To pick a pocket of Mars

With the Japanese probe Hayabusa hitting the surface of an asteroid and possibly bringing a bit back, the BBC’s Jonathan Amos has turned his attention to another big bit of rock we want a scraping from – Mars.

The next big two rover mission to hit Mars will be a combined ESA-NASA mission involving the European ExoMars rover and the American Max-C rover, the latter of which will have the capability to bag and pack samples of the surface of Mars for retrieval by a later mission.

Before then, and using the same rocket landing system, the sky crane, the next rover mission to Mars in 2012 is NASA’s Curiosity, the rover formerly known as Mars Science Laboratory.

In the meantime, we’ll just have to enjoy the data beamed back by the rovers and satellites already there. Combing through such data allowed a group of schoolchildren to recently discover a ‘skylight’ or fallen in part of a lava tube. The reaction of the kids, their teacher and their mother have been put into quick soundbites here.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s