NASA anxious to hear from Mars rover as dust storm clears

National News

August 31, 2018 - 11:00 PM

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — NASA is anxious to hear from its dust-silenced Mars rover, Opportunity, as the planet’s red skies clear.

Flight controllers have been on the alert for a message from Opportunity ever since a dust storm enveloped Mars in June and contact was lost. The storm has finally diminished. That means the sky is now clear enough for Opportunity’s solar panels to receive sunlight and fire back up.

But NASA this week warned it may never hear from Opportunity again. If there’s no word back in the next couple of months, NASA said it will cut back on its listening effort. Even if a message does get through, that may be the most the rover — mute since June 10 — can muster.

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