On the week of the 15th anniversary of NASA's Opportunity rover's touchdown, officials are acknowledging that it could be permanently out of commission.
“This could be the end,” principal investigator Steven Squyres told the New York Times on Friday. “Under the assumption that this is the end, it feels good. I mean that.”
Six months ago, Opportunity found itself in the middle of a dust storm that the Times called “one of the most ferocious storms on Mars in decades” — which blocked its solar panels and it may have proven to be too much for the tiny rover to overcome.
“That’s an honorable death,” Squyres told the Times.