PIA11172: Crumpled Heat Shield
Target Name: Mars
Is a satellite of: Sol (our sun)
Mission: Phoenix
Spacecraft: Phoenix Mars Lander
Instrument: Surface Stereo Imager (SSI)
Product Size: 938 x 376 pixels (width x height)
Produced By: University of Arizona
Full-Res TIFF: PIA11172.tif (1.06 MB)
Full-Res JPEG: PIA11172.jpg (45.29 kB)

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Original Caption Released with Image:

The Phoenix Mars Lander's Surface Stereo Imager took this image of the spacecraft's crumpled heat shield on Sept. 16, 2008, the 111th Martian day of the mission.

The 2-1/2 meter (about 8-1/2 feet) heat shield landed southeast of Phoenix, about halfway between the spacecraft and its backshell/parachute. The backshell/parachute touched ground 300 meters (1,000 ft) to the south of the lander.

The dark area to the right of the heat shield is the "bounce mark" it made on impact with the Red Planet. This image is the highest-resolution image that will likely be taken by the lander, and is part of the 1,500-image "Happily Ever After" panorama.

The Phoenix mission is led by the University of Arizona, Tucson, on behalf of NASA. Project management of the mission is led by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. Spacecraft development is by Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver.

Photojournal Note: As planned, the Phoenix lander, which landed May 25, 2008 23:53 UTC, ended communications in November 2008, about six months after landing, when its solar panels ceased operating in the dark Martian winter.

Image Credit:
NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona/ Texas A&M University

Image Addition Date:
2008-09-18