News FocusLunar and Planetary Science Conference

Spirit Is Willing, Though Weak

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Science  19 Mar 2010:
Vol. 327, Issue 5972, pp. 1449
DOI: 10.1126/science.327.5972.1449-a

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At the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, there was talk of resurrecting the Spirit rover, which has been stuck since January, or at least a realistic prospect of a return to limited mobility. But first, Spirit must survive the winter. Its handlers are guardedly optimistic that its power levels will not drop so far that the rover's electronics freeze, but no one is making any promises. Next September or October, as spring returns to Mars, Spirit will likely serve 6 months' duty as an essentially stationary geodetic marker in a study of the planet's core.