Azara Blog: Phoenix spacecraft lands on Mars

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Date published: 2008/05/27

The BBC says:

Nasa says its Phoenix spacecraft is in good health after making the first successful landing in the north polar region of Mars.

Images sent back show a flat valley floor with polygonal features that give the ground a "paved" appearance.

These are believed to be a sign of the water-ice that lies just beneath the surface at these high latitudes.

The ice should be within reach of the probe's 2.35m-long robotic arm, which is due to be deployed this week.

The arm can dig through the topsoil to the ice beneath and scoop up samples to return to the lander's deck for analysis.

Humans manage to land another probe on Mars without crashing it, it shouldn't be big news in 2008 but is. And the bonus is that there is now some exciting science to come.

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