Members of NASA Phoenix Mars Mission's Robotic Arm engineering team test the arm's motorized rasp in the Payload Interoperability Testbed at the University of Arizona, Tucson. The testbed has a near-duplicate of the Phoenix lander for use in developing techniques to be used on Mars and for checking commands planned for the lander.
The Phoenix Mission is led by the University of Arizona, Tucson, on behalf of NASA. Project management of the mission is led by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. Spacecraft development is by Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver.
Photojournal Note: As planned, the Phoenix lander, which landed May 25, 2008 23:53 UTC, ended communications in November 2008, about six months after landing, when its solar panels ceased operating in the dark Martian winter.