Recent high resolution images taken by the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter may provide a long awaited answer to what exactly happened to the Beagle2 rover. The mission, launched by the UK in 2003, sent the rover to the red planet in hopes of learning more about it. That mission was halted when all contact with the rover was lost after attempting a landing. For more details about the mission, read the BBC news article found here.
The images show what appears to be the rover, its decent parachute and rear cover spread out across the barren surface of Mars. Overlays of the rovers design schematics on top of the enhanced image of what experts say is the rover are compelling, but the images are not clear enough for a definite positive identification.
Radio contact with the rover was never established after the landing attempt in 2003. Scientists and engineers feared that the rover had been completely destroyed during the landing attempt due to a miscalculation regarding the thickness of the Martian atmosphere, but these fears may now prove to be be untrue.
Popular theories say that the solar panels which were mounted on surfaces that were supposed to deploy outward from the rover never fully deployed.
Thank you to my good friend Lee Lovett for sharing this on his Crunchbase.com profile.