In 2003 Europe sent a UK-lead mission to Mars, the beautifully designed Beagle 2 lander. Beagle 2 went missing for 11 years until it was spotted this week by the HiRise camera on NASA’s MRO! The photos reveal that this is not a crash site! Beagle 2 landed successfully but it didn’t fully deploy. It waits patiently on Mars for 11 years! Europe has a lander on Mars and we didn't know it! Just consider how amazing mapping capabilities we have for Mars. Finding the lost Beagle 2 was like a needle in a haystack. Interplanetary hide and seek.
But do you know what else makes Beagle 2 landing on Mars so special? It was carrying art by Damien Hirst and music by Blur.
Yes Europe sent art on Mars 11 years ago!