Now a Stationary Research Platform, NASA's Mars Rover Spirit Starts a New Chapter in Red Planet Scientific Studies
View from Spirit's front haz camThis view from the front hazard-avoidance camera on NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit shows the position of Spirit's front wheels following a backward drive during the 2,154th Martian day, or sol, of the rover's mission on Mars (Jan. 23, 2010). The view is toward the north. Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech
WASHINGTON -- After six years of unprecedented exploration of the Red Planet, NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit no longer will be a fully mobile robot. NASA has designated the once-roving scientific explorer a stationary science platform after efforts during the past several months to free it from a sand trap have been unsuccessful.
The venerable robot's primary task in the next few weeks will be to position itself to
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