Mars

Curiosity rover communication moratorium in effect until May 1

Curiosity rover communication moratorium in effect until May 1

March was an eventful month for NASA's Mars Curiosity rover, which experienced a variety of issues and delays, some due to problems with the rover itself and others due to conditions outside of anyone's control. Those issues have been resolved, but now starting today a communication moratorium has gone into effect, and Curiosity will be on its own, perhaps taking the most exotic vacation ever, until May 1.

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Mars could be hit by a comet next year

Mars could be hit by a comet next year

A few years ago Jupiter was hit by several chunks of the comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 after the comet broke apart. The massive gravity of Jupiter ripped that comet into pieces and those chunks collided with the planet. Since Jupiter has such a thick atmosphere, all we could see were the effects the impact had on the thick atmosphere.

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Curiosity put back into safe mode due to software error

Curiosity put back into safe mode due to software error

Back on March 11, NASA was scheduled to apply two software patches to its Curiosity Mars rover after recovering from a problem with one of its on-board computers. Now the rover has run into another problem, this time with a software file error that is preventing it from performing most of its duties, though it remains in communication with the NASA team.

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Europe and Russia teaming up for mission to Mars

Europe and Russia teaming up for mission to Mars

NASA may have already landed several rovers on the surface of Mars, but that isn't stopping other countries from trying it themselves. The European Space Agency (ESA) and Roscosmos have signed a deal to launch an orbiter in 2016 that will orbit the Red Planet, as well as plans to put a rover on Mars in 2018 as part of the ExoMars program.

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Mars Curiosity rover finds evidence of habitable life on Mars

Mars Curiosity rover finds evidence of habitable life on Mars

Today during a NASA news briefing on the progress that the Curiosity rover is making on Mars, scientists have revealed evidence that point to conditions of habitable life on the Red Planet. An analysis of rock samples that were collected by the Curiosity rover shows that Mars could have supported living microbes at one point in time.

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NASA holding Mars Curiosity briefing live at 1 pm ET

NASA holding Mars Curiosity briefing live at 1 pm ET

In an effort to update the general public on what's going on with the Curiosity rover on Mars, NASA will be holding a public news briefing today at 1 pm ET, and they'll be streaming it live over Ustream for all to watch. While it's a mystery as to what will be discussed, our guess is that they'll be addressing the recent malfunction with the on-board computer.

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NASA to apply two software patches to Curiosity rover

NASA to apply two software patches to Curiosity rover

Earlier this month, NASA's Mars Curiosity rover experienced its first major malfunction, with one of its on-board computers experiencing a "memory glitch" and failing to go into sleep mode. A few days later, the space agency announced that the rover had been transitioned to its secondary computer and put back into active mode. Now, a tad over a week later, NASA has stated that it is making progress in its testing and assessment of the A-side computer's memory.

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Buried flood channels discovered on Mars

Buried flood channels discovered on Mars

Scientists have discovered some buried channels on Mars that show signs of flooding on the planet. The flood channels were discovered near Mars's equator along a region called Elysium Planitia, one of the youngest volcanic region on the planet. The scientists are currently looking into the cause of the floods, and how they relate to the climate changes on the planet. So far, scientists believe that the flood waters originated from a deep water reservoir that was released by tectonic or volcanic activity.

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NASA prepares Curiosity rover for huge solar flare

NASA prepares Curiosity rover for huge solar flare

Following close on the heels of NASA's Curiosity rover being moved from safe mode back into active status following an issue with one of its on-board computers, the space agency has now put it into sleep mode due to the threat of a giant solar flare. The solar flare is expected to hit Mars later this week, and the Curiosity rover is in the hot zone.

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Mars Curiosity rover is no longer in safe mode, says NASA

Mars Curiosity rover is no longer in safe mode, says NASA

On March 1, we reported that NASA's Mars Curiosity rover had experienced its first big problem, an issue with a corrupted on-board computer that prevented the robot from going into sleep mode. Fortunately, the machine has a secondary backup computer, but the malfunction prompted Curiosity to be put into Safe Mode as a precaution. NASA announced earlier today that it has been transitioned back into its active status.

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Mars Curiosity rover experiences first major malfunction

Mars Curiosity rover experiences first major malfunction

So far it's been smooth sailing for the Curiosity rover on Mars, and it's even taken the time to snap a few Instagram-worthy self portraits. However, NASA has announced that Curiosity suffered its first major malfunction. One of its onboard computers became corrupted and wasn't going into sleep mode when commanded to do so.

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Dennis Tito announces plans to send married couple on a private Mars flyby mission

Dennis Tito announces plans to send married couple on a private Mars flyby mission

Dennis Tito, an American millionaire, announced plans earlier today at the National Press Club to send a married couple on a flyby trip past Mars. This will be done as part of his newly created Inspiration Mars Foundation organization, which was also announced today. As part of the mission, which is set to take well over a year at 501 days, two individuals will be selected - one man and one woman - who Tito prefers to be a married couple.

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