SCIENCE IN THE NEWS DAILY
Unknown Problem Interrupts Mars Lander's Task
from the San Francisco Examiner
PHOENIX (Associated Press) - The first sample of Martian dirt dumped onto the opening of the Phoenix lander's tiny testing oven failed to reach the instrument and scientists said Saturday they will devote a few days to trying to determine the cause.
Photos released by the University of Arizona team overseeing the mission showed a scoopful of dirt sitting on and around the open oven door after being dumped by the craft's 8-foot robot arm.
But none of it made it past a screen and into the tiny chamber, one of eight on the craft designed to heat soil and test gasses for signs of water or organic compounds that could be building blocks for life.
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PODCAST & VIDEO: Engineering Around Extreme Events
Extreme events, such as super floods and hurricanes, are becoming more common, so civil engineers are trying to adapt civil infrastructure such as bridges to these unpredictable and sometimes devastating meteorological events. Engineer Ana Barros discusses how engineering can prepare us for extreme weather events, but also how changing climate and population conditions can affect the ability of infrastructure to hold up over time.
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