Saturday, May 24, 2008



PASADENA, California (Reuters) - A new chapter in Mars exploration opens on Sunday when a small robotic probe jets down to the planet's arctic circle to learn if ice beneath its surface ever had the right chemistry to support life, mission managers said on Thursday.

NASA approved the mission, known as Phoenix, after the Mars orbiter Odyssey found ice surrounding the polar caps on Mars in 2002.

On Earth, the arctic regions hold the history of the planet's climate changes, which are locked layer by layer into the ice core.


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"This is where the history of life is preserved in its purest form -- organic molecules and cellular bacterial microbes and so forth," Smith said.

"We're wondering if this is true on Mars," he said.

The U.S. space agency faces a formidable obstacle before its new round of Mars studies can begin.

Phoenix has to land in a process that requires it to slow itself from 12,000 mph (19,000 kph) to zero in seven minutes.

"This will be a very nail-biting time for us," said Fuk Li, the Mars Exploration program manager at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, which oversees Phoenix.

From 170 million miles (274 million km) away, flight controllers will only be able to watch and wait to learn Phoenix's fate. Radio signals from Mars travelling at the speed of light take 15 minutes to reach Earth, so by the time flight controllers learn that the probe has begun its descent it already should have landed.

Finally, Phoenix has to unfurl its solar power panels to begin collecting energy from the Sun. Otherwise its batteries will last just 31 hours.

"All of these events have to occur exactly as planned," said project manager Barry Goldstein. "The team is very confident in that we've done everything we can."

(Editing by Tom Brown and Vicki Allen)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It's a crime agaisnt humanity to invest and spend so much money on exploring about the life here and there in the space. It's better to go for the governments concerned to make one charitable organisation for the betterment of downtrodden in their countries and see much poverty and suffering is there in their own countries. Water crisis, single moms, orphans, unemloyed people, housing problems, crimes and debt ridden societies, drugs, divorces, sickness and health problems, all these are the things which governments try to search, locate and eradicate by using this money instead of sending missions by spending billions of dollars worth money and time etc.

Muslims are not spending like this because we know already, Allah sent His Prophets and the first Prophet and Man Adam on this earth. That is why we are all here. Allah said in the Holy Qur'an that He has blessed the earth. That is why earth is at zero potential and it also grows vegetation and rice, wheat and fruits etc. There is water and rain. Rain comes from sky to earth. This is the sign of God and we believe in the Qur'an and we don't have to be fools and start thinking about nonsense like spending money in the moon and mars.

for those whom Allah has left to be misguided due to their arrogance and rebelliousness, for them who are not ready to bend and bow before God Almighty Allah and show respect and obedience to Him and His words, Allah has left to roam about without any aim and goal in the life and finally they will be cast to Hell Fire. This is because they took life as some kind of sport and totally disrespected their own intellect and wisdom given by God to recognise God Almighty's power and true words and Religion "Al Islam" and follow His Prophets-peace be upon them. Now the Final Prophet of God has arrived 1400 years before who is called as Mohammad -peace be upon him, it is the duty of mankind to respect him and follow his Sunnah or Traditions and commands along with Qur'anic guidance. He showed us how to follow Qur'anic guidance as brought to us by His Own Sunnah or traditions (acts and life style).

Is there escape from death? Is there escape from Allah? Is there escape from Islam. You can't beat God and Islam. But be ready to be beaten by God's punishments if you are the rebel against God. May Allah make us good muslims and follow His Deen or the way of life-Al Islam which He only gave for us all for success and salvation. Aameen