NASA’s Opportunity Rover Declared ‘Dead’ after 15 Years Exploring Mars

This isn’t the end. Opportunity lives on in current and future Mars missions.

NASA’s Opportunity Rover stopped transmitting information eight months ago after an intense dust storm struck the red planet.

Now, after countless attempts to wake up the rover, NASA has declared Opportunity ‘dead’ 15 years after its arrival on the red planet.

The Global Dust storm that engulfed the red planet darkened the sky on Mars and prevented sunlight from reaching the rovers solar panels.

NASA’s ‘Spirit and Oppy’ Twitter Account paid tribute to their lost rover writing:

To the robot who turned 90 days into 15 years of exploration: You were, and are, the Opportunity of a lifetime. Rest well, rover. Your mission is complete. (2004-2019)

NASA said on February 12 it would broadcast a final series of recovery commands, in addition to the more than 1,000 already sent.

By February 13 there was no response, and the rover was declared dead, 15 years after its arrival on the red planet.

The rover outdid itself. Its original mission was supposed to last only a few months, and the rover managed to survive on the red planet for fifteen years.

If you ask me, that’s one hell of a rover.

In fifteen years of exploring Mars, Opportunity made countless discoveries like confirming there was once liquid water on the Martian Surface. The rover found hematite, an iron mineral associated with water, and a vein of gypsum, which is thought to have formed from mineral-rich water moving through rocks on Mars.

Oppy ( as scientists like to call it) also came out as NASA’s most enduring rover; the six-wheeled alien explorer on Mars traveled more than 45 kilometers on the red planet’s surface, snapping countless images of our neighboring planet.

 

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