'Life on Mars' lander aims for risky touch down on red planet
The search for life on Mars may take a giant leap on Wednesday when a space lander is due to touch down on the red planet in Europe's first attempt to land a craft there since the Beagle 2's "heroic failure" more than a decade ago.
The disc-shaped 577-kg (1,272 lb) Schiaparelli lander, which will test technologies for a rover due to follow in 2020, is expected to enter Mars's atmosphere at a speed of nearly 21,000 km (13,049 miles) per hour at 1442 GMT.
It will use a parachute and thrusters to slow down before touching down on the planet's surface only six minutes later.
The... read more