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EUVE ends mission; MGS enters extended mission
Posted: Sun, Feb 4, 2001, 11:22 PM ET (0422 GMT)
Mars Global Surveyor One NASA space science mission came to an end at the end of January while another completed its primary mission. NASA shut down the Extreme Ultraviolet Explorer (EUVE) spacecraft on January 31, eight and a half years after its launch into low-Earth orbit. The spacecraft was the first to observe the universe at extreme ultraviolet wavelengths and had already completed its three-year prime mission as well as an extended mission. Mission advocates had argued for one more year of observations before the spacecraft deorbits in late 2001 or early 2002, but NASA preferred spending the small amount needed to continue operating EUVE on other missions. On the same day EUVE was shut down, the Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) spacecraft completed its primary mission — one Martian year, or 687 days, in its prime mapping orbit. MGS will continue operating in an extended mission mode for 14 months, including mapping potential landing sites for future missions. Mission managers hope to coax the spacecraft to continue operating into early 2004, when it can serve as a communications relay for two planned Mars rovers.
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