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Watch MARS Dead or Alive


Mars homepage

This hour-long program is divided into seven chapters. Choose any chapter below and select QuickTime, RealVideo, or Windows Media Player to begin viewing. If you experience difficulty viewing, it may be due to high demand. We regret this, and suggest you try back at another time. Due to rights restrictions this program is not available for downloading and cannot be viewed outside of the United States, its territories, possessions, and commonwealths.

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Chapter 1
Chapter 1 thumbnail A Hostile Environment

The lure of the Mars mission is the possibility that the planet, a frozen desert today, was once an environment suitable for life.
running time 5:17

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Chapter 1
Chapter 1 thumbnail High Stakes

With half of all spacecraft sent to Mars having failed, NASA engineers face enormous challenges in designing rovers that will thrive there.
running time 7:45

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Chapter 1
Chapter 1 thumbnail Unexpected Problems

As the rovers' launch date approaches, the parachute and airbags that will help with descent and landing reveal major flaws.
running time 7:52

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Chapter 1
Chapter 1 thumbnail Where to Land?

Engineers and scientists struggle to choose landing spots both safe enough for landing and geologically promising.
running time 6:59

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Chapter 1
Chapter 1 thumbnail Engineers Prevail

The team finally succeeds in designing a parachute and airbags that will aid the rovers during their descent and landing on the Red Planet.
running time 9:08

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Chapter 1
Chapter 1 thumbnail Time to Fly

The launch window arrives, with the team having done all it can to prepare for things that could go wrong.
running time 10:12

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Chapter 1
Chapter 1 thumbnail Postcards from Mars

After a successful 100 million-mile journey, Spirit lands in Gusev Crater and phones home to NASA.
running time 2:51

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