December 6, 1999 |
Despite its most ingenious efforts, NASA once again failed to rouse the Mars Polar Lander Sunday, making it more likely that an entire flotilla of U.S. Mars explorers--a $356.8-million project involving two major spacecraft and two auxiliary probes--has been lost at the Red Planet this fall.
December 7, 1999 |
Jet Propulsion Laboratory scientists controlling the Mars Polar Lander failed early this morning in what was considered the last, best hope for contacting the spacecraft. Beginning at 12:20 a.m. today, flight controllers tried to establish contact with the lander's UHF antenna using a signal relayed through the orbiting Mars Global Explorer. Previous attempts have focused on direct communication using the lander's medium-gain antenna, and controllers hoped the new approach would be successful.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 1, 2000 |
Astronomers who spent the weekend sifting through radio transmissions from space say they have detected no signals from the missing Mars Polar Lander. But project leaders said Monday that they are still trying to contact the craft and have turned to astronomers worldwide for help. Scientists say that if the lander is still operational, they would not expect a signal back before Friday, and a clear indication might not come for several more days. The $165-million craft was lost Dec.
February 17, 2000 |
The Mars Polar Lander is officially lost--again. Hopes were raised late last month that the probe had signaled Earth--and a worldwide flurry of activity began to listen for and decode radio transmissions from space--but NASA officials have once again given up their search for the errant spacecraft. Stanford telescope operators thought they had detected a faint signal that could have come from the lander in January.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 26, 1999 |
The fervent hopes of scientists--including these planetary experts at UCLA--for a successful landing at the south pole of Mars were dashed when the $165-million Mars Polar Lander vanished without a trace Dec. 3 as it began its descent to the surface of the Red Planet. It was the Jet Propulsion Laboratory's second failed Mars mission of the year. In September, JPL's $125-million Mars Climate Orbiter disappeared as it began to orbit the fourth planet.
May 7, 2005 |
Nearly six years after NASA's Mars Polar Lander vanished during a landing attempt on the Red Planet, a scientist said he had spotted what appeared to be wreckage of the spacecraft. The observation came during a reexamination of grainy black-and-white images taken by the orbiting Mars Global Surveyor, which searched for the probe with no success in 1999 and 2000.