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Spirit: End of Mission
post Jun 11 2011, 08:24 AM
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It appears they have [finally] fixed the clock on the MER page and removed the "Sols past "warranty"" line for Spirit.
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post Jun 15 2011, 01:57 PM
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There was a time when I used to sit down at the computer every single day,
waiting for new images to come down from Spirit and Opportunity.
Like so many others here I stood amazed..
It touched my heart to see the scientists behind the mission fall into tears,
when those first images came down onto that big screen at JPL..
I enjoyed playing around with those images, sharing that joy with a bunch
of people here doing exactly the same.
I enjoyed learning from the mission, learning about cameras, geology,
image processing techniques and so forth...
I enjoyed sharing my enthusiasm with my wife, as she sat in the couch
watching tv on her own.. as I was way to hung up looking at alien desert rocks.

There was a time when I would have said that Spirit is dead.
But Spirit is still there -it's a robot after all.. it's parts will deteriorate in
the Martian winds but it could be preserved as we all know.
We all know to well that what really makes us living organisms; our personality,
and everything what makes us who we are, cannot be preserved. We die.
We leave a lifetime of memories, depending on the duration of our staying
here on Earth...

There was a time when I would have been sad for the so-called death of Spirit,
but I'm more than satisfied. I'm more than gratefull for what really made Spirit
something more than just a robot; the real people behind the commands that she
was given in order to function.. the people who sacrificed a lot of time of their lives
to make Spirit do what she did. The people who decided that this wealth of imagery
and other data should be shared with the average man, the amateur astronomer
and others that gather in places like UMSF founded by Doug.

There was a time that all of the people who's names are on the dvd's carried by
Spirit and Opportunity were alive. Undoubtebly a number of those people have died
since the Mars Exploration Mission carried on their names to Mars.
My wife was one of them.
She left on sol 2269 for Spirit, the same number in days from
Spirit's landing to the last Pancam images, or 2208 sols.
I remember thinking 'you are both dying now...'
In memory I like to think of her now as the ancient Greek did,
wandering the plains of Elysium, a province on Mars and the imaginary place in Greek
mythology where the entrance was gained by a righteous life, the island of the blessed,
those who received immortality.

Spirit is what we call dead, but she is still there, just as anything and everyone that
ever left a memory once upon a time. And to quote Einstein; time is an illusion...

So, thank you Spirit, a big thank you to every soul involved in the mission, and another
big thank you for the dvd on board, for taking us to Mars, for eternity !

photographer, space imagery enthusiast, proud father and partner, and geek.

http://500px.com/sacred-photons &
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post Jun 15 2011, 03:59 PM
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I'm moved beyond words. Thanks for this.

Jonathan Ward
Manning the LCC at http://www.apollolaunchcontrol.com
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post Jun 15 2011, 08:04 PM
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My thoughts are with you, Nix!

Need more input ...
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post Jul 24 2011, 01:41 PM
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There's a link: http://www.spaceflightnow.com where "Mission officials and scientists pay tribute to the Spirit rover that explored Mars for six years before succumbing to the harsh Martian winter in 2010". It last 1h14mn50s and it's worth to have a look at. You'll see Steve and much more people talking about Spirit legacy as well as a lot of little stories we all enjoy here.
Since the link point to "home page" of spaceflightnow.com, it'll probably not last long but I didn't find a better one.

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post Jul 24 2011, 03:56 PM
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Here's the direct YouTube link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GkHyBzOjvjg...player_embedded

If Occam had heard my theory, things would be very different now.
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post Jul 24 2011, 05:34 PM
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Some top scientists and engineers are also able to form a compelling narrative to outline their aspirations and accomplishments. This is a wonderful example! Thanks for sharing.

It's interesting to hear SS speak before Spirit had landed on Mars: Planetary Radio December 2003

SS making sure his team got flu shots: "This isn't a sprint, it's a marathon. It'll last for months!" smile.gif
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