Five Years on Mars
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The Mars Exploration Rovers have been researching planet Mars for over 5 years now and are still going ...   Too slow? Switch to Low-Res Video

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In Jan 2009, NASA's twin Mars rovers are celebrating their fifth anniversary on the Red Planet, long outlasting the three months they were scheduled to survive. The secret to their success? "It has been a combination of three things," says Steve Squyres, the Mars Exploration Rover Mission's lead scientist. "First, we built some very good hardware, and we're very proud of that." The rovers have also been lucky with the weather. We thought dust could end the mission, but on several occasions we have had lucky gusts of wind hit the rovers and clean the dust away, giving them a new lease of life." The choice of landing sites in reach of hilly terrain has helped also. "We have been able to drive the rovers onto steep north-facing slopes during the wintertime, tilting their solar arrays towards the sun and increasing their power output."
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