Mars Rover Beginning to Hate Mars (The Onion)
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31-05-2012, 09:36 AM
Mars Rover Beginning to Hate Mars (The Onion)
Mars Rover Beginning To Hate Mars,2072/

PASADENA, CA—NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory scientists overseeing the
ongoing Mars Exploration Rover Mission said Monday that the Spirit's
latest transmissions could indicate a growing resentment of the Red

[Image: Mars-Rover-R_jpg_250x1000_q85.jpg]
Spirit completes a diagram of an erect human penis on the planet's dusty surface.

"Spirit has been displaying some anomalous behavior," said Project Manager John
Callas, who noted the rover's unsuccessful attempts to flip itself over
and otherwise damage its scientific instruments. "And the thousand or
so daily messages of 'STILL NO WATER' really point to a crisis of

The "robot geologist," as NASA describes Spirit, has been operating
independently for over 990 Martian sols—nearly the equivalent of three
Earth years. However, scientists estimate that, in recent weeks, Spirit
has been functioning on the level of a rover who has been on Mars for
approximately 6,160 sols.

According to Callas, Spirit was operating normally until the onset of
the Martian winter, whose shorter days and frigid temperatures
typically mean a slower pace for exploratory rovers. "We began getting
the occasional transmission along the lines of 'ANOTHER SOIL SAMPLE OF
time, she'd power down and not transmit much of anything, which, at the
time, didn't particularly concern us."

But as the winter lingered, Spirit began producing thousands of pages
of sometimes rambling and dubious data, ranging from complaints that
the Martian surface was made up almost entirely of the same basalt, to
long-winded rants questioning the exorbitant cost and scientific
relevance of the mission.

[Image: Mars-Rover-Jump-R_jpg_250x1000_q85.jpg]

Project leaders receive data from the Mars rover Spirit.

"Granted, Spirit has been extraordinarily useful to our work," Callas said. "Last
week, however, we received three straight days of images of the same
rock with the message 'HAPPY NOW?'"

Mission Project Scientist Bruce Banerdt said that Spirit will often
roll down Gusev crater and up the opposite side for no apparent reason,
missing "countless" potential opportunities for scientific discovery.

"Once, when we radioed her to please leave the lecturing and
hypothesis-making to the mission project team, she responded by forming
her robotic arm into an obscene gesture," Banerdt said. "That arm
contains a state-of-the-art spectrometer meant to provide crucial
mineralogy data."

Project organizers said the most distressing instance of erratic
behavior occurred last week, when images from the Mars Reconnaissance
Orbiter revealed that Spirit had scrawled the message 'FUCK MARS' in the
thick, iron oxide dust that gives the planet its characteristic red

"The orbiting Mars Odyssey has cut off transmissions from Spirit,
which seems to envy the craft's ability to fly freely around in space,"
Banerdt said. "Similarly, data suggests Spirit is convinced that [sister
rover] Opportunity has found water and isn't telling anyone."

Despite these malfunctions, mission leaders remain optimistic that the rover will eventually return to full working order.

"Hopefully these malfunctions will straighten themselves out," Callas
said. "In the meantime, we'll simply have to try to glean what usable

NASA remains optimistic that the rover will remain at least partially
operational for the foreseeable future. However, because of the
Spirit's recent proclivity toward ramming into boulders at full speed,
scientists have remotely disabled its 1.5-pound rock-abrasion tool so
the rover is unable to terminate the mission prematurely.


"We were conservative Jews and that meant we obeyed God's Commandments until His rules became a royal pain in the ass."

- Joel Chastnoff, The 188th Crybaby Brigade
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31-05-2012, 04:35 PM
RE: Mars Rover Beginning to Hate Mars (The Onion)
Fucking hilarious! Thumbsup Bowing

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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31-05-2012, 05:59 PM
RE: Mars Rover Beginning to Hate Mars (The Onion)
Aww, poor Spirit Sadcryface (or maybe she should now be called 'Lost Spirit' Tongue )

Humankind Dodgy (a total misnomer)
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