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Thursday, January 22, 2004

Incommunicado 

This pretty much sucks.

PASADENA, Calif. (Reuters) - NASA scientists said on Thursday they had lost contact with the robot rover Spirit on Mars and were unsure what had caused the problem.

Spirit project manager Pete Theisinger told a news briefing that there was a "very serious anomaly" in communications with the six-wheeled craft, which landed on Mars on Jan. 3 on a planned three-month mission to explore the geologic history of the planet.

Theisinger said scientists had been unable to communicate with Spirit for about 24 hours and had so far been unable to explain the source of the problem.
Spirit is not totally dead, according to the article. It has sent out some basic signals, but mission controllers are unable to send commands to the rover, and the rover is not sending back any useful data.

And things were going so well before. Hopefully they can clear this up. NASA has restored contact with wayward spacecraft several times in the past, so perhaps they can salvage this mission as well.
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