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NASA is about to reformat the Opportunity rover on Mars

The Opportunity rover on Mars is about to get a reformat by NASA, hasn't been reformatted in ten years
By: Anthony Garreffa | Science, Space & Robotics News | Posted: Sep 2, 2014 2:41 am

NASA is about to get the reinstall discs for its Opportunity rover on Mars, and do a fresh install. The US space agency has been having issues with the Opportunity, where it can't get the vehicle to reboot, with scientists pegging the issue on worn-out cells in its flash memory.




After ten years of service, and trekking the alien landscape of Mars, we should be surprised with its ten-year run. NASA had originally had an expected mission life of just three months, so even with the problems, lasting ten years is quite the achievement. Scientists will soon back up Opportunity's memory, then send a format command to prevent the bad cells from being accessed.


The signal for this action will take 11.2 minutes to reach the Opportunity, as Mars is currently 212 million miles away. Since the Opportunity touched down in 2004, the winds on Mars have kept its solar panels mostly clean, which is another surprising thing to note, especially with an expected mission life of just three months.


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