunity had found geological signs of great amounts of water, an ingredient necessary to sustain life as we know it.
The rovers Spirit and Opportunity positioned themselves at new sites to look for additional evidence that water once flowed on ancient Mars.

February 20th, 2004

Scientists Searching for Martian Water Say Rover May Have Found Mud Voice of America

Soil stuck to the wheels of a U.S. rover on Mars is causing mission scientists to wonder if it is mud. Two rovers are on the red planet seeking evidence of liquid water that might once have supported life. The Spirit rover has arrived at a small depression in the ground nicknamed Laguna Hollow and has wiggled its wheels to disturb the very fine soil. This kind of maneuver allows its instruments to sense minerals below the surface. When the vehicle backed up, scientists noticed that some of the fine soil stuck to its wheel.

February 15th, 2004

Mars Rover Prepares to Dig for Water Evidence Voice of America

One of the U.S. Mars rovers is preparing to dig into soil to look for evidence that water once flowed on the planet that could have supported life.

January 29th, 2004

Martian Water Quest Hits High Gear Voice of America

Mars is under more intense scientific scrutiny than ever. The curiosity is about whether Earth’s cold, barren neighbor was ever wet enough to support simple microbial life. Scientists speculate that liquid water once flowed there because U.S. satellites in recent years have observed channels and other land forms that appear to have been carved by water. Now, two U.S. robot rovers are on the Martian landscape to seek proof of this.

January 1st, 2004

Spirit to Bring Scientific Exploration to Mars Surface Voice of America

A U.S. spacecraft named Spirit is approaching Mars for a landing on the cold, barren, rocky planet. After it arrives, it is to deploy a six-wheeled robotic rover laden with instruments and cameras on a 90-day hunt for water and signs of life. Three weeks later, the process is to repeat itself on the other side of the red planet with an identical lander and rover.

December 23rd, 2003

Landers Approach Mars in Quest to Find Water, Evidence of Life Voice of America

The skies around Mars are getting crowded, and traffic on the ground will soon increase, too. The United States and Europe are sending landers to the Martian surface to provide a broader and closer view of the Red Planet. A major goal is to find water and evidence of life.

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