Sun Storm May Have Damaged Mars Craft

From a Times Staff Writer

The intense solar activity of the last month may have knocked out a key instrument on the Mars Odyssey orbiter. A radiation monitor used to determine how hazardous Mars would be for astronauts stopped working on Oct. 28.

Efforts to restore the instrument have been unsuccessful, said officials at NASA's Jet Propulsion Lab in Pasadena. It had been collecting data continuously since March 2002.

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