Beagle 2 shown 'intact' on Martian surface

News emerged last week that the infamous 2003 Beagle 2 Mars Lander has been found on the surface of the Red Planet 'intact'.

High-resolution images taken from orbit have identified its landing location, and 'it looks to be in one piece'.

The Beagle 2 Lander was built in the United Kingdom but was thought to have crashed on the surface during its descent. However, a set of three observations from the NASA Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, using its High
Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera, shows Beagle 2 partially deployed on the surface of the planet, ending the mystery of what happened to the mission more than a decade ago.

They show that the lander survived its Dec. 25, 2003, touchdown enough to at least partially deploy its solar arrays.

The discovery of Beagle comes less than a year after the death of the tenuous project leader, and engineer, Professor Colin Pillinger.

Author
NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory

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