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Science team recommends NASA 2020 Mars rover collect samples
Posted: Wed, Jul 10, 2013, 6:52 AM ET (1052 GMT)
Mars 2020 rover blueprint (NASA/JPL) A team of scientists recommended in a report released Tuesday that NASA's 2020 Mars rover mission collect and cache samples for later return to Earth. The report by the Science Definition Team for the planned 2020 Mars rover mission recommended that the rover focus on studies to look for signs of past life on Mars. That effort includes collecting up to 31 soil samples and rock cores that the rover would store; a later mission would collect these samples for return to Earth. NASA announced plans last December to send a rover based on Curiosity to Mars in 2020, but at that time had not defined its specific objectives. Including a planetary science "decadal survey" report in 2011 identified a Mars rover mission to cache samples as its highest priority large mission for the next decade.
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