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The Road to Endeavour

Opportunity – still roving…

26 Sep 2017, 10:37 UTC
Opportunity – still roving…
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I do a lot of astronomy and space exploration Outreach work – talks, observing nights etc – and it will surprise none of you to learn that one of the subjects I talk most about is Mars. There’s a lot of interest in Mars “out there”; thanks to films like “The Martian” , the recent NatGeo series “Mars” and science fiction in general, people are as fascinated by the red planet today as they have ever been. Which is great! But one thing I hear time and time again when I give my talks, or talk to people about Mars as I’m pointing it out in the sky, is: “Is that Mars rover still working?” But they don’t mean Opportunity, they mean Curiosity, either because they assume Opportunity died years ago, or because they didn’t even know about Opportunity in the first place. Boy, are they amazed to learn that there are not one but TWO rovers on Mars, and Opportunity has been there since 2004…!
And yes, I’ll admit it, that hacks me off.
I’ve thought for quite a while now that Opportunity isn’t given the credit she deserves, not by space reporters (with the notable exception of AJS ...

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