Opportunity reappears

Mars: Opportunity reappears, but it is still silent

Rover twins Spirit and Opportunity are probably with the Viking probes of the seventies of the twentieth century, the mission on Mars best known in the history of Nasa.

Landed on Mars in 2004, with a duration of their missions scheduled for at least 90 days, the rovers went far beyond. Spirit officially turned off more than 6 years later, with a last signal received on March 22, 2010.

Only a storm has stopped Opportunity

Opportunity managed to operate until June 10th when, due to an imposing sandstorm, it stopped sending signals to the Earth. The storm lasted about 100 days and only a few days ago, on 20 September, NASA managed to find it again, thanks to Reconnaissance Orbiter, Opportunity, still standing on the slopes of the Perserverance Valley.

Rover in safe mode, will it start again?

Throughout the storm Opportunity remained in “safe mode”, with just the Mission Clock active, so as to be able to try to reactivate the rover once the level of dust in the atmosphere of Mars has been reduced to such a point as to allow the solar panels of the rover to recharge the systems.

Opportunity reapperars

For now still no contact

At the moment despite the efforts, NASA has not yet managed to re-contact Opportunity, that could have suffered damage to the cold, like the twin Spirit, or have solar panels covered with dust and therefore not able to recharge.

The longest mission of all time

Scientists all over the world hope however that the little rover (which in the photo of NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona it's a small white dot in the center of the box) can go back into activity by further extending what it is anyway the longest mission of a probe on a planet in the solar system, having already lasted 5111 days operating on Mars.

Tags: Space exploration, Mars