NASA’s attempt to bring home part of Mars is unprecedented. The mission’s problems are not |

Large value overruns. Key deadlines slipping out of attain. Issues of unprecedented complexity, and a era’s value of scientific progress contingent upon fixing them.

That’s the present state of Mars Pattern Return, the bold but imperiled NASA mission whose quickly ballooning funds has value jobs at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in La Cañada Flintridge and drawn threats of cancellation from lawmakers.

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