The Mars Exploration Rovers have each completed their
first Mars Year (687 Earth days) and are close to completing their
second Earth year exploring their respective sites on the Red Planet.
With both Spirit and Opportunity finding new variations of bedrock
in the areas they are exploring, the mission is continuing to send the
team holiday gifts in the form of intriguing discoveries.
There was a big news splash about two articles that appeared in Nature about Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity's landing site. The articles suggest two theories for the formation of the layered sulfur-rich deposits at Meridiani Planum that do not involve standing liquid water.
According to the latest Venus Express Status Reporton ESA's website, the Near Earth Commissioning Phase of the mission has been completed successfully, and the spacecraft is going to be napping for a few weeks as it continues to cruise toward Venus.