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Mars Exploration Rovers Update: Opportunity Wraps 2016, Heads into 2017 Toward 13th Anniversary

A.J.S. Rayl • December 31, 2016

As 2016 came to an end and 2017 rang in, Opportunity was working the first leg of the ascent up the rugged western rim of Endeavour Crater on her way to an ancient gully, the next scientific tour de force down the road, and the mission was closing in on its 13th anniversary of surface operations coming up in the New Year.

China outlines its space exploration ambitions

Andrew Jones • December 27, 2016 • 1

China released a new white paper on its policy and activities in space, outlining ambitious deep space exploration, human spaceflight and space science projects as major priorities for the years up to 2020 and beyond.

Field Report from Mars: Sol 4588 - December 20, 2016

Larry Crumpler • December 20, 2016

Opportunity continues to climb up the inner crater wall of Endeavour crater, heading south on its journey toward its next valley target.

Planetary discovery over the past quarter century

Steven Hauck • December 20, 2016 • 1

2016 marks the 25th anniversary of the creation of what has become one of the primary venues for the publication of research in planetary science: the Journal of Geophysical Research: Planets. This occasion is a good opportunity to look back at what we have learned in this era of expanded exploration and to try to take a peek at the future.

Curiosity update, sols 1489-1547: Drilling at Sebina, driving up through Murray, drill problems at Precipice

Emily Lakdawalla • December 12, 2016 • 1

It's been a drive-heavy two months for Curiosity. Since my last update, the rover has drilled at a site named Sebina, then traveled about 500 meters to the south across increasingly chunky-looking Murray rocks to a new attempted drill site at Precipice. They were planning to attempt a new drilling technique at Precipice, but encountered a new problem with the drill instead.

Field Report from Mars: Sol 4577 - December 9, 2016

Larry Crumpler • December 09, 2016

Opportunity has begun the ascent of the steep slopes here in the inner wall of Endeavour crater after completion of a survey of outcrops close to the crater floor. The goal now is to climb back to the rim, drive south, and arrive at the next major mission target on the rim before the next Martian winter.

Mars Exploration Rovers Update: Opportunity Departs Spirit Mound, Embarks on Toughest Exit Ever

A.J.S. Rayl • December 02, 2016 • 1

Opportunity worked along Endeavour Crater's western rim through November, taking pictures, hiking slopes, and finishing work in the depths of Cape Tribulation.

Schiaparelli investigation update; crash site in color from HiRISE

Emily Lakdawalla • November 23, 2016 • 11

ESA issued an update on the Schiaparelli landing investigation today, identifying a problem reading from an inertial measurement unit as the proximate cause of the crash. Meanwhile, ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter is operating its science instruments for the first time this week, and HiRISE has released calibrated versions of the Schiaparelli crash site images.

Subsurface Water Ice in Utopia Planitia, Mars

Cassie Stuurman • November 22, 2016 • 2

Martian radar expert Cassie Stuurman explains how the SHARAD instrument aboard NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter was used to detect buried ice deposits.

HiRISE coverage of the Opportunity field site, version 1.0

Emily Lakdawalla • November 18, 2016 • 1

As she did before for Curiosity, Emily Lakdawalla has searched through the HiRISE image archive for photos of the Opportunity landing site and sorted them all out so that you don't have to.

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