Mars rovers get their due

by Paul Jay, CBCNews.ca

While those plucky Mars rovers continue to brave a dust storm on the Red Planet, Space.com has unveiled a top 10 list of their greatest moments.

Not surprisingly, the discovery of evidence that water once flowed on the planet tops the list of discoveries. The complete list is here, though a word of warning: the layout is a bit jarring.

Missing from the list is perhaps the rovers' greatest achievement: simply lasting this long. Originally designed to run for 90 days, the rovers Spirit and Opportunity have continued to function for over three years since arriving on the planet in January 2004.

It's touch and go right now as to whether the rovers will survive their current crisis, but NASA is providing updates of their status on the website. The next mission to Mars is the Phoenix Mars Lander, which lifts off from Earth on August 3. The next rover, the Mars Science Laboratory, is scheduled to launch in 2009.