What will happen to a dead Opportunity unit on Mars?

What will happen to a dead Opportunity unit on Mars?

The NASA Opportunity Mars Rover displays its own shadow in a photograph dated July 26, 2004. The image was taken by the front camera when the rover moved to the Endurance crater on the Meridian Plateau.

NASA's Mars scout Opportunity is officially considered dead. Most likely, during the large-scale dust storm of 2018, he had discharged solar batteries. The last time they tried to contact him on February 13, they received no answer.

What will happen to his body? It is important to understand that many human artifacts are not able to last long beyond the limits of the Earth’s biosphere. Already they say that solar radiation should have destroyed the Tesla Roadster Ilona Mask, which was launched last year. But such machines are represented by a large number of organic fibers and plastic, but the rovers create more durable materials.

Opportunity has plastic parts that can break when exposed to sunlight. For example, such a fate is prepared isolation. But most scientists tend to believe that the rover will remain in the same condition as it arrived. That is what the future colonists will find it once (in the next 100-200 years). It is important to take into account the dust settling factor. Opportunity continued to work for so long, because the Martian winds regularly blew dust from the apparatus. But if you take a long period of time and the immobility of the rover, then it is difficult to say who will win (dust or wind). But still there are doubts that the device will rest in the mound.

And if you rewind millions of years ahead? On our planet, all static, dead and old objects are buried underground. But this is affected by the tectonics of water and plates (these factors are different on the Red Planet). In the future, aliens or colonists will be able to find the rover, as our archaeologists find ancient relics, fossils and dinosaur bones.

However, NASA hopes that people will find the rover. Now actively developing projects to create a sustainable settlement. The agency has no plans to return the device to Earth (this is too expensive and meaningless). However, the colonists could deliver it to the dome (or any other type of settlement) and use it as a museum piece.

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