Andy Lee / Staff reporter
On May 30 1971, NASA started launching rovers to discover facts about Mars, which unfortunately lead to a fiasco. After many attempts, the “Spirit” rover became one of the longest-lasting rovers that have ever been created, which had launched June 10th, 2003 to search for discoveries on Mars, the red planet.
NASA created its “Mars Exploration Rover” which one of the creations was Spirit, to search for evidence of habitability, taphonomy and organic carbon. NASA spent over 650.4 million dollars on collections for discoveries. Since Earth cannot last forever, they say it’s worth the money to find new places to live.
The Spirit rover did find some unique discoveries that other rovers could not find. The discoveries include finding new atmospheric dynamics which are studies of air motion, and one of the main discoveries, finding a new habitable environment. Ancient Mars may have been habitable for millions of years, proven by the “Curiosity” rover, Spirit’s twin rover.
After the creation of Spirit, NASA made an advancement because “the two new rovers that NASA had created made a huge effect on our present earth, they are most likely a more enhanced version of the Spirit rover,” said Paul Hong, grade 10.
The two new rovers, Curiosity, and Opportunity were about 5200 miles away from each other. Curiosity rover came back safely and returned to science operations and is currently exploring “Glen Torridon” that creates lots of clay minerals. On the other side, Opportunity had died due to layers of dust that had coated its solar panels, preventing it from recharging.
Their main discoveries include Curiosity detecting boron, an essential ingredient for life on Earth, and finding a basketball-size meteorite on Mars, which was the first meteorite to be discovered on another planet, which can enhance the research of “stardust” by our NASA scientists.
Overall, the Spirit rover hasn’t made a huge impact on the earth, but it has prepared human for life there in the future. “Even though the Spirit rover did not make much of a difference here on Earth, it did change the developer’s thoughts and stimulated them to create better rovers,” said Ethan Jiu, grade 10.