NASA’s Opportunity Mars rover was the candle that just kept burning. Built to operate for just 90 Martian days, it lived for over 14 years until yesterday, when NASA officially pronounced it dead.
The Opportunity rover drove over 28 miles on Mars and spent over 14 years providing unique images of the Red Planet to scientists on Earth.
The death knell for the rover was a dust storm in Mars in June 2018 that obscured the Sun and covered Oppy’s solar panels. But the rover didn’t perish without sending out one final message. Transmitted in data bursts on June 10, 2018, the sad message roughly translates to: “My battery is low and it’s getting dark.”