Europe will send a tiny lander on a scorching, supersonic tumble to Mars Wednesday as part of an ambitious quest with Russia to find evidence of life on the Red Planet, past or present.
The weather forecast for faraway, blistering planets called "hot Jupiters" might go something like this: Cloudy nights and sunny days, with a high of 2,400 degrees Fahrenheit (about 1,300 degrees Celsius, or 1,600 Kelvin).
Long before the space age, Earthlings were already in hot pursuit of life on Mars, using primitive telescopes and even psychic mediums to seek evidence of sentient beings.
Europe was poised Tuesday to place a paddling pool-sized lander on Mars and a gas-sniffing craft in its orbit as part of a mission with Russia to scour the Red Planet for signs of life.
Mars as seen by the webcam on ESA's Mars Express orbiter on 16 October 2016, as another mission, ExoMars, is about to reach the Red Planet.
Those who live along the "wet coast" – which is what people living in Puget Sound or the lower mainland of British Columbia and Vancouver Island affectionately call their home – might think that they live in the wettest ...
European-Russian spacecraft were on course for Mars Monday after crucial deep-space manoeuvres in preparation for a daring mission to find evidence of life on the Red Planet.
UPDATE: Ground controllers re-established full links Sunday with a European-Russian Mars orbiter which worryingly stopped sending status updates after releasing a lander on a three-day trek to the Red Planet's surface.
Europe sent a tiny lander on a three-day, million-kilometre (621,000-mile) trek to the Martian surface Sunday to test-drive technology for a daring mission to scout the Red Planet for evidence of life.
On 10 October, ESA's deep-space radio dish in Cebreros, Spain, transmitted an 866 sec interstellar message towards the North Star as part of the international "A Simple Response" project.