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NASA To Attempt 'Reset' On 10-Year Old Mars Rover

02/09/2014 11:57 BST | Updated 02/09/2014 11:59 BST

With all the attention going to the Curiosity rover it's sometimes easy to forget the veterans that have also been scouring Mars.

READ MORE: Mars Curiosity Rover Shows Its Age In Incredible New Selfie

In this case NASA's Opportunity rover has been scouring the red planet for 10 years, a staggering nine years and nine months longer than NASA's original three month projected lifespan for the rover.

opportunity rover

Sadly even rovers age and recently Opportunity has been rebooting itself with little or no warning suggesting that the hardware is beginning to show its age.

Thankfully John Callas of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory confirms that the problem is solvable.

"Worn-out cells in the flash memory are the leading suspect in causing these resets...reformatting is a low-risk process, as critical sequences and flight software are stored elsewhere in other non-volatile memory on the rover."

The flash cells are where Opportunity stores non-essential data like images, video and research information so thankfully when the team reboots the rover it won't lose any core functionality.

Of course it's never as easy as just pressing the restart button. NASA will need to send the command over 125 million miles.