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This frame from an animation portrays the unfolding of all three booms making up the antenna for the radar instrument on the European Space Agency's Mars Express orbiter.
This frame from an animation portrays the unfolding of all three booms making up the antenna for the radar instrument on the European Space Agency's Mars Express orbiter.

Deployment of Mars Express Radar Antenna Sections (Artist's Concept)

One of two Mars Exploration Rovers sits inside its cruise stage waiting to undergo environmental testing at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
One of two Mars Exploration Rovers sits inside its cruise stage waiting to undergo environmental testing at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

Mars Exploration Rover Makes Progress

At the Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, the Mars Science Laboratory rover, Curiosity, and the spacecraft's descent stage have been enclosed inside the spacecraft's aeroshell.
At the Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, the Mars Science Laboratory rover, Curiosity, and the spacecraft's descent stage have been enclosed inside the spacecraft's aeroshell.

Mars Science Laboratory Aeroshell with Curiosity Inside

Tests of possible maneuvers for use by NASA's rover Spirit on Mars include use of this lightweight test rover at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.
Tests of possible maneuvers for use by NASA's rover Spirit on Mars include use of this lightweight test rover at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.

Checking Tilt of Lightweight Test Rover

Artist rendition of the formation of rocky bodies in the solar system -- how they form and differentiate and evolve into terrestrial planets.
Artist rendition of the formation of rocky bodies in the solar system -- how they form and differentiate and evolve into terrestrial planets.

Mars Interior (Artist Concept)

NASA's next Mars rover, Curiosity, drives up a ramp during a test at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. The rover, like its smaller predecessors already on Mars, uses a rocker bogie suspension system to drive over uneven ground.
NASA's next Mars rover, Curiosity, drives up a ramp during a test at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. The rover, like its smaller predecessors already on Mars, uses a rocker bogie suspension system to drive over uneven ground.

Ramp Drive Test for Curiosity Mars Rover

This is an artist's concept of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft during its cruise phase between launch and final approach to Mars. The spacecraft includes a disc-shaped cruise stage (on the left) attached to the aeroshell.
This is an artist's concept of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft during its cruise phase between launch and final approach to Mars. The spacecraft includes a disc-shaped cruise stage (on the left) attached to the aeroshell.

Mars Science Laboratory Spacecraft During Cruise, Artist's Concept

The oldest light in the universe, called the cosmic microwave background, as observed by the Planck space telescope is shown in the oval sky map. An artist's concept of Planck is next to the map.
The oldest light in the universe, called the cosmic microwave background, as observed by the Planck space telescope is shown in the oval sky map. An artist's concept of Planck is next to the map.

Planck and the Cosmic Microwave Background (Artist Concept)

In this photo, taken April 29, 2011, technicians install lifting brackets prior to hoisting the 200-kilogram (440-pound) GRAIL-A spacecraft out of vacuum chamber after testing.
In this photo, taken April 29, 2011, technicians install lifting brackets prior to hoisting the 200-kilogram (440-pound) GRAIL-A spacecraft out of vacuum chamber after testing.

Testing the GRAIL Twins

Technicians transfer NASA's Juno spacecraft from its rotation fixture to the base of its shipping container in preparation for a move to environmental testing facilities.
Technicians transfer NASA's Juno spacecraft from its rotation fixture to the base of its shipping container in preparation for a move to environmental testing facilities.

Moving Juno to Environmental Testing

This image of NASA's Juno spacecraft was taken as the vehicle completed its thermal vacuum chamber testing. A technician is attaching the lifting equipment in preparation for hoisting the 1,588-kilogram (3,500-pound) spacecraft out of the chamber.
This image of NASA's Juno spacecraft was taken as the vehicle completed its thermal vacuum chamber testing. A technician is attaching the lifting equipment in preparation for hoisting the 1,588-kilogram (3,500-pound) spacecraft out of the chamber.

Juno Marches On

Researchers at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California, and Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah, collaborated to construct a prototype of a solar panel array that folds up in the style of origami, to make for easier deployment.
Researchers at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California, and Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah, collaborated to construct a prototype of a solar panel array that folds up in the style of origami, to make for easier deployment.

Power Origami

A Ph.D. student in mechanical engineering at Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah, unfolds a solar panel array that was designed using the principles of origami.
A Ph.D. student in mechanical engineering at Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah, unfolds a solar panel array that was designed using the principles of origami.

Unfolded Solar Array

The arm and the remote sensing mast of the Mars rover Curiosity each carry science instruments and other tools for NASA's Mars Science Laboratory mission. This image shows the arm on the left and the mast just right of center.
The arm and the remote sensing mast of the Mars rover Curiosity each carry science instruments and other tools for NASA's Mars Science Laboratory mission. This image shows the arm on the left and the mast just right of center.

Arm and Mast of NASA Mars Rover Curiosity

This close-up photograph taken at the Payload Interoperability Testbed at the University of Arizona, Tucson, shows the motorized rasp protruding from the bottom of the scoop on the engineering model of NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander's Robotic Arm.
This close-up photograph taken at the Payload Interoperability Testbed at the University of Arizona, Tucson, shows the motorized rasp protruding from the bottom of the scoop on the engineering model of NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander's Robotic Arm.

Rasp Tool on Phoenix Robotic Arm Model

A researcher at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, holds a prototype of a solar panel array that folds up in the style of origami.
A researcher at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, holds a prototype of a solar panel array that folds up in the style of origami.

Researcher With Solar Array

This map illustrates where NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander was targeted to land on May 25, 2008, based on expectations as of noon pacific time (3 p.m. eastern time), May 24, 2008.
This map illustrates where NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander was targeted to land on May 25, 2008, based on expectations as of noon pacific time (3 p.m. eastern time), May 24, 2008.

Zeroing in on Mars

Seven minutes before NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander enters the Martian atmosphere, it will jettison the cruise stage hardware that it relied on during the long flight from Earth.
Seven minutes before NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander enters the Martian atmosphere, it will jettison the cruise stage hardware that it relied on during the long flight from Earth.

Cruise Stage Separation

In this artist's concept illustration, NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander begins to shut down operations as winter sets in. The far-northern latitudes on Mars experience no sunlight during winter.
In this artist's concept illustration, NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander begins to shut down operations as winter sets in. The far-northern latitudes on Mars experience no sunlight during winter.

Phoenix Twilight (Artist Concept)

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