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NASA confirms cost overruns for Mars 2020 rover
Posted: Sat, Mar 23, 2019, 6:39 PM ET (2239 GMT)
Mars 2020 rover illustration (NASA/JPL) NASA confirmed Monday that the Mars 2020 rover mission is suffering cost overruns. The rover mission, just 16 months from launch, is experiencing problems with two of its instruments and the system that will cache samples for later return to Earth. NASA didn't specify the exact amount of the overrun but said it is less than 15 percent of its previously confirmed cost of $2.4 billion. At a planetary science conference Monday, NASA officials said the agency will look to cover the overrun by seeking efficiencies within the mission itself, and reductions from elsewhere in the Mars program, to minimize the effect on the overall portfolio of planetary science missions. NASA also defended a decision announced earlier this month to remove a magnetometer instrument from the Europa Clipper mission, saying that the decision was based not just on growing costs but other risks in the instrument's design.
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