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Venus probeThis is an artist's impression of the Venus Express entering Venus' orbit on Tuesday. In this phase of the mission, the most challenging since launch, the spacecraft's main engine burns for about 50 minutes to reduce its speed as it approaches Venus. This enables the Venus Express to be captured by the planet's gravitation.
"Everything went as it was planned, clearly, without difficulties," said Gaele Winters, the European Space Agency's director of operations. "This is a great success."
Venus Express control
The Venus Express flight control team follows the orbit insertion manoeuvres in the main control room at ESA's Spacecraft Operations Centre in Darmstadt, Germany.
Spirit's last ride?Despite a broken wheel, the Mars Rover Spirit is crawling across the Martian landscape to find haven for the winter. Spirit is currently navigating through rough terrain to reach a hillside that gives enough sunlight to keep it running over the dark Martian winter. Currently, Spirit can operate about an hour a day over flat ground.
Spirit is still working. This photo shows where the right wheels of Spirit were grinding in the soil, prompting NASA to backtrack the rover and attempt another route.