Rover Reprieve: NASA Keeps Funding Alive For Spirit, Opportunity | Aero-News Network
Aero-News Network
RSS icon RSS feed
podcast icon MP3 podcast
Subscribe Aero-News e-mail Newsletter Subscribe

Airborne Unlimited -- Recent Daily Episodes

Episode Date

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Airborne On ANN

Airborne 07.18.16

Airborne 07.19.16

Airborne 07.20.16

Airborne 07.21.16

Airborne 07.22.16

Airborne Hi-Def On YouTube

Airborne 07.18.16

Airborne 07.19.16

Airborne 07.20.16

Airborne 07.21.16

Airborne 07.22.16

Tweet Us The Coolest Things You See @OSH16!
#OSH16Coolest!

It's Alive!: AirVenture 2016 Innovation Preview on Vimeo!

It's Alive!: AirVenture 2016 Innovation Preview on YouTube!

 

Wed, Mar 26, 2008

Rover Reprieve: NASA Keeps Funding Alive For Spirit, Opportunity

They Keep Going And Going... Too Long?

Let's face it: NASA never expected in its wildest dreams to be still be funding the Mars rovers Spirit and Opportunity... as they were originally designed to only last 90 days.

Yet here we are, four years on, and both rovers are still plugging away on the Red Planet... an all-too-rare example the government getting A LOT more than it paid for.
But like a hungry infant with a bottle, the rovers need to be nourished... in this case with cash, to keep their research efforts going strong.

According to The Associated Press, last week NASA -- looking to cut any fat it can from its budget -- sent a letter to the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, asking the lab to put one of the rovers in hibernation, and limit the duties of the other.

Both actions would cut about $4 million combined from NASA's Mars budget, money the agency would rather have available towards its upcoming Mars Science Laboratory mission.

That request... understandable as it may be... was met with skepticism in the halls of JPL. Faced with scientific opposition to the plan, as well as an interesting PR dilemma -- the Mars rovers are among NASA's best-known programs to the general public, besides the shuttle and International Space Station -- on Tuesday NASA rescinded the letter.

"This letter was not coordinated with the administrator's office and is in the process of being rescinded," an agency statement reads. "The administrator has unequivocally stated that no rover will be turned off."

The move is a welcome, but likely temporary, reprieve for Spirit and Opportunity... as this issue may very well come up again in the future, as long as both rovers keep functioning. And while Spirit and Opportunity have been hobbled quite a bit by age... by the looks of things, their final days aren't on the visible horizon just yet.

FMI: www.nasa.gov

Advertisement

More News

Airborne 07.22.16: ONE Aviation New Jet, Drone Pilot Nabbed, Stemme Twin Voyager

Also: AEA Giveaway, 44 Trips To OSH, Airbus Drones, Future Pilots, NTSB Training, Air BP, Boeing Forecast, ALPA Milestone ONE Aviation has provided ANN with the initial outline for>[...]

It's ALIVE! 2016 AirVenture Innovation Preview Program Debuting RIGHT NOW!

Get The EARLY Inside Details On THE Most Exciting NEW Innovations And Product Announcements From OSHKOSH... The staff of EAA and the Aero-News Network are pleased to announce that >[...]

EAA Raises The Bar -- Accessible Safety STC Adds More Aircraft, More Devices

STC Can Be Ordered Online Starting Right Now We knew it was coming and we're glad to see it coming along so well and siwiftly... EAA has announced several much anticipated updates >[...]

Airborne 07.21.16: KC46 Update, Fly A P40 at AirVenture?, Runway Conditions

Also: ANN 2016 Oshkosh Schedule, Airplane Efficiency, Federal Excise Tax, A320neo, Jet Demos, 100+ Exoplanets, CFM's $8.2B Deal The KC-46 Pegasus aerial tanker program moved closer>[...]

Teens With Drone Help Solve Boat Theft

Followed The Suspects As Far As They Could And Alerted Police Two teenagers with a camera-equipped UAV helped police catch some suspected boat thieves this week on Camano Island in>[...]

blog comments powered by Disqus



Advertisement

Advertisement

Podcasts

Advertisement

© 2007 - 2016 Web Development & Design by Pauli Systems, LC