The Mars Spirit Rover which landed on Mars over six years ago was intended to provide initially only three months of research. But the Mars rover broke all expectations and has been providing critical data about the Mars environment ever since it landed.
Even with a broken front wheel the researchers have still been able to explore the surface, driving backwards and using the useless wheel as a dredging tool to check what lies just under the surface of Mars.
Unfortunately in September 2009 the Mars Spirit rover became embedded in soft sand and has been unable to move from its position. It is still providing critical data to the researchers at NASA’s Mars command centre and its new mission is now to act as a stationary Mars outpost.
But it doesn’t look good for the Spirit rover as winter approaches on Mars its power may fall critically low as it can’t realign its solar photovoltaic panels two point in the direction of the sun.
Luckily Masters of the Mars Rover dropped on the other side of the planet is still functioning perfectly.