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A Decade in Mars Orbit

NASA/JPL-Caltech/Univ. of Arizona
NASA/JPL-Caltech/Univ. of Arizona
On March 10, NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter reached its 10th anniversary in Mars orbit. The spacecraft has provided a wealth of data about how Mars has changed during past eras, and has directly observed how the environment changes over seasons and years. Its HiRISE camera provides some of the most spectacular images we see of the planet (at right is Gale Crater, where the Curiosity rover is working). Every week MRO sends to Earth more data than the other six Mars missions combined, and over its lifetime has provided 264 terabits of data, more than all interplanetary missions—past and present—combined.

Heather Goss is the Departments Editor at Air & Space.

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