During the first 25 seconds after NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander deploys its parachute, the spacecraft will jettison its heat shield and extend its three legs.

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During the first 25 seconds after NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander deploys its parachute, the spacecraft will jettison its heat shield and extend its three legs.

This illustration is part of the animation featured above.

The Phoenix Mission is led by the University of Arizona, Tucson, on behalf of NASA. Project management of the mission is by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. Spacecraft development is by Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver.

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