Scooped up Mars dirt

The Mars Phoenix Lander is finally going to scoop up its first Martian soil sample into its laboratory instrument. It's been about ten days since the landing, during which they've only managed to take pictures of the surroundings and try out the robotic arm for a couple of test scoops. Now the lander is finally about to embark on what it's been sent for. I'm looking forward to seeing what it discovers, whether it be actual water, minerals formed with the help of water, or even organics that might be the result of life.

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Mars microscope

The Mars Phoenix Lander has managed to take some really close-up pictures of Mars dust. The picture was taken off of a silicon substrate which was exposed so that dust kicked off when the lander landed would stick to it. I don't know what to make of the picture, but it still gives me a warm and fuzzy feeling to see something so microscopic from Mars.

The image above is from NASA.