This artist's concept of the proposed NASA Mars Sample Return mission shows the launch of the martian sample back toward Earth.

This artist's concept of the proposed Mars Sample Return mission shows the launch of the martian sample back toward Earth. This image is part of a series designed to describe the current groundbreaking Mars Sample Return mission concept (see figure 1 below for a composite of the series), with a tentative launch date of 2013.

figure 1 for PIA05486
Figure 1: series composite

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