A Record-Breaking Rover
NASA’s Mars rover Opportunity has boldly gone where no rover has gone before—at least in terms of distance. ____1____
On July 27, after years of moving about on Martian ground, the golf-cart-sized Opportunity had driven more than 24 miles, beating the previous record holder—a Soviet rover sent to the moon in 1973.
“This is so remarkable considering Opportunity was intended to drive about 1 kilometer and was never designed for distance,” says John Callas, the Mars Exploration Rover Project Manager.
____2____ “But what is really importantly is not how many miles the rover has racked up, but how much exploration and discovery we have accomplished over that distance.”
The solar-powered Opportunity and its twin rover, Spirit, landed on Mars 10 years ago on a mission expected to last 3 months. ____3____
Spirit stopped communicating with Earth in March 2010, a few months after it got stuck in a sand pit. But Opportunity has continued to collect and analyze Martian soil and rocks.
During its mission, Opportunity has captured, and sent back to Earth, some 187,000 panoramic and microscopic images of Mars with its cameras. ____4____
The rover doesn’t seem to be ready to stop just yet. If Opportunity can continue on, it will reach another major investigation site when its odometer hits 26.2 miles. ____5____
Researchers believe that clay minerals exposed near Marathon Valley could hold clues to Mars’s ancient environment1. Opportunity’s continuing travels will also help researchers as they plan for an eventual human mission to the Red Planet.
Mars rover n. 火星车
panoramic adj. 全景的
odometer n. 里程计
rack up v. 积累
microscopic adj. 微观的
1.could hold clues to Mars’s ancient environment：含有与火星早期环境有关的线索。
A It has also provided scientists with data on the planet’s atmosphere, soil, rocks, and terrain.
B He works at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California.
C Scientists call this site Marathon Valley, because when the rover reaches the area, it will have traveled the same distance as the length of a marathon since its arrival on Mars.
D Opportunity has been working on Mars since January 2004.
E The objective of the rovers was to help scientists learn more about the planet and to search for signs of life，such as the possible presence of water.
F Since arriving on the Red Planet in 2004, Opportunity has traveled 25.01 miles, more than any other wheeled vehicle has on another world.
2.B 前文引入了一个新人物John Callas，而后文是他说的一些话，因此这里应该填写的内容是对这个人的进一步介绍。
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