Wednesday, September 26, 2007
The most complex spacecraft ever developed for a trip to Mars has been "descoped" because of cost overruns. The $1.7-billions Mars Science Laboratory has lost its Descent Imager and had other experiments "defunded," meaning that no more money will be forthcoming and the development team will have to make do with the budget it has. Planetary scientists are naturally furious, but NASA Headquarters has made it clear there's no money to cover a $75M overrun. The probe is scheduled to be launched in 2009.