A British-built space probe, thought lost on Mars since 2003, has been found on the surface of the Red planet.
The UK Space Agency said :This ended the mystery of what happened to the mission more than a decade ago,
Beagle-2 was released from its mother craft on December 19, 2003 and was due to land six days later.
But nothing was heard from the lander after its scheduled touchdown.
Now, over a decade later, the lander has been identified in images taken by the high-resolution camera on NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO).
This find shows that the Entry, Descent and Landing sequence for Beagle 2 worked and the lander did successfully touchdown on Mars on Christmas Day 2003.
Images taken by the HiRISE camera on MRO have identified clear evidence for the lander and convincing evidence for key entry and descent components on the surface of Mars within the expected landing area of Isidis Planitia which is an impact basin close to the equator.
Subsequent re-imaging and analysis by the Beagle 2 team, HiRISE team and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) has confirmed that the targets discovered are of the correct size, shape, colour and dispersion to be Beagle 2.