NASA’s Opportunity rover runs out of power, goes to Sleep Mode


NASA’s Opportunity has run out of power and not been able to communicate back to the earth. Nasa scientists are waiting for the sunbeams to reach the rover, then Opportunity can recharge its battery with the help of solar cells to communicate back.

But currently, NASA’s Opportunity rover is encircled with the dust storm and these storms are pretty common over the Martian surface.

John Callas, Project Manager for Opportunity at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory has told during the press conference that ” It is like you have a loved one in a coma in the hospital. “You have the doctors telling you that, ‘Okay, you just have to give it time, and she’ll wake up.’ All the vital signs are good, so it’s just waiting it out.” He added: “By no means are we out of the woods here.”

NASA's Opportunity

NASA’s Opportunity is at such low power, it can’t even perform even the basic functions. NASA has confirmed that on June 10th, they received the last radio transmission from the rover. They tried to communicate with the rover on June 12th, but the rover did not reply.

Callas has confirmed that currently, they are waiting for the dust storm to shut off, which will allow the sunbeams to reach the solar cells of the rover and it can recharge its internal battery to communicate back to earth.

NASA's Opportunity

Usually, it takes a month time for Mars dust storm to subside, as of now NASA Opportunity rover has disconnected its battery from the rest of electronics and its internal clock is only running. But one thing which can create trouble is, if Opportunity won’t be able to generate enough power to keep the clock running, then it may end waking up at the wrong time.

Another issue, which can be tricky for the rover, the dust storm can damage the lenses of rover a bit.

Now, NASA is waiting for the storm to calm down and so that the sunbeams can reach the Opportunity.