back to article Phoenix prepares to flex its muscles

NASA is preparing to flex the robotic arm on its Phoenix lander following a technical glitch which provoked a temporary comms breakdown between the spacecraft and the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, which relays commands to Phoenix and dispatches information from the Martian surface back to Earth. NASA explains: "The UHF radio …


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  1. dervheid

    "the names of more than a quarter million Earthlings."

    Who will be first to be enlisted as slaves upon the arrival of our Martian Overlords.

    Let's just hope they're not offended by any of the 'art' either.

  2. Stephen Booth

    So thats where it went

    "the names of more than a quarter million Earthlings."

    I think we have just tracked down one of the missing government data disks then.

  3. Ian Hunter
    Black Helicopters


    It looks like the colours have been altered on the picture with the flag and dvd. It's as if they have added more red to it, as that's what people would expect to see.

    I read somewhere that one mission controller on the Pathfinder mission (I think) said they would have clear blue skies for the landing. What's the deal there then?


    The truth is out there.

  4. John Arthur

    "the names of more than a quarter million Earthlings"

    Surely the HMRC could have let them have a CD with a lot more than that on!

  5. Geoff Johnson

    1/4 million names

    That's nothing the British government gives away disks containing millions, along with their addresses and bank details too.

  6. Steve


    Shouldn't that be "Earth creatures" ?

    Where's the kaboom...?

  7. Anonymous Coward

    ... the names of more than a quarter million Earthlings.

    Great, now there's a "Millions" CD being offered to aliens. Baton down the hatches for when the intergalactic spam runs begin... although it should make for some interesting p0rn.

  8. Evil Graham

    Don't worry about the DVD

    It's probably region-coded.

    Using the joke alert icon this time, just in case...

  9. Chris

    Re: Colours?

    From what I've been able to determine from the NASA site, it's an approximate color image compiled from a picture taken with a violet filter, and one with an infrared filter. I doubt they actually have just a plain color camera on board, as it's not the most useful thing in the world.

  10. Tom Chiverton

    @Ian Hunter

    The color-corrected photos take longer to appear than the raw snaps.

  11. Ceilidhman

    under a red red sky

    Due to Rayleigh scattering (, the Martian sky must be blue. If you colour correct stock NASA imagery for the planet, the terrain looks much less 'alien' and indeed looks a lot like similar deserts on Earth, e.g. Arizona. Nasa has always racked up the red on their Martian pics for some unexplicable reason.

    Mines the penguin coz it's cold and there's a lot of water there for them to swim in.

  12. E


    are staying out of view of the cameras while poking the control buttons, and laughing their asses off.

    This is just another case where an extension of the Brit total coverage camera surveillance society system would be useful. The Martians could be prosecuted for vandalism and, hmmm, disrespect.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters

    it's not even there

    it's all a hoax it never really went there..bush gave the money to hilary to pay for the election . next we'll have transmitted live from area 51

  14. Anonymous Coward


    i know this is a great leap forward for mankind and all that, but when i read the article, the only thing that stuck in my mind was the fact that the manager of the mars exploration program at NASA is called 'fuk li'

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