NASA lost contact with two mini Mars spacecraft and they don’t know exactly why

marco cubesats

NASA’s Mars InSight mission is moving along nicely, with the robotic lander preparing for many months of research that will tell scientists more about the interior of the planet than ever. Unfortunately, two of the machines that helped NASA track InSight’s perfect landing now refuse to answer calls from the space agency, and nobody knows exactly why.

The success of the MarCO mini satellites — named WALL-E and EVE in honor of the futuristic Pixar flick (which isn’t as good as A Bug’s Life) — was a long shot for NASA from the start. The tiny CubeSat spacecraft were designed to track InSight’s position so that NASA could keep a close eye on its progress as it made its way to the surface. They performed better than anyone could have expected, but we may never hear from them again.

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NASA lost contact with two mini Mars spacecraft and they don’t know exactly why originally appeared on on Wed, 6 Feb 2019 at 21:03:46 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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