Mars Orbiter Ready for Penetration

NASA engineers are preparing for the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter to make its risky approach to the planet on March 10. The agency has a 65 per cent success rate at getting probes to orbit Mars, compared to 80 per cent for successful landings on its surface.

As it approaches the planet, controllers on Earth anticipate there will be a signal from the spacecraft indicating that a 27-minute engine burn will slow it down and let martian gravity capture it.h